It’s been cold! Look at your electric or gas bill for January for verification.
There are not many among us who choose to ride in the cold weather we have been having lately. It’s not impossible, but you have to plan and be equipped correctly to undertake this. Motorcycling clothing has evolved from piling up to strategic layering. Technological advances and techniques borrowed from hikers, campers, skiers and other outdoor sports enthusiasts allow us to enjoy longer riding seasons and enjoyable rides in the cold. Two circumstances that motorcyclists avoid at all costs are ice, and the combination of cold and rain. Ice is self-evident. We watch videos of four wheelers skating along on black ice. Motorcycles would not stand a chance. With the proper clothing we can ride in very cold weather. Rain is sometimes unavoidable. However, the combination is uncomfortable and can be downright dangerous. The only reasonable strategies are not going out or pulling over and finding shelter.
As with all vehicles, keeping up with regular maintenance is essential to safe and comfortable riding. On motorcycles we have a very limited margin of error. Keeping your bike in shape is an obligation, not an option. Proper tire pressure and keeping the motorcycle on a trickle charger between rides are two of the best preventive maintenance strategies. Checking tire tread, fluid levels, brake pads and cable action will prevent possible breakdowns en route.
Of course, limited riding time in winter does not mean we don’t have our heads in the game. This is a time for getting out the maps and travel literature to plan the routes we will take once the weather improves. For the Robson Riders, that means scheduling the monthly breakfast/lunch rides, dinner rides and planning the two to ten-day excursions for the club. And, many of us energized the spirit at the Progressive International Motorcycle Show, February 2-4, at the Kay Bailey Hutchinson Convention Center in Dallas.
See you on the road!
Beware of cagers and keep the rubber side down!