Most of us have a fair amount of money invested in our rides. We often will spend the absolute maximum we can afford to get the best combination of power and comfort for the style of road riding we prefer.Spending additional money on this passion may be difficult to justify once we settle into our riding habits – whether we ride for simple commuting, pleasure, or for a bit of “freedom therapy” to calm the hurried soul. Some of you are fortunate to live in climates where the weather has little impact on the amount of time you enjoy riding. For the rest of us, rainfall and dropping temperatures has us downshifting back into our enclosed, four tire cubicles. Bor…ing!
For the rain conditions, though, Harley-Davidson comes to the rescue with its Genuine MotorClothes Hi-Vis Rain Suit (available in orange or yellow, men regular sizes small to 5XL and men tall sizes large to 3XL). Rain gear for women is available with slightly different styling and also in a large range of sizes.Constructed of a 100-percent nylon shell and 100-percent polyester lining, staying dry is not an issue. The Harley-Davidson Hi-Vis Rain Suit jacket and pants have ample room when worn over your regular riding leathers and do not bind or wad up in any of the usual places. The knees are the only vulnerable spot; when they are bent it eliminates any air space between layers of fabric and leather thus allowing the wind chill to nip at the knees after a while.Large jacket pockets are on both left and right side with another zippered pocket on the inside of the jacket. A hood with drawstring is rolled up neatly into the collar with a drawstring also in the collar that can be drawn to make an even better wind and rain seal around the neck. The pants also have a pocket on the left thigh.Clearly there is increased riding safety due to the highly visible bright colors as well as the Scotchlite reflective panels on both jacket and pants for increased nighttime safety. Walking into a destination restaurant that I frequent, the waitress recognized me then described me as looking like a 6 foot tall highway department construction zone rode cone. Hey, I’d wear spinning glitter tassels on my jacket breast pockets if it would help other drivers see me!I have found with this gear over my regular leather jacket and pants, the impact of the cold wind, factoring in wind chill as well, is reduced to the point riding in temperatures down to 38 degrees is comfortable. My Electra Glide does have the heated grips, allowing me to wear lighter gloves (Harley-Davidson offers several styles of cold weather gloves, some heated, that would work well to keep the hands warm).All of the pocket closures, pocket flaps, zippers and Velcro fasteners have very tight tolerances that minimize the possibility of water intrusion if we ever find ourselves riding in wet weather. At the end of the ride. the Harley-Davidson Hi-Vis Rain Suit is easily cleaned up – the fabric resists absorbing road grime that may splash up on the pants or jacket. Simple instructions state to hand wash in cold water, lay flat to dry and use only soft, damp cloth to clean the Scotchlite material.The Harley-Davidson boot gaiters are not an afterthought. They are very efficient and help protect those boots that cost a fistful of dollars and fit oh so right. There’s no sense of messing expensive boots up with foul-weather road grime or getting them so wet that the first time the sun comes out the boot leather dries then splits so badly it looks like the boots are smiling up at you.Pricing for the Harley-Davidson Hi-Vis Rain Suit comes in at under $250 for the jacket, pants and gaiters. I’d stick around and write a few more lines of appreciation, but it is 42 degrees here in Kennewick, Wash., as I write this, and I’m gong for a ride.
This week, Senior Editor Nic de Sena rides the all new Ducati Monster. Big changes have been made by Ducati–has the company ruined the considerable heritage of the iconic Monster–or are the changes worth it? In the second part of the show, we chat with Nick Ienatsch, Founder and Head Instructor at the Yamaha Champions Riding School. He says: “We aim to change your riding life by introducing you to Champions Habits: The techniques, approaches, skills, and the mindsets of the best riders in the world. These Champions Habits are the foundation of safety and consistency to whatever speed you ride, in any venue on any bike. Street riders, this is just as much for you as track riders. The best way to make safe riders is to make good riders.“ We hope you enjoy this episode!