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What clothing to wear on a serious winter motorcycle commute

Published on: 20 November 2020

We’ve put this little video together because, after the first Lockdown, we had a lot of customers in the shop who had decided that they wanted to commute into work on a bike, rather than take the train or some other form of public transport. Now many were only going to be riding for 20-30 minutes, but some had decided to ride from the depths of Surrey right into the City or the heart of the West End.

Now no problem with this when the weather is good, but it’s a different matter as we move into the winter. Our fear, which we often expressed as vehemently as we could, was that some of these folk were not taking the prospect of commuting through the winter as seriously as they should. Some were aiming to do the ride on a 125. And some were looking at riding in gear that, frankly, was simply not up to the job.

A commute of this ilk through a British winter is not to be taken lightly. And so we thought we would proffer some advice to all those who, often as a result of the pandemic, had decided that a motorcycle was the answer to their winter transport requirements.

Let me be clear; if you’re a seasoned rider who has been undertaking a long-distance commute like this for years, then this video is probably not for you. You will learn nothing new. But the video is not aimed at motorcyclists like you; we made it for those who are perhaps more recent to this particular adventure.

Before we released it, we showed the video to an external person who we sometimes turn to for help and advice on our videos. His response was that the video was too long. He may be right, but we don’t produce these videos for entertainment. We make them to help riders make better decisions about the gear they need for their riding. There were things we wanted to say; and therefore we were happy for the video to be as long as it needed to be. In our view, this video is perhaps the most important one we have ever produced. Biking is dangerous. The familiarity that comes from doing the same journey day-in-day out makes commuting on a bike even more dangerous. Add in the effects of the cold, the wet and the dark, and you enter a totally different realm.

Here at Motolegends we talk to a lot of long-distance, high-mileage commuters. Sean here can also count himself as a member of this particular group of elite motorcyclists. As a result, we know a lot about how to make the kind of commuting we’re talking about more bearable; and ultimately less dangerous.

If you’re thinking of undertaking a long distance commute this winter, especially if it’s the first time you have ever done so, you should watch this video. Is it too long? I don’t know, but if staying safe on the bike is not worth 30 minutes of your time, then you should really stick with the train. It’s a lot safer!

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