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Last week of daylight savings time (sob!)(28 posts)

Last week of daylight savings time (sob!)tarwheel
Oct 23, 2001 4:44 AM
I usually ride in the afternoons, so this is my last week of after-work rides with daylight savings time ending this weekend. Fortunately, the weather is incredible in NC this week -- sunny and warm. It was actually 80 degrees when I left for my ride yesterday afternoon at 5:15, and it's supposed to be even warmer today and tomorrow. I am gonna try to ride every day this week to take advantage of it.

Next week, it looks like my mileage will have to start scaling back, unless I get a lighting system. Do people who use these systems really feel safe? I don't think I've ever seen a cyclist riding after dark with a lighting system around here. Of course, this is bike commuters' hell around here. There are no bike lanes, the traffic is terrible, and there are road construction projects everywhere so the drivers are surly and mean. I honestly don't think I would survive a week commuting by bike. But a lighting system might be something to think about for riding on my regular routes after work when the traffic has died down.
two words: lights, trainerJs Haiku Shop
Oct 23, 2001 4:54 AM
i'm using this for lights, it blows through three AA batteries in around 3-4 hours on the front, but the beam is fine to navigate by at night without streelights and without a moon, if you're not going too fast. the rear has fallen off my bike and hydration pack several times and ended up in several pieces (my fault every time), but works after i put it back together. only problem with the front is that it can be difficult to replace the batteries after a few hours of riding (carry a spare pocket-sized light to work by).

bought a trainer early this year and am looking forward to (dreading) using it soon.
Yes, a sad time of yearMcAndrus
Oct 23, 2001 5:00 AM
Yeah, I'm a little melancholy about it myself. The short evening daylight has already cramped our style in Columbia, SC. Usually a bunch of us (ranging from 10 - 40 riders) get out and hammer on Tuesdays and Thursdays. But that dies down in mid-September and has pretty much stopped for this year.

So tonight and Thursday I'll go and do one loop of a 20-mile hill route; just enough daylight to make it safe even with my flashing light on my seatpost.

We can ride on weekends pretty much all year here but what about weekdays? I live in one of those modern cul-de-sac type subdivisions. I think this year I'll put on my blinky light and just soft-pedal around the neighborhood for an hour or so a couple of evenings a week.

Of course, I could use a trainer but ye-gads they drive me to distraction, staring at the wall. Everyone raves about rollers but I think I'll get grief from my domestic financial advisor (wife) if another $300 bauble shows up.

A couple of locals have lights for their handlebars that I've seen them use but I don't know as they do much good in a city where streetlights cast off more ambient light than a headlight can project.

I do think though that reduced light riding requires a red blinking tail light.

My first challenge, though, is to admit to myself that the season is over ........ so sad.
Yes, a sad time of yearJon
Oct 23, 2001 10:20 AM
Do you know Mark Merrill by any chance?
Yes, I doMcAndrus
Oct 23, 2001 10:52 AM
In season I ride with him (and others) once or twice a week.
Yes, I doJon
Oct 23, 2001 11:26 AM
It's a small world! I correspond with Mark on a regular basis, having gotten to know him
originally from a question I posted on this board. I'll say hi to him for you.
To the contrarymickey-mac
Oct 23, 2001 5:02 AM
I do all of my rides in the morning and can't wait. On weekday rides, the first 40 minutes have been in pitch black. That might be fun on an open country road, but it can get a little sketchy in rush-hour LA traffic.

I use a lighting system and feel pretty safe with it. In fact, with a flashing strobe on the rear it seems like cars approaching from behind give me a wider berth than they would during daylight hours. Also, my impression is that cars making left turns wait longer for me as I approach the intersection. Despite this, I'll take good old daylight over artificial light any day.
totally agreeclimbo
Oct 23, 2001 5:09 AM
morning is the best time to ride and now it will be light again at 6am, 2 hour rides before work, no problem. Yee Haawwww !!!!!
I hadn't thought of that ... hmmmtarwheel
Oct 23, 2001 5:41 AM
I had forgotten that the extra hour doesn't just disappear, it just moves to the morning. That's something to consider, but morning is a tough time for me to ride as I normally take my daughter to school. However, perhaps I can talk my wife into dropping her off a couple days a week.

A few questions about lighting systems: Are the battery operated (AA) ones OK, or do really need to drop the bucks for a rechargeable system? I might not mind spending the money on a rechargeable system after I tried it out, but it's a lot to spend on something that I'm not sure I would use a whole lot. I've just ordered a battery operated taillight, but not sure what to do on the front end.

BTW, I'll be heading back to spin cycle classes next week, so all is not lost. I actually enjoy spin cycle classes quite a bit, much moreso than riding a trainer, but nothing can compare with the open road.
Oct 23, 2001 7:55 AM
I use the Performance Single Pro
(see at It was tops in a thorough test of about 15 lights that Bicycling did a couple of years ago. Made by has a NiMH battery and works great, not too heavy and recharging is a no-brainer (you can overcharge some types, also some acquire a "memory" if you don't deep-cycle them). Not cheap, but cheaper than NightRider or other chi-chi brands. It often goes on sale for $20-30 off. Here in Texas I commute 30 miles RT all winter so I need it after DST goes off for every ride home.
LightsRich Clark
Oct 23, 2001 10:49 AM
The AA lights are really not intended to give you light to ride by; they just help make you more visible. Recommended only if your entire route is via brightly-lit streets, if then.

As many of us have been saying in various threads, night riding is nothing to fear. Indeed, it's common to discover that drivers see you better and respect you more at night when you're well-illuminated, because you're obviously behaving like a vehicle.

If you need to light up the road ahead of you, I'd suggest you should go with a rechargeable system with a focused spotlight of at least 12 watts. Adding a second, more broadly focused light of similar brightness helps a lot as well. A dual flood/spot system not only gives you all the light you need, but provides a little redundancy in case of lamp failure.

Also, don't scrimp on the reflectors -- reflective tape, reflective straps, reflective paint, reflective vests, even an actual reflector or two. Lights are important, but you'll never be as bright as car headlights.

Say BB-tarwheelzelig1
Oct 23, 2001 5:20 AM
Just can't get used to that new handle. Did you ever find a Kelme jersey when they were riding Gios? I may be going down to Geoffry Butler's box/blowout sale this weekend and you never know what they throw in the boxes on the floor.

Let me know so if I do get down there, I'll be sure to look.
Say BB-tarwheeltarwheel
Oct 23, 2001 5:34 AM
Zelig, I still haven't found the elusive Kelme-Gios jersey, so keep your eyes out for one. I need a fairly large size though, at least XXL (6) or XXXL (7). I actually found one for sale on eBay about 6 weeks ago but it was too small. Too bad because it ended up selling for only $15.
re: Last week of daylight savings time (sob!)DEANguy
Oct 23, 2001 5:34 AM
Yes the weather has been outstanding this week. I start doing more mountain biking when the time changes. I feel much safer riding at night on a trail than on the road. I also do some indoor action on the rollers, but also start running more in the evenings. Went for a beautiful ride Sunday in Chatham Co.-sunny, 80 degrees, and the leaves-just gorgeous. Enjoy.
What, you didn't ride the NCBC fall century?tarwheel
Oct 23, 2001 5:45 AM
I had planned to ride the NCBC century Sunday, but came down with a cold on Friday night. I went riding with a friend on Saturday morning anyway, and felt like crap the rest of the weekend. Got up on Sunday morning still planning to ride the metric, perhaps, but couldn't get going. I went for 25-mile solo ride in the afternoon and was glad I skipped the century. My nose was running, my legs ached and I had no energy. I was all fine again by Monday afternoon, however.
Join me this SaturdayPaulCL
Oct 23, 2001 5:43 AM
For my last ride of the season...the Cincinnati Cycling Club Great Ghost Rider Ramble. (AKA: The Halloween Century) The ride is this Saturday before we 'fall back'. Bundle up, 'cause, its' gonnna be cold! (30 to start, 45 as a high)

After Saturday, my bike will be put away for about a month until I get the 'itch' again. From November until February, I will be stuck on the rollers. There may be occasional outside rides in Jan/Feb. I want to try racing again this year and the first race of the season will be three days before my 40th birthday in February.
Hey, Paul CL...CA
Oct 23, 2001 7:25 AM
Where and when is the Halloween Century, that sounds like fun.
Spooky RidePaulCL
Oct 23, 2001 7:42 AM
In St. Leon, IN. About 20 minutes from downtown Cincinnati. I've made this my last ride most years. Sometimes the weather is great, once, we had snow and freezing rain (we were turned around 15 miles out). Here's the webpage:

My general plan is to do the 100 or 75 miler, depending upon how I feel and the weather. Early weather reports indicate about a 20% chance of shower in the AM. Low of 26, high of 46. Ouch. If you want to join me, either email me or post a response. Paul
Look on the bright sideDave Hickey
Oct 23, 2001 5:57 AM
It's only another 60 days and the days start to get longer again. I keep telling myself that even though it really doesn't work. I'll ride during lunch and get out the Tour tapes for my trainer.
So desperate even the Tai Bow infomercial spoke to me128
Oct 23, 2001 6:14 AM
Thought about buying the whole series!
I'm selling my trainer to my buddy who is actually training,
I'm buying a weight bench and some Guinness (for strength!)

The MTB in the snow cane be fun...
And x-country skiing is really great...
Ok, I'm depressed....


I actually don't mind so muchRich Clark
Oct 23, 2001 6:21 AM
The last couple of weeks before DST ends are annoying, since sunset occurs during my evening ride, so I have to wear sunglasses against the glare when I start out, then stop and switch over to regular glasses and move my mirror halfway home.

Not to mention the glare is dangerous and make it harder for drivers to see me (my evening route is directly into the sunset).

I found myself staying late just to be leaving after sunset anyway. It'll be a relief not to have to worry about it. And the sun will be higher in the sky in the mornings for a while.

Just get a good light & quit your whining. ;-))MB1
Oct 23, 2001 7:17 AM
Night riding is the best! Disclaimer-night riding with a full moon in the desert is better than the best!

As for night riding in the city, the commuting routes are no longer crowded with joggers, roller bladers, dog walkers and casual cyclists. If you have enough lights and reflectors drivers actually see you. We may go a little overboard (if there is such a thing)with the lights and reflectors but the end of daylight savings doesn't reduce our weekday riding. Get a rechargeable light with at least a 10W beam, 2 rear blinkies (1-red, 1-amber), choose your routes carefully and night riding can be very safe and enjoyable.
but 60s by the weekendDA
Oct 23, 2001 10:50 AM
CCC night rides every Wed for an hr or so, downtown Raleigh... minimal traffic and no lights needed. Will begin later in year.
I've heard about those rides ...tarwheel
Oct 23, 2001 7:28 PM
Sounds like fun. What time do they start? You really don't need lights?
I feel sorry for all you folk in the Northern Hemisphere:-)Dutchy
Oct 23, 2001 5:01 PM
In Australia we are now getting ready for Daylight Saving. The winter seems to have lasted forever,
in fact it hasn't really stopped yet. I have always been an afternoon rider, it just suits me better
until this year. This year I rode all through winter by riding to work 2-3 times per week
and then either catching a train home or getting a lift from my wife, I am not keen on riding
in the total darkness with traffic. During September as the evening light has increased
I will ride after work using a Vista-light system. It has an 15w and a 10w light that run off a rechargeable "bottle"
battery. It's a good system and I would recommend it to anyone looking for some extra light.

Bring on Daylight Saving.
Hey, that's right!Leisure
Oct 24, 2001 12:29 AM
I've heard some good things about biking in Australia; damn I wish I were rich. I'm not sure if I want to be happy for Dutchy or kick him. :-)
Up here this is my favorite time of year. The colors changing, the smell of leaves on a crisp wet breeze, the recurrent spiritual revelation that there really is beauty in senescense. To me there's something about riding in a Fall evening that's a bit more, well, romantic, and my schedule makes it harder to ride in the evenings as well. I started working night shifts a couple years ago for this reason alone, but now that I've started up dayclasses again I've been having a hard time riding more than two or three times a week.
Oh well, this whole bike light thing has given me yet another dimension to my bike-stereo idea. Distraction can be such a good thing.
If your in america, you can double your money coming here..Dutchy
Oct 24, 2001 3:29 PM
In australia our exchange rate is about 2:1. So for every american dollar you get
almost 2 Australian dollars. This makes travel & accomodation cheap for you guys.
So it might not cost as much as you think.

So, can we stay at your place?mickey-mac
Oct 24, 2001 9:41 PM
Come on, everyone, let's road trip to Oz and stay at Dutchy's place. ;-)