My new best friends

By Nat on November 11th, 2010

Tuesday night I set out to go for a ride in the 42degree weather, only to find that 30 minutes later I could not feel my fingers, and my toes were starting to loose feeling as well. After an hour my hands were worthless and my feet were close behind. I was wearing regular long-fingered gloves and two pairs of socks; obviously not enough.
So, yesterday I splurged on some very nice waterproof/windproof booties, and fantastic winter gloves.  OMFG!  I rode last night in the 40degree weather (2 degrees cooler than the previous night), and I scoffed at the cold.  90 minutes later I was toasty and sweating, just the way I like it.  The right gear makes all the difference, and I HIGHLY recommend doing whatever it takes to keep yourself cozy and happy.  This time of year there are too many reasons not to ride, but I just found two that will help keep me in the saddle.


This is only the initial review, but I will revisit this and give an actual technical review after I have had sufficient wear-test analysis done on the booties and gloves.  Hopefully they’ll get some sub-freezing tests, as well as a lot of rain, and maybe snow.  I’m feeling optimistic, but only time will tell.  Warm fingers crossed.  :-)

3 responses to “My new best friends”

  1. Steady Sterry says:

    I look forward to hearing about the Booties, I will be in the market for some of those soon.

  2. sandy says:

    I was asking my coworker for recommendations for booties, and he says get the cheapest pair you can find. Apparently, the very nature of booties make them prone to wear and tear. No matter what booties you get, they’ll tear, the stitching will come out and/or the cleat will wear down the material. So, don’t waste your money.

    I hate booties. They’re impossible to put on- and I wear size 36 shoes! I have to pull at them for a good 5 mins to get my shoe in. The distance between the clip and heel is too long for my shoe, so there’s a wrinkle of fabric.

  3. Nat says:

    Your co-worker makes a point, but not the right point. Yes, the nature of all booties is that they will wear out. BUT, if you try them on and make sure they fit easily and snugly (yes, both are possible), then you are well on your way to happier feet. Second, it is worth buying the most insulation model possible. Many are made for aerodynamic purposes, others are made for cold-wind protection, while the heartiest are made for water, wind, and cold protection. Since you live in the NW and are likely trying to ride in less than ideal conditions, go for the latter. Lastly, get the kind that are made for mountain bike shoes. Most are made for road shoes, which do not offer room for your spikes, and do not work well with the “recessed” type of mountain cleat. Road cleats are supposed to pop through the hole, and all of your weight focuses on the cleat and your heal when you walk. MTB versions allow all of your walking tread to be exposed, and therefore do not wear out on the bottom because you’re not constantly unintentionally stomping on the tread. Also, the mountain bootie versions usually are more “size-correct” because the shoes tend to be a little bulkier.
    SO, invest wisely. The entire point of booties (for me at least) is to make it easier for me to ride in the winter. If they are too difficult to put on, that negates the point. And, if they’re not good enough quality to keep you warm, that also negates the point. Sometimes it is worth spending a little more, when it goes a lot further, especially with cycling gear and apparel. I rode in 21degree weather yesterday, and smiled almost the entire time because I was out in the cold, yet I was warm and happy.

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