There is hardly a place you can go where you do not encounter at least one motorcycle enjoying the fall season. Like all seasons, there comes a time when you need to retire your bike for the winter months ahead. As motorcycle season is never long enough, riders try to make it last as long as possible. However, there are distinct signs that show when it is time to stow the bike.
Unsafe Road Conditions
Colder weather equates colder roads which means less traction for motorcycle tires. Riders need to be fully aware of this when cornering and using speeds that require greater traction. Once the temperature drops below zero, riding risk increases. A cold but snow-less day can be just as dangerous as riding in snow if you are not experienced or prepared. Black ice is a well-known hazard as well as loose materials. Sand trucks will regularly sand and gravel the roads to combat ice. Catching your bike on any of the loose grit can easily throw you off your riding game. When riding close to winter months, be very aware of the road conditions and your own expertise level.
It is one thing to find yourself suddenly caught in a rainstorm. It is quite another to be out when a sudden snowfall hits. Riders, especially those that commute to work for long periods of time or long distances, need to be fully aware of the possible weather changes. Cold crosswinds or sudden snow falls not only put your riding in danger, it can also put you at risk of hypothermia or frostbite if you go off the road and wind up unconscious in the ditch.
You are Simply not Comfortable
While travelling on the open road at highway speeds, you will experience the world at 10 degrees colder than it is. Let’s say it is a sunny 13 degrees outside, once you hit highway speed, it will feel like 3 degrees. Every rider has their own degree of comfort. However, riding is also supposed to be fun. If you are finding that you are cold, uncomfortable or even just worried about sudden weather changes then it might be your sign to retire for the winter.
A good motorcycle rider is a confident one. Confidence comes with good knowledge and experience. If you are unsure about your conditions or skills for the current road conditions, you are putting yourself at risk of an accident.
The correct time to retire your motorcycle for the winter depends on where you live, your experience as a rider and your toleration for the current seasonal changes. A time will come though, when it is time to trade in your leathers for your parka. All is not lost; consider this a good time for a bike tune up to get it ready for the next summer season. When that time comes, the friendly folks at Sadler Insurance would be happy to review your motorcycle insurance to help give you that peace of mind for the season ahead.