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eminva
09-08-2011, 08:41 AM
Greetings from the very wet late shift.

There is a low spot just east of the Lyon Village Shopping Center/Spout Run (where the apartments are). It was totally flooded this morning. It was possible to bike through it, but I saw a jogger climbing the fence to walk on top of it to get around the obstruction.

There were other submerged spots along the Custis and W&OD, but this was definitely the deepest and longest.

Liz

Dirt
09-08-2011, 08:51 AM
Good catch, Liz. I unclipped and coasted across that one this morning.

consularrider
09-08-2011, 09:40 AM
It was interesting watching the joggers try and figure out how to get around a 15 foot stretch of water that was about six inches deep. Having one of them jump back on the trail from the rail just as I was entering the water was disconcerting. With the color of his clothing, he had blended in with the vegetation.

Dirt
09-08-2011, 09:59 AM
People don't think before they jump. Glad everything worked out on this morning's commute, sir.

CCrew
09-08-2011, 11:29 AM
Two words: Cyclocross bike :)

I've taken a beating from co-workers that can't believe I've ridden in in this.

Dirt
09-08-2011, 11:34 AM
I get that a lot from people at work. "You rode to work today?" Someday they'll figure out the answer is always yes. The fixie is great in this stuff. Cross bike is probably more agile when someone jumps out in front of you though. There's a reason the model name for my fixie is called the "Steamroller".

jabberwocky
09-08-2011, 12:06 PM
Rain when its 75 degrees out isn't that crazy. You just get wet. :)

Now, rain when its 35 degrees out? That takes dedication. And also fenders and good rain gear.

Tim Kelley
09-08-2011, 12:13 PM
I get that a lot from people at work. "You rode to work today?" Someday they'll figure out the answer is always yes.

My response to that question is, "What? Did you expect me to WALK to work in the rain??"

ronwalf
09-08-2011, 02:16 PM
Do they make panniers rated for submersion? The Paint Branch trail had water up to my knees under the Metro/CSX tracks.

Greenbelt
09-08-2011, 02:21 PM
@ron -- were you on the NE branch trail this afternoon? Passable?

Dirt
09-08-2011, 02:25 PM
Do they make panniers rated for submersion? The Paint Branch trail had water up to my knees under the Metro/CSX tracks.

Ortlieb panniers are as close as I've found to being rated for submersion. The ones that I've got are basically like a big ziplock bag. They did amazingly well on the two occasions that I completely submerged my cargo bike. Moving through water at any speed at all, however, puts a lot of strain on the clips that hold the panniers to rack. On one occasion the clip did not break, but I could see where it had bent a little.

Two sets of home-made bucket panniers proved to be perfectly water tight. They were made from the old, plastic cat littler buckets that are pretty hard to find these days. I did a pretty good job of sealing the holes that I drilled for mounting the hardware for hooking them to the rack.

The more fancy-pants bucket panniers that I made out of dog food storage containers that I got on sale at The Container Store did not fare so well. They were designed to be "generally air tight" but the hinges let water in and the plastic was brittle enough that the added force of moving through water cracked the plastic where the mounting hooks were connected.

I'm guessing that your question may not have been serious. My most sincere apologies for having an answer for you. I'll try to be better (or worse) in the future.

Pete

ronwalf
09-08-2011, 07:27 PM
@ron -- were you on the NE branch trail this afternoon? Passable?

Sorry, that was on Wednesday, and that pass under the metro tracks is as far south as I go at the moment.

Jsnyd
09-08-2011, 09:50 PM
Do they make panniers rated for submersion? The Paint Branch trail had water up to my knees under the Metro/CSX tracks.

I'm going with Dirt. Ortlieb. What a coincidence that revolution cycles(Clarendon) have two or three pairs in stock! I sold a pair to a guy last week just before the storms. I'm sure he's happy.


---
I am here: http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=38.845311,-76.949795

5555624
09-09-2011, 04:38 AM
I would not want to totally submerge them, but my panniers will keep things dry in water up to the top of my rack. (Serratus, from MEC in Canada, they've been replaced by something similar.) If I had to replace them now, I might go with Ortlieb. There was something I didn't like about the Ortlieb panniers when I got there, but that was more than a dozen years ago.

PrintError
09-09-2011, 07:23 AM
My response to that question is, "What? Did you expect me to WALK to work in the rain??"

Or "I can't believe you sat in traffic all day!"

rcannon100
09-09-2011, 07:47 AM
Flooding on Custis Trl East of Lyon Vill. Traffc comes 2 stand still. Oh wait thats 2 take pics! @BikeToWorkDay #bikedc

369

You might think that someone, in their clever design of this bridge over the creek below, would have thought to install a drain somewhere. I stopped and looked for a drain to clear, but did not see one. Last night there were two of these lakes along the Custis.

And YEAH as I was biking home last night, they were closing 495! Twice this week week biking in the deluge, the GW parkway was at a full stop stand still bumper to bumper honk punch scream.

ronwalf
09-09-2011, 08:44 AM
Two sets of home-made bucket panniers proved to be perfectly water tight. They were made from the old, plastic cat littler buckets that are pretty hard to find these days. I did a pretty good job of sealing the holes that I drilled for mounting the hardware for hooking them to the rack.

I completely forgot about my bucket panniers. Mine won't fit my laptop, though, and I can't seem to get them out of the foot-strike zone.


I'm guessing that your question may not have been serious. My most sincere apologies for having an answer for you. I'll try to be better (or worse) in the future.

After a week of having to wrap everything in plastic bags to keep them dry, the question is gaining more and more relevance.

PrintError
09-09-2011, 09:53 AM
And YEAH as I was biking home last night, they were closing 495! Twice this week week biking in the deluge, the GW parkway was at a full stop stand still bumper to bumper honk punch scream.

The roads around my office in Reston were all either flooded, closed, or gridlocked. This actually caused more pedestrian traffic on the trail as drivers parked and walked instead. Ahh it's good to be a bike commuter.

Dirt
09-09-2011, 10:28 AM
I completely forgot about my bucket panniers. Mine won't fit my laptop, though, and I can't seem to get them out of the foot-strike zone.
After a week of having to wrap everything in plastic bags to keep them dry, the question is gaining more and more relevance.
Foot-strike zone: Mine ride on the back of a Big Dummy cargo bike, so foot strike is not a problem. I can imagine that might be an issue with a normal bike.

I did have one instance where I got water in a bucket pannier. I hadn't closed it correctly.

Sustainable waterproofing regimes: Otterbox and Pelican make laptop cases that are designed to completely seal and protect in the worst conditions possible. These things really work too. I have 5 or 6 of them in different sizes that I have used when traveling with electronics in seriously sketchy weather conditions. They are not cheap, but you'll buy it once and forget about it. I have a Pelican case designed for netbook computers that I carry "The Precious" (aka my iPad) in these days. It works perfectly. As for clothes, wallet, etc., I use dry bags designed for kayaking. They also come in different sizes. They seal much better than ziplock bags and have lasted for YEARS. I think the one I use daily (which really means 300+ days of riding per year) cost me $40 when I purchased it from REI in 2007.

Ziplocks are okay and help in a pinch, but they're not a long-term solution.

Knowing that going swimming was a possibility last night, I left most of my stuff locked in my file cabinet at the office. I didn't even bring The Precious home. My wife was shocked.

Pete

PrintError
09-09-2011, 04:21 PM
Dare I ask what "The Precious" is?

For yesterday, my bag contained only clothes, no concerns if that got wet. Thankfully I ride with no electronic devices.

rcannon100
12-15-2011, 10:33 AM
BTW ArlCo is apparently sending out a crew to examine the drain that causes the flooding at this point on the trail, Custis near Cleveland St.

rcannon100
12-19-2011, 07:43 AM
Arlco says


I EXAMINED THE AREA AND SUCCEEDED IN CLEARING THE DRAIN. IT WAS INDEED FILLED WITH COMPRESSED LEAVES, SMALL TWIGS AND SEDIMENT. THE EXIT PORT APPEARS TO BE A 4" PIPE THAT CAN CLOG RELATIVELY QUICKLY WITH DEBRIS. I WILL BE SURE TO MAKE OUT TRAIL CREW AWARE OF THE TENDENCY SO THAT THEY MIGHT KEEP AN EYE ON IT.

:D

americancyclo
12-19-2011, 08:09 AM
they yell a lot, huh?

MCL1981
12-19-2011, 06:27 PM
Ortlieb panniers are as close as I've found to being rated for submersion. The ones that I've got are basically like a big ziplock bag. They did amazingly well on the two occasions that I completely submerged my cargo bike.

So, I would love to hear the story behind this one.

rcannon100
12-20-2011, 10:17 AM
they yell a lot, huh?

Yeah, I think their all caps key is stuck :D