Just because it dark out, doesn’t mean you can’t ride!
I went out last night at 5:30 with the lights to get started on the winter mileage. Rode 36 miles. After getting the motivation to get out in traffic again, it wasn’t that bad. Riding on the road after a couple months of mountain biking, made the road bike fit feel weird. After a half hour or so, I was in the groove. Speaking of groove, when riding by yourself in traffic, the ipod helps a lot. Yeah, I know riding with music is dangerous, but so is riding in general. The key is the think with your eyes at all times. Look back every few minutes, and defensive driving at the intersections. Pay attention to the darkness around you, and when a it lights up, you know a vehicle is coming behind you; that way you won’t be too spooked if the car gets too close, and you can move over a little just as they pass for extra safety. Act like a car at the intersections, and the other should see you. A good taillight is a must at night!
I’ll be doing this two or three times a week, until the roads get nasty. So far in Farmington, the roads have been dry. Until the roads are wet, its better than the indoor trainer!
For my headlights, I am using Dinotte 200L Dual Lithium. Very nice lights! Simple to attach, white light (not yellow), LONG ride times, compact and light, and the lithium batteries do not have charge memory issues. I bought them direct from Dinotte at about $325.00. I’ve used them a couple times on the MTB trails too. For me the main factor is the long ride times. My old NiteRider Evolution lightset would be done in 2 hours, usually on reserve the last 15 minutes. It really put a worry factor during my night rides on the road. The Dinnottes have three output levels too, so you can conserve when you are going to be out a long time, or if you’re on lighted streets. They are attached with some stout O-Ring style bands. I was a little iffy about this, and thought they may move around, but they are actually really stable. It’s actually hard to adjust them while riding, which means they’re on there pretty tight. They sit on some rubber pads that are indented into the bottom of the light housing. We aren’t sponsored by Dinotte, but I wish we were! This is a nice U.S. product.
You can split one battery into two lights (like I’ve done here), or use the other battery that comes with the kit. Really nice setup. I ordered the Spotlight lens and the flood lens to get great coverage.