Autumn in Northeast Ohio brings some of the best cycling conditions of the year, but riding in the fall also means spending a little more time planning your outings, especially when considering what to wear to stay comfortable.
Choosing the right clothing for the weather can be challenging even for experienced riders; Bicycling Magazine has even attemtped to address the problem by programming this tool to help you pick what to wear. Try it and let us know what you think of it--do the recommendations it makes match what you would have picked on your own?
Here are some tips to help you stay comfortable and safe on your late-season rides:
3. Try wool clothing for comfort in a wide range of temperatures. We've expounded on the virtues of wool here before, and we'll do it again! Wool is nature's technical fabric--it keeps you warm even when it's wet, and it wicks moisture as well, if not better, than the latest high-performance synthetic materials. A wool jersey makes a great base layer under a jacket for cold conditions, but the latest lightweight wool items even feel great in the summer! Try some lightweight wool socks in summer or winter, and your feet will thank you. And don't worry about that itcy feeling like you got from that bulky wool sweater that your grandmother bought you for your birthday years ago; today's fine merino wool is just as smooth and comfortable as cotton!
4. Remember to stay hydrated, use sunscreen, and use a headlight and taillight. Without the summer sun and humidity beating down on you, you might not feel the urge to drink as much water or other fluids, but don't forget that it's still just as important to stay hydrated. Also, even in overcast skies, the sun can be just as dangerous on exposed skin as in the summer. With fall's late sunrises and early sunsets, you may find yourself out on the road in less-than-ideal conditions for visibility. If you plan on riding in the dark on a regular basis, it's wise to invest in a high-intensity rechargeable light system. If you just want to have a backup in case you end up being out a little longer than expected in the dusk, an inexpensive headlight and taillight are adequate to help make sure you're seen by motorists.
Stop by any of our three stores to try on these and other clothing items from the new Pearl Izumi Fall Collection, as well as a full selection of lights, socks, and much more from all of our favorite brands.