Riding in the rain

Hi Pavletes,
I had a bit of an epic ride today as I was surprised by heavy rain and a hailstorm. For the first bit, I even enjoyed it but only until I got wet feet even though I had the overshoes on. The water either came through the vents in the sole or was soaked in via the bibtights. Wet gloves also did not make it nicer.
I suspect all the Brits here can share quite a bit about riding in the wet. How do I keep the feet dry? Should I tape the vents in the shoes or do I need watertight shoes? What kind of gloves do you wear? What else to considder?

Giro and Endura both make great waterproof socks. Ultimately unless you use a winter cycling shoe , water will get in.

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As a brit in Germany, I can say categorically that it rains more where I live here than where I lived in the UK. :slight_smile:

Definitely tape up all holes in your shoes unless you know that you will be too warm. What I learned as a brit, is that staying dry on a bike is a nearly hopeless task when it rains hard. Personally as long as I am warm and comfortable I don’t mind being wet.

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As I don’t live that far from you, I think I have underestimated German rain :smiley:
My problem actually was getting cold hands and feet. The normally brilliant Castelli Perfetto Light gloves didn’t make it very long and the insulated overshoes sucked up a lot of cold water. What do you use in terms of gloves and overshoes?

I definitely will give those a try, I have several browser tabs open with waterproof socks.

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Move to California like I did…

In all seriousness, I always found that double socks and double overshoes was good for most rain. Only issue was when it was so bad. You could feel your foot get wet instantly through the cleat holes.

I agree with this. As long as I’m warm, I’m not complaining about being wet. Just part of being British!

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Sealskinz Socks combined with waterproof overshoes (those latex, yes). Sweaty, but was better than rain. Gloves: two pairs of sealskinz. One under your jacket as a spare set.
Alternative: wintershoes or flat pedals with higher hiking boots and sealskinz socks. Last one is a bit of an aesthetic bridge you should cross, but works well in case the road gets too muddy or you end up lost or with a broken bike in the middle of nowhere.

That’s a good point on the flat pedals and hiking boots. Not ideal, but gets it done.

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Cheap hack: thin socks, plastic bag and another set of socks. Even better are socks ‘Disposable-Icing-bags’ and another set of socks!

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I just accept that if there is a lot of water about I will get wet feet. So to keep warm I do:

  1. tape closed any holes in the soles of my shoes.
  2. wear toe warmers over the front part of my shoes. I have used Gore and Castelli both of which get the job done.
  3. wear a thick neoprene over shoe. My favourites were a pair from endura but eventually those gave up. I now have a pair from DHB but they are a bit meh.

I don’t worry about socks because sock choice doesn’t seem to make a difference once they are wet.

There are only one set of gloves and yes I mean SET to get. Over the years and I have always ridden all year round unless the weather makes it unsafe and I have found the Dessent133 to be the best option Ultimate Cycling Glove Pack – Dissent 133

They are 3 or 4 gloves designed to work together so while they might appear expensive you only buy the set for numerous conditions. They have a silk liner, a thicker set and then a shower/wind proof pair and then a full waterproof pair. You then mix and match the one or two gloves with either the showerproof or full waterproof gloves. You can start a ride and then later take one pair off once the conditions warm up for example.

For shoes if you not going to buy winter shoes then tape up the vents and line under the foot bed with tin foil. Then add overshoes for me I have some Madison ones which are ok but not perfect. Ideally either buy a size or two larger and either wear waterproof socks like Dexshell or sealskin. You need a bigger shoe as the socks are thicker and if you squash the socks you reduce the thermal properties so will get colder feet. However as you’re buying bigger shoes then why not get some proper winter boots. I like the Shimano ones myself but I have a wider foot.

My experience with Shimano ones was the opposite of Kevin. They are fine if it is dry but not remotely waterproof - basically like wearing summer shoes. At the end of rides I would literally tip half a cup of water out of each shoe.

TBF I should have said I they are the MTB shoes and a few years old now.

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Great hack! Thanks for sharing

This is excellent. Great tip there