Preparing For a Cross-Country Motorcycle Ride

May 08, 2017

With the summer season officially here, there's no better time to ride your motorcycles across the country. The warm temperatures and mild weather offer near-perfect riding conditions. But before you hit the open road, there are a few things you should know.


Luggage Rack


Depending on the length of your trip, you may want to install a luggage rack on your motorcycle. A backpack or satchel can only hold so much gear, at which point you're forced to seek other solutions. Thankfully, motorcycle luggage racks are inexpensive (often costs less than $100), easy to use, and offers tons of extra storage space. Just mount it on your bike and you're good to go!


Prepare for Bad Weather


As the saying goes, hope for the best but prepare for the worst, holds true when riding your motorcycle across the country. Hopefully you'll have sunny weather with clear skies, but in the event that mother nature throws you a curve ball, you should have a backup plan ready. Even short 30-minute summer showers can leave you soaking, ruining an otherwise perfect trip. So, how can you prevent disasters such as this from occurring? Invest in a weatherproof motorcycle riding suit. You don't have to necessary wear it 24/7, but you should have it ready and stored on your bike just in case.


Gear Up


But you'll need more than just a waterproof riding suit when going on a cross-country bike ride. If you plan on being gone for several days, some of the items you'll want to bring include shirts, pants, socks, underwear, boots, cash, a first aid kit, a map, and a tire patch kit. Many riders prefer leather motorcycle suits due to their strength, comfortable and durability. Even if you wear a motorcycle suit, though, you'll still need a change of clothes consisting of the essential “base layers.”


Having a GPS navigation system installed on your motorcycle as part of a Steel Horse Audio® motorcycle speaker system or a standalone system can also prove helpful for cross-country trips. If you don't know the exact route to your destination, or if you're looking for a faster, alternative route, a GPS system can help. With that said, you shouldn't rely solely on GPS to get you to your destination. Map out your route before getting on the road so you'll have a general understanding of which roads to take.


Pre-Trip Motorcycle Checklist


  • Check your motorcycle's tire pressure and tread.
  • Headlights, taillights and turning signals.
  • Horn
  • Brakes and brake fluid
  • Gas
  • Oil

Photo from driver Photographer via Flickr Creative Commons

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