Fear no Weather

Bike riders in America, if you want to sincerely use your bike  as a transportation option, some of you need to overcome  fear of the weather, which is a primary obstacle for uninitiated bike riders and non-bike riders. It’s like modern Americans DNA has changed and we have an extra chromosome. The WXY! So, it’s summer and what could be nicer than to ride each and everyday? Plan ahead, think before you jump in the car and get on your bike and ride.

Was thinking as I woke up to rain slapping against our rooftop how it would be a wet bike ride to work. It was still dark so the wind gust that made our French doors shake gave the impression that nature meant business. As I prepared some toast, drank coffee and read on-line, the rain and wind disappeared. The western sky was clearing and the likelihood that I would need a raincoat was nil. So it goes over the course of a day. The weather can often change for the better. That’s’ a glass half full.

I soon took off on drying streets and noticed how this threat of rain kept many bike riders from the morning commute today. Even the threat of muggy weather in the afternoon thinned the bike riding ranks with the exception of university students.

Plenty of bike riders are “weather weenies” that is that at the first sign of moisture they are off the bike and in the car. What would get them over the hump and make the choice to ride? If getting wet seems like a hardship, there are other factors that might be the cause. Such as no fenders or improper foul weather gear. But, there are ways to improvise gear.

Springtime in Minneapolis, MN 2011. East German Rain Coat, Filson Hat, Good rain-pants and leather boots with Mink Oil wax..single speed Bike with Fenders

Not everybody can afford Gor-Tex. A visit to the Army-Navy store or Dick’s sporting goods has inexpensive rain suits, poncho’s and East German Army gear. My rain gear is seasonal. Frankly, in the summer I want to stay warm when its raining so I don’t mind getting wet. That means if it’s pouring I use my East German rain coat whatever shorts I am wearing and a pair of sandals. If I’m caught in a rain without gear, then I usually have a second shirt in my messenger/backpack to layer and stay warm. In the Fall and Spring I have rain pants that I picked up at a second-hand store for six bucks. And in the Winter where I ride there is snow and if it does rain, I hope I’m not caught in it since it turns to ice quickly.

If we truly want our neighborhoods, towns and cities to become abundant with life then we have to first become residents that bike ride more and drive our cars less. Don’t let the rain stop your parade, you only have one life to live and for those of my generation that have not started bike riding, you aren’t getting any younger.

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