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30-40 MPH winds?(27 posts)

30-40 MPH winds?Kristin
Oct 31, 2001 8:37 AM
How hard is it to ride in 30+ MPH winds? I plan to ride during lunch today. Perhaps I'll take Warrenville Road, crossing the 355/88 overpass for the full effect! Seriously though, I usually ride thru downtown Downers Grove during lunch and its gonna be warm today. I've haven't ridden in strong winds yet. Am I nuts? Anyone else in the area riding today?
re: 30-40 MPH winds?Len J
Oct 31, 2001 8:40 AM
Into a 30-40mph headwind is like riding up a very steep hill. (I'm sure that there is some way to use to calculate this.) Be prepared with whatever gearing you use to climb mountains and be prepared to go very slow while expending high effort.

The good news is that the Tailwind ride willo be amazing.

Good Luck.

yes, you are nutsmr_spin
Oct 31, 2001 8:52 AM
Aren't you still having knee problems? This won't help.

I've ridden in some strong winds, possibly 30mph, and it is not only physically hard, it is mentally draining. You can see the top of a mountain and know the pain will end. With strong wind, it just goes on and on and on.

The only time I will set out into wind of this magnitude is if I have four or five friends to form a paceline. Otherwise, the road bike goes back on the hook and the mountain bike comes down!
Just go ride. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.cory
Oct 31, 2001 8:57 AM
Go out against the wind, ride until you throw up, then turn around and coast home. Everything everybody said about the draining aspects of wind is true (we have 20-30mph winds most afternoons from May through July, which makes getting in shape for summer no fun at all), but so what? All you can do about it is ride or don't ride.
It doesn't feel THAT windy todaygreg n
Oct 31, 2001 9:01 AM
But I'm in the NW suburbs. I guess it could be different.

Well, of course riding in that kind of wind is hard, but it's good training. If you actually get used to that kind of wind, an average wind will feel like nothing. I'd say most importantly, be careful with the crosswind if it's on your right side. If you're not ready, a gust can blow you into traffic.

Good luck.

P.S. I'm hoping to cut out of work early today to ride. You can't beat the upper 60's the end of Oct. in Chicago.
re: 30-40 MPH winds?mjd
Oct 31, 2001 9:03 AM
I rode out west of St. Charles on Monday afternoon - was nice then, too. Unfortunately, about an hour and a half into the ride (when I was WAY west of home) the wind shifted to the northeast at 15-20 mph and the temp dropped to about a 35 degree windchill. Thought I was going to have to call the wife to pick me up out in the farmland. Was NOT fun and I wasn't at all prepared clothing-wise. May test the wind today, but it looks to be blowing pretty darn hard. I agree with the previous post about not being able to see the end of the wind (versus seeing the top of a hill). Fighting to pedal at 10 mph on a flat is quite demoralizing; I'd rather crawl up a hill. Unfortunately, I think I'm stuck with the wind out here in the far western 'burbs.
re: 30-40 MPH winds?bikedodger
Oct 31, 2001 9:06 AM
If the wind is fairly steady then it is just a good workout. The problems start when the wind is very gusty as it becomes hard to control the bike.

Start out into the wind and use the tailwind to push you home.

tailwind never makes up for the headwindColnagoFE
Oct 31, 2001 9:11 AM
I remember during one year of Ride the Rockies we were climbing a hill into a 30-40MPH headwind...down to about 6-7MPH. It was totally demoralizing. Tailwinds are nice, but I'd rather just have no wind.
yes, always against the wind firstDog
Oct 31, 2001 9:13 AM
One time 20 years ago I rode from Columbia, Missouri, to Jefferson City and back. About 30 miles each way.

I felt like superman on the first half. I was cruising around 35 mph! Man I felt great.

I turned around, and Wham! I had what must have been at least a 20mph headwind, if not more. It was a real drag getting back home. Froze my butt off in the headwind, too.

It's always much nicer to ride against the wind first. Then you have the push to look forward to.

not quite always!4bykn
Oct 31, 2001 9:33 AM
I know this doesn't pertain to riding today, but when it's very hot and humid, I ride a tailwind out, and push headwind back. The reasoning is that on the second half when I'm warmed up the headwind provides a bit of cooling effect. With a tailwind I've overheated before.
Hot TailwindsKristin
Oct 31, 2001 10:02 AM
Yeah...that's worse than almost anything! On a hot humid day, the tailwind gathers all that latent heat from the road and wraps it around you like a boiled wool blanket. Its enough to make you turn around and pedal back up the mountain you just conquered. (okay, molehill...)
you froze your butt off in the headwind?ET
Oct 31, 2001 2:19 PM
I'd think in a headwind that's the last thing to go. :-)
dead metaphor nmDog
Nov 1, 2001 7:15 AM
Make sure you stop in at Founder's Hill in downtown...RhodyRider
Oct 31, 2001 9:12 AM
...DG for a much-deserved post-ride pint, K!!
beware the crosswinds!4bykn
Oct 31, 2001 9:29 AM
A 30 mph head/tail wind is manageable, if somewhat painful. Just be careful when you get a 30 mph crosswind. Riding in those conditions is plain unsafe. Also be especially careful when being passed by vehicles, with high winds their "wake" seems much stronger. Ditto on overpasses. This late in the year it's tempting to get out and ride, but use your common sense, ride safe.
Crosswinds and OverpassesKristin
Oct 31, 2001 10:07 AM
Yeah. What I said about taking the 355 overpass was a joke. I tried it back in July and nearly got squashed. I was fighting a pretty decent headwind and getting pumbulted by strong cross gusts. I rode next to death himself for a moment or two. Curb on one side, Minivan full of screaming kids on the other. Even on a calm day, that overpass is bad.
re: 30-40 MPH winds?guido
Oct 31, 2001 11:51 AM
With a 30mph tailwind you'll go 30-35, no problem. But against it, you'll be working pretty hard in your 39-19, and doing maybe 10mph, on the tops, maybe 12mph on the drops. But it's a little easier than climbing.
:-) ... This is where perspective comes in!Kristin
Oct 31, 2001 12:05 PM
You must be strong! 39-19 is an average gear for me. I'll let you know what gearing I used when I get back. Just checked the Intellicast and the wind is steady from the south at 18MPH with gusts. Not as bad as previously predicted. Well, Notes crashed which is a sign that its time to go ride!

By the way, is the best weather site for non-meteorologists and physics geeks.
:-) ... This is where perspective comes in!kyroadie
Oct 31, 2001 1:32 PM
My luck would be that I go into the wind to start and at the turn-around the wind did a "180" and the ride home would be into the wind too! This has happened to me a few times. Not much fun!
wind reverses in the middle of ride!guido
Nov 1, 2001 2:16 PM
That's happened to us a few times here in Tornado Alley. We'd go into a southern breeze, anticipating a nice tailwind would push us back, then the winds would shift around out of the northwest. Bummer.
Can't break the cross-over habitKristin
Oct 31, 2001 2:29 PM
Amazingly, I found a combination of riding conditions. Mostly I rode with a crosswind and slight headwind or tailwind. I stayed mainly in 39x11-14...yeah...I know! Into the headwind I was up around 39x23-21.
I rode to work from Evanston today.gust-of-sun
Oct 31, 2001 1:32 PM
Wind only bothers me when i'm trying to go fast or when i'm on my singlespeed. When it's windy, or raining, or snowing i take my commuter and i take it easy.
Ride on,
Some Facts...Kristin
Oct 31, 2001 2:25 PM
* Today is October 31
* October 31 is Halloween
* Elementary School lets out at 2:30pm
* 2:30 pm on October 31 has high congestion potential
* 5 Points per kid
* Kids can run 12 MPH when being chased

Most Important
* Don't forget protective eyewear

* If you do forget protective eyewear, go back and get it. You never know when a car is going to hit a train, closing the railroad crossing and forcing you to ride through a construction zone in 22 MPH winds. (the wind increased while I was out.)

* When its 68 degrees in October, turn off computer and just ride.

* Its okay to stop and watch the ducks too

* ***Windy is no big deal when your riding for fun***
How hard is it to ride in 30+ MPH winds?Dutchy
Oct 31, 2001 4:43 PM
This is a post I posted a couple of weeks ago, I thought it was relevant so I dug it up for your info.
Like people have said, the crosswinds are the real danger, esp when being passed by semi-trailers
they tend to suck you towards them as the crosswind dissapears when they pass.

Don't you just hate it when you plan for a good fast ride, but the headwind has other plans for you.
On Monday I drove up to an area I will be moving to in April 02'. Even though where
not moving for a while I wanted to check out some new roads. As soon as I got out of the car,
I felt the wind was very stiff, but I thought I'm already here and it's a nice sunny day so why not.
My route was a simple 80km/50ml RT, ride to the end of the road, turn around and come back.
I stared my journey and straight away noticed the wind was at my back. After the first 10km/6ml
of hills it started to flatten out and I was really flying with the tailwind, on one flat stretch I was
doing 52kph/32mph. I wondered should I keep going in this direction as the head wind back
would be impossible, but I don't get many tailwind's so I made the most of it. At the base of the
last climb my Ave. was 36.8kph/23mph, I reached the turn around point with an Ave. of 34.2kph/21mph.
Not too bad for the terrain and for someone who has never raced.
As soon as I started to head back I could feel the headwind pummelling me, I got on the drops and just pedalled.
The wind was so strong that I had to break on the downhills as it was trying to throw me off the bike.
I could barely maintain 19kph/12mph. I admit I stopped several times, in disgust, I was doing my
best but the wind was beating me. I couldn't even stand on the hills as my body was acting
like a windsock, making it even harder. Eventually I made it back to the car, with an Ave. speed of 25.5kph/16mph.
I had my fastest Ave. heading out (for a hills ride) and my slowest Ave. coming back.
Now I have ridden in plenty of headwinds before but this one takes the prize for the worst I have
ever experienced. I think the wind was ~25-30 knots.

On extreme wind days I will take out the MTB with slicks and head to the local National Park
that is fairly protected from winds and just do 40km/25ml through the park.

re: 30-40 MPH winds?Scoalf
Oct 31, 2001 7:53 PM
As some have already said, wind like that tends to be pretty demoralizing. I play a mind game, where I tell myself the wind is a living creature, trying to make me stop. So I curse and swear at the wind telling "it" that it WON'T beat me. I have yet to be blown to a standstill! ;o>
Ya' wanna talk demoralizing...4bykn
Oct 31, 2001 11:48 PM
At the Hilly Hundred, I was fighting my way up a hill, while a guy about 10 yards ahead of me was sitting up looking cool, calm and collected, and whistling while climbing.
Yeah, that guy was funnyKristin
Nov 1, 2001 6:44 AM
Just spinning away about 1/4 of the way up the hill. I couldn't 4bykn was infont of me and asked the guy if he HAD to whistle. I couldn't even speak at that point, as I was hyperventalating. The rider (from Chicago even) offered to sing for us! I was impressed by him.