Riding in the Cold
Cold Weather Riding, Protect Yourself
You have that itch to get out and ride, but the weather isn’t cooperating. Maybe the only transportation option is your motorcycle. Riding in the cold can be done, but it needs to be done safely.
Understanding the toll the body will take in frigid conditions is important. A cold winter chill can lead to extreme fatigue and even fatal consequences. It is not recommended to ride in the cold, but here are a few tips to do it safely:
- Wind is not your friend, remember that wind chill will effectively drop the temperature to frostbite conditions in as fast as 30 minutes on a 40 degree day (Of course a windshield is the best protection).
- Protect yourself against wind with wind resistant clothing and a full face mask (leather is a great choice for torso and leg protection).
- Make sure to keep your core temperature up.
- Heated clothing is great way to keep warm (they plug into an auxiliary port on the motorcycle, but remember to unplug before getting off).
- Ride with multiple layers (thermals, sweats, fleece, vests and outer wear). Moisture wicking undergarments will help remove any moisture when not riding with all the layers.
- Cover every part of your body.
Helmets can be lined with insulation to keep your head warmer and fill gaps where air can leak. If riding with an open face helmet, a leather bandana or ski mask can be used to keep the wind off your face.