The weather in the Pacific Northwest has not abated much. Yesterday I decided to head out with a friend on a morning ride. The weather reports early in the week were saying 50 degrees by this weekends and it seemed rather promising. So, we set up a 9 am rendezvous at my place .
Well, 9 am came and it was still only 27 degrees out, but I had grabbed a couple of full fingered gloves with the hopes that it would take care of the frozen fingers. The ultimate plan being for a nice 15 mile urban ride. As they say, the best laid plans and all that. With the frost all over, and me being unaware how road tires would perform in those conditions, we hopped on the Burnt Bridge Creek trail and rode a nice 7 mile loop. The ride itself, over fairly flat terrain, was just fine. My neck and ears-however-lost all feeling some time around mile four. It was obvious that I needed better preparation .
I headed out later that day with a better idea of what I needed and picked up a fleece head wrap and was given a wonderful pair of full fingered Thinsulate gloves from a friend (an avid biker who also spent some time explaining what I rapidly was discovering : biking in the winter is expensive).
Today, 28 degrees out, I mapped out a 10 mile loop by my girlfriend's house in Battle Ground. Now, better armed than ever, I was hoping I could reach the kind of speeds I do when on the stationary (around 19 miles an hour). With dark and untraveled roads I opted to keep the pace a little more measured (and in lines with what I need to maintain for STP) pace, around 12mph.
I rediscovered today why I live riding so much. Just you and the open air and the quiet of your bike. At the end, I did 10.11 miles in just over 50 minutes. Not bad for one of my first real rides of the season.
An interesting note, however, is that I discovered Wind+Moisture+Freezing Temperatures=Ice Accumulation on bare legs. Go figure.