Some trip essentials for the journey
From our friends at Law Tigers:
It’s summer road trip time!
Road tripping on your bike is an excellent way to visit scenic locations while celebrating your love for riding. However, bringing all the necessary supplies on your trip is essential to having the best experience. To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of some of the most critical items you’ll need for your trip. Read on to learn our ultimate motorcycle road trip packing list.
Road trip king Ted Edwards’ rig. Photo by Ted.
We believe you should always travel with a proper helmet. This should go without saying. Wearing a helmet every time you throw a leg over your motorcycle should be considered essential. However, on road trips, when you may be tired and have longer exposure on the open road, a helmet is even more crucial to staying safe. We always ride helmeted-up, even through states without helmet laws.
If you’re planning to buy a new helmet for your road trip, we recommend choosing one that fits firmly yet is breathable and comfortable so you don’t feel tempted to remove it throughout your journey. DOT-approved or higher-rated helmets should keep you safe.
2. Tool Kit
If you do not typically keep a toolkit in your bike, now is the time to bring one along. When you go on solo road trips, you may not have friends or family members nearby to help you fix a flat or jump a dead battery. You also won’t have any other means of transportation to get to the nearest store and purchase the tools you need.
Your tool kit might include:
- A wrench and socket set
- A flat tire repair kit
- A portable air compressor
- Wheel removal tools
- Jump leads
- Cable ties
- Spare parts- plugs, etc.
3. Riding Gear
Along with your helmet, you should also bring protective, comfortable clothing to wear while riding your bike. Specifically, you should be sure to pack the following articles of clothing:
- A protective jacket
- Armored riding pants
- Riding socks (several pairs)
- Rain gear (better to have and not need,…)
These protective layers can help keep you warm on windy and cooler stretches and provide a barrier against rocks and other debris you may encounter on the road.
Dirt or pavement, be prepared. Photo by Darin Branton.
4. Wallet and Paperwork
You obviously should always bring your wallet, vehicle registration, and ID with you when you ride your bike. If you’re planning a longer motorcycle road trip, you may want to take some additional paperwork along, such as:
- Extra copies of your driver’s license
- Documents with your emergency contact information
- Insurance cards
- Extra cash or bank cards
- Health information- conditions, allergies, blood type, etc.
These items can be helpful if you experience a crash during your road trip and cannot share your contact information with emergency responders. Alternatively, having extra cash and cards on hand can ensure that you do not become stranded if you lose your wallet. That happened to one of us on a cross-country trip many years ago. Unpleasant.
5. GPS or Maps
Some motorcyclists prefer to use paper maps for navigation on road trips (We’re partial to Butler Maps). If you do plan to use paper maps, we recommend only referencing them while parked or stopped at traffic lights. A tank bag with a handy map window is perfect for quick reference checks.
Alternatively, you may find it easier to use a GPS to plan your route and adjust to changes in traffic in real-time. If you choose to use your smartphone as a GPS, be sure to silence texts, emails and other notifications to eliminate distractions while riding.
REVER is a great system for trip/route planning and logging.
The freedom of the open road. Photo by Harley-Davidson
6. Hygiene Items
Of course, you should also pack personal hygiene and toiletry items for your trip. If you’re like us, you’re bound to forget something. Here’s a simple checklist we use:
- Toothbrush, toothpaste
- Bar of soap
- Shaving kit (?)
- Hair brush or comb (if nec)
- Hand sanitizer
- Sunscreen (definitely)
- Bug spray
- Any necessary personal meds and vitamins
7. Safety Items
Finally, we recommend taking along a few extra items as an added precaution for your trip. For example, you may want to pack:
- Protein bars or other filling snacks, in case you become stranded
- A flashlight
- Extra batteries
- A bike lock
- A location tracker for your family members or loved ones
- A motorcycle cover
- A spare key
Finally, don’t forget your free Law Tigers Riders Benefit Package.
Following the above simple motorcycle road trip packing suggestions should help you pack everything you need for your upcoming ride.
And always, always, ensure your motorcycle is as ready as you are: Conduct a full T-CLOCS inspection well before setting out.
Once you hit the road, riding safely and aware is essential to avoiding accidents. However, if you find yourself a motorcycle accident victim, you can call our Law Tigers team at 1-888-863-7216 for assistance.