Biking in the rain does not exactly scream “Fun!” to most people, and that’s understandable and miserable. It’s wet, dark, and a little more dangerous than riding in the sun. Yet, whether you love it or hate it, one thing is for certain, a wet ride is unavoidable even for the timidest of fair weather cyclists. In fact, there is no such thing as the bad weather with the right kit, some common sense, and skills and you can stay safe and still enjoy your ride. The following comprehensive guide to biking in the rain will make sure you stay safe, comfortable and in control.
What to prepare for biking safety?
Safety comes first, so the most important piece of gear you need for biking in the rain is a good set of lights. Everything else is secondary. Beyond that, a good waterproof jacket and some warm, waterproof gloves, and install some fenders so you don’t turn your spinal column into a dirt road. Besides, you need to prepare something else to keep your body dry. The followings are some necessary recommends.
1.Cycling rain Jackets
We know that riding in the rain can be a little tricky because you will get wet and it’s a real annoyance. The most important item of clothing for battling the rain is a jacket. With a good waterproof jacket, not only can it keep your torso dry, but also it will help you regulate your body temperature. There are 2 key points to choosing a jacket. One is Breathability. It is important to keep warm, but a breathable jacket is necessary. If you overheat, you will get wet from the inside rather than the outside. A synthetic fabric, wool, or fleece are great options. The other is waterproof, for water always finds a way. Gore-Tex is the best material as it is waterproof and breathable. Besides, a jacket with zipper vents under the arms can help offset "boil in the bag" effect.
2.Cycling rain pants
There are a few waterproof cycling rain pants designed for breathability on the market. And anything made of Gore-Tex is going to be more breathable if you are easy to sweat. A good pair of cycling rain pants is essential when you are biking in rainy days. If you wear them as general outdoors clothes or for a short-distance trip, a pair of cycling rain pants with the waterproof index of 6000 is enough, but if you bike for a long distance, you need to choose them with the waterproof index of 10000 at least.
3.Waterproof bike lights
Because of heavy rain and the glare from auto headlights which will reduce your vision, it is also important for you to use waterproof bike lights so that people driving and walking can see you. It is also a good idea to ride with some bright LED lamps which are relatively inexpensive and work reasonably well. To be seen, a front white light, red rear light, and side lights are recommended.
4.Waterproof shoes and gloves
It is important for you to keep your extremities warm and dry because you will feel uncomfortable when your hands and feet get wet. A pair of waterproof shoes is worth their weight in gold while gloves are harder to get right. They need to protect you without being so thick as to hamper your bike control. You still need to be able to feel the brakes and gears through all that material.
Cyclists who carry anything they want to keep dry should invest in a waterproof bag. There are lots of options these days — backpacks, saddlebags, trunk bags and handlebar bags. Whatever you choose, waterproof is the key. To protect your cargo, a cheap solution is to wrap your things in a plastic bag to keep water out.
They may not look great but they are indispensable for rainy days. Mudguards will keep all that filthy water on the road off your body. It may be a little tricky if you ride with a bike of unguarded wheels spraying the water. Besides, bike frames, chains, and saddlebags also enjoy the protection of fenders.
cyclists safety bible-The Comprehensive Guide To biking in the rain Don’t bother with cycling glasses, for not only does it make you look cool, but also it keeps the rain out of your eyes on rainy days. Besides, a pair of glasses with yellow or transparent lenses is a nice choice, because to some extent it can light and make you have a better vision in rainy days. Do remember wipe your glasses regularly. If you don’t want to wear glasses, a cheap cycling cap worn under your helmet is a good barrier for your head, and the peak will give extra protection for your eyes against the spray.
How to bike?
Most people don’t like biking in the rain, but it’s important for you to get used to the inconvenience causing by rainy days and try to give play to your biking ability. For riders who take part in a match, bending without trouble can increase their confidence. For general cycling lovers, getting used to biking in rainy days can reduce panic and the possibility of an accident. However, Riding in the rain is more dangerous than riding in dry conditions for an obvious reason: slippery when wet. There are a few things you need to keep in mind to ensure your safety. Here are a few tips for cycling in the rain:
1.Be familiar with the road condition
It sounds simple, but most of us usually forget the simplest things in fact. Be care of the grease on the road (you will see a colorful reflection). In the meanwhile, you have to avoid pools, for there might be rocks and big holes under the water. Besides, Metal surfaces, road imperfections, and painted surfaces can become slippery in wet weather. So you can’t be too careful when you are crossing over train tracks, metal grates, sewer covers and even bike lane markings. When you ride over them, try to keep your feet in a “neutral” position (both feet on the pedals at the 3 and 9 o’clock position), take some of your weight off the seat by lifting your butt up, and stop pedaling to maintain balance.
2.Be careful around the corner
You can’t be too careful when you are around the corner. The slippery road surface and the gravel cause the tire to slip easily which makes it dangerous to bike in rainy days. I had an experience of falling down from my bike in the rain and it really hurt. When you are biking in wet weather your brakes are less effective than on a rainy day. Therefore, you need to brake early enough to a complete stop. Besides, you need to notice the drivers and walkers on the road. When you are turning, try to sit upright and take a little slower than you normally do.
3.Be highly visible
It is hard to identify things when it’s rainy. So it is well worth making yourself more visible when it’s rainy, even in the middle of the day. Lights are needed anyway and flashing LEDs are a good addition. Bright colors and reflective clothing is also a good choice to increase your visibility.
4.Get a spare bike for rainy days
If you live in a city with wet and humid climate or the road need to be sprinkled with salt to prevent icing in winter, you’d better buy a spare bike. You can ride a heavier bike in the offseason which have a good effect on training your skills.
5.Drink a cup of hot water
When you reach your destination, it’s great to drink a cup of hot water to keep warm and prevent you from getting a cold.
6.Remember to clean your bike after your ride
To ensure the brakes are still effective, do remember to take some time to wipe water and dirt off the metal bike wheel rims, front and back. If possible, wipe water off the chain after a rain ride and squirt on a little bike lubricant which will extend its life.
7.Learn to like biking in rainy days
Perhaps it’s the most difficult parts. However, think it over, it will motivate you when others stop have a rest indoors. You can a shorter the distance, but you should try your best to play well when biking in rainy days.
What are you waiting for？
Don’t let rainy days stop you from biking. Biking in the rain doesn’t have to be a chore. If you follow above steps and keep your head up, you can ride through even the wettest of weather and still arrive at your destination feeling and look great.
Go out and ride in the rain, because it’s important to know how your bike handles and how to handle your bike in the rain, as well as how to dress to be confident and comfortable in those conditions.
Long life is like a long journey. You will find a different view differs from others when you keep going on. All the weather is an unexpected part of your journey and you should appreciate it. As long as you make a good preparation for it, biking in rainy days should be a wonderful scenery