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You Know What YOU Should Do? …Shut The Hell Up.

This morning I saw an article on Ultimate Motorcycling by Ron Lieback. It was called 7 Tips for Winter Motorcycle Riding. I shared it on my Facebook page. As the morning rolled on I saw the same article shared on other motorcycle-related pages as well. Being the curious type, I clicked through and read some of the comments people were leaving on the different pages.

One of the common sentiments that some commenters responded with was along the lines of you should just drive a car.

Really?

Thank GOD you’re here because that thought NEVER would have crossed anyones mind. A car? What a great idea.

News Flash:
Some people WANT to ride their motorcycles all year round.

Yes, their level of success and tolerance is varied based on many things, which are personal to them. But the idea that all motorcyclists who experience winter conditions should do any one thing is just ridiculous.

You Know What You Should Do?

Very seldom has that phrase been uttered to me followed by something that I actually wanted to do. I really think what people mean is you know what I would do? And that’s fine. They should just go ahead and do that.

Offering suggestions or tips on ways you’ve succeeded at doing something is one thing – but the minute someone gets preachy with their information or takes a tact like they know what’s best for someone else it bugs the crap outta me. Even if what they mean is you might like x, y or z ~ the way they say it is just as important as what they’re saying. Some “experts” are freakin’ annoying.

I’m looking forward to continuing my riding through the winter. Again.

a dusting of snow and KTMs

Comments

OG
Reply

Um, Ural! That is the answer to all winter riding concerns :D

dom
Reply

Well, I like the answer you propose, or you could also say…..sorry that you’ve not the gumption or intestinal fortitude to ride year round, my condolences….return to your cage now.

There’s other phrases as well but am trying to keep this thread rated G. :)

Adrian
Reply

You rock. Plain and simple.

bob b
Reply

I’m riding my ’74 Vespa to work these days cuz my K100RT/EML rig is down for repairs. I sure do miss being able to tuck in behind my rigs large fairing and turn the heated grips on high, with my hands shielded inside ATV gauntlets. So far, the lowest temp on my Vespa has been 22f. I’ve ridden when my unheated garage was at -2f.

I did not read Lieback’s article; after over 30 years of year round riding, including all but 3 Midnight Runs since 1976, I know what gear works for me, and how to prep my various bikes.

That being said, I WILL NOT take my sidecar rig out when it’s snowing or the roads have ice and snow on them. There is not enough weight on the wide car tires my EML rig uses, and it becomes unsteerable and unstoppable. A bad combination. I once spun my rig backwards on ice and flipped it onto it’s side into a snowbank. Other than snow down my neck from getting ejected into the snowbank, I pushed the rig off me, remounted and rode away, albeit it at a reduced pace. Lesson learned. Bob B

SniperSmitty
Reply

Very well said. I cannot count the number of times people have said to me… “You ride that thing in the rain!?!” Or “Don’t you get cold?” I say yes I do, but my motorcycle is my religion. Do you go to church when it rains? Freaking cagers

Sandi
Reply

There are plenty of reasons to ride all year. Some people don’t have a car and rely on motorcycles as their only form of transportation. Some people do it for fun, like those crazy polar bear club people. For me, if it’s 50 degrees, sunny and the roads are dry, it’s good enough for me. I get too much joy from riding to lock my baby in a garage for three months.

Doug Just Doug
Reply

In my experience, many riders who respond like that are insecure in their unwillingness to ride in hot/cold/wet weather. Even though I’m stupid enough to ride in certain conditions, I don’t think any less of someone who doesn’t, so I respect someone who simply says “Riding in those conditions doesn’t so sound like fun to me” or “I’m strictly a fair-weather rider.”

Shybiker
Reply

I survived three Winters on Long Island without even owning a car, so it’s possible — and fun — to ride in the cold. I recently bought my Abarth principally for work (not enough luggage-space to carry boxes of trial documents) and still plan to ride my bikes throughout the year. Anyone who doesn’t share my outlook can watch me from their car as I speed by with a smile on my face.

Kristy M. Lopez
Reply

Good for you! I, too, get quite annoyed at what others think I should do on my bike! The “motorcycles are dangerous” and “you could get yourself killed” and “don’t you want to see your kids grow up” comments really get old…an on my nerves! I ride because I want to. I ride because I find it enjoyable. I ride because it’s MY right to do what I want! Now, I don’t ride in the winter as much as others do (especially those on the East Coast). I live in SoCal and am pretty spoiled when it comes to the weather, but I encourage you, and all riders, to ride when YOU want, where YOU want, and how YOU want! Now, maybe if I had some of the heating gear, I might just go out in the cold a bit more often. Then again, cold for me is anything below 50 :). BTW – you have motivated me to ride the scenic route a bit more often and take a few more pictures than I have before. I used to just right to commute. That’s not an option now, so I ride more for pleasure…which I absolutely L-O-V-E!

Fuzzygalore
Reply

Hi Kristy :D

50 is still cool, susceptible to a windchill factor. Heated gear… it opens a whole other avenue of possibility.

I’m so glad to hear you’re out riding just for riding sake. The world is such a big, beautiful place – seeing it from the seat of your bike?… <3

Novos
Reply

I’m going to try and NOT fracture my wrist this year when I point the Husky into a snowed fire road in the mountains :)

rmachida
Reply

The vocal critics will probably always be vocal. They’d actually have to stop talking to hear any response….

John A. Stockman
Reply

I live in Washington state and whether on two wheels or three w/my Ural Tourist, I’ve ridden all year ’round. I can’t count the times I was admonished about “aren’t you cold?”, “don’t you know it’s raining/hailing/snowing?” No, I’m blind and dumb and didn’t see or feel the weather. Idiot-sticks. You get the right gear for the conditions & task at hand, keep your skills sharp by practicing at least once a month in an empty parking lot somewhere AND take advantage of the plethora of training courses that are all over. That way, you know the skills you’re practicing in that parking lot are going to help and improve your abilities…not just those poseurs who tell me, “I don’t need training, I’ve been riding for 10/15/20 years…” Yeah, the old saying applies that you don’t have 20 years of experience, you have one year of inadequate experience repeated year after year. They have learned nothing because they’re unwilling to put their ego aside and realize there are things you can learn that will enhance your motorcycling experience and keep you aware, which reduces your risk. And I have a physical disability that has destroyed all the cartilage in every joint. You can imagine what family, friends and doctors say about me, a handicapped guy riding a motorcycle!? “Don’t you know motorcycles MAKE people handicapped?” NO, really? Never occurred to me. I was never able to enjoy any form of physical freedom, but motorcycling allowed me to experience that feeling of freedom of movement; in a way that could never have been possible w/o my motorcycles. Ride, ride, ride and repeat!

Steve Williams
Reply

Riding in the winter is just plain craziness. Absolutely nuts. Or worse. It’s so cold and so completely sucks the life out of you that people who ride in the winter are like those crazy mountain climbers. Don’t do it. Once the temperature drops below 75F you should park your bike and let it sit until the thermometer is consistently in the 80s.

Really.

Winter riding. Humbug.

On a related note I just put the snow tires on the Vespa…

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