Road trips are a great vacation idea. During these times of pandemic, it makes a lot of sense to take a road trip to avoid the tourist crowds. On a road trip, you can go to places less traveled. And doing it on a motorcycle makes it even more of an adventure.
Road trips do take some planning, however. And on a motorcycle, there are a lot of things to consider before you head out. Preparation is key to a safe and fun motorcycle road trip. Whether you are new to motorcycling or an old hat doing the first long road trip, you’ll need a guide on how to get started. In this article, we will go over what you need to consider when planning and packing for your motorcycle trip.
Choose the destination accordingly
For your first motorcycle road trip, it is important to pick a destination that isn’t too much of a challenge. Safety should be your first concern so the location needs to be ideal for novice riders.
There are some places that attract a lot of motorcyclists. Usually, many people flock to an area specifically because of the natural beauty or the weather. Whatever the reason, these places cater to motorcyclists so the roads are almost always in good shape and people around there are used to sharing the road with bikers.
Places, where the weather is stable with plenty of sun, are the best choice. Arizona, California and New Mexico are great places for motorcycle road trips. The weather is warm almost year-round with lots of sun. this opens up the possibility of going in the off-season when there are fewer tourists, traffic, and even fewer other motorcyclists.
Not only that, but the stable weather makes for roads that are in good shape. Nicely paved streets are important to avoid an accident that can lead to a nasty injury and require the help of motorcycle lawyers like Lamber Goodnow.
Remember that everything you pack is going to have to come with you on your person and bike. It is important to pack lightly and only bring the essentials, while also packing the proper safety gear. The gear you wear is heavy and bulky unfortunately but must be packed.
The rest of the clothes that you pack should be lightweight and comfortable. You will be spending time at your destinations and will need regular clothes to wear besides your riding gear.
You’ll need to be prepared for different types of weather and temperature. Although it is a bad idea to ride when it’s raining, sometimes it happens suddenly. Have some rain gear to wear so you don’t get soaked through until you find shelter.
Light layers are a good way to go since you can find yourself getting chilly on the bike. Yet, you don’t want to take up a lot of space in your bags with a heavy coat. Thermal layers are very thin these days so take advantage. The other benefit is that you can remove them one layer at a time when the weather warms up.
Also, have space for a first aid kit in case you run into some trouble or get ill. Plus, a repair kit for things like a flat tire or other minor problems comes in very handy on the road.
Plan your route
Being spontaneous is part of the appeal of road trips. For your first motorcycle road trip, it is important to stick to a plan, however. It is essential to not get caught somewhere that could pose a problem because you didn’t plan. It could be running out of gas in the middle of nowhere, or being too fatigued to keep riding and there is no hotel in sight.
Map out your miles per day with points of interest, food and lodging marked out along the way. This will keep you from ending up in a situation that puts you in danger.
Checking the route online every day before heading out is also a good idea. Accidents can tie up traffic for hours without a way to get out of it in some circumstances. A fund road trip doesn’t involve being stuck in traffic for hours. Even on the most scenic route!
Another reason to check before heading out for the day is that there could be dangerous driving conditions like high winds or slick roads. There are times when you can be fooled by good weather in high elevations only for it to change very quickly. Specifically, Colorado and Utah have areas that are deceptively above sea level that don’t seem to be.
Avoid trying to max out the miles you do in a day and instead enjoy the ride. Make frequent stops to avoid fatigue and dehydration. Stopping for water breaks in arid areas is extremely important.
Also, the vibration of the motorcycle cause muscles to tighten up which leads to fatigue after a few hours on the road. Fatigue leads to poor decision-making and slow reaction times. Driving while tired can be as dangerous as drinking and driving. Stop well before you feel fatigue set in.
You can plan out these stops ahead of time or just stop when you feel that you’re about to get tired and arrive in an area that looks interesting.
Aside from the safety factor, taking breaks leads to more fun. Sometimes sticking with the plan can start feeling like a routine. It’s the discovery of off-the-beaten-path destinations that you didn’t find in the guidebook that makes a lasting impression. You may have stopped in a cute town because you were tired, but decided to stay on a few extra days because you couldn’t resist the charm.
When you are prepared ahead of time for your road trip it leads to a much more fulfilling vacation. The thrill of the road can only be fully enjoyed when you are safe and don’t have to worry. Take these tips to heart before you head out on your road trip and get ready to make a lot of memories.