Sunday, December 10, 2006

First snow ride on the XT225

Today’s temperature was in the high 30’s. I wanted to ride, I wanted to try out my new BMW Santiago boots and my new MotoGP textile pants. I got home late from the party last night so I woke up late today, and even though the temperatures were warmer today, it was cloudy and nothing was melting.

At noon I couldn’t take it any more. I grabbed a shovel and I went in the driveway to see if I could clear a path just so my bike could reach the street. The ice was hard in some places so I ran some hot water on the ice to soften it, so I could break it away easier. After about 1.5 hours I had a path.

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Chunks of snow and ice cleared from the driveway so I could ride today

I got geared up but I couldn’t start the XT. It turned over but wouldn’t stay running. I’ve read posts on message boards about people having problems with cold starts after the bike sits for a while. I haven’t ran the bike since Thanksgiving weekend and it’s been very cold in the garage. After about 15 attempts, it cranked over and stayed running. I was off.

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Getting ready to take off

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Most of the main roads were dry, but I did find some small residential streets that were not plowed really good and there was still some snow on the road.

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My favorite gravel parking lot where I practice off roading, check out the snow piles.

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Only half of the parking was paved, so I got my first opportunity to ride a bike on snow. Shallow snow wasn’t a big deal, but I did run into ice under snow that made my back wheel spin out and then I got stuck in some deep snow. My back wheel kept digging in deeper so I decided to get off the bike and push it out.

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So you could say my first snow experience was fun and I’ll be back for more. I just have to install my brush guards to keep my hands warm.

My MotoGP Overpants kept me warm, the zip-in quilted liner worked fine, I didn’t have any other layers underneath even, although upper 30’s isn’t even that cold. I rode though some big puddles too, the pants are waterproof. I originally ordered size 4 of these pants since I usually wear size 3 in jeans, but since these pants go in to the boots, with the puffy zip-in liner, I couldn’t zip the pants all the way down around my ankles, they were too narrow, so I had to return the size 4 and got size 6. I haven’t tried these pants on yet without the liner, but I’d imagine that they might be a bit loose, they fit perfect with the liner.

The BMW Santiago boots are comfortable although the soles are noticeably made of harder rubber than my ST boots. Also waterproof, as I tested them out in some puddles. This is the gear I’m taking on my Texas trip in two weeks. Although I was out riding for only 2 hours and I went only about 30 miles, I’m pretty sure this gear will work fine. Not sure if I’ll get another opportunity to try it out before my trip. I leave in 12 days.

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Back home in my driveway

1 comment:

Carolyn said...

Sweeet!! My XT is *definitely* cold blooded. I'm surprised yours woke up for you at all; it must really love you. ;)

So jealous of the Big Bend trip. It goes without saying, but take bazillions of photos for those of us who'll be stuck at the in-law's house for Christmas with no bikes for miles around. *sob*