Questions about bike gear for the rainy season.
I live in the Portland, OR area and I've been biking to work since April. So, I'm about to hit my first rainy season and I would like to arm myself to successfully continue biking at least into the fall and hopefully through winter, too.
My main question is about shoes that make biking in the rain not a chore. I have been using toe clips and Converse all-stars this summer, but that will absolutely not work with the rain, so I'm going to need to either get waterproof shoe covers, or buy waterproof shoes. And if I buy waterproof shoes, maybe I ought to just upgrade to clipless pedals and shoes? Also, I think I like the velcro straps so I don't have to deal with laces, but I'm not entirely sure what the pros/cons are there.
I have a chartreuse bike jacket that has been good for cooler mornings, and it dries fast so it will be good for early on in the fall, but I am going to eventually need some kind of heavier jacket, I think. But I'm afraid that anything heavier will = more sweat, which I don't want (no shower at work). Is there something warm, waterproof, breathable, AND visible that I can get?
I ride a Specialized Crossroads, so it has the overlap. I kicked out my front fender early on in the summer and haven't yet replaced it because it's been unnecessary so far, but I'm going to need a new front fender or maybe one of those things that attaches to the front tube (not sure what it's called exactly) to deflect water. If I get a new fender, I guess it will need to be super-tough since I don't 100% trust myself not to kick it by accident again. Do those things that attach to the bike instead of the wheel work well, would that be a good option?
What other things do I need to bike in the rain? Waterproof gloves? A helmet liner? Goggles which don't let rain bead up on them? Etc.
I've seen this
and I've seen this
, and both were helpful though they're a bit old now; is there new stuff out there that is awesome?
Also, any recommendations for a bike shop to buy this stuff at? I've heard River City is good. I would love to be able to try out the clipless pedals before I buy, is there any shop which would let me do that?