It’s January. Typically, in the Pacific Northwest that means we’re drinking way too much coffee to stay warm, we’ve wrapped ourselves in Gortex and wool to stay dry, and we spend just as much time cleaning the mud off of our bikes as we do riding them. This is a familiar song and dance to me. Wake up, stare outside at the pitch black pelting rain and make an impulse decision on whether or not to trudge my way through another wet, soggy, coldAF ride. I’m about 50/50 on this one. Some mornings I do it because it’s the only time I’ll have to ride on that particular day. Other mornings, I convince myself that the extra 90 minutes of sleep is great for my sanity and crawl back into my bed cave.
However, each January there also seems to be this little nugget of magic that pierces through the seemingly impermeable thick gray blanket of wetness and bestows upon us a few gloriously sunny days. To the locals, these days are known as “Holy-shit-it’s-summer-in-January!” days. They are treasured the way a mother treasures her child’s first pair of shoes. They’ll be talked about throughout the rest of the dreary wet season (aka, until the sun shines again on July 5th). We’ll even reminisce about them next January when we get another round of gloriously brilliant golden light and crisp bluebird days.
This past dose of sunshine was felt all along the west coast as my Instagram feed slowly dissolved from muddy shins to gorgeous rays of light bursting through the trees on Mount Seymour on the North Shore, endless island views from the mountain tops of Bellingham, to golden-hour panoramas from the hilltops of Seattle and beyond. One thing is for sure, when the weather gives you roughly eight months of dark, cold and wet conditions, we definitely learn to take advantage of the sunny days whenever we have them.
Here’s to more random gorgeous days in the winter! Until then, I’m going to go wash the mud off of my bike from last night’s rain ride.
*Header image by Scott Mackay