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Anyone riding pre-dawn?

Old 05-29-19, 07:26 PM
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Anyone riding pre-dawn?

lately to beat the heat? These 100 degree days have really put a damper on my training rides, so I'm considering some 45-60 minute rides in my neighborhood before daybreak. Of course I'll need adequate lighting to see and be seen. Anything else?
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Old 05-29-19, 07:32 PM
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I've been thinking the same thing, though I tend to do late afternoons/evenings instead.
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Old 05-29-19, 08:01 PM
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I'm heading out tomorrow morning at around 6 am. It will be 72 degrees here in Atlanta. I'll be off and on my bike all day but at least it will be nice when I start out. The high will be around 95.
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Old 05-29-19, 08:01 PM
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I do it sometimes out of necessity. Although I don’t prefer to be up that early, there is something exhilarating about being out riding in that time and cool air and watching the sun come up.
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Old 05-29-19, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by audiomagnate View Post
I'm heading out tomorrow morning at around 6 am. It will be 72 degrees here in Atlanta. I'll be off and on my bike all day but at least it will be nice when I start out. The high will be around 95.
Our afternoon highs have been right at 100 for a week. It was 97 tonight at 7 p.m. Hell, it's been cooler in Phoenix! Pretty soon the heat index will hit 100-105. Sometimes I hate living in the Southeast.

/rant
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Old 05-29-19, 08:09 PM
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When I was commuting- I was leaving the house around 0600.

After my start time got moved up 2 hours, I can only recall leaving the house at 0430 once. That sort of thing is not my bag, baby.
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Old 05-29-19, 09:04 PM
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This morning I rode for a couple hours pre-dawn. Low 70s F as opposed to daytime 95F. I sweated some, but nowhere near as much as a mid-day ride, and didn't feel a need to drink anything other than prehydrating. Almost zero cars.

In addition to front and rear lighting, I have helmet lighting, and I wear a safety vest and a reflective band on each ankle.

Last edited by rseeker; 05-29-19 at 10:13 PM.
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Old 05-29-19, 09:12 PM
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I ride pre-dawn on my commute in the dead of winter. I always thought if I lived somewhere that was very hot and humid a pre-dawn start would help beat the heat.

A real good lighting setup is what you need. Shop for "where the light goes" over just plain lumens. Peter White is the place to go for info.
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Old 05-29-19, 09:19 PM
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I went out at 5:45am today, not quite pre-dawn. If I dont go at that time, forget it: work, kids, etc. Its either then, or not at all.
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Old 05-29-19, 09:30 PM
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I LOVE the Dawn Patrol rides! In the summer when children aren’t being readied for school I get up early enough to ride right at 6:00 for 45 minutes to an hour. Sometimes I do a loop out on some back roads, sometimes it’s the run out to scenic Hodges, SC and back. Some mornings it’s enough to ride multiple laps of the 1.08 mile circuit of my neighborhood. The bike of choice is the battered Gitane TdF fixed-gear conversion with LED lights front and rear and a reflective orange safety vest.

About 5 years ago I was blogging about these rides at internaldetours.blogspot.com - these can be really special rides that involve amazing sunrises!
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Old 05-30-19, 10:14 AM
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Not me! Pre-dawn is when I'm getting my best sleep.
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Old 05-30-19, 11:13 AM
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I'm on my bike from 4:45 to 5:10 most mornings, but that's just my commute.

For long rides I really like getting started a few hours before dawn. Roads are quiet, you can see dawn unfolding little by little, you see animals...
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Old 05-30-19, 11:26 AM
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In AZ right now we are still having great weather. Been mid 70's to low 80 until this week and now hitting 90 soon. We are typically hitting our 100 degree days about now. Ride today was at 7:00. Our group rides change with the weather from 4:30 am hot summer days to as late as 9 am in the winter. Rode along side a Torpado today, the guy has a NOS 50th group I been trying to get him to let loose of for some time. LOL!
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Old 05-30-19, 11:30 AM
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Originally Posted by rhm View Post
I'm on my bike from 4:45 to 5:10 most mornings, but that's just my commute.

For long rides I really like getting started a few hours before dawn. Roads are quiet, you can see dawn unfolding little by little, you see animals...
Rudi, another benefit you allude to for most people that live in an urban area: you get out of town and into the countryside before traffic picks up.

The OP's intent is to beat the heat. Three timese in the past year I started pre-dawn for another reason: to get a ride done earlier or make a cut-off time. In my "What could possibly go wrong?" tour of the Bay Area right after Christmas 2018 I was leaving from near Santa Cruz to get back over the Coastal Range and to SFO for a late afternoon flight out. Even though the pre-dawn start was very chilly, watching the sun come out over the coast and slowly warming my body up, no traffic on Hwy 1, the views...



We typically think of the golden hour, that time when the sun is coming across the atmosphere at a low angle and giving light a redder, warmer, softer tone. There are actually two golden hours, one just after sunrise, the other after sunset.

This got me thinking of another pre-dawn start to a ride - with @rhm riding through eastern Long Island to catch a noon ferry to Connecticut on the way to French Fender Day.

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Old 05-30-19, 11:35 AM
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I enjoy the heat, go figure. We used to run on black-flag days because "haji don't quit in the heat..." When I ran for Asics, I trained daily at 1 pm. It made the 10 am races a lot more enjoyable.

However....With a 1000-mile June committed to... (Great Cycling Challenge)...I'll be trying two-a-days for most of June. That means my Garmin Varia headlight (no, I don't have $300, I bought it on CL for $50). It's extremely bright, and dawn here is close to 5 am, so I'm more worried about being seen than seeing. I also bought a vest and extra taillights.

It also rains here in the mornings, a lot. So I get wet.
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Old 05-30-19, 12:21 PM
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Grateful to live in the PNW I will take a little rain over 100 degrees and humidity any day of the week and twice on Sundays. I was riding pre dawn to train for STP about a decade ago but not much since. I did enjoy the quiet and the dawn light and the car free (mostly) roads then. Since I leave for work (driving) at about 6:30 every day riding before that has not been happening. I am going to brave the mid 70s temps and ride after work today on my left at work C&V 84 Novara Randonee. One of these summer mornings I am going to go the Multi Modal route to work by Bus and bike.

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Old 05-30-19, 12:33 PM
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If I'm trying to get a certain distance in a day, I start right after the sun starts lightening the sky. If I'm close enough to a town, and not trying to hurry, I wait for the sun to fully rise. That helps a lot, with being seen. 👍
A lot of the time, I end up riding right through the day, but with several short breaks. Like Robbie, I seem to ride better in the heat. For me, I think that's when my arthritic old knees feel best, nice & warm. 😎
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Old 05-30-19, 01:21 PM
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Predawn, yes. When riding this in Jamaica...


...I see this every second morning...
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Old 05-30-19, 02:06 PM
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Absolutely my favorite time of year for cycling: May-August. Out of the house by 0540, a blissful 12-mile ride on the Capital Crescent Trail along the bluffs of the Potomac River here in Washington and back by 0645. Why? Cool, beautiful sunrise and early morning light and best of all.... only a few people to be seen in car, on foot or on bikes. I often see more deer than people. And a different machine each week.. this week it's my 1973 Pogliaghi.

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Old 05-30-19, 02:07 PM
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Maybe I'll become an early morning person. One day. I do like the world then, but my mind doesn't kick in for a while, and then my bowels suffer, for some reason.
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Old 05-30-19, 03:17 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
I do like the world then, but my mind doesn't kick in for a while, and then my bowels suffer, for some reason.
I can relate. Not that I want to.
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Old 05-30-19, 04:00 PM
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Meeting my boss's boss at 5am tomorrow. He is very competitive. I am competitive against only very competitive people, I like to watch them lose. It's the German in me, good schadenfreude. I hope to drop him like a bag of wet sand. Wish me luck.
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Old 05-30-19, 04:05 PM
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Originally Posted by iab View Post
Meeting my boss's boss at 5am tomorrow. He is very competitive. I am competitive against only very competitive people, I like to watch them lose. It's the German in me, good schadenfreude. I hope to drop him like a bag of wet sand. Wish me luck.
Good luck! And let us know the outcome.
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Old 05-30-19, 04:40 PM
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I've been trying to ride when it's hotter, but unfortunately that has only meant about 80F so far. Participating in a 1000km ride in mid-June that promises to feature some really hot weather
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Old 05-30-19, 06:22 PM
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I love my pre-dawn rides along the canals here in the East Valley, but still go for short (15 to 20 mile) afternoon rides too, 105 is OK, 115 is hot. Did about six miles at 120+, just to prove I could, way too hot!!!
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