Kilrush to Doolin, a rainy day cycle


61 Kilometers today.

Screen Shot 2011 10 22 at 8 46 58 PM

I look out the window of my unheated empty hostel. It is 8:30 AM, still too dark to cycle. The wind is blowing the cold rain into it. I shiver involuntarily. I check the weather on the internet. 12 degrees C. Gale warning in effect. Rains intensifying in the morning. I manage a mischievous grin. Soon I am going to be cycling in this stuff. Cool!

View out my window at 8:30 AM.

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What I really like at the end of the day is to wear my pajamas underneath my clothes. They are so soft and warm. Cycling in rain gear is the opposite. The jacket sticks to my arms as it gets soaked. I feel the cold plastic wrapped around me like chilled cellophane. I am just a little dryer on the inside than the outside because the lack of air circulation means that soon my shirt is soaked with sweat. The wet shirt chills me when I stop.

I now wear the rain trowsers over just underwear. With pants under, they get too hot. The rain pants cling to my bare legs, transmitting the chill and the feel of the rain. My legs sweat going up hills, and the pants get soaked on the inside.

The leather gloves are soaked. The Sealskin waterproof socks do not dry out at night. Heck, I just ran them through a dryer and they are still wet. But even wet they do keep my feet warm, if wrinkled. The helmet cover rain hat works well. The helmet holds the rain hat away from my head allowing air to circulate underneath.

The Arkel panniers keep soaking up moisture. They keep getting heavier and heavier. I chose them because of the myriad pockets. But the truly waterproof Ortleibs would be a better choice in the rain, especially if all your gear is organized into stuff bags inside.

But I’m not the only crazy one. Check out these surfers:

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Ok, that kinda makes sense. But this golfer with an umbrella?

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Here is the view heading into Doolin. The Island in the background is Inisheer, one of the Aran islands. I’ll go there tomorrow if the weather permits the ferries to run.

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Doolin is one of two places to catch a ferry to the Aran islands, and is touristy.

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The Aille River Hostel in Doolin. The owners daughter in pink plays in front.

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