Need Some Help Gearing up for Winter/Wet Riding.
I will say this... If it is below 25 degrees outside (Not very common in WA)... I am a wussy and will stay inside with my book. Rain doesn't bother me as long as I stay dry. I got into cycling last summer and I am getting ready to give the bike its first full tune up of the season... I would like to go out and ride and get ready for the summer riding which I love. I have considered just buying a trainer a Cycle ops 2 which I have found for 200 bucks or I could just buy the gear. I am looking for some trusted brands but I don't want to dump a fortune. My budget is about 250 for the clothes all together. it is worth noting that I get warm easily So I don't think I will need 3 layers of pants, 6 layers for my core, and 2 balaclavas. Any suggestions for this newbie-cyclist trying to break into the rain/winter weather riding? (fenders for the bike are a given) I cruised the forums and either missed some of the threads or the ones I was looking at didn't really have brands. I also like high visibility items such as the Neon yellow because I really don't want that car to not see me and end up as a hood ornament.
It is also worth mentioning I have a nice fleece jacket for a middle layer made out of polyester and is very warm. I do want to keep the clothing bicycle based. I also have a fleece Balaclava as well that I intend to use.
Pearl Izumi (PI) skull cap.
Long sleeve and maybe short sleeve Craft undershirt
PI Elite Softshell HiViz jacket
Voler Jet HiViz jacket
PI Thermal Barrier tight (no pad) or Performance Triflex tight (no pad, heavier but cheaper)
Sugoi Resistor booties
Performance Zonda gloves
Add Performance leg and arm warmers for spring and fall.
That should get close to your budget - you might have to forgo the PI Softshell and just wear two SS jerseys with arm warmers. That'll mostly work.
The Zonda gloves are good down to ~40° and raining. Colder than that you have to spend real money. GoreTex or Giro waterproof.
Use toe warmers to make up for not wearing $300 MTB boots.
Put plastic produce bags with the bottoms cut out under your booties and wrapped tight around your bare leg to keep water out of your shoes. Or better, go to a dive shop and buy a pair of dry suit leg seals. Put them on your bare legs, over your bootie tops. They're not expensive.
Something like this might be a good starting point: http://www.bontrager.com/model/11005
A good baselayer can go a long way towards keeping your core temp comfortable. I also recommend a nice pair of gloves, and some shoe covers to help keep your toes from feeling the chill.
I know what you mean I commute downtown Seattle every day on bike! Here's a few critical tweaks I've had to make in the past few cold days:
I've been doubling up on my gloves - a tight, cheap dollar glove on the inside (even better if you can find ones that allow you to work your touchscreen on your smartphone), and a thicker, water/windproof bigger glove on the outside.
Same thing with socks, with a plastic bag over a thick pair of wool hiking socks.
I wear rain pants a lot of times with a pair of sweatpants underneath, or base layer bottoms.
For the top I base layer it, put on a nice fleece, and top it off with a thicker windproof jacket.
I've been commuting from Beacon Hill to Bellevue since last July and definitely had to gear up once the weather got colder. A few of my favorites:
Bib tights: http://www.competitivecyclist.com/ca...-bibtight-mens
Base layer - find something with merino wool. I've found they're lighter than other base layers, regulate temperature very well, and best of all, take longer to stink even though they're hanging in your locker (or wherever you store it during the day). Or, particularly on cooler days, you can just find an old merino wool sweater to use as a base layer and that works just fine as well.
I've found some great deals on gear on http://gearup.active.com/ and http://www.theclymb.com, though it's worth checking Amazon (particularly if you have Amazon Prime) for good deals on clothing, too.
Wickers balaclava from Sierra Trading Post less than $10. the expedition model is a little thicker
Waterproof, breathable rain jacket for your outer shell. $99. http://www.bicycleclothing.com/Water...n-Jackets.html made in Oregon.
Rainsheild O2 rain pants (get the black ones). $60 http://o2rainwear.com/2011/03/primary-pant/
For your budget, these three items should give you a good start. All are good quality items that should last a long time.
maybe a helmet cover and shoe covers. I use Showers Pass Touring shoe covers that will handle anything that Seattle weather will throw at you.
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