Sunday, August 13, 2006

Liquid sun

Date: August 13
Mileage: 14.2
August mileage: 156.5
Temperature upon departure: 53

One way in which I am woefully unprepared for this move to southeast Alaska - besides, I mean, not having a home - is my complete lack of rain gear. During the winter I acquired good cold weather gear, but a parka and layers of polar fleece do little to keep out the chill when they're dripping from every square inch. The best things I own are neoprene gloves and booties, so - yeah - my hands and feet are semi-warm. I still have to head somewhere indoors after about 40 minutes because I am

Riding when it's -5 out is one thing, but cutting through the thick, soggy wind of 50 degrees and raining is a whole different kind of chill. While below-zero burns skin and bites ragged lungs, this Juneau August chill seeps into my core, saturating every cell with a deep and heavy cold until it has drowned all hope of ever being warm again. The instant fix for this is a hot shower, but the longterm reality is that I need some better gear. I have yet to check out the retail options in town, but I imagine such gear is not hard to find here.

I have yet to really do a long, hard ride here, but not for lack of time. It's funny, because I have so much to do, but can't really start any of it until I can set up a permanent household. So I spend too much time sleeping, reading, agonizing over the classifieds, and lingering in hot showers. I feel like more biking would lift my spirits and help jump-start my "settling" process, but it's so hard to find the motivation when I have a trunk full of wet bike clothes and an jittery energy reserve fueled by little more than anxiety, a small measure of desperation, and Goldfish. I've been subsisting on comfort food - which, in my case, consists mostly of processed carbohydrates that a 3-year-old would find appealing, make-your-own salad bars and sushi. Since I'm not currently spending any money on rent, why not?


  1. Jill - You should try to get on the Patagonia Pro Deal program. Seems like with your outdoor journalism work, you could get in as a journalist. Good savings on gear for sure.

  2. One other thing - On our NOLS course in Prince William Sound it rained for a week and a half straight. One trick for getting clothes dry when camping - put them in the sleeping bag with you..your body will dry them out. Riding gear for the rain is tough - I find those plastic cheap jackets work best, and that anything with a coating fabric simply doesn't last. For just hanging out, that cheap but thick rubber Helly Hanson stuff the fishemen wear is the bomb. That and an umbrella.

  3. oh dear, sounds like kodiak. get ahold of heather lende in haines. she knows people in juneau and could help you find a place for you and your cat.

  4. Raingear....Hmmm, Wally World is selling Stearns on closeout, not real expensive, but a quick and dirty fix for lack of raingear!

  5. Check out

  6. fishtaxi sounds as though she has the right idea! make the call. :) good luck on finding a permanent abode!

    peace out, yo!


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