Cyclerides.com Weekly Update
First of all, I would like to say,
HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! Hope everyone takes some time to honor
this great country on its 242nd anniversary of the Declaration of
Independence. God Bless America!
you missed the newsletter last
week entitled "Bring Tomorrow
Into Today", Click
Here to View. I had several replies from those
who have ridden to Telluride and taken a day to do a similar trip.
Check it out.
is that time of year when we will soon have to start dodging monsoons,
thunderstorms and tornadoes. And with the art of guessing the
timing of missing a storm comes the art of knowing when and "if" to put
on your rain gear. I was talking to a rider friend of mine yesterday
and we were swapping stories of how we have gotten caught in storms
without our rain gear, and also when we put it on and it didn't rain,
which resulted in riding in our very own rain suit sauna. It is
probably more luck than it is an art pick the right answer, but we will
all go through it if we ride in the Summer.
That conversation reminded me of an
article that I did a few years ago that I think about every time
I am riding and see some clouds in the distance of the direction that I
am riding. Do I, or don't I? That is question that I have asked too
many times and came up with the wrong answer. For those of you that
have read this before, it is a good one to refresh your strategy. For
the several hundred new readers since this was posted, enjoy!
When do you put on Rain Gear?
Yep, if you ride far enough and long
enough, you are going to be caught in a rain storm at some point on
your motorcycle. While you can plan around rain on short day
trips from home, when you are out on a 10 day trip and you are going
from point A to point B that day, it is pretty hard to avoid. As a
result, I have heard a lot of rain stories and have a few myself. I
will share a few of my observations and then lay down on the couch and
share a few of my rain soaked philosophy's.
From what I can tell, there are 3
types of riders and how they deal with the prospects of rain.
1. The rider that will spot a
lone cloud floating across the sky 40 miles away that will stop and put
his rain gear on.
2. The rider that will see dark
clouds and rain coming down 4 miles ahead that will surmise that there
is the likelihood of getting wet soon and will pull over and put his
rain gear on.
3. And then. . . There is the
guy that will see dark black clouds a mile away, smell the rain, see it
coming down ahead, notice cars coming toward him with their wipers
going, see wet pavement and sprinkles on his windshield that will still
figure a way to rationalize how it will only last for a few minutes and
he will somehow be able to ride through it and not get wet. (You know
who you are)
Unfortunately, I tend to fall into the
ill-advised #3 slot when it comes to putting on rain gear. I
told you there could be a Dr. Phil moment, so here goes. As most of you
know by now, I love to ride. Especially out on the open road going from
one destination to the next. My idea of a great day is to eat a Big
Breakfast from McDonalds and not eat again till that evening. Once I
get rolling, anything that is going to slow me down is an obstacle to
my goal of adding more miles. You see, in my world, stopping for gas,
bathroom breaks and eating are a huge waste of time and generally just
a good way to burn daylight. Putting on rain gear is also a great way
to waste time. So for me, the prospects of pulling over and spending 15
minutes wrestling with rain gear is a huge risk of wasting time. What
if I go to all that trouble and IT DOESN'T ACTUALLY RAIN! I've wasted
precious riding time.
But there are those times that it does
rain! Have you ever tried to put on rain gear quickly? It
sometimes seems to be the clothing version of a Rubik's Cube. There are
so many zippers, Velcro, buttons and snaps on these things, it takes an
engineering degree just to get them apart, much less apply them to your
body and keep water out. This part really frustrates me. See if you can
relate to this story.
Ok, Mrs. C. and I were on a trip last
Summer and I was somehow caught in a weak moment and slipped
into the #2 category above. I actually stopped BEFORE it started
raining. Well, it would be more like number 2.75 as the rain was more
like 400 yards away instead of 4 miles. Anyway, we know the rain is
emanate and we are on a short time frame to get our gear on. So I
unpack my rain gear, that is tightly compressed in the tiny little bag,
tear away the Velcro on the legs of the pants to get the zipper far
enough up to get my size 13 boot through the opening. I bring back both
zippers, put the pants down so I can put my legs through the holes to
find that the Velcro has come back across and stuck the pant legs
together again, not allowing my boot to go through, leaving it stuck
half way in the leg. I can't push it through or pull it out.
Now I am on the side of the road
hopping in circles on one leg because I don't want to step on
my rain gear and get it dirty from the asphalt. I finally hop over and
grab hold of the bike to balance myself and peel back the Velcro from
the leg. While I was doing that the other leg had found a nice resting
spot on the exhaust pipe, melting a nice big hole in it. So I grab that
one off the pipe, and start to put my foot through the leg when a big
clap of thunder erupted and the rain started coming down. Now I have
the pressure of getting my pants zipped up, Velcro in place while
getting pelted with rain.
I quickly grabbed my rain jacket to
keep from getting any more wet and found that to store it
properly, I had zipped it up and snapped all the buttons. Now I am
getting wetter by the second as I try to de-construct my jacket to put
it on. While being sufficiently distracted with my rain suit erector
set, I had neglected to close the saddle bags and found that the cloud
burst that had cut loose moments before and had sufficiently drenched
me was now filling up my bags. So I quickly grabbed my rain boots and
closed the lids, remembering why I don't like to stop to put on rain
Now comes the puzzle of putting on my
boot covers. Living in Arizona, the land of 4 inches of rain a
year, we just don't get a lot of practice putting on our rain gear. So
there are some questions. Is there a right foot and a left foot? There
are no labels. Does the Velcro go to the outside of your leg or the
inside? Does your rain suit leg go over or under? And oh ya, the
monsoon is now in full force while I am trying to figure out the
protocol for the boot installation. I get the boot covers on,
reposition my rain gear leg over the top, put my helmet on and now
ready to roll.
The good news is, after the WWF match
with "Hulk Rain Gear" I am back on the road and sufficiently wet
under my rain suit, but not taking on any more water, except for the
burned hole in my leg. One thing about rain suits are that they are so
water tight that they don't breathe very well. They are actually a good
wind breaker to keep you warm. Now my body temp is heating up, the
moisture can't escape, and I feel like a rolling sauna inside my rain
suit. But that's ok, I'm still drier that if I didn't have it on and am
now looking pretty smart for stopping when I did. Or was I?
We had traveled about 10 miles down
the road, the rain stopped as fast as it started and the sun was
starting to shine hot and bright. Now the sauna inside my rain gear was
on high and I couldn't wait to get it off. It looks like we might have
gone through the rain and there was not much of a threat ahead. Now
comes the debate. Do you error on the side of caution leave the rain
gear on and look a little funny riding in bright sunshine with rain
gear in case that one cloud 30 miles down the road has rain? (See Rider
#1) Or do we pull over, take it all off, fold it up, smash it down and
try and force it back into the undersized micro bag that it came in
knowing that there is a slight chance that we could need it again? That
is the big decision knowing that it will be another 15 plus minutes
just to do that.
I'm guessing the rain suit debate will
continue as long as we have motorcycle riding and rain. I'm
sure you have had the same discussions on the side of the road with
your riding group. Some will error on the side of no chance of getting
wet and some will endure a few rain drops to keep from spending 30
minutes of your riding day putting on and taking off rain gear. I tend
to take on a little water to keep from going through the dreaded rain
suit exercise, but that theory caught us good in Wyoming last year. We
got stuck in the scenario of just a little rain here and there to the
point that you were already too wet to put your gear on, so you just
gut it out for the next 30 miles thinking you can't get any wetter.
Take it from me, you can. We were completely soaked. I even poured
water out of my boots after that one. Mrs. C. informed me that we won't
be doing that again. I tend to agree.
As you read this, I'm sure you have
conjured up a few of your own rain stories from the past. Do you
invest the time and effort to put it on, or not? It is a tricky thing
trying to out-smart the weather. I struggle with it every time, but am
striving for position #2 in my examples above. The problem still
remains, I just don't like to stop once I am rolling down the highway.
As the old saying goes, the best view
of a thunder storm is in your rear view mirror.
Page for updates rides, photos and video posted throughout the
you would like to sign up for the Cyclerides.com Weekly Update Click Here.
Attention Hat Wearers!
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Saturday, July 7th
Harley-Davidson Bikini Bike Wash.
Join Chandler Harley-Davidson on Saturday July 7th for our Bikini Bike
Wash from 10am - 2pm. Come get your bike washed by our Harley Girls for
FREE! Not only is your Bikini Bike Wash Free, there is also FREE FOOD,
Outdoor Games and More! Take advantage of 15% OFF Labor on All Chrome
or Black Accessories in service and Genuine H-D Cleaning Supplies! 20%
OFF Licensed H-D Cooling Gear in Motorclothes! Chandler HD is located
at 6895 W. Chandler Blvd. in Chandler, AZ. 844-942-7539. www.chandlerharley.com
Saturday, July 14th
Harley-Davidson Battle of the Sexes Bike Wash.
BATTLE OF THE SEXES BIKE WASH
is back at Arrowhead Harley-Davidson! Join Arrowhead H-D on Saturday,
July 14th, from 9am to noon for a Bikini Bike Wash from the Harley
Girls AND Muscle Motorcycle Wash from the Harley Men! They’ll also have
FREE Pizza, FREE Ice Cream & FREE Boot Shining courtesy of Black
Sheep. THIS DAY ONLY: A special Service Advisor will be onsite making
UNBEATABLE SERVICE DEALS on EVERYTHING! For more information, visit: www.arrowheadharley.com. Arrowhead Harley-Davidson is
located at 16130 N. Arrowhead Fountain Center Dr. in Peoria, AZ.
Enter by July 16th
Tigers "Stylin in Sturgis".
It is STYLIN-N-STURGIS time again!! This year we are going bigger and
better! One lucky winner will receive the Sturgis trip of a lifetime.
Could it be YOU? Enter your name to win a chance at at a STURGIS TRIP
of a LIFETIME, courtesy of Law Tigers and a few of our friends! To sign
up, go to:
Valley Rally 2018 Presented by Law Tigers.
Reserve your rooms early for the Thunder in the Valley in Cottonwood,
AZ happening on September 12-15.
Musical Guests this year:
Friday: Jonny Lang at 9PM.
Saturday: Blackfoot w/Rickey Medlocke at 9PM.
Mid Week Updates will be made on the
Easy to remember Facebook address. Go to www.facebook.com/cycleridescom
LIKES! Take a look at all the new photos posted on the
wall. If you are not on Facebook, you can still view the
page, but you will not be able to post. There will be a link there
for you to sign up for Facebook if you are inclined. Click the LIKE
Great compilation of commercials
called "Judge too quickly". Click Here
Since this is 4th of July. Here are
some firework Fails. Click Here
Click on the Video of the Week
graphic to view.
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Until Next Week,
Blessings and Safe Riding To All,
"The Road Is Yours - Take The Ride"
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