Advice for Cold Weather Riding

I’ve been experimenting with cold weather riding and thought I’d pass on what I’ve learned to stay as comfortable in the 20’s as I am in the 70’s.

Cold!

I wear a Gerbing electric jacket liner. I recommend a liner instead of the vest as it will keep the arms warm too. I also have Gerbing electric gloves which hook into the jacket liner. Be sure to get the optional thermostat so as the temperature changes you can adjust the heat.

In temperatures below 50 degrees, I wear thermal long underwear, jeans and leather chaps.

A neck warmer is real nice and you can get one inexpensively here:

http://www.jcwhitney.com/Motorcycle-Neck-Warmers-Balaclava/600013764.jcw

Last Saturday, I rode 100 miles on the interstate with the temperature at 28 degrees and was very comfortable.

Stopping is a bit of an art though. The heated vest will keep the capillaries on the surface expanded, and you can get cold VERY quickly when you stop. If it’s a gas and go stop taking under about 4 minutes at the pump, no problem.

But if you decide to take a rest break, I recommend getting inside before the gear coolss down and taking off the jacket which will still be cold. Otherwise you end up cold and shivering which takes a whole bunch of energy. This means gassing after eating instead of before.

Avoid smoking and caffeine as they reduce the ability to withstand cold.Ask for a cup of hot water which will warm you inside. I avoid riding when there is frost on windshields as many people won't clean them properly. I power the electric gear from a large (110 AH) marine battery which I keep under my seat. This will give about 10 hours of heating time. Visor fogging is a problem. I just open it a crack when I'm going slow. Also if I sense a cough or a sneeze coming on when at speed. Oh, I forgot to say I wear a full face helmet.

Leave a Reply