I love to ride in the dark. I love the silent road to echo with my BULLs Roar. But not as easy. I have heard people saying be careful during Night Motorcycle Ride, you may not be visible to others. Anything may come from any direction and you may not be able to see them. Even Pro-riders are claiming such things. Still love for night rides never goes down.
So the question is How to ensure a safe Night Ride? What are factors that affect Night Motorcycle Ride?
Dawn and Dusk are the most scenic time to ride and Dusk and dawn are the most difficult times to drive as your eyes are constantly adjusting to the changing light conditions.
Challenge with Darkness during Night Motorcycle Ride
Planning ahead is very important for riding. During night rides this become difficult and spotting hazards and judging corners becomes a challenge. Making matters worse, night-time brings additional hazards for the motorcyclist: drunk drivers, animals in the road and decreased temperatures. After the sun goes down, many rural routes also become nearly abandoned, meaning help from a passing motorist becomes even less likely. If you’re heading out into the night, you need to keep all those factors in mind. Here’s what you can do to make sure you stay safe.
Increase Your Vision To increase your vision, make sure your headlights are properly adjusted. You may like to install flash lights and into your bikes. This may cost anything between Rs. 1500 to Rs. 4000 (may be more depending upon your choice) Once you install it. Go the dark road and test it before your actual ride. Adjust lights as per the need. You must be able to see the corners clearly. Your low beam and high beams are working perfectly fine. alternate between high and low beam. Low should illuminate the area between your bike and the wall, high should hit the wall from the ground up. If you are not satisfied, then you must readjust it till the time you are satisfied. It sounds obvious, but make sure you’re keeping your headlight lens clean and free of moisture or other occlusions. A little dirt, dust or condensation can have a major impact on the efficacy of your headlight. You should also check to ensure your headlight bulbs are relatively new. They grow dimmer as they age. As a rule of thumb, replace yours every year or so, if you’re riding regularly. Use anti glare glasses and visors for better visibility and to avoid the glare from oncoming traffic.
If you have a projector-type headlight, you can perform an HID conversion relatively easily, but you will need some knowledge of working with electrics. Consult an owner’s forum for model-specific reviews and recommendations.
Make sure your brake lights are working fine. You may wish to some flashing lights with breaks and you may like to install a helmet light.
Handling Challenges for Night Ride
Many ruthless four wheel drivers drive with high beam on. They are biggest challenge. Would recommend to focus your vision on the white line painted on the road’s right to avoid being dazzled. It tracks the path of the roadway, so you’ll be able to follow the corners and track the line. The headlights of other vehicles aren’t just a distraction though. Following another vehicle? Look ahead into the area illuminated by its headlights to see further ahead. You can also look out for approaching vehicles; their headlamps will make them apparent much earlier than during the day time. They can also silhouette potential obstacles and hazards, allowing you to identify and react to them sooner.
You may also wish to consider anti glare glasses for Night Motorcycle Ride. They are very helpful for Night Motorcycle Ride.
Always be on the lookout for drivers behaving in an unpredictable manner and give them plenty of room. And, always keep them in front of you; you can control your special relationship with another vehicle if it’s in the front, not if it’s in the rear. Be careful at red signals as many drivers/riders do not follow the red signals this makes the Night Motorcycle Rides very dangerous. Animals are even less predictable than drunk drivers. They can leap from brush at the roadside at the last second, giving you no time to take evasive maneuvers. On a bike, even an animal the size of a raccoon or possum can cause you to crash, while deer and moose can be fatal. The trick here is to be aware of what animals are prevalent in your area, become familiar with the places you can expect to encounter them, then be on watch for them. Slow down, it’s the best way to ride safer.
In mountainous areas or even out in the desert, you can expect night-time temperatures to dip deeply below daytime temperatures. Ride somewhere during the day and you may be sweating, while at that same place at night, you could literally be freezing. In 50-degree temperatures, a 55 mph wind blast will make it feel like it’s 25 degrees out. Check weather forecasts and prepare accordingly. A pair of silk glove liners, a balaclava and a windproof jacket liner stashed in a bag, pocket or under a seat can be a huge help.
With the road less populated, you should also prepare to fix any common mechanical problems yourself. Attach a small LED flashlight fitted with a lithium battery to your key chain or stick one in your toolkit. Quality lithium batteries have a 10-year shelf life and provide more illumination while LED lights require no bulb replacement and are more rugged. Because you’ll have a harder time spotting debris, your chances of a puncturing a tire increase. If you have tubed tires, install Slime in them right now, it’ll help prevent punctures. Since most of the Indian bikes doesn’t have tubeless tyre so either you learn to mount and unmount the tyre or just pray to god that your tyre doesn’t get punctured. I have noticed that many tyre repair guys phone numbers are mentioned on their shops. You may call them. For sure they will charge more but I believe that is better than towing your bike. You may also like to consider 24/7 helpline service, so keep their numbers handy with you.
For purposes of not getting mown-down by any heavy vehicle it is advisable that you must have park your bike at the safe corner with Parking lights on.
FEW MORE TIPS and THINGS TO CARRY for Night Motorcycle Ride:
• Ride a bright colour motorcycle
• Wear Helmet with some reflectors
• Install flashing lights at the rear of your bikes
• Use helmet lights
• Wear High visibility safety gear
• Stay out of blind spots
• Check your brake lights
• HORN OK PLEASE
I hope this information will help you for your next night Night Motorcycle Ride.
Keep Riding! Keep Inspiring!
Compiled by Varun Singh Dewal, Admin, Road Thrill Hyderabad