So it turns out you like going on cycle rides that take longer than 30 minutes. Great, happy riding. Oh it looks a beautiful day out, it’s going to be such a good cycle. Off you go whistling away, in your favourite jeans and hooded jacket. Oh yes, this is the best. Hang on it’s getting a bit cloudy. What!? No! Not rain!
Five minutes later you begin to realise what it feels like being a sponge left at the bottom of a full two-day old bath.
There are probably two major weather enemies to a cyclist. Rain is not one of them (wind and ice/snow are the real baddies) and this is because there is a lot of good gear to protect you against this element so you can cycle for hours and hours though lashings of the stuff and come out almost completely as dry as you went in (not 100% because that’s not possible – but close to it).
So here at Discerning Cyclist, I’ve complied a list of essential rainwear from head-to-toe. Combining great style with great functionality. Good rain cycling clothing is worth the cost, so it’s important to not skimp, but at the same time if you shop around you can get value for money.
Depending on how much hair you have on your head will decide how bothered you are keeping your head dry but there are plenty of rain caps out there and, if you’re going to ride with a helmet (very sensible too), then don’t worry as most caps fit under them.
Available from Wiggle for £10.80
Perfect for keeping not just rain at bay but wind and cold as well. Essential winter cycling attire. It also has a tasteful look and the Craft logo is nicely done so it’s not too in your face.
Available from Vulpine for £35
For warmer days you may can use a more standard cap but make sure you get a storm cap as they’re the waterproof one’s. We’ve just done a review on an excellent storm cap so that leads us to…
A good rain jacket is an essential bit of kit for any cyclist. When I myself first started cycling I just wore a raincoat – big mistake. As well as a jacket to keep the rain at bay you also need one that is lightweight. So it makes the ride easier when it’s on and when it’s in your bag. My first rain jacket was like wearing a tent with bricks in the pockets.
Available from CycleChic for £119
A cycling cape has a unique and old school cycling attire charm to it and this option from Cycle Chic is perfect to keep the top half of you dry during those wet days. Probably more suited to commuter’s or city cyclists as it’s not very aerodynamic but there’s no denying its stylish charm.
For a more functional jacket and one that will appeal to cyclists who ride on more sporty racing bikes is the…
Available from Vulpine for £199 (or Cycle Surgery for a whole penny less at £198.99)
Highly stylish, highly functional and whilst I do like (and own) the Rapha Rain Jacket, the Vulpine just seems better. It’s a big outlay on a coat, I do understand that but it’s a great jacket and the beauty of it is you’re not just getting a piece of cycling clothing you’re getting something you can wear when you’re nowhere near a bike unlike other cycling rain jackets
So that’s the top half of you covered (literally). Next week, I’ll look at some good rain pants and overshoes you can get to complete your waterproofing. Stay tuned…