I’ve got a 50 mile round trip, 6 day a week commute to my coffee shop. Colder weather can be a challenge since I’d rather ride my motorcycle than drive my old Ford pickup. But in Arkansas, it is possible to experience all four seasons in one day so I thought I would share some of my strategies to keep riding even as the temperature dips.
I leave my house at the coldest part of the morning – 6am right before sunrise. On top of that, I leave work at 3pm – the warmest part of the day. This means if I actually want to enjoy my ride without numbing cold on the ride in or sweating on the way home, I’ve got to think through my gear. And while there are seemingly an endless assortment of options of cold weather motorcycle gear, I try to keep it as simple as possible since I’m simply commuting not going on an Alaskan expedition.
A simple pair of coveralls work, but for the ride home, I need to pack at least a an armored jacket and a base layer. Furthermore, I’ve found coveralls to be to cumbersome on a motorcycle and leave me feeling like the kid from A Christmas Story.
I start with a base layer. For pants, I want something I can wear all day without overheating. These have worked better than a simple pair of long-johns primarily because of their moisture wicking properties.
For a top, I wear a this one that has a 1/4 zip mock turtle neck.
Ugly Bros riding pants and whatever shirt I’m wearing to work that day goes on over this.
Even with all this on I do not fell cumbersome and I have freedom of movement in all my extremities. Once I get to work, it is a simple process of removing my jacket, hoodie, soft shell pants, and top base layer (sounds like a lot, but the jacket and hoodie would come off anyway). Everything I don’t need for the ride home packs up easily in my backpack.
With all this in mind, we are curious if you keep riding as the days get colder or store your bike for the winter? If you keep riding, what gear do you choose?