As a biker you need to well equipped, especially in the winter. As you go on more and more rides you start to realise what gear you rely on and can’t ride without. If you find yourself ill-prepared for long distant rides in the cold and the pissing rain then you could be hating every second of it. We don’t want that, riding is to be enjoyed every single second! I’ve been riding for about 3 years now and I’m not the most prepared rider by any means, I’m still learning lessons from being ill-prepared!
Here are my top 10 riding essentials, apart from the obvious like a helmet and leathers!
A balaclava was a life saver for me when I was biking around the Scottish Highlands. These things keep your head warm and eliminate drafts. I would still recommend wearing a nice neck warmer along with the balaclava.
These knee-high socks are great for keeping your legs warm. I would still wear a base layer (I usually wear 2) when it’s cold and I also wear regular socks underneath. These socks keep the cold out and add some more comfort when you’re wearing boots.
Second pair of gloves
There is nothing worse than riding in the cold with a soaking pair of gloves. I was caught in a long ride home from Aberdeen to London and it pissed down through the north of England and my hands were so cold I had to stop at every other service station for warmth. Eventually my skin started splitting on my fingers and bleeding. Yeah. Make sure you have a second pair of gloves as a backup, and that doesn’t include the two pairs you’ll probably be wearing at the same time anyway. You can check out the best motorcycle gloves here.
I always keep a battery pack in my tank bag, mainly because I use my phone as a GPS system. I don’t travel without it regardless of the bike. When you’re riding rural roads and places you don’t know, you don’t want to be caught without any battery, any power or any form of communication!
I’ve started to take a hat with me on my rides because I like to look cool and don’t want my helmet hair to ruin that. I usually go for a thick beanie hat or flat cap, better to have one and not need it than need one and not have it.
You see so much more when you’re riding so why not stop and appreciate the moment with a nice photograph. As you can tell, I love doing this and I love showing off my photos on social media (another reason why I need a battery pack). Here’s a nice shot I took on my Fujifilm X-T100 while I was riding around Scotland.
I’ve always used a disc lock and never understood why people still use thick heavy chains that they’ve got to carry around. I have a pretty standard Oxford Disc Lock but I’m looking to get one of those new ones that have built in alarms that go off if anyone touches it. You can check out the best motorbike disc locks here.