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2020! The “How was your commute?” thread!

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2020! The “How was your commute?” thread!

Old 01-07-20, 10:31 AM
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Steely Dan
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another glorious January morning for a bike commute here in chicago!

35 degrees, plenty of sun, light and favorable winds, dry, nary a trace of residue snow/ice/slush/etc.

man, a guy could really get used to this........


but the hammer drops tonight, the forecast temp for tomorrow morning is only 17 degrees w/ a 14 mph NW wind dropping the windchill down to 6 degrees.

it's chest hair time!
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Old 01-07-20, 08:49 PM
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Back on the commuter train (bike) after a bit of time off! I managed to miss the rain today. Which was awesome.

Originally Posted by arsprod View Post
Thanks for getting the 2020 thread started! First commute of the year - 41F, not a bad start!
I definitely read that temperature the wrong way the first time and thought 'wow, negative 41'! This is what a few years deep in Wisconsisota will do to ya
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Old 01-08-20, 07:51 AM
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Originally Posted by wipekitty View Post
Back on the commuter train (bike) after a bit of time off! I managed to miss the rain today. Which was awesome.



I definitely read that temperature the wrong way the first time and thought 'wow, negative 41'! This is what a few years deep in Wisconsisota will do to ya
LMAO! Unlike our fearless Canadian brethren I would NOT be riding in -41F temps!!
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Old 01-08-20, 11:56 AM
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Still learning to use this dropper post on the MTB portions of my ride. I can tell what it's for, but don't always remember to use it, and actuating it is about as convenient as front downshift when you're not expecting it to get steep. And the knees have to bend a lot deeper. It's hard to change nearly forty years of bike habits learned since childhood.
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Old 01-08-20, 12:52 PM
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Holy headwind batman!

Unseasonably mild here but that brings the blustery, spring type weather with it.

Thankful for my "budget aero" setup, except in cross winds, scary.

Also kinda glad for my 1x10 setup, my single speed would have been a little painful riding in to 35 MPH winds.

Maybe I am getting old. Maybe my kids have worn out my legs from hours of ice skating.

Cheers all.
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Old 01-08-20, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by arsprod View Post
LMAO! Unlike our fearless Canadian brethren I would NOT be riding in -41F temps!!
Canadians - because even Americans need heroes!
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Old 01-08-20, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
another glorious January morning for a bike commute here in chicago!

35 degrees, plenty of sun, light and favorable winds, dry, nary a trace of residue snow/ice/slush/etc.

man, a guy could really get used to this........


but the hammer drops tonight, the forecast temp for tomorrow morning is only 17 degrees w/ a 14 mph NW wind dropping the windchill down to 6 degrees.

it's chest hair time!
I have actually drank Old Style - at a bar in PHX. Owned by a Chicago transplant.
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Old 01-08-20, 02:11 PM
  #33  
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My first commute of year today. 40F, cloud and dry - maybe wet on the way home.
Monday was my first work day and was rainy and with jet-leg, so just drove.... going back home took me more than biking
Yesterday worked from home because was waiting the luggage that didn't make it to my final destination.
Next week, snow forecast and cold around here - if not so wet will adventure out
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Old 01-09-20, 08:04 AM
  #34  
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Temps right at 32F this morning. Just before heading out I saw an almost full, big yellow moon setting. It looked cool.

Temps are looking to warm up over the next few days and into next week. Gonna feel like an early spring.
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Old 01-09-20, 08:26 AM
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Wind out of the south at 15-30mph with gusts up to 60mph. In one area was riding along at 15mph and all the sudden was going 20.. and not pedaling! The rest of the ride was challenging to say the least.
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Old 01-09-20, 01:49 PM
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Only excuses today.

My wife bought me an Apple watch for Christmas, so my rides are picking up my heart rate now. Have not done anything with the data... yet...
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Old 01-13-20, 05:42 AM
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A very nice commute with the temp at 33 f degrees and dark skies. No winds to speak of which was great because the last two days have been windy with gusts greater than 20 mph. Also dry roads.
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Old 01-13-20, 07:44 AM
  #38  
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Bailed on the ride today due to all day rain. I cleaned my bike just yesterday! Warm out though at 60+F.

A local cyclist was hit and killed yesterday afternoon. Driver said he was passing and the cyclist made a sudden left into his path. People who knew him say he was an experienced rider and there was no where to turn left into. Whatever happened, it's tragic for both parties.
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Old 01-13-20, 08:10 AM
  #39  
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mgw4jc that is sad to hear about.

I bailed on commuting today because there was a thunderstorm as I woke this morning. I looked at weather apps and % for rain was too high to take the chance. Very warm though! The bad news is that it is supposed to be rainy most of the week. Then eventually turn colder. with missing last week due to life stuff and this week due to weather i am contemplating setting up the bike on the trainer or going to the gym a bunch more this week.

Worried about losing my fitness going on two weeks with no real riding.
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Old 01-13-20, 09:06 AM
  #40  
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Consecutive bicycle work commute number 871:

First day back after taking an unexpected week off work due to Influenza A. Still not feeling great, but feeling good enough I guess. You definitely lose your winter skin when you don't leave the house for 8 days, and being covered with blankets for most of that time.

My wife was trying to convince me to take 1/2 the day off and go in at noon. I decided if I'm only going to work 1/2 a day, I'd rather it be in the morning. This leaves me the option to work all day if I feel up to it. This way if noon comes and I feel good enough to continue I didn't burn 1/2 a day of vacation time unnecessarily. She was also encouraging me to reconsider riding my bike. I threw out the option of riding to the bus stop and taking the bus downtown, and she didn't care for that due to the monster hill I had to climb between our house and the bus stop. I then threw out the option of just walking to the bus stop, but she didn't like that idea either. She finally agreed to let me wake up this morning and make a judgement call of what I feel up to doing.

16F with a 15 mph wind. We got about and inch of fresh powder last night. I'd heard from some friends that the MUP hasn't been plowed after the last couple of snows and has gotten really icy and rutted. I decided to ride, but left the house 15 minutes early so I could take my time and ride at an easy pace. I debated between the winter bike with studs and the fat bike. I decided with the fresh snow to go fat and drop the tire pressure down to 6.5 lbs. I'm glad I did.

I rolled along around 6 mph without exerting too much effort. The fat tires cut through the fresh snow with ease, and the snow gave me some decent grip on top of the ice lurking below. I'm glad I left early, as I used every extra minute I had allotted myself.

For some reason my goggles were really icing over. Usually it doesn't become an issue until below zero, but this morning just two miles into my ride I noticed I was having trouble seeing. At one point I started going up a hill and thought, "wait a minute, there's no hill here." Turns out my goggles were so iced over I had missed my turn. I decided that it was unsafe to continue to ride like that, so I just took my goggles off and finished the last 1.5 miles bare eyed.

I arrived unusually sweaty for temps in the teens. I'm guessing it's a residual effect of my sickness.

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Old 01-13-20, 11:21 PM
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On airplanes today and Wednesday and a rental car tomorrow. Back at it Thursday, which is also the day I've promised to deliver all the work I am not doing MTW. Sooo good luck me.

Meanwhile the truck needs a transmission repair. Minimum estimate $3200. All my bikes together didn't cost that much and it's only to pull the thing out and replace one gear. Stupid automobiles.
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Old 01-14-20, 07:30 AM
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Wet roads as the rainy week continues. No rain coming down though. 60F for a warm January morning.

Had a guy give a long, angry honk as he passed. Then I caught up to him as he waited to make a left turn. It seems like he hesitated to go even though it was clear, possibly waiting for me to do something. I did nothing. Probably should have noted his license plate though.

I wiped the bike down a little when I arrived at the office because I hate to see my Sunday cleaning reversed so quickly.
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Old 01-14-20, 08:22 AM
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Consecutive bicycle work commute number 872:

15F and windy. I left the house early because I had a doctor's appointment before work. I was about two miles from home and really struggling to maintain speed. I thought it was a combination of the head wind and me still recovering from the flu.

I saw my friend Scott about a hundred yards behind me on the MUP, so I decided to take a rest break and pull over. He stopped and we chatted for a couple of minutes. He works at the hospital where I was going, but I told him that I was moving especially slow this morning and for him to go on without me. He took off, and I started to ride again. This time as I was pedaling something definitely felt wrong. I looked down to discover my rear tire was completely flat.

When I bought the fat bike I had the tires converted to tubeless because (ironically) they are supposed to be puncture resistant. The trade off is when they do go flat they're pretty difficult to fix on the road. I decided that I wasn't going to make my doctor's appointment, so I called and cancelled and will probably get a bill for it anyway. Instead of going to the hospital I decided to try and limp to the client's office 2.5 miles away and then figure out how to deal with my tire there.

I pushed the bike 1.5 miles with the flat tire. If you think riding a fat bike is good exercise, you should try pushing one! With about a mile to go a kind stranger with a truck saw my plight and stopped to give me a ride the rest of the way.

I'm going to call my wife and see if she can leave for work early, and take me and the bike down to the LBS to get the tire fixed. I can then ride back to the office and ride home tonight.
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Old 01-14-20, 01:17 PM
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Did your sealant freeze? I wouldn't have thought so, part of the formula is RV antifreeze. But you are riding outside my experience.

Was the puncture too big to seal? Do you have a plug kit? A guy on MTBR just posted a review of the Stan's Dart, which along with its mechanical function is coated with a catalyst for the sealant. He tried it with both Stan's and Orange Seal. With the Stan's it worked fine, the Orange Seal catalyzed but went powdery instead of gummy.

Had your sealant just dried out? This happened to me a lot on my first set of tires, which were not really tubeless tires (lacking the butyl inner layer) and they wept fluid. They worked better with Orange Seal than Trucker Co which I think is a Stan's clone. Stan's sells 2oz injector bottles with a valve remover molded into the lid.
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Old 01-14-20, 01:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
Did your sealant freeze? I wouldn't have thought so, part of the formula is RV antifreeze. But you are riding outside my experience.

Was the puncture too big to seal? Do you have a plug kit? A guy on MTBR just posted a review of the Stan's Dart, which along with its mechanical function is coated with a catalyst for the sealant. He tried it with both Stan's and Orange Seal. With the Stan's it worked fine, the Orange Seal catalyzed but went powdery instead of gummy.

Had your sealant just dried out? This happened to me a lot on my first set of tires, which were not really tubeless tires (lacking the butyl inner layer) and they wept fluid. They worked better with Orange Seal than Trucker Co which I think is a Stan's clone. Stan's sells 2oz injector bottles with a valve remover molded into the lid.
I just got back from the LBS. A co-worker wound up hauling me and my bike there rather than making my wife come, and in return I bought him lunch.

Apparently I hit a rut or something big enough to break the bead on the tire, and had a slow leak. The LBS just re-seated everything and tested for leaks and everything looked good. They threw in some extra sealant just to be safe. They even cleaned and lubed my chain and didn't charge me for any of it. Then I rode the bike back to the office and everything held fine.

I'd only had the tires converted to tubeless for about three months, so I doubt the original sealant had gone dry in that time. I'm not sure what kind they use, but they're used to dealing with bikes in our climate so I'm sure they've figured out what works well. I remember them saying that the sealant they use does pretty good down to about -20F.
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Old 01-15-20, 05:56 AM
  #46  
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The commute today was pleasant and unexpected. The temp was 36 f degrees with dark skies and barely any breeze. Later today should be in the 40's with sun.


I thought due to having a hair cut after work I would have to take the car to work. But no, I will go straight home on the bike then come right back with the car for the hair cut. The salon I go to is at the end of the road I turn to get to my work building. About 1/4 mile away.
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Old 01-15-20, 08:10 AM
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Quite the foggy morning here. About 55F and less than normal visibility.

The majority of cars passing in an unsafe manner (in my opinion), are not unsafe toward me, but rather unsafe toward oncoming traffic. They get into the oncoming lane to give me plenty of room, but do so with oncoming cars approaching. I fear that one of these days I'm going to witness a head-on or at least a side-swiping collision due to these unsafe passes.
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Old 01-15-20, 08:38 AM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by mgw4jc View Post
Quite the foggy morning here. About 55F and less than normal visibility.
Same here (except temp was 32F). I don't know if it's because the temp was right on the edge of freezing but fog seemed heavy and wet. Today's supposed to be our last day of above normal temps... sigh
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Old 01-15-20, 09:05 AM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by arsprod View Post
Same here (except temp was 32F). I don't know if it's because the temp was right on the edge of freezing but fog seemed heavy and wet. Today's supposed to be our last day of above normal temps... sigh
We have one more day getting to 60+, then your colder temps reach NC.

I forgot to mention the co-worker who told me she got a Peloton bike for Christmas and has been riding it every day so far. She was excited to tell me when she hit 100 miles. And today she told me her stats of number of rides, calories burned, miles ridden, etc. While I prefer outdoor activities, I think it's great when anyone tries to be physically active, so I encourage the best I can and tell her to keep it up.
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Old 01-15-20, 09:46 AM
  #50  
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35 degrees and damp, but at least the freezing rain they were warning about hadn't arrived yet, perhaps later this morning.

the 1st half of january is now in the books, and in 11 years of 4-season bike commuting, this has definitely been one of the mildest early januarys we've had here in chicago.

but it looks like the 2nd half of the month will drop a bit down into more normal long-term seasonal averages.
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