Pico's Cycling - Tales of the Road is an online cycling magazine. It is intended for writers and riders who want to share their on the road cycling stories and pictures. Submissions that follow our guideline are gratefully appreciated. See the appropriate page in the site menu. Will publish the best of the best each month. Follow us on Facebook or Twitter @PicosCycling.

Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Not Everything Costs an Arm and a Leg - Bike Clothing on a Budget

By Jack Hawkins
Photos: Jack Hawkins

It seems that Spring is finally here, and there’s been fine weather abound. I’ve been getting out on my bike quite a bit, and it has felt fantastic to get back in the saddle again.

I spent my winter researching bike touring, researching destinations, clothing, equipment, technology and found that clothing in particular was quite expensive. And, in the beginning I found myself thinking - ‘Wow, I’m really going to have to shell out for all this stuff, aren’t I?’

I couldn’t have been more wrong. All it takes is some creativity and perseverance to find cycling clothing that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. And believe me, it’s out there. Instead of raving over jerseys, jackets and cycling shorts that cost a fortune and were well out of my budget’s reach, I found myself looking elsewhere - second hand clothing stores, in particular.

It was there that I found a Pearl Izumi cycling jersey, a pair of Easton baseball-come-cycling pants, and a very lightweight, waterproof anorak. Note that only one of these is cycling-specific, and everything cost under twenty dollars. That same jersey would have cost me $50.00 from Pearl Izumi’s online store. A pair of those Easton baseball pants - $40.00, and a waterproof, cycling-specific jacket, well according to Bike Radars opinions on which waterproof jackets are the best… The prices range from $70 USD, all the way up to $500! No, I’m not kidding.

Obviously, as with any sporting clothing - you get what you pay for. And as I ride in the clothing that I’ve purchased, I may find that it is woefully unsuitable, but, so-far, so-good! The waterproof jacket has kept me dry and the jersey has performed excellently.

I have also been graciously gifted a Merino Wool cycling jersey from Bobolink Gear in the United States. The plan is to review this product over the next however long it lasts, providing several reviews throughout this year as I cycle throughout New Brunswick, and next, as I conquer Canada.

Despite my success in finding both cycling-specific, and cycling-applicable clothing in second-hand stores, there are however several things I’m missing when it comes to my clothing. A pair of waterproof pants, for example. Two new pairs of cycling gloves - both full-fingered and fingerless, a cycling windproof headcover (how I’d have loved one of those on the rides in early April when I met up with my old enemy - Mr. Headwind). This list will no doubt be extended as I look ahead to 2015, and cycling across the country!

For now, though. If you guys have any suggestions for me on cycling clothing, where to look for bargains, what to buy, etc. Then please do get in touch. Below are some pictures of me, all geared up.

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