“A parade of storms,” said the tweet from the National Weather Service. We are not talking about temperatures that peak in the single digits as they do on the East Coast. Not the deep snow that covers the roads in Chicago or Madison and makes riding your road bike a dicey decision at best. Not the ice that hides in the shadows of every turn on a climb in Boulder. No, we are talking about moisture. And lots of it. People like to joke that it always rains in Seattle. Well, they’re often not wrong.
Words/Images: Andy Bokanev
Quite honestly, we are quite lucky when it comes to weather here in the Pacific Northwest. The winters suck, but it rarely gets “too cold” and when it snows in the city it tends to grind traffic to a screeching and swerving halt. Of course, there is the amount of daylight. There are mornings that feel like they do not quite develop into actual days, radiating a minimal amount of light until deciding that was a good enough attempt and settling for a (sun)set…around 4:30 p.m. And the aforementioned moisture? It is omnipresent. We are either drying off from a passing shower or getting ready for the next one.
Yes, we have been guilty of explaining that, in fact, annual precipitation is less here in Seattle than it is in, say, New York City…. But you won’t hear us bring that up three hours into a soggy ride. Don’t get us wrong, we will take rain over the various winter alternatives. We even have beautiful weeks when a high-pressure system moves in over the area, when the air is crisp, the mountains are clear and the temperature falls just low enough to make you paranoid about every single dark patch of pavement. But for every sunny cold day, there is a freezing morning with sideways rain, daylight still an hour or two away, and having to share the road with increasingly late and irritated drivers. Or maybe today you do not feel like pulling on one, two, three or four layers of clothing to ride for 90 minutes only to realize that riding in the cold is not a lot of fun and also makes you want to stop and pee.
On those days the leg warmers stay off, revealing an increasingly fading tan; we get on the Cycelops H2 Smart Trainer; and the coffee stop is just a few steps away in the kitchen. Bad weather or lack of daylight is not a good enough reason to miss a workout. At least that’s what (hopefully) we’ll be telling ourselves come April or May.