Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Stuck in the Mud-dle with you!

(photo by Laura Crawford)

Excuse the terrible terrible pun, I couldn't help myself. On this last trip, we lucked out with some great riding weather the first two days. It didn't really rain until the third day, but boy did it come down in buckets (mostly when we were sleeping...and while we were having breakfast so we missed the brunt of it).

On our way out of Ojai I came into close contact with something that I don't see very often as a Southern Californian. Mud. Thick, concrete-like 3-inch thick mud. I'm not quite sure what I was thinking, perhaps that I could just ride through it really fast. It didn't happen. In fact, my bike went from about 13mph to 0 in four feet. When I got off to push the bike, my feet sank deep into it and it actually removed one of my sandals.

Now, this is all preface to tell you how great this Seal Skinz and Keen sandal combination is. I've been riding this combo during the rains here and it works great. Because of the open design of sandal, it dries really quickly. If you're on tour, this means you don't have to wait days for your shoes to dry. The Seal Skinz keep your feet dryish and warm (I wear a pair of wool socks with the SS). I have had the waterproofness compromised a little, but it was still FAR better than any other setup I've tried.

In this particular instance, my Keens were completely caked in hard mud. The next clear puddle we ran across, I simply walked around and stamped in it and was able to get most of it off. The same for the socks, I just waddled around a bit in a few inches deep of water and got the mud off while my inner sock stayed dry.

If I had shoes and regular socks, this would have sucked a lot. I would have had to wash out the shoes and change socks, unless I wanted to rough it until the next available spigot.

So, just saying, Keen sandals + Seal Skinz + wool socks make for happy feet.


Ian said...

Looks like the lower part of the Ojai-Ventura bike path? Yeah, that sees some mudflows nearly every year.

I think it was the big storms of about 5 years ago, took out a section of trail at the creek. Had to go out and around on the Hwy to get by it.

*sigh* Been three years since I moved, still miss commuting home on that trail.

RussRoca said...

It's a great trail! And all downhill from Ojai!