Somehow, it’s already the end of August and although there’s still plenty of post-ride swimming to be had, the temperatures are cooling down during the night at higher elevations and the extra layers are coming along for alpine rides.
We shouldn’t forget that the weather in big mountains can change at the drop of a hat, even during the scorching summer months - just look how swiftly Mother Nature twisted the World Cup schedule in Andorra this weekend
For those extra-large days or overnight bike-packing missions, a Gore-Tex jacket and a merino long sleeve are the bare minimum of apparel that are packed along, with hopes that they stay at the bottom of the pack.
Technical belts and shiny glasses - are the necessary?
That made me think about how much I appreciate quality gear, but like bikes, the lighter it is and the more efficiently the apparel performs, it’s likely to cost substantially more than a cotton T-shirt and a gas station rain jacket.
I haven’t bought those swishy jackets and pants all in one go though. It’s taken a few years to acquire and collect the best garments for those nasty days. I dread the thought of sliding out with those pricey layers on or scratching expensive glasses, but they do allow us to keep riding in less-than-ideal conditions.
Do you see value in technical apparel and protection? Are you rocking no knee pads, skate shoes, and a cotton T-shirt, or are you on the jersey, merino top, and Gore-Tex team?