Fall can be one of the most beautiful times to ride. The air is cool, leaves are changing and there are plenty of festivals, toy runs and markets to attend.
Fall can also be a deceptively tricky time to ride, as cold snaps can come out of nowhere, which can be dangerous on a bike. Check out the quick tips below to make sure you stay safe while having fun!
- Forecast – This one can seem like a no-brainer, but it’s easy to forget that a typical fall day can range WIDELY in temperatures. If you’re 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 temps, and pack accordingly.
- Heated Gear – We’re so lucky to live in a time of heated gear! 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!
- Quality Gloves – Hands are easy to forget about on a bike. But they’re the first things to get cold when the weather 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.
- Newspaper – If all else fails, this time-tested remedy works in pinch. Pull over 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 last-ditch effort, any rider at this step should assess if it is truly safe to continue.
- Move – Just like in hot weather, cold weather riding is hard on a body, even if you’re well prepared. Try to take regular breaks to walk, do jumping jacks, grab a quick coffee or 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.
For many bikers, cold weather riding yields some of the most rewarding two-wheeled adventures of the year. It’s important though to keep these safety tips in mind, and always be aware of how you’re feeling that day.
For more great safety tips, check out our Current News for Riders page here! And to stay up to date on great motorcycle, scooter and snowmobile events year round, be sure to follow our online events calendar here!