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Old 08-04-10, 07:51 PM   #1
Surly Q
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Leaving for Seattle in two Days!

My adventure is just around the corner, and I can hardly believe it! I shipped my bike and gear to my niece's house, (she lives near Seattle) and I fly there on Friday. I plan to start my journey on Monday. I can't tell you how excited I am! I'm having trouble sleeping and usually that is not a problem for me!

It was cheaper for me to fly and ship my gear than take the Amtrak which was my original plan. But this way, I get to travel with my sister, spent some time with my family, and get some loose ends tied, before I'm on my bike.

One of those loose ends, and this sounds a little trivial after all the preparation (packing, repacking, weighing, taking stuff out, etc, etc, etc) is what do do with my head in the rain. I've covered my body. In fact, one of my biggest splurges was on a shower pass elite rain jacket, but I didn't purchase the hood part. I just think that if someone spends that much money on a rain jacket, the hood should be included! and not cost extra. In any case, I think the hood restricts vision and head movement. But how to keep my head dry and water from running down my back? that's the question. A shower cap? keeps your head dry but does water still run down your back? If anyone has advice in this regard, I'd so be happy to hear it!

I figured that when I got to Seattle, I might find something that would fit the ticket. Seems like a good place to buy rain gear!

Just wanted to touch base here and let you all know how appreciative I am for your good advice and help. I going to do an online journal for family and friends (they think I'm crazy), so I'll still be checking here, too.

Tailwinds!
SurlyQ

Last edited by Surly Q; 08-04-10 at 07:58 PM.
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Old 08-04-10, 07:57 PM   #2
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best thing to do for your head in the rain is find the nearest coffeeshop and sit a spell!

no, seriously, it won't be raining that much, a shower cap should be sufficient. after all day in a rain, there's water inside your coat wether you have a hood on or not, usually. i wouldn't sweat it.

if you want you can also purchase a goretex cycling cap but doubt it wouldn't get worn much in the summer... but if you want that cap, check at Gregg's Greenlake Cycle, saw some last time i was there!
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Old 08-04-10, 09:39 PM   #3
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Hi, another Seattle rider here (I ride a lot in the rain...)

The Showers Pass rain hood is *very* nice, but not sure it would be worth it to you in the summer; it doesn't rain around here much in the summer (my grass is dying as I type...).

But I wear a rain cap over my helmet in the rain, and if it's *really* wet I wear a baseball cap under my helmet, too. The bill on the hat shields my face from the rain. I wear glasses, so it keeps those dry (or at least drier) during the rain, too.

If you're coming into downtown Seattle, the best selection of apparel and rain gear is likely going to be REI's big downtown store on Yale. Recycled Cycles, also close to downtown, has a decent selection of apparel as well. The *best* bikeshop in downtown Seattle is Elliott Bay Cycles, in Pike Place Market, at Lenora & Western. They have great stuff; their riding gear is top quality stuff but the selection can be small.
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Old 08-05-10, 06:28 AM   #4
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Yeah we are in our dry season right now so you should be fine with the showercap and a lighter rain jacket. The showerspass might be overkill but depending on how long you will be here it can start raining in a heartbeat. Have fun and if all else fails sit in a Stabucks and people watch at Pike Place market, its definitely a good place for that.
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Old 08-05-10, 07:35 AM   #5
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Thanks! I forgot to mention that I am headed down the coast to San Luis Obispo. I am hoping that I don't need my rain gear and at some point, can ship it home. I think that I will just get that shower cap and find a coffee shop if that fails! I plan on taking it nice and slow and smelling the roses along the way. Thanks again for your reponses.
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Old 08-05-10, 07:42 AM   #6
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Even if it rains this weekend, it's gonna be in the low-mid 70s down here, way too warm for a jacket, IMO. I'm gonna roll with fenders and call it good. Shorts and short-sleeve shirt will be worn.

I'd leave Seattle pre-dawn Saturday or Sunday, or take a bus down to Tacoma or even OLY (if leaving mid-day) because I hate cycling in most parts of Seattle when most people are awake. This is assuming you're going straight south and not taking in the Olympic Peninsula.

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Old 08-05-10, 07:55 AM   #7
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Have a great ride!

as hoods do affect vision, there has been a Louis Garneau helmet cover available that has a Beau Geste like rear neck flap that does a fair job of funneling the water away from your neck in a total monsoon, but they are difficult to find if even produced, and make one look goofy unless its really, really raining.

perhaps for the future.
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Old 08-05-10, 09:02 AM   #8
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I have a waterproof helmet cover for on the bike and a zip-on hood for my jacket for in camp. Mostly I haven't needed them, but I had one downpour day (in northwest Washington) where they were invaluable. Just my 2 cents. I still carry them on every tour over a week (when I feel reasonably able to count on weather forecasting.) Better to have them and not need them than vice-versa.
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Old 08-05-10, 09:51 AM   #9
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as to shipping your rain gear home...I wouldnt, partly not to cross the "rain gods" but also because when I did this trip about 15 yrs ago, albeit in late June, it was often cool, and having a wind shell (my rain jacket) was handy, in the evening at campsite, morning etc.

I mean, a windshell slash rain jacket, rain pants and rain booties dont weigh much in the big scheme of things, and its a drag to get all wet (especially your shoes) so I like to have mine. The Murphys Law effect basically.

rain booties are a great invention. here in Montreal at Mountain equipment coop MEC, they sell some for 25 or 30 bucks, I have had mine for at least 15 years (after a trip in France wehre wet shoes and wet feet brought on a cold, was miserable, cold and wet feet) They are tough, last forever if you dont tap dance on cement with them on, and as a biker, they are simply very very handy. Here in Mtl, I ride often into November or even early dec if dry, and these rain booties work wonders to keep your feet warm as well, blocking the wind obviously and with warmer wool socks, they work great.

ps, these are rain booties, not the neopryne (sp?) ones just for cold, which arent waterproof.

your route is a nice trip. I have many good memories of it. Loads of bikers too.

cheers from a stranger
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Old 08-05-10, 10:26 AM   #10
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FWIW, overcast and more or less drizzle, mid 50s to mid 60's, on this patch of the coast, .. several microclimates,
'dry' season is relative .., mudslides are reduced at least..
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Old 08-05-10, 10:45 AM   #11
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I'm with djb. Definitely don't ship the rain jacket home. It'll be a great shell for nights and mornings, maybe even the first 5 miles of your rides. fietsbob's OR coast forecast is still above jacket weather for me, but some folks like jackets in those temps.
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