|Lightning - From Wikipedia|
Around DFW, on the other hand, the rain REALLY lets you know it is serious stuff. Lightning, thunder, flash floods and more. And then, as quickly as the rain arrived, it is past and drenching Louisiana or Oklahoma. I think the term around these parts is the rain comes down as a "frog strangler," but I'm not from around here. Regardless, it'll come down as several inches in an hour.
Last week, however, we got lucky. It actually rained THREE DAYS IN A ROW! Multiple rain days tests a cyclist's ability to not only stay dry on the commute, but also to keep stuff dry over multiple days. Any fair weather cyclist can ride ONE day in the rain. After all, the shoes and gloves and stuff can dry out and things will be back to normal. I was doubly lucky, because, after the first rain day, on Monday, my new "waterproof winter boots" showed up.
|Fortunately, Chandra has a DIFFERENT Salomon Shoe|
Early the next morning, before I realized theyd snuck onto my doorstep the previous evening, I received a text from Chandra. THAT is shown at left. Chandra put up a post about HIS Salomons, but took it back down. Perhaps it'll be back up by the time my loyal reader reads this.
Well, as it transpired, I had gotten Salomon boots. I picked them over the North Face Snow Sneakers because I wanted something a little higher cut than the North Face product and I'd read quite a few good reviews.
Half way through this text exchange, I went out and the shoes were there, in a giant box. It wasn't as bad as Jon's box, but it WAS pretty big. And it was raining. HARD. It turned out we got three or four inches that day. It was a good test of new boots that claim to be waterproof.
Well, they WERE waterproof, as long as you do not try to emulate a powerboat while riding your bike. I do not recommend riding through deep standing water in Salomon Deemax 2 Winter Boots. The water will splash up and under your rain gear and come in through the top of the boot. Or at least it happened to me with my right foot. The left stayed nice and toasty and dry. Even the right didn't get very wet. It was dried out during the day and suffered no further dampness. In my own defense, there were a couple of lightning strikes on the way to work and that was a bit distracting. The closest one was about a mile away. That seemed a little cozier, but reading up on lightning again from Wikipedia reminded me that lightning can strike ten miles away, and it was also a bit disconcerting to hear about DFW flight delays because the ground crews were not allowed out when potential lightning conditions existed. Of course, by THAT time, I was more than half way to work and there was nothing to do but complete the journey and plan on some further lightning research.
|Salomon Deemax 2 Winter Boots with Canari Rain Pants|
I also tried using plastic grocery bags to keep my gloves dry. It didn't work real well the first day, but some fiddling gave better success the second. I really can't bring myself to put those tight latex gloves over winter gloves.
Unfortunately, by Wednesday afternoon, things were drying out, so I only got three wet days, but it was a lot of fun, except I felt a little sorry for my coworkers who had to walk in from their parking lot without proper weather protection. I also discovered on Wednesday afternoon that 60F is about as warm as you'd want to cycle in the boots. Rumor has it they'll be good down to zero with wool socks. Maybe even a little colder with shoe covers. Our all-time record cold in North Texas was -8, so I think these puppies will work VERY well for the half dozen times I need them - and being cleatless, they'll also work well for walking in cold or wet weather.
|Boots Have Sealed Soles and Tongue, with Thinsulate Insulation|