Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Cold Vegas Ride

Just over Cajon Pass, literally, on the edge of a storm.

When I first started riding, I remembered looking through various catalogs and seeing all sorts of cold-weather riding gear.  One item that caught my attention was heated grips.  Having never really ridden a bike anywhere else but SoCal at the time, I thought to myself: "man, you must been a real pansy to need heated grips."

Fast forward a few years later.  I had relocated to NY and I still remembered the first time that I had ride in the cold.  We had some prototype that needed to be tested and this is around early winter in NY.  It was a cold, sunny day.  It had been snowing lightly but nothing really stuck on the ground.  I hopped on the SV and off I went.  I was fine for about 10 minutes putting around town, then I got on the interstate and I quickly realized how big of a pansy I was.  My fingers were the first to go and it got extremely uncomfortable in a hurry.  I had to cut the ride short as I couldn't bear the cold wind blasting on my fingers.

That winter I learned to appreciate winter gloves and heat packs.

A few years later, I got my first bike with heated grips, a BMW K1200S.  A great accessory except by now I'm in sunny LA and I used it sparingly, only on trips outside of the LA area.

The K1200S was retired last fall and I now ride a Kawasaki Ninja 650.  It's probably the funnest bike I've ever owned.  Since getting it, I haven't really missed the K1200S at all.  Until last week.

I rode the bike out to Vegas for last week.  It had been cold here in LA and before I left, I checked the weather in Vegas.  In the mid to high 40's and sunny.  Just like LA.  So I thought to myself, just layer up and I should be fine.

I left LA mid morning on Thursday.  Having layered up and all the air vent zippers closed off on my GlowRider jacket, I was comfortable even cruising around the high 90's.

Traffic out of LA was light and I was zipping along at a pretty good pace.  When I got to I-15, a black SUV zoomed by me and it must've been doing well over 100.  A smile quickly appeared on my face.  I let the SUV get a few hundred yards in front and picked up my speed to match that of the SUV.  I love having a rabbit!

I tailed my rabbit for a good while until all of a sudden, my trusty TPX Detector went off on a light Ka alert.  I instinctively let go of the throttle and dropped my speed down to around 75.  Needless to say, the SUV quickly disappeared ahead of me and I kept my caution on.

At this time, I was thinking that if there is a cop ahead catching speedsters in my direction, that SUV is toast!

The Ka alert slowly got stronger, and sure enough, about 3/4 of a mile later, I went by a CHP on two wheels on the side of the road.  To my surprise, the SUV was nowhere in sight.  Not sure what had happened, but either the SUV also had a radar detector and slowed down, or exited the freeway before he got to the cop.

Regardless, had it not been for the TPX Detector, I'm sure that I would've had a chat with that CHP.

Now, back to the conversation about cold weather.  Shortly after my encounter with the CHP, I started heading up Cajon Pass.  As I was approaching the ascend, I could see heavy clouds at the top of the pass.  This is when I realized that I had forgotten to check the weather conditions in between LA and Vegas and I could be in trouble.  A portable sign on the side of the road warning motorists about icy road condition followed, then I start seeing cars with snow on their hood and roof on the opposit traffic.

By now, I know for sure that I'm in for a cold ride.  As I got near the top of the pass, it started to snow.  I went from being very comfortable to very, very cold quickly.  So quickly that I didn't even realize that my fingers were freezing numb until pain started radiating from my finger tips.  How I miss my K1200S with the heated grips now!

I decided to keep on going instead of pulling over because there weren't any exits, and I braved the cold until I got over the pass and immediately pulled off at the nearest fast food joint, a Jack in the Box.  After dismounting the bike I beelined directly to the restroom and had my hand under the faucet for what felt like an eternity before I could feel my fingers again.

I knew the ride should be better after the pass as I could see nothing but sunshine ahead, but I was in no hurry to get back on the road.  I took my sweet on lunch and used the time to defrost myself a bit before finishing up the ride.

I returned from Vegas the next day.  This time, I checked the weather in between LA and Vegas.  Sunny the whole way, but still cold.  I braved the cold as the return trip was not as bad, but still, pretty darn cold.

Surprisingly, not a single threat encountered on the way back.  Maybe the cops didn't feel like being out in the cold!

Another trip, another save, and I definitely learned that I'm a pretty big pansy when it comes to cold weather riding!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

New Products!

We are starting off 2013 with two new products!

The first is our AdaptivMount Skinny Bar Mount, which is designed for crossbars found on some adventure bikes, fairing bars on some sportbikes, and metal mirror posts on most scooters.

The second is our Mount Plate Extension, which will allow existing AdaptivMount to hold two devices!

Get yours today!