img_1558

Bad Weather or Bad Gear?

Many cyclists are familiar with the velominati rules. You don’t have to get far down the list to come across rule #9:

Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.
Fair-weather riding is a luxury reserved for Sunday afternoons and wide boulevards. Those who ride in foul weather – be it cold, wet, or inordinately hot – are members of a special club of riders who, on the morning of a big ride, pull back the curtain to check the weather and, upon seeing rain falling from the skies, allow a wry smile to spread across their face. This is a rider who loves the work.

 

the top of bannerdown

 

However you don’t necessarily have to love the work, but love the sport and riding your bike. Even my parents at the age of 50 will still not be deterred by a light shower here or there. “The weather is bad” or “I don’t want to ruin my bike” are the most common excuses heard in cycle clubs nowadays.

It was just earlier today that I looked out the window and saw a wet, bleak, January morning. It wasn’t icy like yesterday, meaning there was no danger of slippery roads. Instead of deciding to miss the session and head back to my work I headed over to my chest of drawers, pulled them open and started to rummage for the days kit.

 

a similar outfit last year

 

Winter leggings, 3 thermal tops, 2 pairs of gloves, a gilet, 2 pairs of socks and my thickest overshoes later, I set out into the misty morning. Is there such a thing as bad weather? Or do we just need to wrap up, stay dry and stay warm?

As I was riding I encountered numerous other riders, something not uncommon for a Sunday morning surrounding Bath. However one thing that was uncommon, unanimously 100% of the riders returned my greeting with a wave or a hello.

Only a small difference however it made me realise that in this moment of bad weather, the people that really love the sport, it’s community, the opportunities it provides are always there come rain or shine!

The riders weren’t all riding fast, riding road bikes or training like me. A trait that doesn’t necessarily have to be replicated. But all out to enjoy themselves, with a smile on their face remembering why they do it. An example that should definitely be followed!

0 replies
  1. dirtbaglawyer
    dirtbaglawyer says:

    Really enjoyed this. I must admit, I’m kind of a fair weather cyclist… my complete lack of coordination means that riding in crap weather generally ends with me and my bike skidding across slippery roads somewhere. But I get the sentiment – there’s something awesome about those manic grins you get to share with other people who crazy enough share your obsessions.

    I’m a climber with a knack for selective and optimistic interpretations of weather forecasts. My mobile phone is sitting in a bag of rice right now after getting caught in a huge storm that hit halfway through my last climbing adventure. I knew the storm would come… but the chance of squeezing in a bit of climbing was worth it.

    Enjoy your next ride, whatever the weather! Keep up the madness.

    Reply
    • Jack Schofield
      Jack Schofield says:

      Cheers! There’s definitely a knack to it, a lot of people let their tires down by 20psi on road bikes. And you have to spot the gravel on the road to steer clear!
      Aha sounds like you need some £1 sandwich bags from tesco to wrap up valuables. they haven’t let me down yet! You too with the climbing 🙂

      Reply
      • dirtbaglawyer
        dirtbaglawyer says:

        Might have to try the tyre trick next time I’m out in the rain. And the sandwich bag trick as well! You actually inspired me to go our for a ride this afternoon, so thanks for that too.

        Reply
  2. ragtimecyclist
    ragtimecyclist says:

    A wry smile is really the only way to deal with bad weather. I find that if I head out for a ride in the cold and rain with the attitude that i’d rather not be there the suffering is multiplied. You’ve got to relish it, or at the very least pretend to relish it, then somehow it doesn’t hurt so much!

    Reply
    • Jack Schofield
      Jack Schofield says:

      But if you wear enough kit and you’re warm, it’s hard not to enjoy riding your bike! I suppose it’s like skiing, worst conditions in the world but if you’re set for it, endless fun to be had!

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply