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How was the commute today?

Old 01-06-04, 02:52 PM
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..not to take anything away from your experience. That did sound stressful. Chalk it up to a bitter midwesterner facing 2 more months of crummy weather and on off commuting .
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Old 01-06-04, 02:59 PM
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Originally Posted by streetdog
..not to take anything away from your experience. That did sound stressful. Chalk it up to a bitter midwesterner facing 2 more months of crummy weather and on off commuting .
I hear ya, while we don't have the California/Flordia/etc endless summer I love that in PNW one can ride year round. I like the fact that the seasons change and I like the rain. Snow and cold like this seems to only occur in non el Nino/la Nina years and doesn't last long. I haven't had much trouble riding in sub Freezing weather, as I have adequate gear and such. The problem I was alluding to really was the ice caused by the cold. The combination of the busy road and ice was where the stress came from. No ice and busy roads is fine, ice and the familiar trail is fine. Just the ice and dark and the traffic -no fun.

I sure have a lot of respect for you mid West riders, months and months of extreme weather, it must be almost enough to drive one to a trainer. Almost.
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Old 01-06-04, 03:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Kodama
I hear ya, while we don't have the California/Flordia/etc endless summer I love that in PNW one can ride year round. I like the fact that the seasons change and I like the rain. Snow and cold like this seems to only occur in non el Nino/la Nina years and doesn't last long. I haven't had much trouble riding in sub Freezing weather, as I have adequate gear and such. The problem I was alluding to really was the ice caused by the cold. The combination of the busy road and ice was where the stress came from. No ice and busy roads is fine, ice and the familiar trail is fine. Just the ice and dark and the traffic -no fun.

I sure have a lot of respect for you mid West riders, months and months of extreme weather, it must be almost enough to drive one to a trainer. Almost.
Ice is scary stuff especially black ice covered with a thin layer of snow. I went down last year during my commute, I was on the ground before I knew what happened. I been in the situation your described, cold weather, darkness, lamp fading on a partially cleared street you don''t know well enough with drivers who are nervous and don't see you. They don't use ice on the roads out there do they? They do here, hell on the environment, cars and bikes but it clears the streets. To bad the alternative proucts are so expensive, of course if they were used more they would be cheaper.

It is almost enough to drive one to a trainer, almost but not enough. I don't own a trainer, every winter I consider getting one but always decide I prefer riding outside in the cold more. I commute into the high teens and ride my mtb off road when the streets are a mess. Riding in the snow, what fun.
My wife and I are considering relocating to PNW (Portland, OR) this year. What is the riding like in general out yonder. Will I need fenders on my roadie?
Keep on trucking.
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Old 01-06-04, 03:29 PM
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Originally Posted by streetdog
My wife and I are considering relocating to PNW (Portland, OR) this year. What is the riding like in general out yonder. Will I need fenders on my roadie?
Keep on trucking.
Portland is a great city, bike friendly good size etc. Many Portland members here on this site will give you more insight. A little too much indie attitude perhaps, but Seattle has its share of that as well. As for fenders, I'd say yes, if you are going ride in Spring, fall or winter. I commuted for years without them and once I added them, I no longer skipped the rainy days. Essential in my mind. However as much as it rains here, it is often drizzle, and the summer often brings 3 months of little rain.

Anyway I'm off to do a little snow riding myself
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Old 01-06-04, 03:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Kodama
As for fenders, I'd say yes, if you are going ride in Spring, fall or winter. I commuted for years without them and once I added them, I no longer skipped the rainy days. Essential in my mind. However as much as it rains here, it is often drizzle, and the summer often brings 3 months of little rain.

Anyway I'm off to do a little snow riding myself
You are right no commuter bike is finished without a good set of fenders. I have them on my SS/commuter, I just find it hard to think about putting them on my road bike... ...uggh... ...I must adapt to the new surroundings, if that means more fenders, so be it. Admitting that you have a problem is the first step...
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Old 01-06-04, 05:26 PM
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Good rides today, It feels great to be getting rides in every day after the break for the holidays.

I had a nasty moment last night though. Whilst negotiating the level (railroad) crossing, which is on a tight bend, the front wheel slipped on the wet rails. For a split second it felt as if the bike was about to slide out from under me to the right, then it regained grip, dug in, over compensated and nearly did the same to the left. All quicker than you could say..... well you might imagine what I said!

Take it easy out there on these winter roads.

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Old 01-07-04, 08:37 AM
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When conditions are favorable for experiencing what you folks up past the Arctic Circle (Mason-Dixon line) deal with in winter, such as was the case this morning, it's incumbent upon me to hunker down and do it. Temps were about 19 F , chill factor about 10 F. In characteristically true form, I underdressed.

My first sensation was a predictable brain-freeze on descent. Nothing new here, except that that was followed by ear-freeze, cheek freeze and leg freeze.
Still not a problem, since I knew it was only temporary. Again predictably, my first good climb drove all the freeze away. Now I was feeling good.

But my next descent sent me right back into freezer-burn. No problem, I thought, my next climb will set me right. Sure enough, it did. But I soon realized that the numbness accumulating in my ears, face, forearms and toes would be more difficult to get rid of than my mother-in-law (just kidding, Angela! ) Finally, I accepted the fact that my best friend on this ride was not going to be the heat I generated, because that wasn't getting to my outer appendiges, but my best friends and companions became my mind's ability to wander and my body's ability to numb itself.

Next time, I'll wear a tad more. Great ride, though!

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Old 01-07-04, 08:53 AM
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Originally Posted by LittleBigMan
When conditions are favorable for experiencing what you folks up past the Arctic Circle (Mason-Dixon line) deal with in winter, such as was the case this morning, it's incumbent upon me to hunker down and do it. Temps were about 19 F , chill factor about 10 F. In characteristically true form, I underdressed.

My first sensation was a predictable brain-freeze on descent. Nothing new here, except that that was followed by ear-freeze, cheek freeze and leg freeze.
Still not a problem, since I knew it was only temporary. Again predictably, my first good climb drove all the freeze away. Now I was feeling good.

But my next descent sent me right back into freezer-burn. No problem, I thought, my next climb will set me right. Sure enough, it did. But I soon realized that the numbness accumulating in my ears, face, forearms and toes would be more difficult to get rid of than my mother-in-law (just kidding, Angela! ) Finally, I accepted the fact that my best friend on this ride was not going to be the heat I generated, because that wasn't getting to my outer appendiges, but my best friends and companions became my mind's ability to wander and my body's ability to numb itself.

Next time, I'll wear a tad more. Great ride, though!


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Old 01-07-04, 10:02 AM
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cold one today - 20 degrees and windy - days like this you get the disbelieving glances from people at work
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Old 01-07-04, 10:10 AM
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My first sub-20 F (-7 C) ride of the winter. Had a pleasant chat with a motorcycle cop while we were both stopped at the light. Beautiful morning, great ride, and it was particularly nice to hear the studs go silent again as I rode across the ice.

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Old 01-07-04, 11:58 AM
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The last 500m of my commute is on the sidewalk running on the outside of Capitol Park. It's a designated bike path, so no comments to get off the sidewalk! Anyway, it's a nice cool down coasting up to the bike cage.

This morning I was rolling up behind two young women and not wanting to startle them, I said "On your left!"

Which way did they look? To the right of course. So as I went by I said, "Your other left."

Now, to be fair, they might have been part of the new Schwarzennegger administration. Anybody know how to say "on your left" in German?
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Old 01-07-04, 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted by caloso
The last 500m of my commute is on the sidewalk running on the outside of Capitol Park. It's a designated bike path, so no comments to get off the sidewalk! Anyway, it's a nice cool down coasting up to the bike cage.

This morning I was rolling up behind two young women and not wanting to startle them, I said "On your left!"

Which way did they look? To the right of course. So as I went by I said, "Your other left."

Now, to be fair, they might have been part of the new Schwarzennegger administration. Anybody know how to say "on your left" in German?
Hmmm, I don't know the proper short term in German biking lingo, but you could say: Achtung (or Vorsicht), ich ueberhole links... [Attention (or Careful), I'm passing on your left] Good luck.
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Old 01-08-04, 03:26 AM
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This morning's ride was not the best - It is pouring rain out there and blowing a gale. I rode with all my lights on because visibility was so poor. The road was so awash with water in places that I was dreading "that" hidden pothole...

Still, that which doesn't kill you etc.

Cheers,

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Old 01-08-04, 08:37 AM
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It warmed up to 26 this morning, calm, no wind. Quite nice, but I still got brain-freeze on my first couple of descents. My homemade geek-light and I are still very much in love...my three-way switch can flash my lights alternating from left, right, then both together with a spin of my fingertips (this helps when approaching intersections,) and the beamage is satisfying.

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Old 01-08-04, 09:43 AM
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26??? 'Dems shorts weather... It was warming this morning than yesterday but that makes it about 19F today whereas yesterday was about 17F. Tomorrow it's supposed to get even colder here in NJ!

I think I caused a stampede on the way home yesterday... I ran into a pack of about 15(!) deer behind a farm and nursury not far from my office and they went corraling down the trail and eventually into the woods, but I felt like yelling "Yeehaaaaww" and "ride 'em cowboy".... Weird, cause normally I only see a family of 4/5 but this was insane. Just hope they stay off the main road...

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Old 01-08-04, 12:09 PM
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After nearly a week of rain and cold I was able to hook up with my weather-weenie training partner to get in our standard workout ride before work. What a beautiful morning.
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Old 01-08-04, 08:12 PM
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I finally found what it takes to make my PI Amfib lobsters warm enough to wear at 10F/-12C. Rather than my Outlast liner gloves I wore some gardening gloves made of knit supplex and having a long forearm coverage www.foxglovesgardengloves.com . These made a tremendous difference, making the PI's actually useful. I actually had to get off my bike to wait for the 7 turkeys to slowly cross the road this morning. Watching the moon rise through the woods this evening was spectacular. At first it looked like a bonfire on the horizon, then it seemed to leap upward to show the full orb.
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Old 01-08-04, 08:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Jean Beetham Smith
I actually had to get off my bike to wait for the 7 turkeys to slowly cross the road this morning. Watching the moon rise through the woods this evening was spectacular. At first it looked like a bonfire on the horizon, then it seemed to leap upward to show the full orb.
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Old 01-08-04, 08:43 PM
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Back at it after two days off. The first being the snow day, which I did do some rec riding in, yesterday being so slushy, rainy, etc. that I just didn't think it would be safe. Especially on the detour route- I probably would have ridden the trail. Anyway drizzling today and the temps in the upper 30s (f) seemed warm. The road shoulders are now covered with even more sand and there is still some slush and a lot of water around. It does feel like the worst is over, even though it is still early Jan. The next week is predicated as in the 40s(f) and raining. No problem that
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Old 01-09-04, 09:39 AM
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A little sleet on the way home but it was a relatively balmy 37F. After having to commute via car for two weeks I was quickly reminded how fast your body can lose it.
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Old 01-09-04, 01:06 PM
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Too cold for me today, temp of -18C, 0F this morning, so I bussed it.
Yesterday was a nice cool ride, -8 C, 18F both morning and evening rides, wind had dropped, so I was much warmer than Tuesday's blustery cold ride. Wednesday was also a bus day, -10 C and very windy + fresh dusting of snow and salt on the roads.
3 days riding out of 5 this week, not too bad for this time of year. Unusually strong winds with the cold temps this week. Calm and cold is more comfortable for riding than windy and cool.
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Old 01-09-04, 04:09 PM
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This week has had it all weather wise -clear and very cold on Monday, snow on Tuesday, rain on Wednesday, clearer with fog on Thursday and today, Friday, it is mostly overcast warm (mid 50s! [f]) and windy. So the ride was pretty fun, except when the constant headwind gusted up strong. I did get some tail wind action though on the backtrack portion of my commute. I hate to say this but it really feels like early spring. This deep into winter I'm sure it's just a warm front, but it's nice.
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Old 01-09-04, 06:36 PM
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Today was my first day commuting since the snow. 40F this morning, 44F this afternoon. It was great to be riding again: conditions were not great due to lots of gravel & sand in the bike lanes & also still a lot of snow piled up on the shoulders & out into the bike lanes & some intersections. About 1/2 mile from work, fellow in a mid 70s Chevy pickup leaned on his horn as he passed me. I was taking my share of the car lane due to snow & slush in the bike lane. No other traffic at 6:15 AM & this is a 4 lane road plus 2 way centerlane for turns. I am well lit & wear a reflective vest so it wasn't like I suddenly appeared in front of him wearing dark clothing. Don
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Old 01-10-04, 07:58 PM
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Right at freezing this morning. It only climbed a few degrees. Very moist. Chilly. My ride had a rear flat! Slow leak--pump fixed it. (Should have ridden my bike! )
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Old 01-12-04, 03:10 PM
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59 deg. F with a 10 mph. tailwind going home!

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