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Planning for a Motorcycle Road Trip

As summer draws near, enthusiasm builds around summer travel. People all over the country plan car trips, plane trips, and train trips to visit loved ones and enjoy vacations. In fact, 80% of travelers (206 million Americans) are planning road trips this summer. This includes motorcyclists who may be venturing out on their first motorcycle road trips.

Your Motorcycle Road Trip Checklist

As with any other road trip, it's important for motorcyclists to pack appropriately for their travels and plan their motorcycle routes accordingly. Because motorcyclists face a few extra risks while traveling, safety must be a top priority. Road trip safety for a motorcyclist requires proper safety gear, such as helmets and protective clothing. On top of that, motorcyclists should take a few other steps before they hit the road.

Whether you are a seasoned motorcyclist or you're a novice on the bike, you should keep in mind some important safety measures if you are taking a motorcycle road trip this year. From the right attire to care of the bike itself, it's important to be prepared for not only fun but the possibility of an emergency. When it comes to owning and riding a motorcycle, safety and preparation are key to success.

A Motorcycle Road Trip Checklist for Motorcyclists in the U.S.

When you prepare for a road trip in a regular vehicle, all you really need to do is pack clothes, snacks, and water, and ensure that you have plenty of fuel. Other than standard maintenance checks, regular road trips by passenger vehicle are pretty simple. Motorcycle trips, however, require a bit more planning and preparation.

Want to make sure you have everything in order for your motorcycle trip this summer? Here is a motorcycle road trip checklist for your next (or first) adventure:

1. Perform a maintenance check.

The first thing you should do before heading out is make sure that your motorcycle is in good condition and that everything works as it should. The last thing you want to experience on a road trip is a flat due to a faulty tire or another issue that can cause a crash. Here are a few common maintenance problems to watch for in order to prevent accidents. Also, you should keep a motorcycle tool kit in your bike's storage compartment in case you need to make a repair or two.

2. Take a practice ride.

If this road trip is your first time riding your bike for a stretch, try a few practice runs to get into a proper rhythm. If you have only ever ridden your motorcycle for two hours at a time, the six-hour road trip you have coming up may feel impossible when you are actually navigating it. Prepare yourself by getting a feel for longer rides to gauge whether a certain distance or time will work for you.

3. Consider a high-quality windshield.

You may enjoy the feeling of the open road, but spending hours riding at speeds of 60 and 70 mph with the wind in your face may cause early fatigue. A good windshield ensures that you will not have to constantly fight the wind. This will help you save your energy so that you can last the whole trip.

4. Wear the right gear.

You should wear a full-face helmet to protect yourself from injury or bad weather, though it's not required in every state (note that some states, such as Georgia and Tennessee, require motorcycle helmets for all riders). Also, consider wearing long sleeves, pants, and gloves that adequately protect your body from the elements or mitigate potential injuries. As you've probably noticed, motorcycles can also make a lot of noise, so it's important to wear earplugs to protect your ears as well.

5. Pack a portable GPS.

If this is your first long road trip on the bike, stick to your planned route with a reliable GPS system or a paper map in case the battery runs out on your device. You'll want to avoid getting lost in order to conserve fuel and make it to your stopping points as planned. This is especially important if you are planning a longer trip such as a cross-country adventure.

Motorcycle road trips can be exhilarating, but motorcyclists are more vulnerable on the road than standard vehicle drivers. That's why it's so important for motorcyclists to ensure they have everything they may need for a road trip and be prepared to manage the risks of the road. If you've been in a motorcycle accident and need the help of an experienced motorcycle injury lawyer, contact Steelhorse Law now.

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