Motorbike roadtrip guide for beginners
When you are looking to travel, one of the most repeated advice you will get is to travel light. Traveling light becomes even more important when you decide to travel on a motorcycle. How do you decide what to take with you and what to leave behind? This checklist should assist you in making an informed decision.
If you are traveling to the northern areas of Pakistan, riding on a motorcycle is much easier than using buses and trains. You should brace yourself for blistering winds and extremely low temperature. It is advised to make sure you keep yourself warm. Most of the items included in this list are listed keeping in mind motorbike riders are more prone to accidents and harsh weather than those driving cars.
Comfort over style
Your clothes should be comfortable more than stylish. Some of the essential clothing items are gloves, socks, jackets and undershirts. It is very important that your entire attire is focused on keeping you warm and comfortable. You will most likely be traveling in the same attire for long hours and changing clothes frequently is not a viable option.
1- Reflective gear
Reflective gear will always keep you safe as a motorcyclist. Given the temperatures in Pakistan, motorcyclists travelling to the North will prefer to avoid sunlight unless they have reached higher altitude. Therefore, its is absolutely necessary to have reflective equipment so that you don’t always rely on headlamps or taillights.
2- Rainwear and water resistant equipment
Rainfall is generally not the primary concern when you are traveling via car unless it’s combined with poor road conditions.
Traveling on a motorcycle is different. Your bike is designed to endure rain but you need to make sure that everything you have on you is not damaged by water. So the jackets and trousers need to be comfortable, warm and water resistant. Whatever little luggage you have should also be wrapped in some form of water resistant fabric. Usually water resistant fabric is coated with rubber or polyvinyl chloride which is commonly known as ‘PVC’. Wet clothes are a heavy burden for you while traveling. Therefore, it is important to take relevant measures.
3- The right rope
Some of the best all purpose rope that is useful is nylon rope, although the stretch is not always needed, it is extremely strong and has a high melting point. It is also an insulator when it is dry. However, it is important to know that after water resistance, the properties of electrical resistance are altered. Other than water entrapment, dirt and other contaminants can also affect dielectric properties of nylon. It is one of the best shock absorbing materials as it is flexible. If you are skilled at tying knots, it is extremely helpful to have a flexible rope that is easy to carry. However, non-stretchable rope is advisable in some situations. Polyester rope is one of the most common non-stretchable ropes. Your choice will depend on what is suitable for your case. You can keep both types of ropes as they are equally useful or make a choice based on need if space is limited.
The most important thing that you need is a first-aid kit that includes antiseptic wipes, bandages, and other medical supplies, in the case of an emergency. A first aid kit is a must have, whether the mode of transportation is motorcycle or not. It is important to keep a compass handy. Even though times have changed and we are not usually relying on compasses for directions but in places that are not densely populated, a compass can be a good source of directional guidance. Keep a durable flashlight along with extra batteries. A flashlight can assist you in countless ways. If your headlamp stops working, which is quite possible, you can tape your flashlight to near your headlamp and have some form of vision rather than having nothing at all. It is also a useful component to make sure you are seen by oncoming traffic. Low temperatures are notorious for rendering lighters useless and therefore matches are more reliable. However, matches are not waterproof and it is necessary you keep the matchbox away from water. If you hold a lighter in your hand for ten minutes and warm the lighter up, it might work. The idea is that butane is a gas at room temperature but if it is extremely cold, it will not effectively vaporize to sustain the flame. Keep a multi-tool kit in your luggage, it takes very little space and has numerous uses. It will assist you in case your bike breaks down. Duct tape can solve most of your problems and is extremely helpful in a variety of situations.
5- Exclusively for motorcycle
Remember to pack a compressor pump with you, in case you need to deal with a flat tyre. Along with the pump, it is advisable to keep spare tube(s)l. Moreover, keep a patch kit for emergency situations. Keep a good lock/security system for your motorcycle so that you can leave your motorcycle unattended if the need arises. Keep a motorcycle cover that is waterproof and durable but it should be lightweight and not a hassle to carry around.