Rain-schmrain! If you’re a die-hard motorcycle rider you don’t let a little bit (or a lot) of the wet stuff deter you from getting your two-wheeled fix. You don’t have to be a tough “biker” type to slog through an unexpected deluge—but it sure does help if you have the right motorcycle gear to start with.
It doesn’t take much to be prepared for a rain storm; you can either gear up with the appropriate motorcycle attire to start with or just tote some rain gear with you in a back pack or motorcycle saddlebag without adding a ton of excess weight or taking up precious space. Below we listed a few items that can help keep you smiling when Mother Nature decides to rain on your parade.
Keep your head Up
Speeding down the highway in an open face helmet or half helmet, at 70mph, in pelting rain is basically the equivalent to using your face as a pin cushion—not fun! Besides providing overall face and head protection in the event of an impact, a full face motorcycle helmet is your best defense against Mother Nature’s furious offence. For decades Shoei has been one of the top names in motorcycle helmets, and for good reason, the company spends a lot of time and money designing and testing to ensure a comfortable, safe, and reliable helmet. Shoei’s Qwest Full Face Helmet is a great all year helmet as it provides plenty of venting in the warmer summer months and has superior sealing around the face shield to help block out wind and rain. In fact, with Shoei’s Quick Release Self Adjusting (QRSA) base plate system swapping between a clear shield or tinted face shield is a quick, easy, and tool-less task. As the shield is pulled to the closed position the spring-loaded base plates evenly suck the shield in tight against the window beading to create a wind and waterproof seal. It’s amazing how much more enjoyable a rainy motorcycle ride can be when you’re not fighting dribbles of water seeping into your helmet. In addition, by blocking wind noise your ears won’t be ringing or muffled once off the bike. Other benefits of the Qwest helmet include five shell sizes to choose from for a perfect fit on just about any head size or shape, a highly durable and lightweight shell construction consisting of fiberglass and organic fibers that help distribute the stresses of impact, and a five year manufacturer’s warranty from purchase date or seven year manufacturer’s warranty from helmet manufacture date, whichever comes first.
Skirt the Issue
Most of the time when you combine the words “men and skirts” in the same sentence people tend to get a little up tight, but in this instance the situation is quite different. The Schampa Helmet Skirt is like a piece of heat shrink tube for your helmet/neck, just a lot less constricting. Actually the helmet skirt isn’t constricting at all, but it does an excellent job of making a protective seal around your neck. Basically this skirt attaches to your helmet via a Velcro strip that you stick to the bottom of your helmet. Then you simply attach the skirt and it will cover the exposed area between the bottom of the helmet and the top of your jacket. With the helmet skirt in place you don’t have to worry about water dripping off your helmet or jacket collar and into your chest area. Not only will it block the rain but it will protect you from wind chill and works better than sunscreen at keeping your neck area from getting sun burned.
Remember when you were a kid and you couldn’t wait to jump into your favorite onsie pajamas before bedtime? Think of the Tour Master Centurion One-Piece Suit as an adult version of the onsie—minus the butt flap and slippery feet. When it comes snow, rain, heavy wind, or grimy road conditions this one-piece riding suit is like a layer of armor (just way more comfortable and flexible) that will keep you looking fresh as a daisy once you peel it off at the end or your motorcycle ride. Speaking of armor, this suit is loaded to the hilt with CE approved armor in all the critical areas like the elbows, knees, shoulders, and back, but you won’t need to carry around a can of oil like the tin man in order to move around because it features accordion style stretch material in the back, knees and waist to allow for easy movement. Comprised of a 600 denier Carbolex shell and featuring 1680 denier ballistic polyester paneling the Centurion suit defeats the rain with its Rainguard barrier. The barrier blocks water while also providing breathability so you won’t feel like a wrinkled old man in a steam room. If you find yourself riding through one of those sporadic Florida summer downpours, the suit has waterproof venting in the chest as well as a myriad of other vents throughout. If you don’t have one of the aforementioned helmet skirts, no worries as this riding suit features a hidden Aqua-Barrier hood tucked inside the collar that you can pull over your head before putting a helmet on. Available in stealth black or a mix of Gunmetal and Silver, the best thing about this one-piece motorcycle suit is that it has a heavy-duty main zipper that runs from the collar to the knee, so you don’t have to be a yoga master to slip into it.
If the thought of stuffing yourself into a one-piece riding suit makes you feel claustrophobic then a separate jacket and riding pants will be more up your alley. The Telluride Hi-Viz Waterproof Textile Jacket from AGV Sport is a great motorcycle jacket that will help keep your core dry when the wet stuff starts falling. Made of multi-layer Dura Guard textile material this riding jacket is windproof and waterproof thanks to a breathable Reissa membrane between the outer layer and liner. Specifically built for the long haul this AGV Sport motorcycle jacket features pre-curved arms, CE-approved armor, a ton of pockets, and adjustable Velcro at the waist, collar and cuffs for a fine-tuned fit. Best of all, when the dark clouds set in, the hi-viz yellow coloring and reflective piping will make it easier for others on the road to see you.
Many people are familiar Joe Rocket because of its great quality motorcycling gear like the Alter Ego 2.0 Pant. With a removable 100-percent waterproof liner these pants will keep you dry in a storm, yet are very versatile and ideal for just about any type of weather conditions. For those times when the temperatures begin to pick up the riding pants have a zippered, U-shaped panel that runs from the sides of the mid-thigh and up over the top of the seat area. Behind the removable panel is a large swath of FreeAir mesh that allows for massive ventilation. What most riders like about these pants is that they are offered in Small-3XL size ranges in Short, Regular, and Tall versions.
Keep it Simple
For those that like to just keep a simple set of rain gear handy in case of a weather emergency, the Tour Master Defender Two-Piece Rain Suit is what you need. Easy to compress and roll up, this motorcycle rain suit combo can be tucked away in a saddlebag without disrupting the weight and balance of the bike or taking up valuable storage space. Then when the skies unleash a fury of rain, you can simply slip the pants and jacket over your existing riding gear. Constructed of a lightweight, waterproof, polyurethane backed nylon shell this rain gear won’t wear you down because of excessive weight. The polyester mesh lining provides a breathable barrier between you and the shell so you won’t end up sweating up your own storm inside the gear. With the knowledge of how annoying it can be when the waist of your pants slip down or the legs fly up while riding, Tour Master eliminated those issue by providing removable suspenders for the waist and elastic stirrups at the leg cuffs. Offered in a combination with black and your choice of blue, red, silver, or yellow and available in size XS-4XL this motorcycle rain gear will appeal to many riders.
Get a Grip
Wet, soggy hands are miserable on a long motorcycle ride; and if it’s a really cold rain the addition of wind chill can really exacerbate the suffering. A good set of waterproof motorcycle gloves like the Icon Patrol Waterproof Glove will keep your digits happy even in a torrential downpour. This glove is a great choice for cold and wet riding conditions because the gauntlet cuff and adjustable wrist strap will give you extra protection from rain and wind. The waterproof textile exterior shell on the top is highly durable and tough against abrasion while the leather goat skin palm area makes it easy to grip handlebars and manipulate controls. Combat ready, the reinforced knuckle armor on these motorcycle gloves will help keep your bones intact and the clear rubber windshield wiper attached to the side of the index finger on the clutch hand allows you to clear away water drops from your helmet face shield, motorcycle goggles, and even glasses.
If your “waterproof” motorcycle boots aren’t doing their job then something like these Frogg Leggs Boot Covers from Frogg Toggs are a simple way to fix that problem. Made from durable, waterproof 600 denier rubberized nylon, you can easily slip these cover over your motorcycle boots and with their 17-inch high leggings you could basically roll or wade your way through a small creek or flooded street and not have to worry about getting your feet soaked. A draw cord at the top of the calf area helps block water while adjustable ankle and arch straps ensure the boot covers stay tight and secure. You’ll be sure to maintain solid footing on your motorcycle pegs and on the ground with the high-traction rubber sole. And with the boot covers being so easy to fold up and store they’ll fit perfectly in your saddlebag with your Tour Master Rain Suit.
In the Bag
No matter what type of riding you do, a motorcycle tank bag is an invaluable asset to have along for the ride. Available in a magnetic-mount style or strap-mount style the Mototrek 7 Tank Bag from MotoCentric provides plenty of storage for essentials like your cell phone, wallet, keys, and point and shoot camera. If you’re an old school type who still likes to navigate their way like a pirate, the top portion has a removable, waterproof, see-through vinyl map pocket that will keep your paper maps dry. Or you could stuff your smart phone in the map pocket and go by its GPS maps. The large main compartment is big enough to carry an extra pair of gloves, sunglasses, sunscreen, and more. And to help keep your items in place and easy to get to, the main flap features an organizer. With seven liters of total storage capacity this piece of motorcycle luggage can handle quite a bit of gear. One of the greatest things about this tank bag is no matter if you use the magnetic or mounting strap version you can easily remove the bag and take it with you at gas stops, lunch breaks, or whenever—ensuring your valuables will always be with you and you won’t have to worry about leaving them in the bike. If you should encounter rain on your trip, this motorcycle bag comes with a rain cover that stows inside and can easily be pulled out and slipped over the bag when the need arises.
Riding a motorcycle should be a very fun and relaxing experience; and one you shouldn’t let get ruined by something like a little rain. With the proper riding gear and motorcycle accessories you can motor through a light drizzle or barrage of rain without ending up looking like a drowned rat at the end of your ride.