Motorcycle Rider Tips and Techniques

Riding into the New Year

A New Year Resolution

Hello Fellow Riders,

If you are like me one of your New Year Resolutions was to ride your motorcycle more in 2016.

You may be fortunate like I am living in part of the country where the winter has been mild and riding your motorcycle has been possible. If you have not yet had the chance to ride your motorcycle this year I would encourage you to begin today planning for your first opportunity to get on motorcycle and ride.

I was able to ride my motorcycle a lot during the month of December and even on Christmas Day! I made it a point to get on my motorcycle and ride it just so I could say I rode my motorcycle on Christmas. I also rode on New Years Eve, and then again on New Years Day. I will admit it was a little chilly. I had anticipated the weather and dressed accordingly. I also took into consideration the temperature drop that would occur as the sun went down. I had ridden to a friends property where we were shooting guns to welcome in the New Year. I intentionally made it a point to leave the fun and to be off the road and in the house when evening had come.

Motorcycle Rider Tips and Techniques is a result of me riding my motorcycle during the winter and into the New Year.

If you are still riding your motorcycle during this time of year you will identify with what I experienced during my recent rides. If you are not still riding but plan to ride this winter a tip is a means to a more enjoyable ride. I believe this is the time of year when we can really examine and improve our riding techniques.

As recently as yesterday it became very apparent to me that “cagers” motorist are not even aware that motorcyclists ride motorcycles in the winter.  We all know or we should know that most cagers are not paying attention to their driving or actively looking for motorcycles. Many cagers believe motorcycles are only recreational vehicles and only ridden during the spring and summer months.

This brings me to “Tim’s Tip”. Ride your motorcyle knowing you are not being seen, anticipated, or expected.

I have a friend that teaches the MSF Intersection Course in local high schools. He also happens to be a Blue Knight. My friend was telling me of how often during his presentations he has students asking him about the saying “Loud pipes save lives”. His response to these students is this question. “When you hear an ambulance, police or fire truck siren how often do you wonder from which direction it is coming?” The answer is always the same, they are not sure. He then tells the students that at every motorcycle accident he has investigated the common explanation from the motorist is “I did not see the motorcycle”.

Loud pipes may save lives. High visibility riding gear may save lives. All the gear, all the time, may save lives. Improved lights and additional lights may save lives. These are all beneficial attempts to reduce our risks but not the total solution. Riding your motorcycle knowing you are not being seen, anticipated, or expected in addition to these will make a significant difference at the end of the ride. This is especially true in the winter months when most motorcycle riders are not riding the roads and far from the minds of the motorists.

See you on the “Open Road”,

Moto-Tec Tim