Monday, October 13, 2014

Don't let the drizzle get you down

Bike to Work Day 2014
This hasn't been a great long weekend for biking (for those of you who don't have to work on Columbus Day). There was light drizzle on Friday, Saturday, and for most of today (Monday). Not great riding conditions, but not really that bad. We rode to the Reston Farm Market on Saturday, using the W&OD Trail for about 2 miles and we didn't see another cyclist. The rain was very light and it was a pleasant ride, especially since we had the trail mostly to ourselves, along with a few runners and walkers. Today was the same story.

One advantage we have other most other riders is that we believe in fenders (when I worked in a bike shop a while back I was surprised how many people don't know the term "fender") that keeps water, sand and mud from splattering on our shoes and back when the roads and trails are wet.

In places like Portland, Oregon and Seattle, Washington, if you don't ride in the drizzle, you won't ride for a good part of the year. If you don't have fenders, why not try them. They are a great addition to the bike and they don't cost much.

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Another advantage of fenders.. they make your chain and bottom bracket last longer by blocking the spray from your front wheel. Fenders should be long enough to keep gritty water from kicking up on your chain as well. 90% of the fenders that come preinstalled on bikes are too short. Only a couple of brands of aftermarket fenders are long enough as well. The good news is that decent fenders are pretty cheap... only $35 to $50 or so for a set of SKS or Planet Bike fenders.

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