Friday, October 2, 2009

Cooler Weather

I tried out my new gloves on a recent morning.
I also installed one of the two liners in my jacket.
September in Kansas can seem like two different seasons sometimes. Average high temperatures around 80, but it seems that we never hit exactly on the averages. In some years summer seems to hang on and we get highs around 90, while in other years it feels a lot more like fall.
This year, August was unseasonably cool and rainy, and I was afraid that September would turn out to be hot. It doesn't seem right to go to a Friday night football game when it is 90 degrees outside. But, it has been very pleasant this year.
Fall is my favorite time of year. Cooler weather, leaves turning color, football games and relaxing on our screened in back porch (keeps the bugs out) are just some of the things I enjoy.
I remember how surprised I am about riding in cooler weather, that the wind chill seems to increase exponentially as the temperature drops. Even at 60 degrees, it can be brisk when riding at 30 mph. At 50 degrees it is much, much cooler, etc. We have had some recent morning lows around 40 degrees.
I remember last winter that I sometimes had 6 or 7 layers of clothing on. I wear my gear over my work clothing when I commute. My legs don't seem to get as cold as my chest and arms, so don't wear as many layers on my legs, but do have long underwear if needed.
It sure seems like the summer has passed by quickly. But I sure do like the cooler weather that comes in the fall. It means bundling up a little more on the scooter, but I don't mind. In fact, I find it invigorating.
I am not a fan of really hot weather. The way I figure it, you can always put on more clothes If it is cold, but you can only go so far in shedding clothes If it is really hot. That is, of course, unless I lived on one of those nude beaches that are so famous in Key West. Other people, I know, prefer hot weather to cold, but it is not for me.
I have ridden for many months now exclusively with my Aerostich Hot Weather Vegan gloves. They are fantastic and I would recommend them to anybody. They are perforated and have been nice even on the hottest of days. They have been used in over 100 degree weather. But as it gets cooler, they will not serve the purpose of warmth. I bought some Tourmaster Winter gloves for rain and colder temperatures. They should be an improvement over what I used last winter because they have the proper motorcycle padding and a better grip on the controls. I doubt that they will be any warmer than what I used last year. Cold is cold and no glove is perfect in really cold weather without heated grips, which I do not have. I do use silk liners at times and that will probably suffice.
Kansas has a wide variety of weather as the seasons change. I like it that way.
As the seasons change for people like me that ride year round, the gear and apparel must change as well.
Ask me again in January, but for right now I am not complaining about the change in seasons.
Sent from my BlackBerry® smartphone with SprintSpeed


  1. People in Key West have perked up following the first cold front of the fall. It was 75 degrees at 6am yesterday and that seemed cool after a summer hovering around 95. Temperatures are all in the perception. I will ask in January for sure.

  2. Conch,
    Just go ahead and rub it in. LOL.

    Last winter did some days where it was in the teens in the morning. Even then I didn't find it to be too bad. Just the fingers were cold, but my commute only takes about 15 minutes at the most and can stand cold fingers for that long.

    And I will be looking for that question in January.


  3. cpa3485:

    I see you have taken our suggestions of photographing a "SEA". I expected a sea of Corn Fields, not a sea of dandilions. Pay no mind to Mr Conch. While 75f (24c) would feel cool to him and he often complains about having to dig out his sweater or winter jacket, we would welcome that heat. Currently here it is dropping to 8c (46f) at nights and it may reach 60f, if we are lucky. Very pleasant for riding your bike, not too hot nor sweaty.
    Last year I purchased a pair of heated gloves. Perhaps you should try to find a pair as there are heating elements for each finger.
    If you ever wish to shed your clothes we have an excellent "clothing optional" beach here for you to sample. WRECK BEACH, but sorry, no pictures allowed.

    bobskoot: wet coast scootin

  4. Bobskoot,

    While a lot of corn is produced in Kansas, the major crop is wheat. Gobs of it. The county just south of us is the world's leader in the production of wheat, by county.

    Those nature pictures were taken at a Nature Center here recently. One is of a tallgrass prairie and the other is a type of sunflowers (not dandelions, although we have a lot of that here as well). The sunflower is the state flower and the blossom follows the track of the sun during the day.

    As to gloves, I am always searching for ideas, but have no way to hook up electrics on the scooter. There is a limit to my farkle budget according to the money manager in my family (my wife).

    No nude beaches here either, in fact the only beaches are at area lakes.

    Thanks for stopping by,


  5. Kansas is beautiful in Fall! Thanks for posting the nice pics, and stay warm! I'm starting to convert over to my leather jacket as Fall is in the air in North Bend as well.

  6. Jim, different gloves for different seasons, or even various times of the day, are a must for one's comfort. I'm considering adding heated grips to one of my bikes, though may opt of the easier installation of heated gloves instead.

    In one of your comments on another blog you were voicing concern about a longish ride on your scooter. Not a problem. I rode my Vespa GTS250 from Seattle to San Francisco and back a couple years ago. We averaged about 250 miles per day with no problem. Last summer I did a 450 mile day from north-central Montana back to Spokane, Washington, and about 250 miles of that was on Interstate 90. When you get outside of large metro areas the highway traffic thins considerably. Go for it!

    Isn't it Kansas where the "corn is as high as an elephant's eye"?


  7. Oops, no, now I remember ... that's Oklahoma! Well, if memory serves, the landscapes are pretty similar.

  8. Dear CPA3485:

    This was a highly entertaining episode today, Jimbo, with a classic balance of gear discussion, photographs, and personal perspective on heat. I agree with you: give me cooler weather everytime. As for Conch... Do you remember last winter, when temperatures in Key West hit 54, and he was sleeping on the bathroom floor, huddled around a space heater or a candle, or something?

    I have three pairs of gloves. The first is warm weather perforated Icon gloves, which I regard as crap ($55) from New Enough. They are crap, but the fit the best of any summer riding glove I can find. And they don't look like they were part of a teenage mutant ninja turtle costume. The secomd pair are form-fitting black suede gloves (about $39) which off good grip and no holes for temperartures down to 35º. (They have zip for knuckle protection, which I have sacrificed for better clutch sensation in the left hand.) And finally, I have a pair of Lee Parks, elk and deer hide gauntlets, lined with Thinsulate, for really cold weather. They are the warmets glove I have ever owned, but are bulky on the control surfaces. I got them as a gift. They run around $179.00.

    The coldest I have ventured out in is 25º (f). And even then, it has to be really dry outside.

    Great post today!

    Fondest regards,
    Jack • reep • Toad
    Twisted Roads

  9. Lance,
    It all just goes with the change in seasons. Have a leather jacket as well, but it is bulky and really too nice for the scooter. But leather is good, and warm too.
    Take Care

  10. Chuck,
    Thanks for stopping by and providing some encouragement. Two weeks from now is the planned date for the ride up to Topeka so I can attend a high school reunion of all things. The interstate is a direct route of 135 miles, but plan to take a much more scenic, but way less direct route. May end up 160 miles or so, with many planned stops for some pictures. I also have way too many picture ideas for when I get up there, so it will be a picture taking weekend, not to mention seeing some people that I haven't seen since the last reunion.
    I am going on the scooter unless the weather looks really bad for that weekend. For me it will be the longest trip I have ever taken on the scooter. The excitement level is really big.


  11. Jack,
    Thanks for stopping by again, although you are kind to call this entertainment. To me it was just more like mumbling.
    But we all know that Conch couldn't put up with any kind of cooler weather, don't we.
    Ah well, maybe in January, we'll think a bit different.
    Thanks for stopping by,


  12. cpa3485:

    We will never give in to Mr Conch. He is so smug in his warm abode in paradise. We will continue to say how much we like the colder weather. Right ?

    bobskoot: wet coast scootin