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 Riding skills where I'm getting a bit rusty
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scottrnelson
Advanced Member
6948 Posts
[Mentor]


Meridian, ID
USA

Honda

XR650L, 790 Adv R

Posted - 03/16/2021 :  2:52 PM                       Like
Even though I now live somewhere that gets real winter, I rarely go more than two weeks without doing some kind of ride. Now that we're regularly having days above 45 degrees I'm trying to get out riding at least once a week.

So most of my riding skills are staying pretty sharp. Things like judging the speed for upcoming corners, traction available for all sorts of conditions, and most things involved in riding on highways.

But today I did something different. I tried to take the back roads to a town up in the mountains and had to turn around when I got up high enough that there was ice on the dirt road. When I came back down I decided to ride through downtown Boise and head away from the mountains. I had a couple of incidents where I could tall I wasn't 100% on top of my game, even though I wasn't really in any danger.

The first case was on a divided two-lane road (one lane each way) where I came up to an intersection and realized a little late that I needed to turn left there. Instead of moving into the left turn lane as soon as it opened up, I waited until the car behind me had already zoomed into that lane and was right next to me. Not a big issue, just wait a little and pull in behind them, but I realized that I was unaware that the car was there until I had turned on my left turn signal and went to check my blind spot. I should have known the position of any cars behind me too. This is a case that I rarely encounter, and something I can see that I need to be better at.

The second case was on another (undivided) two-lane road where a car was coming downhill from a side street on the right. Normally I don't trust anybody who could possibly invade my space, but I think I was assuming too much that they would stop at their stop sign. I believe the driver was just trying to time it to pull in right behind me as I went by, but it was still going 10-15 mph through that stop sign. And the car was less than one car length away as I went by. I need to pay a bit more attention to ALL cars that could possibly invade my space.

So, thinking about your riding, are there some areas like this where your skills might be a bit rusty because you don't encounter them often enough?

I'm not going to go into town to "practice" this stuff more, but I'll try to be more aware of the dangers in conditions that I don't normally encounter. Most of my riding is on highways and dirt roads where there are way fewer cars to worry about.

joeanderson
Starting Member
1 Posts


Baltimore, Delaware
USA

Honda

Click 150i

Posted - 04/14/2021 :  11:41 PM
Is your helmet fits you correctly? Maybe that was the problem? I experience it once. you can try ride With Your visor closed and wear a wind blocker.

Joe
Amarillo

Edited by - joeanderson on 04/14/2021 11:56 PM
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Eagle Six
Junior Member
34 Posts


Snowflake, Arizona
USA

Kawasaki

ZX14R

Posted - 04/15/2021 :  8:18 AM
quote:
Originally posted by scottrnelson

Even though I now live somewhere that gets real winter, I rarely go more than two weeks without doing some kind of ride. Now that we're regularly having days above 45 degrees I'm trying to get out riding at least once a week.

So most of my riding skills are staying pretty sharp. Things like judging the speed for upcoming corners, traction available for all sorts of conditions, and most things involved in riding on highways.

But today I did something different. I tried to take the back roads to a town up in the mountains and had to turn around when I got up high enough that there was ice on the dirt road. When I came back down I decided to ride through downtown Boise and head away from the mountains. I had a couple of incidents where I could tall I wasn't 100% on top of my game, even though I wasn't really in any danger.

The first case was on a divided two-lane road (one lane each way) where I came up to an intersection and realized a little late that I needed to turn left there. Instead of moving into the left turn lane as soon as it opened up, I waited until the car behind me had already zoomed into that lane and was right next to me. Not a big issue, just wait a little and pull in behind them, but I realized that I was unaware that the car was there until I had turned on my left turn signal and went to check my blind spot. I should have known the position of any cars behind me too. This is a case that I rarely encounter, and something I can see that I need to be better at.

The second case was on another (undivided) two-lane road where a car was coming downhill from a side street on the right. Normally I don't trust anybody who could possibly invade my space, but I think I was assuming too much that they would stop at their stop sign. I believe the driver was just trying to time it to pull in right behind me as I went by, but it was still going 10-15 mph through that stop sign. And the car was less than one car length away as I went by. I need to pay a bit more attention to ALL cars that could possibly invade my space.

So, thinking about your riding, are there some areas like this where your skills might be a bit rusty because you don't encounter them often enough?

I'm not going to go into town to "practice" this stuff more, but I'll try to be more aware of the dangers in conditions that I don't normally encounter. Most of my riding is on highways and dirt roads where there are way fewer cars to worry about.



Hi Scott, good to here you get out in the cold during the winter. I usually get 1-2 ride a week throughout the winter, but I'm guessing my winters are a bit milder than yours.

My bike is designed for pavement with hypersport tires. I live on a dirt road so each time I ride I get a half mile of dirt. I will ride some dirt/gravel roads if they are well graded, usually keeping it 15-20 mph or less. I'm situated in a small town with typical big time traffic at peaks. Do mostly country riding from small town to small town. 1-2 times a month I venture to the big city for business, meet friends, or pickup gear. I did that yesterday for a set of tires.

I feel I get enough experience to keep on my toes throughout the year. However, last year during the summer season I fell into a bad habit of flicking on me turn signal before I had check same travel traffic. A couple times it was bad timing and confused the cage coming up at my rear quarter. It surprised me that it took more effort than I thought to break that habit.

Any other time I made a bad move it has always been when I let my mind drift. Fortunately it hasn't got me in trouble and probably more embarrassing to me, than the other guy.

With age comes a reduction in vision, timing and reaction. So I find myself working a bit harder than I did when I was younger. The one aspect of winter riding that does annoy me is the addition of more layers, heated liners, thicker gloves, neck gaiters, all which restrict my movement somewhat more than summer gear. I tend to slow down a bit when temps fall into the 20's and check my route before venturing off in areas I'm not that familiar with.

It's important that we discover and recognize our shortcomings and act to correct them. our safety always starts with us.

Good thread you started, Thank You. I always like reading posts that make us stop and think about our own skills and abilities.

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scottrnelson
Advanced Member
6948 Posts
[Mentor]


Meridian, ID
USA

Honda

XR650L, 790 Adv R

Posted - 04/15/2021 :  8:53 AM
quote:
Originally posted by Eagle Six

I feel I get enough experience to keep on my toes throughout the year. However, last year during the summer season I fell into a bad habit of flicking on me turn signal before I had check same travel traffic. A couple times it was bad timing and confused the cage coming up at my rear quarter. It surprised me that it took more effort than I thought to break that habit.
Yeah, this is exactly the sort of thing I was referring to.

Recognize the potential issue, then work on fixing it.
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