|Hugh Blemings's Blog|
Sun, 11 Dec 2005
A work trip was once again going to see me in Rochester, Minnesota so I emailed ahead to Dave that I'd ridden with back in July to see if riding was an option this late in the year. He was keen so I made a point of packing my riding gear including several layers of thermals in anticipation of a chilly day.
A few days out I checked to see if the ride still looked like a goer, I'd been keeping an eye on the weather courtesy of weather.com and figured it could go either way - it had been in the twenties (fahrenheit) for much of the week I was in Austin so was by no means sure that we'd be on.
On the Saturday night I gave Dave a call and we agreed to meet at his place around half one in the afternoon. Turned out to be a glorious day - sunny for the most part but below freezing the whole time which for me was a real novelty. Dave once again kindly loaned me a bike and with a quick check of settings we were off.
Riding in the snow is really something else - the roads had been swept so they were only slippery on the edges, rest of the time it was pretty much like riding in wet weather. We did a 30mi loop through similar territory to the earlier ride and the whole experience was quite special - snow makes everything quiet and no better way to enjoy it I think than from a bike/trike. To someone like me unfamiliar with snow it was a delightful experience, if a bit chilly.
We took about two hours to cover the loop before returning to the suburbs, I had a few wobbly moments but was relieved to have no spills or even a need to put a foot down. My cold weather gear from Ground Effect did very well, though I'd have wanted another (3rd/4th) layer if we'd been out for longer, or in colder conditions.
Dave made the rather wry observation that the average temperature for my rides in Rochester was now a pleasant ~60F on the basis of the two rides so far (100F for the first, 20F for the second)...
Rest of my time in Rochester while brief was equally enjoyable, catching up with colleagues and getting some good work related stuff done too, but the ride was certainly the most unique bit!