Autumn is perhaps the best season for motorcycle riding. Many riders cherish this time of year, since the shortening days remind us winter is fast approaching. And that includes taking in the magnificent show of bright fall colors that turn every tree-lined road into a scenic drive. But as motorcycle riders, we need to remember that within the beauty of nature’s fall extravaganza, there are hazards unique to the season.
All those multicolored leaves on the trees eventually turn brown and fall to the ground. Heavy rainstorms quickly bring down lots of leaves and leave them wet for days. Those wet leaves can be as slick as oil on the road and can significantly reduce your motorcycle’s traction. Be particularly aware when:
Dry leaves are also a concern. When they’re on the road, they can conceal surface hazards like:
Piles of leaves alongside the road can also conceal hazards like:
Motorcycle riders aren’t the only ones out enjoying the fall foliage. You should expect to encounter other drivers who may be distracted by the colorful leaves. Keep an eye out for leaf-looking drivers in front and behind you, as well as in oncoming traffic. Here are some common signs:
Enjoy these wonderful crisp days of autumn and the beauty of fall by being an alert motorcycle rider.
Till next time, ride safe!
Road surface hazards are lurking out there throughout the year. Here are more articles on how to deal with some of them:
Four winter surface hazards to avoid on your motorcycle
Why you need to keep road salt off your motorcycle