Author Topic: Can you Help Me Survive Winter?  (Read 6001 times)

Zalo

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Can you Help Me Survive Winter?
« on: August 17, 2013, 04:48:01 PM »
I was looking through this old post concerning winter bike riding:

http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/11/03/how-to-ride-your-bike-all-winter-and-love-it/

It lists most of everything I'll need to survive winter in New England.

From 70 degrees to 10 degrees Fahrenheit , the post suggested:

1. Pairs of jeans
2. Casual tops, I'm assuming like t-shirts, polos, etc.
3. A light jacket or sweater
4. A nylon water/wind proof shell coat

5. A skull cap
6. Gloves
7. A fleece sweater to go underneath the shell coat (and possibly replace the light jacket/sweater)

8. Thermal underwear

9. "full ski or snowboarding coat" to replace the shell
10. Balaclava
11. Scarf

12. Insulated hiking boots

13. "Snowboarding pants" to go over the jeans (while taking away the thermal underwear)

------------------------------------------------------------------

So far I have:

1. Pairs of jeans/cotton pants
2. Casual tops/flannel shirts
3. Light jackets
4. No nylon shell/nylon pants
5. Alpaca skull caps that were gifted to me
6. Insulated gloves
7. No fleece sweater
8. A few pairs of long thermal underwear
9. No snowboarding coat
10. No balaclava
11. A few thin, fashion-like scarves
12. No insulated hiking boots
13. No snow boarding pants

Additionally, I am vegan, so I'll only use the alpaca hats until I find something else. Also because of veganism, every article that I'm missing, like the fleece sweater, must be non-animal derived, and hopefully not detrimental to the environment, either.

What do you guys think? What's the best place to get these, cheap? MMM mentioned REI, so I'm currently looking through their clearance stock.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2013, 05:39:55 PM by Zalo »

kimmarg

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Re: Can you Help Me Survive Winter?
« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2013, 07:23:14 PM »
So far I have:

1. Pairs of jeans/cotton pants
2. Casual tops/flannel shirts
3. Light jackets
4. No nylon shell/nylon pants
5. Alpaca skull caps that were gifted to me
6. Insulated gloves
7. No fleece sweater
8. A few pairs of long thermal underwear
9. No snowboarding coat
10. No balaclava
11. A few thin, fashion-like scarves
12. No insulated hiking boots
13. No snow boarding pants

Additionally, I am vegan, so I'll only use the alpaca hats until I find something else. Also because of veganism, every article that I'm missing, like the fleece sweater, must be non-animal derived, and hopefully not detrimental to the environment, either.

What do you guys think? What's the best place to get these, cheap? MMM mentioned REI, so I'm currently looking through their clearance stock.

4. You'll want something wind proof. Do not confuse wind proof with waterproof. Both have their uses. Thrift stores, Yard sales, etc.

7. I'm confused. Fleece is recycled plastic bottles, is that vegan? Thrift stores have tons of fleece. Also Marshall's or TJMaxx. Ask around. Don't know what part of New England you are in but most folks I know have at least 3- I could do with getting rid of one or two.  Old Navy also sells fleece on sale for pretty cheap.

13. You really need to find something waterproof. Again thrift stores are a good bet. Cheap plastic can do just as well as fancy gortex.


Don't forget your reflective stuff! Maybe even a flag to make sure you are visible over snow banks.  Incidentally I am assuming you are in an urban area? Maybe you'll inspire me to try, but after the snow comes there is no longer any shoulder and the snow plows will pretty much plow anything in their way so I a terrified to try.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2013, 07:26:05 PM by kimmarg »

Jamesqf

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Re: Can you Help Me Survive Winter?
« Reply #2 on: August 17, 2013, 10:56:07 PM »
Additionally, I am vegan, so I'll only use the alpaca hats until I find something else. Also because of veganism, every article that I'm missing, like the fleece sweater, must be non-animal derived, and hopefully not detrimental to the environment, either.

You do know they don't kill critters to get (natural) fleece, don't you?  So natural fleece is a whole lot less detrimental to the environment than synthetic fleece derived from petrochemicals.

Get a serious pair of winter biking gloves.
 

Undecided

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Re: Can you Help Me Survive Winter?
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2013, 07:41:44 AM »
Additionally, I am vegan, so I'll only use the alpaca hats until I find something else. Also because of veganism, every article that I'm missing, like the fleece sweater, must be non-animal derived, and hopefully not detrimental to the environment, either.

You do know they don't kill critters to get (natural) fleece, don't you?  So natural fleece is a whole lot less detrimental to the environment than synthetic fleece derived from petrochemicals.

Get a serious pair of winter biking gloves.

They don't kill chickens to get eggs, either, but for every vegan I know, that's not the test of whether a product is "vegan."

Villanelle

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Re: Can you Help Me Survive Winter?
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2013, 09:54:00 AM »
Also check Sierra Trading Post, which tends to have very good prices. 

Matt K

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Re: Can you Help Me Survive Winter?
« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2013, 10:25:45 AM »
Skip the jeans. They don't bend well and when they get wet they stay wet. Biking in jeans is just silliness at pretty much any time, but very much so in winter.

Gett a pair of cycling (or running) heavy weight tights (REI for cheap), they are meant to flex nicely and are very warm when your legs are working. Slush pants (basically heavy duty goretex-like over pants) work well, but below -5C the extra insulation of proper snowboarding pants can be nice.

Plant based fibres (what it sounds like you want, since you don't want animal derived or petrolium based) are pretty lousy in wet and cold. Cotton sucks when wet and linen sucks in the cold. Merino wool is very awesome stuff (And you can get merino wool tights) but I don't know where you stand on that (but since you wear an alpaca hat, I guess wool is allowed).

cats

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Re: Can you Help Me Survive Winter?
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2013, 10:41:48 AM »
For fleece (and maaaaybe also the nylon shell), you might (depending on your size) want to check out the kids section at REI.  Before people start scoffing, let me put out there that I am a 5'9", 140-lb female, definitely adult sized.  But, kids sizes seem to go up pretty large these days, and I have scored a nice fleece jacket and some technical tops in the kids section, usually for $15-$30 less than the equivalent adult version.  The kids' stuff usually doesn't have quite so many bells and whistles, but it gets the job done, and comes in plenty of nice, solid, adult colors (i.e., I am not wandering around with unicorns and flowers all over my fleece).

I have tried on rain jackets in the kids section though, and they usually feel a bit too narrow/snug.  Fit seems to be best with items that are made with more stretchy fabrics (so fleece works great).

Zalo

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Re: Can you Help Me Survive Winter?
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2013, 05:07:42 PM »
For fleece (and maaaaybe also the nylon shell), you might (depending on your size) want to check out the kids section at REI.  Before people start scoffing, let me put out there that I am a 5'9", 140-lb female, definitely adult sized.  But, kids sizes seem to go up pretty large these days, and I have scored a nice fleece jacket and some technical tops in the kids section, usually for $15-$30 less than the equivalent adult version.  The kids' stuff usually doesn't have quite so many bells and whistles, but it gets the job done, and comes in plenty of nice, solid, adult colors (i.e., I am not wandering around with unicorns and flowers all over my fleece).

I have tried on rain jackets in the kids section though, and they usually feel a bit too narrow/snug.  Fit seems to be best with items that are made with more stretchy fabrics (so fleece works great).

I am a 5' 8", 125 lb male; usually when I shop, everything is too goddamn wide, and the kids section clothes are too short lengthwise. I've given to trying to learn how to sew by now..

Do you shop REI online? I am hesitant with buying things online because of my less common body size.

My plan as of now is to use what I have, and eventually find usable stuff at the Goodwill near Amherst. 
« Last Edit: August 18, 2013, 05:10:34 PM by Zalo »

cats

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Re: Can you Help Me Survive Winter?
« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2013, 05:59:31 PM »

I am a 5' 8", 125 lb male; usually when I shop, everything is too goddamn wide, and the kids section clothes are too short lengthwise. I've given to trying to learn how to sew by now..

Do you shop REI online? I am hesitant with buying things online because of my less common body size.

My plan as of now is to use what I have, and eventually find usable stuff at the Goodwill near Amherst.

Funny, I find the kids section seems to have a slightly narrower cut (relative to length) so I prefer it since the adult stuff often seems to be on the wider side.  I got a few long-sleeve sports shirts from the boys section earlier this summer for a trip to India and they provided plenty of coverage (no accidental butt/torso exposure, kind of a big deal when going somewhere with a slightly more modest dress code than the US!).  I guess it depends on your preferences though.  I haven't tried this trick anywhere other than REI so I don't know how their kids cuts compare to other brands. 

I don't generally shop REI online (I'm somewhat averse to online clothes shopping as women's shapes/sizing varies considerably by brand, and like you I have some non-standard shape issues). We have a pretty big store within easy biking distance and I have found some good stuff on the sale racks there.  Also, I pretty much have all the gear I need now, so very rarely need to go shopping either online or in real life :)

kdms

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Re: Can you Help Me Survive Winter?
« Reply #9 on: August 19, 2013, 12:12:02 PM »
Don't forget your reflective stuff! Maybe even a flag to make sure you are visible over snow banks. 

I picked up a pair of reflective arm bands that also have batteries that power flashing red lights and these stay on my motorcycle jacket permanently - reflective yellow during the day and flashing red in the dark, and because they're on my arms and not in the typical tail area of the bike, they really stick out.  Don't know if you're planning on riding in the dark, but considering the shorter daylight hours, it might be something to consider.  They've definitely kept people from running into me - not only on the road, but during night skiing as well when I switch them to a different coat.  Around $20 for the pair.

cdttmm

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Re: Can you Help Me Survive Winter?
« Reply #10 on: August 24, 2013, 01:45:26 PM »
My plan as of now is to use what I have, and eventually find usable stuff at the Goodwill near Amherst.

Check CL and FreeCycle as well -- both have plenty of offerings. Check the Salvation Army store a few miles from Amherst College. And if all else fails, take the bus in the winter in order to get around.

And welcome to the Valley. :-)

Katnina

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Re: Can you Help Me Survive Winter?
« Reply #11 on: August 24, 2013, 02:02:03 PM »
Check out Patagonia stuff on ebay- they have a partnership with ebay to keep their clothes out of the landfill.  you can find lots of high quality winter gear on ebay for way less than you would pay new and Patagonia stuff is VERY high quality.  I still wear a fleece from them that got handed down from my sister to me when I was in 10th grade.  She had worn it for 4 years before I got it.  I am now 32 and I wear it every winter.  I got a raincoat from them when I was 18 that I stilll wear.   Paying up for quality can be worth (even when buying used) as it will last for a very, very long stuff as long as you get it in good condition and take care of it.  Follow the care instructions- if it says, hang dry, hang dry!! otherwise you will wear your stuff out much faster.  dryers are terrible for clothes, especially high-tech fabrics.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2013, 02:04:19 PM by Katnina »