Sooner or later it was going to actually rain, and there’d be a good reason for having to ride the rain bike. Today was that day. It was hardly the epic rain event it had been played up to be, but when I woke up the roads were wet, light rain was coming down, and it was cold. So it was time for full-on rain gear, which meant shoe covers (booties), heavier base layer, long-sleeve jersey, plastic rain jacket, hat under helmet (the brim keeps the rain out of your eyes) and neoprene gloves. Oh, forgot to mention thermal tights that aren’t waterproof but still keep you warm when wet.
We should get something straight about rain gear and bikes. You can’t stay dry, not if you’re planning to put out any effort at all. You’re either going to get soaked from the inside-out due to “waterproof but breathable” fabric that can’t keep up with your heat & sweat output, creating a personal sauna, or you wear something that stays warm when wet. The latter is generally preferable, although for the jacket, if it’s likely to rain pretty heavily, I’ll go for the plastic sauna-inducer and just unzip it when too warm. Almost works.
So who showed up on a morning like this? Just me & the two Kevins. One of whom might not have shown up had he not sent me a text the previous night asking if I was going to be out there. As if the answer could be anything but yes. It wasn’t a fast pace up the hill, but not bad, certainly better than last Thursday. Because it was pretty icky up top, with the chance of some fog moving in, Kevin (the pilot) thought it best to stay off Skyline so instead we headed down Native Sons, one of the dead-end roads off Skyline. The result is a bit more climbing than what you’d get with the West Old LaHonda loop, but a bit fewer miles. Overall the ride is harder, much harder than the “84” Strava insulted me with as a “suffer” score!
I’m still looking forward to riding in a downpour though, something to remember. It’s not any tougher than riding on a day like this, but you get a lot more street cred for being out there in the elements. As it was, it pretty much stopped raining by the time we were heading back down Kings for home… and never really rained the rest of the day. Hate that! –Mike–