We’ve highlighted much of our favorite winter gear already this year, from warm jackets and thick, fleecy jerseys to thermal bib shorts. Now we’re only about 8 weeks away from the start of the classics, with their potential for rain, cold and general nastiness.
Just like the pros, you need gear that can handle a bit of water and a healthy dose of cold as we head into early spring. The items below are three pieces we grab when the only dependable quality of the weather is its consistent volatility.
Curve Allrounder Neck Gator — $20
If Leopard-Trek team presentations taught us anything last year it’s the importance of good neck coverage.
I learned years ago to wear some sort of neck coverage every time I go out in temperatures under 45 degrees F, and often even when it’s warmer. A quick look at photo galleries from pro winter training camps shows that I’m not alone. You lose a lot of heat out of your neck, and it seems to be a sort of thermometer for the rest of the body. Cold neck = cold everything else. Warm neck = toasty happiness.
The Allrounder uses the same design popularized by Buff: a seamless cloth tube that can be turned into a number of different head and/or neck warming devices. I generally just fold it over a couple times and stick it around my neck — quick, easy, and effective. You can also turn it into il Pirata-inspired skullcap, a regular hat, a headband, or a sweatband. It’s one of the few items you could find use for on virtually every ride all year long.
The scoop: a cheap do-it-all neck scarf/gator/hat/skullcap/sweat band. Recommended temperature range: any