Riding is a really fun activity. Along with the fun, also comes the responsibility for one self and for others. Unlike other travel options, bike riding has its own advantages and challenges. The liberty and freedom in unmatched when comparing with any other travel option. Preparing for a ride is pretty important. Anything less than 500km would not need a serious preparation, still need some basics taken care. This is to make sure, we do not waste time while on short rides, take care of our safety and others around. Here is a list for reference, feel free to let me know if we need to add anything more.
- Personal safety:
- Helmet. Not just on rides, even otherwise helmet is pretty important for riders. On long rides, it is the must for pillions as well. Just having an helmet is not enough, it has to be of a good quality and has to be buckled up all the time. Here is an incident that happened few years back just firming up my beief, https://www.haringo.com/2014/12/wearing-helmet-buckle-up-please.html
- Riding gear: The only purpose of it is to make sure you are up and can take care of yourself in case of an eventuality. Basic starts with a tough jean and a glove. Even a basic glove is good enough as we get our palm to support intuitively. To have it padded or protected will give us the confidence to use it without fear. A shoe that can protect your feet. Hard one will be preferred. These three I would say is the basics for rider and also for pillions. If you want added protection, a basic ankle and knee guard will cover all the initial impact points. Level up will be riding shoes, riding pants and jacket, which gives you protection in case you had to slide.
- (Optional) This is for solo rides. Share an option to track you down in case you do not contact for a specific period of time. I would usually leave my google login, so that my mobile can be tracked without activating real-time share which will drain the battery.
- Make sure the bike is in a good riding condition. Brakes working properly.
- Side mirror is a must for highway riding. Even on a straight road you will need eyes all around you. Side mirrors add a couple.
- Chain has to be cleaned and lubricated if possible
- Ropes (Depending on the ride and luggage)
- Mobile holder (Optional)
- Plan for wet condition. Always carry enough covers to protect your dry cloths and electronic gadgets. You may never know when this will come handy.
- Always carry a small knife and two sources of fire (Matches and lighter)
- Always travel light. Try to fit in everything in a single bag. An additional bag or cover that you will need when you are on and off your bike (Optional)
- Always have water with you. At least 500 ml all the time. This is for drinking, cleaning, first-aid etc.
- Carry some snacks with you, compact. I would suggest groundnut burfi as it will take care of your protein, carb and sugar needs. There are days I cover distance just snacking on these burfies and settle for a good dinner when sun is down.
- If you are planning to get lost, carry a compass with you.
- Have a checklist prepared
- Make sure you have everything in the checklist
- Download and keep offline map of the places you are planning to visit and if possible, the whole route.
- I usually lay down everything on the floor before I start to pack. I also take a picture, tat way I also know what went in and possibly which bag.
Riding is not everyone’s cup of coffee, but still it is not a bad idea to try that coffee and decide if it is yours or not. This blog should help you get prepared if you are planning to venture out and try it for yourself alone or as a group.
Be responsible on the road and have fun riding!
If you are interested reading, click here to read my first first solo ride covering Coimbatore - Coonor - Valparai - Athirapally and back to Coimbatore. This is an unplanned ride.