Thursday, January 24, 2008

Winter ride reminder (don't let this happen to you)

Don't let this happen to you. I saw this on the news last night and thought of my fellow outdoor junkies. Remember to keep a careful eye on things while you're out in the cold. I'm sure we can all second guess this guy's instincts on keeping running AND not checking his feet even though they were "frozen", but it's up to each of us to make sure our body parts stay intact through the cold season.

With this being my first winter of riding, maybe I'm a bit more cautious than the seasoned veterans, but I try to keep a wary watch on how my extremities are feeling when I'm out in this stuff. Shoot, I'm used to being cold as a veteran of numerous years of ice fishing without a shack on local farm ponds, but I'm usually wearing several layers plus heavy pack boots on my feet so I don't worry much. With just some wool socks and mountain bike shoes on, I'm a lot more sensitive to how cold my feet are getting. I made the mistake a few weeks back of throwing on an extra layer of socks which made my shoes very tight. This actually compounded my issues because not only did my feet get cold, but now the circulation was compromised and made them even colder. After the first loop on the trails, I peeled off the outer layer of socks, leaving just my new wool toe socks. I also made the mistake of sticking my feet under the heater in the truck for a few minutes hoping for a quick warm-up. As I'm sure many of you have experienced, that is nothing but a recipe for intense pain! I quickly abandoned that thought, laced back up, and headed out for round two. My feet were still cold this time around, but they were definitely warmer with the added circulation coming back into play.

Good luck to all riding on the gravel hundy this weekend. Wish I could go, but work forces me to be in Okoboji this weekend. At least I'll get to freeze my fanny this weekend.

No comments: