Dropping temperatures and biting winds can chill the enthusiasm of even the most dedicated biker. However, there are different kinds of cold weather motorcycle gear that can ensure nothing comes between you, your bike, and the open road.
Winter leaves you reminiscing about open roads, breathtaking views, the wind in your face, and that beautiful thump from the pipes.
Most bikers will concede that they resent putting their bikes into storage for the winter. In places with snow, sleet, and severe winters, there is often no other option.
However, if you wish to brave a not-so-extreme winter, the many different kinds of motorcycle gear, especially for cold weather will help make the experience more enjoyable and tolerable.
Following are a few essentials that need to be a part of your motorcycle gear during cold weather:
A helmet that will cover most of your face
Long johns or thermal innerwear
A good windproof and waterproof jacket
In order to stay warm, just a good jacket will not suffice. You also need to layer your clothing, ideally starting with thermal innerwear.
Among the different kinds of jackets available are all-season jackets and expedition jackets. While a multi-utility motorcycle jacket may seem like a sensible buy, your focus should be on good quality and warmth. The outer material should be wind and waterproof, with reflective panels.
Another option is to use overalls for cold weather, which provide the maximum protection. A high-end (read expensive) option is full-jacket liners with heated torso, sleeves, and collar, or electrically heated trouser liners.
Our hands often bear the brunt of harsh weather conditions and extended periods of pressure. Essential to the operation of the motorcycle controls during winter are a good pair of gloves.
What defines a good pair of gloves are those that will keep your palms warm without compromising on dexterity. An effective pair of gloves should keep the hands both dry and warm, and allow free movement of the digits.
When it comes to choosing between leather and textile, the former is more chic and offers superior impact protection, but is not waterproof. Textiles have the redeeming qualities of being more flexible and providing better sensitivity at the controls.
You may also want to consider a pair with extra reinforcement at the thumb-forefinger joint that wears quickly and additional layers on the palm to diffuse vibration. Also ensure a secure fastening system, and good construction that anchor all the layers.
Another handy motorcycle accessory to keep your hands warm are heated grips. They are electrically heated, and draw about 1.6 amps for 22 watts of quick-detach heat. Among the sizes available are standard (36 inch wide handlebars) and long (44 inch wide handlebars).
Cold weather motorcycle clothing will not be complete without a good pair of waterproof boots and snug socks. Look for a pair that is breathable, comfortable, and that will give you protection right up to the shin.
Socks that are specifically designed for motorcycling are ergonomically formed, with padding soles and flex channels, as well as agents to keep your feet fresh.
Products for Fog-free Visor
Low visibility is another problem that makes cold weather riding difficult. The products to keep your visor from clouding up include fog-free visors, accessory shields, sprays, and waxes.
An innovative product is a mask worn inside your helmet that gently seals across the bridge of your nose and cheeks, so your breath is directed down and away from the inside of your visor, eliminating condensation.
Among the other products that make cold weather motorcycle riding more safe are kits that include motorcycle shoes, lamps, brackets, a wiring harness, hardware, and instructions.
Though most bikers are tough, they are not impervious to the elements. Cold weather motorcycle gear performs the dual function of keeping them comfortable and safe from conditions such as hypothermia.