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February riding

February 20, 2013

For the last several years I have had a personal goal of taking at least one ride, no matter how short, in each month of a calendar year.  In a nicer climate this would be an easy task.  I live in Wyoming….  My goal is even more difficult to achieve because I work out-of-state about 2/3 of the time.  My days off are spent hoping for clear roads, clear weather (though rain wouldn’t stop me), and an open schedule.

I was able to take the V-Strom for a brief ride in January.  A quick warm-spell allowed the roads to clear enough to ride out of my neighborhood, though the roads were still quite wet.  The last two days, however, allowed me to take rides to a nearby town on both my V-Strom and my Goldwing.  Awesome…

DSCN0056My V-Strom has hand guards and heated grips, but very little in the way of wind-blocking fairing material.  Interstate riding (~80 mph or so) worked fine for most of my body, but the front of my thighs became very cold – almost to the point of numbness.  The temperature was 34 deg F when I took that for a ride of about 25 miles on Monday.  I took the same ride yesterday (Tuesday) on my Goldwing.  The temperature was 44 deg F for that ride.  I don’t have hand guards or heated grips on the Goldwing, but I’m not sure I even needed them.  With the warmer temperature and a front cross-section about the size of a barn door, I stayed plenty warm.  The vents down around my shins helped a bit too.

I don’t normally like riding the Goldwing solo, I kind of consider that to be my wife’s bike that I only use when we are playing “Driving Miss Daisy.”  In the colder conditions, though, I can see how I may shift more towards riding the Goldwing.  I will have to take several more rides to be sure though…


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