Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Winter riding: Wrap up Boris

This post has been prompted by the arrival of Boris to a nippy Sunday morning constitutional ride in a pair of shorts, fingerless mitts and NO SOCKS. Now there isn't much that would put Boris in a bad mood, even at 6am when the temperature is struggling to push past two degrees. And to give him his due he didn't once bemoan the lack of cold weather gear, apart from to mention that he couldn't feel his fingers on a couple of occassions.

But that didn't stop me from worrying about his toes falling off, especially when the dawn began to break and the frost started glistening on the roofs of the cars.

So here, Boris, is a list of the things you need to make what is already an unnatural thing to do on a Sunday morning, in a self-harm kind of way, that little bit more comfortable.

In order of importance:

Over socks: Your hands will eventually get the blood flowing to them but your feet will remain like blocks of ice around the ride. The oversocks go, as the name suggests, over your shoes, providing a degree of warmth and protection from the rain and mud. They might also help your aerodynamics a bit.

Gloves: Not fingerless padded mits with nice holes for air circulation. You need windproof and preferably breathable. Not quite as essential as oversocks because your hands will eventually warm up with exercise. But they might prevent quite a bit of pain, and you’ll be able to wipe the snot from your nose without it freezing to your hand.

Windproof jacket (above): Preferably waterproof too, and possessing of a little warmth, but the wind is what will do the damage and you need to keep your core warm. Get a gillet otherwise.

Winter tights: You’re going to look like a superhero with them on, but they will keep your legs toasty with their fleece backing and add a bit of that all important windproofing. If you want to keep your crown jewels intact, don’t wear shorts.

Wool hat: Or something to cover your ears at least. You know that ache when that wind blows down your ear canal. But make sure it isn’t too chunky, because you’ll want to get your helmet over the top of it.

Neck gaiter: You could consider this a luxury, but when the temperature really dips you’ll be pleased you have something to pull up over your mouth, even if the result is steamed up glasses and kissing the rear end of a bus. But hey, at least you’ll have a warm mush.

Ten points for guessing that I have linked to Rapha for all this gear. But that's because it is the best there is, and I can vouch for it. Other more inferior brands are available, but they won't keep you as warm, or as good looking. And thanks to Rapha for the pictures. I hope I can repay you in sales. With any luck, from Boris.

People who read this post also read :

No comments:

Post a Comment