As we get halfway through the month of September, October is right around the corner and crisp autumn weather is slowly creeping back into our lives. With the beautiful colors of nature and comfortable temperatures that autumn brings, it can often be the very best time to get out and go for a ride.
However, fall can also be quite a fickle time to ride with cold snaps seeming to come out of nowhere, a condition that can prove considerably dangerous from behind the handlebars. We at Hupy and Abraham understand the importance of rider safety. So, the next time you set out on a crisp autumn motorcycle ride, we encourage you to check out the following tips to ensure you can have a good time while staying safe and warm:
- Check the Forecast – This one can seem like a no-brainer, but it is easy to forget that a typical fall day can range widely in temperatures. If you are caught out longer than you expect, it could spell disaster for you and anyone who is riding with you. Be sure to check both daytime and nighttime temperatures and pack accordingly.
- Consider Heated Gear – Modern riders are extremely lucky to live in a time where heated gear is readily available. These days, almost any bike can be quickly and easily modified to support items like heated handgrips, heated vests, heated jackets and even heated gloves.
- Get the Right Gloves – Hands are easy to forget about on a bike. However, they are the first things to get cold when the temperature drops. This can be dangerous as cold, stiff hands limit your ability to use the emergency brake or utilize the clutch efficiently. Look for leather gloves with limited or no perforations.
- Move Your Body – Just like in hot weather, cold weather riding is hard on a body, even if you are well prepared. Try to take regular breaks to walk, do jumping jacks or grab a quick coffee. Do whatever it takes for you to feel alert again. It can be tempting to just “push through” to get to your destination, but the colder you get, the slower your mind and body will become.
- Try the Newspaper Technique – If all else fails, this time-tested remedy works in pinch. Pullover to any gas station and stuff a few free newspapers into your jacket, paying close attention to where your zippers run. Keeping your core warm will help keep you safe. As a final effort, any rider at this step should assess if it is truly safe to continue.
For many riders, autumn can be the most rewarding time of the year for them to get out on the road and go for a ride. Because of this, it is more important to take the necessary steps to ensure your safety and be mindful of exactly how you are feeling over the course of your ride. If at any point you begin to doubt your safety while on a ride, regardless of the time of year, it is essential that you listen to your gut and not push yourself beyond your own comfort.
For more tips and news for motorcycle enthusiasts, be sure to check out the other articles on the Current News for Riders page on hupy.com.