Spring has returned and motorcycle riders everywhere are gearing up and rolling out for new adventures. Jumping for joy is in order—it’s riding season! Motorcycle riders are collectors of riding memories, roads traveled and good times shared with riding buddies. As you embark on this new season of rides, consider that roads are like memories. They fade with time.
Unlike riding memories, which fade gracefully as our mental scrapbook fills with new adventures, road conditions tend to decay more dramatically. Your favorite roads may be much different after winter than you remember them from last season. What changes might you find?
Spring Road Hazards to Expect
- Accumulated winter road sand
- Gravel driveways washed onto the road
- Fallen rocks
- Frost heaves
- Snowplow damage
- Cracked pavement
- Eroded shoulders
The above list represents some of the typical conditions you will encounter while riding this spring. Scanning for them is part of what you learn in a motorcycle rider education course, which with practice becomes second nature.
Beware the Unexpected
Spring weather is very unpredictable. It often includes heavy rains and thunderstorms. All that rainfall combined with the damage winter has inflicted beneath the pavement surface creates a recipe for disaster.
Many of the most exciting motorcycle roads tend to be in the hills, farm country or mountains. A common feature of these roads is that they essentially are built on a manmade ledge that wraps around the contours of the land. We expect debris to fall down onto the road. But do you think about that road collapsing from beneath you? Roads collapse but fortunately it’s rare that someone is on the road when it goes. More likely than not, you will encounter mobile traffic lights with emergency road repair work in progress. Or recently reconstructed sections of road that consist of a temporary patch. This happens on both well-worn roads and newly resurfaced ones.
As you rediscover your favorite roads or explore new ones, expect the unexpected.
Till next time ride safe!