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Discussion in 'Equipment' started by Oilsooner, Apr 16, 2013.
bmw rallye gear does the job in hot weather
I wear a custom-made active cooling vest, designed for medical use and bomb squad suits. It actually works really well in 100-110F weather. Unfortunately, there is no market for such item :-(
Olympia Moab was my choice for Las Vegas in the summer. I read all the articles and threads like this.
It's a partially mesh jacket. That means it gets good air flow, but also allows some sweat to linger on the skin for cooling in the extreme heat.
Over 95F is hot! You run a very real risk of heat stroke when riding in temps over 95F for long periods. I wear mesh jacket and a cooling vest above 90. You get a little wet but they are LIFESAVERS! They don't work quite as well in high humidity but they do work. Read the reviews on them.
I wear the BMW Ralley 3 jacket in the Australian summer and it is awesome. Plenty of vents to help with air flow. The outer shell breathes so in summer I don't use the inner liner. If it gets too hot, like 05train said, you can close all the vents to stop the hot air from dehydrating you too much.
I was thinking of going with the Veskimo, but spent my allowance at the MOA Rally last year so went with LDComfort tights and their long sleeved mock turtleneck under my BMW Airshell and Rev'It mesh pants. I found that if I got the LDC garments wet I was plenty comfortable in the 108F dry heat of Missouri. Not sure how well it would work in the hot and humid stuff of the souf.
i rode for a few days last summer in temps up to 112f i wore a motoport Kevlar mesh jacket and stretch Kevlar pants. it was a borderline situation.
i made sure to wear a scarf to keep the hot wind off my jugular veins to reduce heat transfer to my brain and wore long sleeve patagonia capilene shirts to keep the wind speed down on my skin. on a few occasions i would wet the capilene shirts to cool down a bit.
on one day i removed the chest armor from my jacket to get a bit more ventilation.
also i kept 5l ice water on board in platy bags with drink tubes.
the mesh does give you a feeling of cooling from the wind crossing your body but you must be very careful to monitor your hydration levels and have an idea of your heat tolerance and current state of heat exposure.
in this situation the humidity was pretty high...if it was lower i would have put my rain liner in to reduce the sweat evaporation.
if you don't piss every hour you are not drinking enough water when exposed to that kind of heat.
your body can only absorb so much water in an hour...but if you can drink enough to piss every hour you are sure you have the max amount your system can handle, and the water you piss out purges a bit of heat from your core, to be replaced with cool water from your camleback.
at every fuel stop a gator aide or some such is needed to replace electrolytes you are sweating out.
you need to keep tabs on your mental state...you get dopey when your brain gets too hot. as soon as you feel your mental state slipping..even a little bit you must stop and cool down...this is a life or death thing.
on the one occasion i caught myself starting to make mistakes i pulled off and got a hotel room...the only one of a 16 day trip...it was 7pm and still 106f.
a cool shower and a good nights sleep in the ac and i was good to go again.
you have to think about exposed skin when you have wind of that temp blowing across your skin...i did get some significant burns on the tops of my wrists where there was a small amount of exposed skin between my gloves and jacket. these were not sunburn but convection burns from the hot air.
bottom line i like the mesh jacket. it is not ideal in these very high temp situations..but on a long trip it is a great all rounder.. it is great on trails where your average speed is low and you would stifle in a solid jacket or one with small vents.
you have to know your limits, and constantly be assessing your situation in extreme heat..and drink a fuck-lot of water.
but be warned...if your are in high temp low humidity and dont activly manage your body heat/hydration...a mesh jacket CAN kill you. and faster than you would think.
I got to try my badlands in some warmer weather yesterday. Rode fhe stelvio about 500 miles in temps that started out in the low 50's and reached a high of 92. I was wearing Ruka outlast base layer bottom with a Patigionia base layer top. That worked well in the cooler temps, when it warmed up into the mid 80's I opened all the jacket vents and left the cuffs lose rather than snug. It worked quite well, I didn't even need to open the pant vents.
I'm liking this gear very much. Since it never rains in west Texas anymore, I can't speak for it waterproof qualities.
"Please proceed governor".
Last edited by stevie88; 04-15-2013 at 10:25 PM.
here in the south, anything other than mesh doesn't work.
Agree with the use of the mesh, but as stated earlier,
the Veskimo has eliminated the issue of riding in hot weather for me.
Hydration is still required, but effects of heat stress on me
is no longer an issue, regardless of the ambient temperatures.
I'm much more refreshed and alert, even at the end of a long day of riding.
Last summer I had first had experience with the US heatwave in July while I was in the Bad Lands National Park area in South Dakota. Temperatures at 50°C or over 125°F are grossly f...ing hot even if you're just sitting in the shade. Trying to stay hydrated while riding on gravel roads is even more interesting and challenging. While I was in SD the wind never let up. It was like standing in front of an open pizza oven with a fan in your face.
Something to consider about riding in hot weather is that hydration is more important than comfort.
My RC suit was like a stinky sweaty sauna inside, even with the vents open. Of course I drank lots of things; but at the end of the day I felt ok, wasn't dehydrated and could ride day after day in the heat. Although mess gear (I do have a mesh jacket for short rides around home, not touring) would certainly feel more comfortable I believe that I would have probably dehydrated to the point of being brain dulled and likely crashed. Like hypothermia, heat-stroke sneaks up on you unaware. I did experience dehydration earlier on this trip for one day; my symptoms were diarrhea and my skin was weird and not elastic. The previous summer in Oklahoma l rode to near heatstroke when I luckily realized that I felt dopy and did a couple of stupid moves.
So when it's grossly hot take a break and have a nap in the afternoon and ride later. It's a coin toss choosing between needing a nap in the afternoon and riding into the evening to make mileage at the risk of hitting an animal.
Some of my trip is here ...
Probably been discussed before but when the temp is > 98.6 F... you probably want to focus more on keeping the heat out. That is, don't open the vents. In that type of crazy heat I would want to try out one of those evaporative vests as well... in which case maybe you do want to open the vents. I dunno. I live in the Boston area so 98+ temps only happen 2-3 times a year. I have more experience riding in cold weather.
Very nice blog BTW!
We south Floridians chimed in about gear in that recent thread.
I use my Olympia mesh jacket without liner
during the cool part of the morning.
As the day starts warming,
I use the Veskimo under a wind proof liner.
This keeps a microclimate against the skin
that stays continuously at 68 to 70 degrees for several hours.
As the temps get into the 90s and 100s,
I'll recharge the 9 quart cooler every four hours.
Hydrating continuously, regardless of temps.
As a retired Special Forces medic,
I'm intimately aware of the effects of the environment on the body.
The Veskimo is how I mitigated heat stress from my rides.
So from what I'm getting on here is that I should pick up a mesh jacket for my hot summer commutes (it breaks 100 here in CO during some days), but for distance/highway riding I should stick with my Kiliminjaro jacket with my vents open and a cooling vest?
I'm curious, any advice on helmets?
X2. Light color gear made a big difference for me, too. I switched from black to a light gray, almost white jacket and pants. When stopped in traffic or moving slowly through the woods, my light gray First Gear Kili jacket is cooler than my black Joe Rocket Mesh jacket. You've gotta be moving along to have the mesh jacket be cooler. This spring I switched from a black to a dorky-looking white helmet, just for the thermal effects. I haven't had temperatures above 60 degrees up here in New England yet, but I'll report in when I do.
Timely thread for me, I need a new mesh jacket (I just can't bring myself to wear my Joe Rocket Yamaha Champions Edition mesh jacket on my new KTM, so it will be for sale....).
New Mexico rider here, and last summer we had to do several hundred miles of slab to get home with the temp over 100, and the old trick of pouring water over your head works pretty well for about 45 minutes. It soaks the t-shirt or whatever you are wearing under your mesh jacket and the evap really feels great.