Thinking of buying a bike and taking up motorcycling? A word from the wise, it’s not anything like you expect. In some ways, the thrill is greater – but there are a lot of hidden disadvantages too. So that you can thoroughly prepare yourself, here are the four things no biker will ever tell you.
There are road obstacles you never knew existed
Being able to weave around traffic is a huge advantage. But not everything on the road is set up for motorcyclists – why should it? We’re only 1% of road users. Speed bumps should be an obvious one, but there are other obstacles that reveal themselves in wet weather. When motorcycling, manholes are slippery death traps that you’ll learn to avoid. Similar are tar snakes, which are much less easy to manoeuvre around. These are cracks that have filled with tar and become slippery in wet weather. Even paint from road markings can become like black ice in the wet.
Weather determines everything
Extreme temperatures are hell when riding. The wind chill can really get to you in the cold. You’re always best off carrying thermal clothes around with you in a backpack so that you can make a quick change if the weather changes for the worst. Waterproof materials such as Gore-tex meanwhile can be worth investing in for the rain.
As for heat, if you want to stay cool but safe, vented clothes are worth looking into when motorcycling. The temptation may be to ride around in your t-shirt and shorts, and whilst this is legal, you’ll immediately feel more vulnerable once that bare skin is on show – a fall could rip your limbs to shreds. Sometimes it’s better to be uncomfortable but safe.You’ll learn to hate bugs even more
When bugs hit you, they feel like bullets. Having a visor is highly recommended. Sites such as http://www.bikersbasics.com/motorcycle-helmet-reviews/ can point you in the right direction when it comes to finding a good lid with a visor. Goggles will protect your eyes, but they won’t stop bugs entering your mouth. Even with a visor, the odd bug will still occasionally find a way into the inside of your helmet and you’ll have no choice to pull over – especially if it’s a bee.
Some aspects of motorcycle culture are great, other aren’t
When taking up riding, it can often feel like you’ve become part of a large family. There are of course biker gangs and hotspots. Other riders will always share their experiences with you and you’ll feel like part of a secret society. However, there are those snobs that you get in every walk of life.
They’re usually older guys that grimace at you when you tell them your bike is Japanese. Also, all other road users hate you. It certainly feels that way, as if you’re trespassing onto their domain with your two wheeled abomination. Some road users are more courteous than others and will give you more room. Fortunately, the pros and cons balance each other out.