Thursday nights, I ride with a group that rides all weather, all year. (Well, maybe not snow and ice or lightening) I am trying to make this a regular ride for me as I both really enjoy the group, and it adds 20-22 mile a week for me. My wife has been kind enough to allow me Thursday nights as a standing ride night.
I am able to get out and ride to the Thursday night ride (I am trying not to burn gas to get to a ride, if possible), plus since I can ride there and peel off towards the end of the ride, I get home sooner and get a few additional miles in.
So, right now, the start is at 6:30 and is light but we soon descend into darkness. I have been getting great use from my lights, both on Thursdays and on my Friday commute.
This photo is the long shadow cast when riding east at 6 PM on Oct. 2. I love the shadow on the road in front of you as you ride... almost a mirror of sorts.
This is a fuzzy photo of the ride home after it gets dark. The fuzziness is a result of the camera, but adds a degree of reality due to the weird way the lights and movement in the dark make a weird little light tunnel. you feel you are in a little world all your own and the darkness almost doesn't exist.
It was amazing how fast the temperature dropped once the sun went down. It was nice in the upper 60's till the sun went down , then it seemed to get to the low 50's in about 10 min. The route I take home is back roads, somewhat rural (although soon becoming suburban), and goes through several rolling hills. When I would hit the bottom of these rollers, the temperature was noticeably lower... maybe 5 or so degrees. It was pretty cool.... pun intended.