Keep Warm and Ride Your Motorcycle Longer In Cold Weather

Man has yet to control climate in order to make every day a good day for riding.

So, in lieu of chanting and prayer, the keys to cold weather motorcycle riding are the proper gear and preparation.

  • First, check local forecasts for the area you’ll be riding in and make sure you have the necessary gear on hand for the weather.

  • No matter what the outside temperature, remember to calculate for the wind-chill factor.

  • Make sure that as little skin is exposed to the elements as possible, and take care to cover the gaps in your attire at the wrists, necks, and ankles.

  • It’s always better to have too much gear instead of not enough. Some riders prefer electric gear for extreme cold — others layer up. The right layers will keep you dry and warm.

Winter Motorcycle Gloves: Waterproof, Windproof and Warm

There is no body part more exposed than your hands — so the right winter gloves are essential.

Waterproof, windproof, breathable gloves are best for extreme cold — with special layers designed to insulate, block wind and keep hands dry.

Here’s what to look for when choosing winter riding gloves:

  • Strategically Insulated:  gloves should be designed with extra insulation added to backs of hands and  fingertips, where you need it most.
  • Gloves with Gore-Tex® are a great choice —  windproof, waterproof and breathable — and there are many winter glove choices with combinations of windproof, waterproof and breathable features, at every price range.
  • Gauntlet gloves —  winter motorcycle gloves with a generous gauntlet  — can help prevent wind from getting into your jacket at the wrists.
  • Leather gloves are a good choice — naturally windproof, warmer than textile gloves, all things being equal.  Warm leather-free, vegan winter gloves are an option, too.
  • Look nice extras like a built-in “squeegee” to clear your visor of precipitation, and touch screen fingertips to keep gloves on (and hands warm!) while using devices.
  • If you only ride occasionally in winter,  windproof and waterproof All Season gloves can be a good choice. Best for colder spring and fall temps when the wind picks up and morning chill sets in; add motorcycle glove liners for extra warmth, under other riding gloves.

For more information on choosing winter gloves, you may like:

Best Cold Weather Motorcycle Gloves: 2014-15 BUYER’S GUIDE

The Right Winter Motorcycle Gear to Keep Warm

Here are some useful rider tips for choosing the right gear:

1. One of the most important things you can do to prepare for a cold ride (once the proper gear is obtained), is to keep your gear warm before you put it on.If you start your ride warm, you’re more likely to end it warm, too.

  • If you currently store your heavy jacket, full face helmet, cold weather gloves, etc. in a cold garage with your motorcycle- bring it inside the house into the warmth instead.

    What to wear:

  • Neck wraps: to thwart the cold from getting into your jacket and helmet and are generally small and can fit into a jacket pocket if the ride turns warm.

  • Base Layers: add a wicking and warm thermal layer under your pants and shirt — wicking fabrics that wick perspiration away from the body, to keep skin dry and stay warm.

  • Socks: A double pair of socks and/or chaps can stop wind from penetrating your jeans and are easily removed when you reach your destination.

  • Helmet:  Gotta wear a lid to keep your head warm — with full face shield, and with or without a balaclava. Some riders also find anti-fog spray useful for better visibility.

  • Riding Suit: Winter riding separates —  jackets and pants —  are great, but some riders find that an all in one riding suit — with no gaps —  keeps them warmer.

  • Boots:  a good warm boot is a must.  Buy ’em once, have them forever.

2. Heated gear is a constant debate among riders.  Some swear by it, others stay warm the old-fashioned way — but all agree that keeping your core warm is key.

More Winter Riding Tips From Experienced Riders

Bike accessories: consider a larger windscreen, handguards, heated grips, and other farkles to protect you from the elements and keep you warmer.

Winter bike tune-up:  Make sure your bike is in good winter shape. Check hoses, add antifreeze, and  check tire pressure and treads before each ride.

Ride smart.  Take it slower.  Open up following distance.  If it starts to snow or get icy, pull of the road.   Don’t be a hero: Get coffee, wait it out.  (And keep the number of a buddy on hand, if you get stranded).

What’s your favorite riding tip for keeping warm and safe when temperatures drop?


P.S. We make over 70 glove styles, many for winter riding, some with free shipping. Check them out: read a review, visit a local dealer or our online store!

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