Cold Weather

By now, everyone knows that I'm a cold weather rider. I will push the season as far as I possibly (and safely) can. I've always got my eye out for anything that would make my rides more comfortable and possibly safer.

Before I go into the more comfortable part of this post, I want to address the "safer" part of it. You see, I have a set route to work in the mornings. It gets me to work in a decent time, avoids most traffic and gives me the best chance at green lights (goggles fog up faster when you stop...go figure). Part of my regular route has suddenly become a life threatening situation. There is a section of the road on the opposite side of a rise that (I can only guess) has a broken water pipe under it. That means that it is always covered in water, day or night. Add to that the fact that morning temperatures are always around 0 C (32 F) and you have a situation that becomes deadly.

I didn't know about the water and I also couldn't see it in time as I approached the rise. By the time I saw it, it was too late to swerve or stop. As soon as I hit the water I knew it wasn't liquid anymore and any attempt to control Selene had gone out the window. The rear wheel broke loose immediately and the entire bike started to wobble. My only saving grace was the fact that the ice patch was only small. When rubber met actual pavement again, Selene straightened up and we were flying straight once more.

I tell ya...I was quite awake after that experience and I learned that motorcycles should not be taken on ice without some extra precautions. Like outriggers or spiked tires.

So now I have a different route for work until they fix that portion of the street.

On the issue of comfort... Recently I've been turned onto Mark's Work Wearhouse and the fantastic things they have. I purchased new jeans that were fully put to the test today. These jeans are painter style with thick jean material lined with felt. In zero degree weather my legs barely got cold. It was amazing and I may have to buy a couple more pairs. This place may actually be my new clothes store.

The only thing I'm having an issue with now is my gloves. The previous "cold weather" ones I purchased now equal crap. My hands are numb by the time I get to work and that is just unacceptable. Cold is one thing, but painful is another. Looks like I have some shopping to do.


Dean "D-Day" said...

I know what you mean!
I have to ride 45-60 minutes each way and my fingers are pretty numb by the time I get to work. It gets a little hard to pull in the clutch by the time I get there. If you find any really good gloves, let me know.

Vinod said...

I might have to take some tips from you about cold weather riding, I'm moving to Michigan!

Allen Madding said...

VERY glad to hear you survived the suprise ice in your path.

Widder Electric Gloves are the greatest thing I have ever purchased. I could never find anything thick enough to counter 60 mph wind over my knuckles. You buy a pigtail that your connect to the terminals of the battery on the bike, a plug in harness that runs up your sleeves and down your jacket, and plug in the gloves. Click the switch and no more frozen fingers! I fully endorse them :)