Winter is here. As much as many of us want to deny it, the snow flurries and dark icy mornings are undeniable. For a rider in the northern states, this is a hard reality to come to grips with. We roll our machines into various storage areas, many carefully winterized and placed on battery tenders, and sadly walk away for several months (OK, maybe we look back once or twice when we walk away, but we’ll never admit it). It’s a tough time that unfortunately lasts a season, which begs the question – what's a rider to do during winter? Luckily for us there are several options for the snow-trapped rider.
- Go Over the Bike: Winter is a great time to go over a routine maintenance checklist. If you don’t already keep a small thorough notebook on your bike’s maintenance and repair schedule, now is a great time to go through the machine and start one.
- Start Your Dream Mods: With Christmas around the corner, winter is also a great time to knock out some of those modifications you’ve been dreaming about during the riding season. Just be sure to stay on schedule so you’re not stuck behind with a bucket full of parts when the snow finally melts.
- Visit Indoor Shows and Races: The indoor show and race scene is actually alive and well in many cities during the winter. A few local examples include The Progressive International Motorcycle Show (IMS) landing in Chicago February 12-14 during its Midwest circuit, and Mama Tried’s Flat Out indoor flat track race in Milwaukee on February 19.
- Ride the Ice: Ice riding is actually a sport! Whether you’re a serious racer or trying off-road for the first time, ice riding is a fun and relatively low commitment sport to explore for those near a water source. Getting started requires any kind dirt bike (old, new or pieced together), studded tires (which you can purchase or make) and warm gear (including electric options). Ice riding is a relaxed community, and great way to practice lines and body positioning in a safe, pedestrian- and car-free environment.
- Rent a Snowmobile: If you’ve never tried a snowmobile, or just have the itch to twist a throttle without the commitment of buying a machine, snowmobile rentals and tours are common throughout many northern states. Most rental areas will provide maps or directions to local trails so that there’s no need for a trailer, and gear can typically be rented or purchased year round.
- Go Karts: Release your inner speed demon. Indoor go-kart tracks are gaining popularity and are a great way to have motorized fun with friends in winter, with no need to bundle up.
At Hupy and Abraham we always encourage you to have fun safely, whether you’re snowmobiling, attending shows or riding during winter. Look for our Watch For Motorcycle materials at IMS and our sponsored racer Parker Lange at Mama Tried’s Flat Out!
Written by: Melissa Juranitch