Motorcycle Rider Tips and Techniques

 Riding Motorcycles during the Winter


Riding during the winter months offers a much different experience that many motorcycle riders never enjoy.

If you ride during this time of year you will be able to identify with what I am going to share. If you have not experienced riding your motorcycle during these months I hope you will considering do so.

When riding during this time of year I do take into consideration a couple of things I might not pay as much attention to as I do during the spring and summer riding season.

My first consideration is how much free movement I have with my cold weather gear on.

Riding during this time of year does require more layers. This is especially true on those days when the sky is blue, the wind is light, and the temperature changes significantly from morning to midday to the evening night time hours.  You need to consider the temperature change with the wind chill factor during riding. I want to make sure that as I layer up my heavier gear does not limit my movement, flexibility or agility. Just changing from your normal riding boots to a cold weather boot will affect how you change gears. This is also true for your riding gloves, especially if like me you change from an open finger glove during the summer to a full glove during the winter.

The second consideration is how visible I am in contrast with the barred landscape.

During the spring and summer months there are many more vibrant colors and contrasts to which we motorcycle riders will most likely be more visible. This being said, I always ride as if I am invisible. During the winter riding season I ride as if I am even more invisible. With the lack of foliage and the contrasting colors of green on the trees and shrubs our dark riding gear blends in perfectly with the lack of colors like camouflage. I find myself even planning my riding route to limit my left turns on open busy roadways. This is not always possible but if I can without much inconvenience I do. By limiting my stopping on the road to make a left turn I also limit the chance of being run over by a clueless motorist. If I do have to stop I make it a point to slow sooner, to gain the motorist attention behind me prior to the turn, and I continue to check my mirrors. This is also a time to keep your motorcycle in gear always prepared to get out of the way without hesitation.

I do enjoy riding during this time of year. The air is so clean and crisp often with the aroma of wood burning fires. When you come inside from the ride as your body temperature rises you again feel so young and alive. It is these times when I really appreciate a single malt in the company of good friends.

See you on the “Open Road”,

Moto-Tec Tim