Okay, I have to ‘fess up. I am hesitant to ride in the rain. I shouldn’t be, and I have a reasonable amount of experience at it — although in Central Texas, we have far less opportunity to ride in the rain than people in other parts of the country.
Here’s what triggered this post: I have fallen four times on the bike since 2009. Two of the four falls were the result of rainy or wet conditions. Each time, I had little in the way of open wounds, but took a long time to recover from being banged up. Shoulders, ribs, hips, etc.
I joke with my friends that “I’m too old to fall.” I say that because at my age, I know recovery takes longer. And yet, back in March, I did fall.
And three weekends ago, I was on a club ride when the skies opened up. Oddly enough, it happened on a stretch of road where I had been caught in a downpour just last summer. Then, I recall sticking with the group, and covering about 10 soaking miles. This time, I found myself reacting in a skittish, almost timid way to the rain.
I slowed way down. The guy I was riding with took off, and in no time was a quarter mile ahead of me. The shower we were in didn’t last long, and the road actually started drying out after the next couple of miles.
A member of our club whom I don’t know well was recently hit by a car, and although his recovery is nearly complete, I’m told he has a sort of post traumatic stress disorder about it. He’s almost scared to get back on his bike and ride in traffic.
I’m not that bad about rain, but I’m a lot more cautious than I used to be.
And yet, people ride in the rain all the time — relish it, even. So, readers, I’m asking for some reader participation here.
How do YOU ride in the rain?
Rather than post in comments at the bottom of this page, I prefer that you email me. I’ll compile the suggestions, tips, skills, guidelines — whatever you want to call them — and put them in their own post sometime in the future.
It’s unlikely I’ll be looking for rain riding opportunities even after I get some tips — but I’m hoping I won’t be as hesitant about it as I am now.
Again, to respond, just send an email to rainycamp AT yahoo DOT com.