Cold Weather Motorcycle Riding Gear : Heated Gear or Layers?

Cold Weather Motorcycle Riding Gear : Heated Gear or Layers?


This is how we do it.

100's of Thousands of Miles

For over 10 years, we've been traveling the country on motorcycles through every weather condition imaginable. This past week, we took a roadtrip out to Arizona and experienced ice, snow, and bone-chilling winds throughout the journey and figured we'd share our thoughts on some of our favorite gear we've come to love over the years.

By 2LaneLife

There's no bad weather, just bad gear

When it comes to cold days on the road, there's a few ways to go about it. You could run heated gear, cover up in leather, wear a coated coverall suit, rock a combination of those, or just...stay home.  We'd prefer not to stay home, so we've taken the non-heated path over the years, utilizing a variety of materials and techniques. 

The good thing about layering up is every piece of clothing has its own purpose. Is it an insulator? Is it wind and water resistant? Can I wear it over other clothes? These are all questions to consider when packing for a cold weather trip. This past weekend riding through the snow, we considered all of these factors and chose to bring a few of the following:

-Water resistant windbreaker 

-Rain pants

-Water resistant insulated gloves

-Warm denim/leather riding vest

-Insulated coverall suit

-Insulated leather boots

-Long johns and base layer tops

-Neck gaiters and other neck coverings

The coverall suit usually only comes out as we ride into the night under 20 degrees, but it 's certainly nice to have available. We'll usually throw on a comfortable base layer under our clothes, then some thick jeans, a long sleeve shirt and hoodie, and boots, then go from there. If it's in the 40's we'll usually just throw on a leather  or denim vest like the Mulholland riding vest along with some  warm gloves like the Thrashin' mission waterproof gloves or the gauntlet gloves, and hit the road.

If temps are in the 30's or there's a couple hundred miles ahead, we'll throw another warm layer on with a windbreaker and  rain pants along with some sort of neck covering . In our experience, that is more than enough and has kept us comfortable over the years, which in turn makes cold weather riding just as fun and exciting as fair weather days. The rain suit is a great combo to have as if temps aren't too cold, you can throw them on over regular clothes when there is a downpour or use them as stated above.  Something to consider when shopping for riding gear is its versatility.

The cherry on top are the insulated coveralls. We went with Dickies, but there are plenty of other options out there. Just make sure to consider the materials used and whether or not they are insulated. We sized up to fit over a few layers of clothes and to make it a bit easier to throw on fully geared up at a gas stop.

So hey, that's just a tidbit of how we do things. There may be better ways and there sure are worse, but it's worked for us over the years and that's just how we do it.

See you down the road...

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"Shaking hands with America" as we travel the open roads capturing the best views the country has to offer.