Grinding in the Cold.

Last night saw temps and wind both hovering around 20.

In the country, at night, with wide-open fields and nothing to stop the wind, that feels mighty cold.

Nonetheless, it was time for the Wednesday night gravel ride, and hence, Chad and I mounted up and rolled out into the darkness.  Given the conditions, I figured we wouldn’t be rolling too quickly, so I decided to mount up the Singlespeed and head out.  Chad was astride his Trek XO cross bike–also a good choice for the evening.

With the wind out of the North/Northwest, we rolled a bit south, and then headed west on gravel, with a few interspersed chunks of pave.  We encountered snow and ice, including a bit of sketchy black ice on the pavement.

The ‘wet’ pavement at the left of the picture. Umm, yeah. That’s ice.

We also encountered…a missing bridge.  That required nothing more than a dismount, run down the embankment, hop a minor creek, and climb up the far side.

Chad was wearing a Gore Phantom jacket, and I’m not sure which pants, but Gore windstopper pants.  I was similarly kitted.  Two quick notes on gear: 1) Windstopper…well, it stops wind.  Effectively.

2)  The reflective strips on the gear work…and make up an important part of my Winter Visibility Plan.

From a distance, the red light is more visible than shown in the pic.  At any distance, the reflective silver bits are super visible.

Rolling a 32/16 gear ratio, I was spun out at ~20mph heading out of town with a tailwind, but perfectly geared for hammering into the wind completing the loop, headed back North.  The El Mar may have been overkill…but was super fun to ride.

 

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