People either love motorbike riding in the rain or hate it. It can sometimes be a great experience and a new challenge, or it can completely put a dampener on your journey. Well if you are someone who would rather avoid riding in the rain at all costs, then this guide is for you, helping you to safely ride your motorbike come rain or shine.
Some puddles might look fine and safe to ride over, but really, they could be covering something up much more alarming, like a very large pothole! If you can’t avoid riding through a puddle, take it steady, make sure the bike is up right and don’t touch the brakes whilst you ride.
As parts of the road become worn, they become shinier and with that slippery. Even on dry roads these patches can be dangerous, so please watch out for these patches of road in the rain.
We’d also suggest staying off parts of the road such as painted lines and manhole covers. If you do find yourself going over these in the rain, avoid hard braking or accelerating.
Normally when driving any vehicle, we do a couple of things at a time. In the rain, and especially on a motorbike try to do one thing at a time by separating your actions, whether that be accelerating, changing gear or turning the vehicle. By doing these actions individually you will keep the traction demands of your tyres to a minimum.
If the rain causes you to be stressed whilst driving, then perhaps see if you can wait for the rain to pass. Driving a motorbike by clinging to the handlebars is only going to tyre you out, cause any movement you make to be harder on you and it will also keep your suspension from working as normal. Even in the rain your bike is designed to handle small bumps and movements so trust it to do its job.
Wherever you are going in the rain, make sure you take it easy. Take your time and don’t rush, reduce your speed and leave more space between you and the vehicle in front. Breaking distances need to be larger in the rain, especially when you can’t always count on your tyre traction in the wet weather.
Think of car tyre tracks as paving the way for you to ride. Car’s tyres can push the water out of your way, and you should try and take advantage of that where you can.
It’s great to have waterproof motorbike gear, but remember that in the UK in particular, the rain often makes it more difficult to see as it’s often so grey and dark. Make sure you wear visible waterproof gear so that you can be seen, as well as investing in a hi-vis vest and other reflective accessories to stay safe on the roads.
You can switch to dual-sport helmets and goggles to make sure you avoid fogging face shields completely. Some people even wear clear safety glasses instead of goggles as those glasses fog even less.
Gloves are important to keep your hands warm and to make sure you can grip onto the handlebars, but don’t take them off unless you have to, as they will get cold very quickly.
If you do have to take the gloves off, make sure you take a towel to dry your hands before putting them back in the gloves. You’ll thank us later.
Nowadays we can’t go anywhere without our phones, let alone all the other valuable items we carry around with us. A dry bag will mean that your items are kept dry and safe whilst you travel through the rain, pop a towel in there as well to make sure you stay as dry as possible.
We hope you find these tips helpful, and hopefully next time you see the rain pouring you’ll feel well equipped to tackle the showers and get to where you need to be.