January 27, 2013
In Vancouver I don’t know that you can claim that winter is in full effect. If people were to ask you, “so how much snow is on the ground?”, or “how many layers of down do you have on?” answering its 5 degrees, I am wearing a T-shirt, and do you mean is there snow on the mountains would probably not contribute to their thoughts of winter. But, as Vancouverites we are still in what we call winter. This means any possible mix of weather situations, the worst of all being between 2 and 5 degrees and raining. This weather is worse than you’re -20 in Edmonton because the cold literally is felt through to your bones!
Yesterday I went out for a winter road ride. One of my friend’s that I often mountain bike with was getting his suspension serviced at Suspension Werx so his mountain bike was out of commission. I have a difficult time paying to do activities indoors when I can go play outside, so we discussed a winter road ride. We had done one last week, and along with my Marx Conditioning training, adding some early season base miles to my legs seemed like a good idea. Looking outside this seemed like a bad idea. It was that perfect sucky condition of 5 degrees and raining with high humidity. ugggghhh…
So, we went road riding.
…and saw this Bald Eagle as well as another, and a Coyote. The road ride was good all in all. We road to White Cliff park and back, through Pemberton Heights on the way home, and stopped at The Pemberton Heights Corner Store for a gooey cinnamon bun. If we didn’t want to keep moving, (to avoid hypothermia) we would have had the option of enjoying a selection of beers, coffee, or some tasty soups and sandwiches. But, we grabbed what we needed and carried on.
55km by the time we got home not too bad. I was still fairly comfortable, despite the less than ideal conditions. My armor of a Race Face Chute jacket, Ice Breaker 200 long sleeve base layer and Circuit SS jersey, Shimano MW80 Gore-Tex shoes, Sugoi Firewall Beanie and pants, and some full coverage fenders, kept me warm and dry all the way home.
We were at 54k, on the last couple blocks before home and coasting downhill. We turned right on the last corner and as I approached my home and applied the brakes, or as they sounded… like fingernails on a chalkboard! If you can’t stand the sound of fingernails on a chalkboard, then maybe winter road riding isn’t for you.