It’s the time of year to layer up. Pre-sunrise departures on the bike can be downright frigid if the overnight low still dips into the thirties. But battling that chill is well worth it to enjoy mid-seventies afternoons. Toting my layers around over the past week reminded me of how dealing with all those extra clothes can require a little strategic planning.
I remember when I first started riding and had smaller saddlebags on my Sportster. I put a third bag on the passenger seat to help me get heavier gloves, clear lenses, sweatshirts, and other gear home after work that I’d needed to wear on the way in. One day I had stopped to gas up and as I did, a motorist on the other side of the pump eyed the loaded bike and asked where I was from.
“Ten miles down the road,” I admitted with a grin. “But I’m a chick and I want to carry a lot of stuff!”
Then a few years later when I had my own office I chose to leave layers at work at the end of the day. Otherwise I’d treat parking lot spectators to the sight of me cramming everything in the bags and sitting on the tops trying to get them to close enough to buckle them shut. On rainy days or when my office started to look like a second hand clothing consignment shop, I’d take my truck to work and cart it all back home in one trip!
Today is Sunday and I have the luxury of waiting until it warms up to head out…which is now. Comfy travels!
It’s real, and thankfully it’s been somewhat alleviated at the moment.
After the hustle and bustle of the holidays, a nasty head/chest cold, and more seasonal temps for winter- it had been a few weeks since I’d been on a bike. This weekend brought a surprisingly mild 50 degree day and although the skies were blue mostly due to a wild looking cloud cover, it was time to get out for a ride to shake off some of this form of PMS.
Even though the day was warmer than usual for January, it was gusty so I headed out with a heated jacket liner on under my leather and a plan to stick to smaller backroads through the woods that would be more protected from the wind.
Apparently the plan worked really well, as I was several miles out before I realized I wasn’t quite as warm as I could be. OOPS! This is the second time the toggle switch for my heated gear has slipped between the tank and my thigh where it’s squished to the off position without my knowing. Happily it’s a quick fix but if I’m going to continue to cheat Mother Nature and extend riding time when it’s cold by using the liner, I’ve got to figure out some solution to rig that up and out of the way!
Of course the sense of euphoria that comes over you as you get going if you haven’t ridden in a while is quite warming also! It’s what causes a satisfied sigh seconds after you’ve reached top gear. Since you don’t meet as many other riders on the road, it’s also what can make you go from a casual nod of the head to acknowledge each other to throwing an arm out in a wave that resembles a goody-goody school kid begging the teacher to call on them too!
And it’s what eases some of the symptoms of Parked Motorcycle Syndrome, for maybe a few days anyway.