March 1st 42F, 6C, breezy, heavy overcast. More wind. More grey. Just another day. Neither hot not cold. I took off the Aldi jacket and put on the even thinner Giordano. I came home with a huge red weal across my forehead. A bit like Frankenstein's monster. Failure to adjust helmet headband between changing hats! I tried to adjust my shoe cleats but the screws were well rusted in. (despite being well greased as new) I wanted more clearance from the new cranks after polishing patches on the old ones. The new cranks are a different shape so may escape such damage. 3 shops, 16 miles.
I had a pleasant chat with a lady who had seen me out on my trike. She, and her group of cycling friends, were intending to ride their bikes down to Paris! They were well in training with a ride of 50km (30 miles) every other day.
My hands were never warm today in the SealSkinz 'Activity' gloves. I would have been better off wearing my dirt cheap supermarket gloves. I don't know what it is about these expensive gloves. They are very windproof but have absolutely no warmth of their own. My hands were uncomfortably cold for a lot of the time. Which is absolutely ridiculous for the asking price. The manufacturers claim these have some insulation. God knows how they'd cope with real freezing temperatures. Though today's wind chill factor was -15C this is not remotely the same thing as riding in -15C temperatures!
14kg of shopping = 31lbs. It made the steering twitchy. With vicious speed wobble when I relaxed my grip on the bars. The good tail wind made it effortless coming home. Then it started to snow as I unloaded Mr Higgins. Only 18 miles today.
5th 34-38F, 1-3C, windy, dark grey. As it felt cold and windy I thought I'd try polyester jogging gloves under the SealSkinz. Not a good idea. Despite there being lots of room my hands were aching with the cold. I took of the thin gloves after the first stop and was more comfortable after that. Perhaps my hands warmed up going up that long hill? I nearly lost it on the following descent! Fierce side gusts nearly pushed me off the road at over 20mph. I was hanging off the side so far I couldn't pedal. Then a huge lorry overtook me and I was nearly sucked under. I hate main roads!
After that I sought out the narrow lanes with high hedges. The wind was cold and strong as I fought my way back across country. After my shopping I had a tail wind and was climbing one hill at 23mph! Even Mr Higgins was impressed! The Aesse jacket was no better than the Aldi in these conditions. It has more warmth than the Aldi but is not quite as windproof. The Aesse just feels more comfortable thanks to the thicker, softer cloth. Though beautifully close fitting it gives more than the stiffer Aldi. The Aldi is a thin shell and feels like it. If the Aesse had pit zips it would be a much better garment for a much wider range of temperatures and conditions. Having underarm vents makes the Aldi wearable. 21 miles.
6th 30-36F, -1+2C, windy, full sun. 23-25mph with the wind. On my hands and knees coming home. Hands cold going. Okay coming back. Toes cold on the way back. 18 miles.