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I'm going on a ride this weekend called the Tour de Blast, which cycles up Mt.St. Helens to the observatory.

The weather forecast is looking pretty dismal calling for thunderstorms, so a lot of rain. I'm expect the temperatures to be around mid 40 to 50 throughout the entire day. That takes into account the morning weather and climbing 4000'.

I've ridden in the rain, but not this much and for this amount of duration. I do have a rain jacket, but it's really just a waterproof shell. Not a heavy duty one like showerspass or such. I do have booties, but no rain paints. My bike is equipped with full fenders front and back, but I don't have extensions to run the fenders close to the road.

Generally I don't mind my legs and arms getting wet. Even my head being wet doesn't bother me too much. Although, I might change my mind on that if its a full day of this.

What I really can't stand and would make me really consider quitting is if my socks get soaked, or my butt get completely soaked. I know that with the booties, my feet still get wet, but not as quickly as without the booties.

What I'm looking for is some advice or inexpensive ideas to get me through this day. I'm contemplating on whether fender extensions are effective at making sure my feet and butt don't get wet as well as shielding my wife who will likely be riding behind me. Maybe a helmet cover... or maybe something to extend my jacket down a bit lower so that the spray doesn't get my butt wet.

Going up the mountain, I'll generate a lot of heat, but coming down I'll turn into an ice cube.

Any tips would be appreciated
 

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I was planning on riding the TDB, until I strained a calf muscle this week.
According to KGW in Portland, they say scattered showers, but it is St. Helens, so it could be more, but it might not be as wet as you think.

Nothing is going to keep you dry for that long. You need to just be warm. With full fenders, I think your butt will stay mostly dry. I would think your rain coat would have drop tail to cover further down?
I would say bring a vest and arm warmers for the way up and if you need extra warmth on the descent, you can put them on under your rain coat. Maybe some knee warmers to keep the knees warm as well.

If you haven't ridden the TDB before, know that the ride isn't up one way and down the other. There is climbing and descending BOTH ways, so you will warm up on the way back. It's after Elk Rock on the way back, that the rest is mostly downhill-ish.

I would wear Wool socks cause even if your feet get wet, they will still be warm.
Maybe consider a cycling cap in stead of a helmet cover. It will breathe better, and will give you some coverage for your eyes.

I would consider adding a mud flap to your fenders. Drill a hole and bolt an extension on. This will go a long way in keeping your feet dry in the front and your wife dry in the back. Home Depot has some stuff or check with your local shop to see if they have some.
I know here in Portland most shops have them.
https://www.westernbikeworks.com/product/buddy-flaps-fender-flap-set

Good luck with your ride. I hope the weather cooperates for you.
 

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Wool, socks, cap and upper body base layer. It works better than synthetics for me.
 

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Thermos of extra strong hot coffee.
Some kind of balaclava to keep your head dry or at least warm. You lose a lot of heat through your head.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks, ill pack the wool base layers and socks and see if I can hobble something for the fender extensions.
 

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If you'll be riding in significant rain for any length of time, fenders only delay the inevitable. Running a rear one can be considerate of following riders. When selecting fenders for coverage, it's helpful to remember that water is thrown off a tire tangentially, not radially.
 

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As you know, wool is your best friend and I have used plastic bags over my socks inside my shoes to help keep water out before. It delays the inevitable but you either get wet from rain or you get wet from sweat so wool socks and probably just suck it up. A change of socks and a toweling off mid trip do wonders to up morale. Watch that you keep your hands warm if you typically suffer from cold hands.
 

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My Pro Tip would be; MENTAL FORTITUDE.

When the b!tch!ing starts internally or vocally my attitude goes down the drain. You know it's going to be difficult and your going anyway, so whining can only be counterproductive.

I would watch this before going in an effort to phsych myself up and pretend that I am hard as a coffin nail.
 

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My Pro Tip would be; MENTAL FORTITUDE.

When the b!tch!ing starts internally or vocally my attitude goes down the drain. You know it's going to be difficult and your going anyway, so whining can only be counterproductive.

I would watch this before going in an effort to phsych myself up and pretend that I am hard as a coffin nail.
El Scorcho hit it on the head with MENTAL FORTITUDE, many are defeated before even turning a pedal in those conditions.

The only thing that I would do different is, be as hard as a coffin nail, don't pretend. If you pretend it is easier to allow yourself to weaken, but if you are truly a Hard Man, you won't allow weakness.
 

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You could do what I'm doing. Stay Home.

I rode it last year and it was one of the miserable experiences of my life. Cold, wet, windy....

I thought long and hard about what I could have done to make it better, and quite honestly, the marginal gains I might have made with warmer clothes, etc... would not have been enough.

I enjoy cycling. Some folks I know would call me obsessed. I can and will ride in wet weather (hard to avoid in the Northwest), but in my old'ish age, I have a rule about cycling. If it's not fun, I'm not doing it.
 

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There has to be 50 awesome rides in the vicinity of Mt.St Helens. This is not one of them--even on a sunny day.
You could do what I'm doing. Stay Home.

I rode it last year and it was one of the miserable experiences of my life. Cold, wet, windy....

I thought long and hard about what I could have done to make it better, and quite honestly, the marginal gains I might have made with warmer clothes, etc... would not have been enough.

I enjoy cycling. Some folks I know would call me obsessed. I can and will ride in wet weather (hard to avoid in the Northwest), but in my old'ish age, I have a rule about cycling. If it's not fun, I'm not doing it.
 

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Coming down a mountain so you can't really generate much body heat, wet, and in 40 degrees is a real good recipe for hypothermia. I'd skip it if those are to be the conditions.
I had it happen to me coming down Mt. Whiteface. Sorry internet hard men but you really can't wish away hypothermia with mental fortitude.
 

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Coming down a mountain so you can't really generate much body heat, wet, and in 40 degrees is a real good recipe for hypothermia. I'd skip it if those are to be the conditions.
I had it happen to me coming down Mt. Whiteface. Sorry internet hard men but you really can't wish away hypothermia with mental fortitude.
Stuff a piece of newspaper on your chest, and pedal fast. That'll keep you from hypothermia. In a few minutes, you're in warmer air! What's the problem? :D
 

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Stuff a piece of newspaper on your chest, and pedal fast. That'll keep you from hypothermia. In a few minutes, you're in warmer air! What's the problem? :D
That's a great idea. Why didn't I think of hitting the news stand on top of Whiteface to grab a paper then hammering it down 7 miles of 10% (or whatever it is) in the rain. Let me know how that works out.
 

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Coming down a mountain so you can't really generate much body heat, wet, and in 40 degrees is a real good recipe for hypothermia. I'd skip it if those are to be the conditions.
I had it happen to me coming down Mt. Whiteface. Sorry internet hard men but you really can't wish away hypothermia with mental fortitude.
Great point. One of the first things to go when hypothermia sets in is reason. And not in some small way... The ability to make a decision that could lead to life or to death is gone as the brain gets too cold. People will walk away from a running car into the snow. As a surfer years ago who never owned a wet suit, I was always aware of how dangerous hypothermia is.
 

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That's a great idea. Why didn't I think of hitting the news stand on top of Whiteface to grab a paper then hammering it down 7 miles of 10% (or whatever it is) in the rain. Let me know how that works out.
Water kind of destroys newspaper as a windscreen, doesn't it? Agree, below 45 degrees and raining? Forget it!
 

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Last year on this ride it was about 45 degrees at the start, and colder as you go up the mountain. There were high winds (there are always high winds on this ride as the road is mostly on exposed hillside). To go with the high winds, there were hard cold rains falling, occasionally some sleet and hail. The road conditions were terrible. So many people had severe hypothermia that the organizers were driving up and down the mountain vans and offering to pick people up, and for those that persevered, they offered us garbage bags to put on over our already soaked to the bone rain gear.

I'm sorry, you can be a hard man if you want. I will never do anything like that again. It was absolutely freaking miserable.

Edit to add: I haven't heard from anyone who was on the ride today (been watching my Strava feed). It was in the mid to high 50s in the Western Washington lowlands today, with severe weather cells moving through the area most of the day dropping lots of heavy rain and hail. Mt Saint Helens is further south. Hopefully they had better weather. If not, I just hope everyone came home safe.

Sign me up for this ride!

 

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Stuff a piece of newspaper on your chest, and pedal fast. That'll keep you from hypothermia. In a few minutes, you're in warmer air! What's the problem? :D
When I read stuff like this, it makes me wonder if you even own a bicycle? or are you just trolling?

Maybe next year you can come up the the Northwest and do some spring and fall rides with us? Sounds like you'd LOVE Tour De Blast.

Don't forget your newspaper!
 

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As far as tips for this kind of thing, which is what the thread was originally for.

For me, wool layers is the key to staying warm. I rain shell is nice, it keeps the cold rain off of you, but I sweat a ton, and stay wet anyway. Wool works well to keep you warm even if you are sweating under your rain jacket.

Thermal tights, wool socks, a wool beanie under your helmet, and whatever you need to keep your energy up (food wise). You can't possible consume enough calories during this ride, but remember, you body is not only trying to drag your butt up that hill, it's also working overtime trying to keep you from dying of hypothermia. If you eat too much or the wrong kind of food (only you know), it will probably just sit in your stomach like a rock, or worse, make you nauseous. That won't help.
 
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