One of the beautiful things about So ‘Tah is the amazing weather we experience. When we say you can ride year-round, we mean it, and most of us do. In reality, it’s probably the reason most of us are here.
Riding November through February can include an extremely wide range of temperatures and climate. It is not unheard of for the Mesas to be under snow, wind to be ripping at 50+ mph in Hurricane and St. George to be sunny and beautiful. We can see days in the 70s, but also those that never get above freezing. With that in mind, a little creativity and a well thought out layering system, and you can comfortably pedal through all of it.
A Layering System is a way of dressing that transfers perspiration and moisture away from the body, passing it into outer layers that are worn for insulation and/or protection from the elements.
Let’s start with the innermost layer, the base layer.
Base Layers are arguably the most important part of any layering system. When you participate in high-intensity activities, you are going to sweat. In warm weather, that sweat functions to cool you down. In cold weather, that same function happens but is intensified by the cold air surrounding you. As you become calorically deficient or stop, that sweat can quickly chill you to the bone and leave you shivering uncontrollably. A
good base layer will take that moisture and transfer it off your body keeping you dry and warm.
The 2nd layer is where you can make big adjustments depending on the temperature you expect to encounter during your ride. The insulating layer continues the work of the base layer allowing moisture to escape but traps body heat keeping you both warm and dry. Insulating layers become the most dynamic part of a layering system. Use a lightweight layer when things are cool, but you don’t expect them to be cold. Add some extra insulation as the temperature drops. The big key is to be sure to not over-layer and if you do, remove layers as soon as you begin to get hot.
A perfect insulating layer for our area is the Patagonia R1 Pullover. It’s has enough insulation that it will work for most temperatures you will encounter in St. George, especially when paired with a windproof shell, but is an excellent standalone piece for those beautiful afternoons that happen almost every day in November.
The last layer is the shell. The shell is used to protect the insulated layers from the elements. If there is rain in the forecast, you will probably want a waterproof jacket to ensure that your inner layers stay dry. High wind expected for the afternoon? A windbreaker can go a long way to keeping you comfortable as the temperatures drop and you continue to ride. There are a lot of different options for outer shells offering endless combinations to make riding possible.
One of our favorite shells is the new Therminal Alpha Jacket.It combines wind protection with insulation and highly hydrophobic liner to create a system that will keep you warm and dry extremely quickly if you start to overheat. With its extra insulation on the front of the jacket, it can double as an after ride puffy when the weather is chilly.
Swing by and ask one of our friendly experts to help you develop the perfect layering system for you and your riding style.