Riding Under Hot Weather Condition - Street Savvy

Beating the Heat
It's summertime, which means many of you who don't live in Alaska or Canada are probably doing plenty of riding in hot and humid conditions. Going for a ride can be a great way to beat the heat, though picking your way through heavy traffic-or crossing the desert-when it's 100 degrees in the shade doesn't quite qualify as "good ride" material in our book.

Still, there are ways to keep cool on your bike, even in severe conditions. Rule number one (and it's one you hear a lot these days) is to drink plenty of water. How much is plenty? Let's just say it's nearly impossible to drink too much, and the right amount is almost always more than you think. (Rule of thumb: If you don't have to urinate, you're not drinking enough.) Staying hydrated will keep your body functioning properly even when it's releasing significant amounts of water (sweat) to keep you cool. You'll also find you'll be more alert and less fatigued as the day goes by.

Good ol' H2O has other hot-weather-riding uses, too. When traveling through areas known for severe heat drenching the clothing beneath your jacket or riding suit with water will keep you feeling crisp and refrigerated for quite a while. (Don't ignore the jacket or riding suit, though; exposing lots of skin to the elements by wearing only light clothing while riding will dehydrate your system in no time, and the cooling effects of drenching will last just a fraction of the time they would've if you would've worn overclothing. And then there's the whole "protection" issue....) To maximize the evaporative effect, open the neck, sleeves and vents of your outer garments to keep plenty of air flowing. A large number of vented jackets and suits these days are great heat-beaters whether you use them in drench-mode or not. A wet bandanna rolled up and wrapped around your neck can also be a lifesaver on a hot day. Also, don't forget that light-colored gear absorbs less heat than dark-colored stuff.

There. Now all you need to worry about on hot days are those slippery tar strips.