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  1. #1
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    What to wear in under 40F environment?

    Hi all, I am new here.

    Just wanted to know how do you guys do your winter tour.

    on my last tour the highest temperature during the day was 40F, I had the following clothes on

    silk Balaclava+helmet
    Icebreaker Merino 200 T shirt
    Icebreaker Merino 320 Long Sleeve
    Northface Windstopper
    Icebreaker Merino 260 Long john
    Shorts
    Icebreaker heavy socks
    SPD Gore tex boots

    This is enough to keep me just warm and eventually I will start to sweat and soon the inner layer will be wet due to the sweat, and when its wet, its cold.... the cyclist I have met they deal with this by taking off a few layers as they get warmed up.

    What are your ways to combat this?

  2. #2
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    Layer up but remember to use your layers.
    A really convenient way to shed insulation is to wear a padded gillet (sleeveless jacket) on top of your windproof.

  3. #3
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    A balaclava at 40F???

    Take the layers off before you climb, put the layers on when you get the top of the climb.

    And if you start sweating within about 15-30 minutes of starting out, you're wearing too much. Stop and take a layer off. It is normal ... good, in fact ... to feel chilly during the first 15 minutes or so of your ride.

  4. #4
    commuter and barbarian scroca's Avatar
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    What's that Northface Windstopper thing? If it prevents wind from getting in it likely traps sweat too. Seems like the layers of merino wool would be the better idea.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member Cyclebum's Avatar
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    I use a compression T as a first upper layer. Wicks sweat and protects the other layers from body oils. Less washing.

    A wool watch cap under my helmet stiffles the heat sink that is my head. Usually the first to go.

    For the hands, a pair of insulated glooves. I carry a pair of extra large 'chemical protection gloves' as an overlayer in case of rain, and/or as a windbreak for my hands when it's that cold.

    My yellow Northface Venture rainsuit is a major component of cold weather riding. Obviously a windbreak, but it 'breathes' nicely, allowing some air flow. This plus one or two upper layers, as needed for the temp, keeps my core warm. Unzip/shed as needed.

    Lower layers can be thermals plus jogging pants plus, in extremis, the rain paints. The jogging pants double as off bike garb.

    Shoe booties for rain and a couple pair of wool socks completes the packing.

    The goal is to minimize the garment count and maximize the protection. My winter gear adds about 4 pounds and a lot of bulk to the clothing pannier when not in use.
    Last edited by Cyclebum; 05-28-11 at 06:41 PM.
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  6. #6
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    cold weather clothing? below 40 is close to freezing, and if its only 40 during the day, most likely it will be below freezing at night. you could see snow. so for snow,



    when it gets really cold and i'm on tour, neckwarmer, layers, wool, knickers and knee socks, windshell clothing with vents for top, sometimes bottoms, windstopper fleece only in hat under helmet. Extra layer of clothes around camp, including a full hoody puffy coat, mukkluks that can be pulled over shoes or socks for around camp or while riding in an emergency, and a couple of ways to semi-dry things at night in the tent if possible.

    Last edited by Bekologist; 05-28-11 at 11:11 AM.
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  7. #7
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    I'm sweating just reading the first post. My winter wear is chamois under mtb knickers, a ss jersey, a raincoat OR polartec jacket (It has to be below 20f or so to wear both, and I usually take one off into the ride) knee warmers if necessary, and smartwool crew length socks. If the weather is terrible I will wear ski length socks, but change into shorter socks if it heats up. I have a polartec headband I wear under my helmet. I wouldn't wear a balaclava above 10f, unless it was wintry mix type weather or super windy. I never wear tights or thermals, they make me too hot and I can't take them off easily.

  8. #8
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    Down to 33 and raining: PI poly skullcap, long sleeve Polar undershirt, long sleeve poly jersey, non-waterproof, thin microfiber jacket, bring wind vest, long-fingered gloves (experiment to find right pair), PI Elite Thermal cycling tights (with pad), thickish, short Smartwool socks, Sidi Dominator shoes, Sugoi booties, or Lake MTB winter boots instead of the shoes and booties. If raining, put a dry suit leg seal on your bare leg right above the sock/shoe to keep water from running down your leg into your shoes. Very easy to keep warm in dry conditions - could sub a summer jersey and arm warmers. Harder when wet - bring a spare pair of socks, maybe spare gloves.

  9. #9
    family on bikes nancy sv's Avatar
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    The key is layers, layers, and more layers. Put layers on and take layers off accordingly. It takes some practice to figure out which layers will work for you, but you'll figure it out after a while. I found that a wool hat was the most versatile layer I had - I could put it on first thing in the morning and then take it off within 10 or 15 minutes once I warmed up. I could have done the same with an extra shirt, but the hat was easier. I also discovered that my ears got cold, so I carried a plain cotton scarf and put that on my head once I took off the wool hat - that was enough to protect my ears, but not enough to heat me up.
    WE DID IT! Our little family of four cycled 17,300 miles from Alaska to Argentina! The trip of a lifetime for sure. www.familyonbikes.org

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