Autumn is fast approaching, and the Summer days of riding throughout the long evenings are going to be soon lost. If you live in parts of North America that don’t get the pleasure of having a warm climate all year round, then its almost time to get your bike ready for its Winter hibernation. With the season change, comes new conditions for motorcycle riders to deal with. The weather is notoriously known for mocking us with random blasts of heat in the Fall, but in reality, the trees are losing its leaves, temperatures are on the decline and daylight is dwindling away. We put together a few tips for motorcycle riding in Autumn to keep in mind before getting out for those last rides of 2014.
Look Out For Dry Or Wet Leaves
Yes the leaves are full of color and look beautiful in the Autumn season, but they are hazardous to riders once they start to fall to the ground, and potentially very dangerous. Dry leaves can pile up on the road and cover potholes or any other inconsistencies. Keep your eye on the road and try to take routes you are familiar with. Rain or morning dew will bring a different kind of hazard as they will create wet leaves causing them to make a slick pavement surface. This could make your bike slide on the road so try and avoid these kind of situations whenever you can. If you approach a pile of leaves on the road, try your best to drive slowly until you’re past the obstacle.
Deer are prominent for being more active in the Fall, whether they be searching for food or scarcely running away from hunters pushing them into new areas. More collisions with deer happen during this season so you don’t want one to come in your path while riding your motorcycle. Make sure you put on your protective gear before going out for a ride, and always scan the road sides if you’re cruising in any rural areas. Stay alert during dusk and dawn as these are the times of day when deer movement reaches its peek.
Leather Is Your Best Friend
The cool, crisp air is very exhilarating during the Fall. Temperatures are much more enjoyable to ride in compared to the heatwaves that occur in the Summer time. This is the time of year when leather truly is your best friend. Leather protects you from the wind and will keep you comfortably warm while riding.
Cold Autumn Nights
The weather is more unpredictable this time of year. It can go from chilly in the morning, warm in the afternoon to below freezing at night. Bringing extra layers with you is something to keep in mind. Once the sun goes down, the temperature can significantly drop and you don’t want to run into some unexpected mechanical problems while under dressed. You may want to bring your rain gear too because frigid rain can cause hypothermia – and no one wants that.
Frosty And Icy Surfaces
Cold Autumn nights only lead to one thing – morning frost. Its important to be aware of frost on the roads in the early morning because that pavement could have a thin layer of ice above it which will force you to lose traction. Shaded areas will frost up first so its important to be knowledgeable of your surroundings while cruising.
In closing, Autumn can be the most captivating time for riding. Traffic on the back roads has decreased, the colors are full and the air is pure. Once the leaves begin to drop, the landscapes become more open. The new settings that come with this season aren’t more backbreaking compared to those of others, but you will need to be prepared for the conditions to come.
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