Monday, December 22, 2008

Icicle Eyelashes

0*F this morning when I set off, but it was a sweltering 3*F downtown once I arrived.

After seeing that there was almost no wind to speak of, I decided to go for it this morning, and my clothing choices were only slightly off. I need some wool gear. My cotton hoodie was collecting moisture in my arms and back, and was starting to frost over on the outside. It looked like it'd been snowing on me once I pulled the windbreaker off. I stayed plenty warm, except my eyes and toes. Heavily fogged and freezing over, I decided that vision trumped comfort. Tears started flowing almost immediately and I had to brush ice crystals off of my eyelashes every few minutes to keep my eyes from freezing shut. No, I didn't get photos of my frozen eyelashes. As far as toes go, I had 3 layers of socks with the plastic bag next to the outermost layer. I was getting uncomfortable by the time I got downtown, but a half hour more would have probably done my toes in.

I filled my Polar bottle with lukewarm water, and it stayed not only liquid, but pleasantly drinkable, probably between 60 and 65 degrees. Especially after having my teeth worked on, they're very sensitive to ice-cold liquids. I drank more than half the bottle on the way in, and just took it easy. New personal record for temperatures, and The Twelve took it nicely, and made the ride not only more enjoyable, but quite a bit faster as well.

Random Tunage:
Ryan Farish - Legacy
Dave Matthews Band - Crash


Apertome said...

Nice job, riding the whole way in those temperatures. I remember riding at 0 degrees last year and having the frozen eyelash problem too. It's a strange sensation.

Sirrus Rider said...

Way to go Noah!

I was thinking about riding, but today is the company holiday Lunch and even though the restaurant is on the way I didn't want to leave my bike exposed that long. Plus I didn't want to be spotted by the brass swapping on my clothes over my cycling gear. Plus, it was a frosty 34 degrees this morning. (I know, downright balmy for you neck of the woods, but for Houston that almost as cold as it gets.)

Pat Ring said...

125 miles to go! Do you think you will make it? About 14 miles a day?

Matt said...

It was -11 in Minneapolis with a sharp head wind, plus the streets are still an icy mess, so I wimped out and drove. Blah. I have the driver's remorse.

Re: "random tunage". I am not trying to start a flame war, but do you wear headphones when you ride? If so (or if not), I would love to hear your thoughts on this hotly contested topic.

(Helmets, Critical Mass, and iPods: the three ingredients for a bicycle related flame war!)

Scott Redd said...

Way to keep it up through the cold prairie winter.

Minus 8 in Omaha this morning (my coldest yet). I tried out some new goggles that go over my eyeglasses. I don't normally have a problem with cold on my eyes after the first mile, but after riding during a snowfall last week, it was obvious that I needed something over my eyes during those conditions.

The problem this morning was my eyeglasses inside the goggles started fogging. I had to remove the eyeglasses and ride half-blind (I can see well enough, just not as clearly as I'd like).

I used a total of seven shirts and two jackets on the top and three layers on the bottom. They are all thin, so I didn't look too bulky. For socks, I used Smartwool, Hot Hands on the toes, and then some thick, wool blend hiking socks under my sneakers (with a hole in them!). Glove liners (with Hot Hands) under lobster claw gloves were on the hands. On my head I had a full balaclava, then one pulled down over my neck and ears, the goggles, then taped up helmet. Only my nose was exposed.

I got pretty hot during some hill climbs on my five mile ride.

The streets are still all fouled up after the recent winter storms, but the studded tires give me grip and reassurance.

Keep it up, all you winter commuter people!

Warren T said...

Funny, I had the same eyelash problem this morning. I made the mistake of closing my eyes for 5 seconds at a stop light... Oops.

Jon said...

I ride with safety glasses (my distance vision is fine without my "real" glasses, I just can't read the speedometer)on the cold days, in order to avoid the lashcicles.

Three above zero, when I left the house. We are having a heatwave!

Anonymous said...

Yes . I think was ice eyelash morning. It was first time for me that cold for eyelashs you can be blind when they freez shut. The wind was not blowing that was nice.
Columbia MO.
Ride safe and be seen and keep eyelashs unfreez;-)
We got 3 to 5 inches coming Tue.

Noah said...

Matt: Regarding Random Tunage, I love my music. I love it A LOT. I listen whenever I can. I do NOT listen to it while I ride on the street, though. I'll often listen in my right ear while I'm mountain biking or on MUP's, but I don't do that very often.

I used to make fun of people who wore headphones on the road. At this point, I don't really care who wears helmets or headphones, who has lights and who does not, who runs stop signs or any of that. I do get kind of cheesed about bike salmon who almost run ME over. The rest of them can do what they want. I've never been directly harassed in KC because of the actions of some other cyclist, so I don't feel the need to debate the headphone thing. I personally like as many senses as I can use as sharp as they can be when I'm riding. It's the same reason I ditched the goggles even though it was well, well below freezing this morning.

Noah said...

By the way, "Random Tunage" is the stuff I'm listening to while hammering out my posts, or sometimes it's the song(s) stuck in my head while I was riding.

sallymander said...

For all you goggle wearing cyclists, give this stuff a try. It's called Cat Crap and it's an anti-fog lens cleaner. Use it on the inside of your goggles and your glasses (inside and out). You won't have fogging issues. I use this stuff when I cross country ski.

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