The Ultimate Guide on How To Ride Better At Night

A trip at night always gives a somewhat free, exciting but a bit scary at the same time. These kinds of rides have always attracted many wild spirits out there. Unlike riding in the day time, riding in the dark can be a little more dangerous. You can’t see very well and it is hard to tell what is a hazard.

This article will show you how to ride better at night so that you enjoy the fun of the night, without taking unnecessary risks. It will give you everything that you need to ride better at night.

How To Ride Better At Night? – 8 Useful Tips

1. Use Good Lights

The lights you require to commute to work are not the same as those you need to ride along unlit paths or country roads. While on the way to work, the streets are often lit with decent light, and all you have to worry about is whether other people on the route see you. On the other hand, on pitch-black roads, your lights must show what’s in front of you and make you visible in the dark.

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Thus, if your motorbike has a lower power blinky light, you can go everywhere with it in town but nowhere on country trails. To roam around on the latter, you’ll need to buy a much stronger front light with 400 to 800 lumens for on-the-road rides and even more for off-road ones. The required lumens also depend on the speed you ride and the ride’s location.

As mentioned above, another task of the light is to make you visible on the road. Thus, only the front light is not enough. You have to prepare one more flashlight to alert other riders and another rear light for approaching riders to estimate the distance between you and them.

2. Ride Where You Are Visible

Basically, every road user has to look ahead when traveling. Thus, their fields of vision are in front of them, which is limited at night since only the vehicle’s lights light up the street. Therefore, you should ride from 2.2 ft to 3.2 ft into the road to make sure other people can see you. 

Moreover, you won’t collide with the obstacles on the side of the road, like potholes and drain covers, this way. Due to the lack of light, whatever you want to do, let the other road users know your intentions earlier than when you do it in daylight.

3. Use Reflective Things 

When traveling at night, it is recommended to have a white reflector (in the front) and a red reflector (a rear light).

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Apart from having the two kinds of reflectors above, it would be best if there is something to make you visible from side-on. You can get some reflective hits on your kit or backpack. Hi-vis clothes are also acceptable; however, they can’t do the job as well as reflective gear. Consider adding some reflective to your gloves to make your hand movements stand out to other road users.

4. Light Up Your Bike

As mentioned above, 400 lumens of light will make do if you’re riding on the road. This will also work if you are already familiar with the route or not planning to ride fast. Otherwise, paths with a higher difficulty level or plans for a wild and fast race will require more power out of the equipment. 

By much more power, we mean 1500 lumens as a starting point for those who want a journey off-road or on blue-graded trail-center style runs. For every trail grading increase, you should add approximately 1000 lumens to the power output.

That said, the minimum power for the equipment to accompany you in the dark on a red trail is 2500 lumens and 3500 lumens on a black trail. 

This equipment comes in various kinds, sizes, and power in the market. Plus, most of them are USB rechargeable. Don’t forget to charge your light before getting on your bike. It will be even better to bring along a backup set in case you forget to charge the equipment, or it runs out of electricity. 

5. Use A Helmet-Mount

This small mount will give you several significant benefits. They brighten up your line of vision, illuminating exactly what you’re looking at. Thus, the mount will come in handy when you need to fix or maintain the motorbike. 

To reduce the weight on top of your head, we recommend you use a light with a separate head unit and batteries. This kind of equipment comes with cables so you won’t have to stand the weight of the batteries on your head. Place the head unit on the helmet and put the batteries in your package.

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Another option is to attach an all-in-one light, which contains both the battery and the LED, to your bike. Normally, your bars should have enough room to fit an all-in-one light. You can go for either of these two options. 

However, it is said that riding off-road with a helmet light is more convenient than a bar-mounted one. The reason is the former illuminates where you want to go instead of where your vehicle is heading. 

If you can, go for the best of both worlds. Start your journey with a helmet mount and one on the bars. This way, the space in front of you will be as clear as day, preventing hidden hazards from harming you.

6. Choose The Right Route

For beginners, an easy and well-trodden route will be the best option. It will help them gain confidence and minimize the risks of getting lost or having accidents. 

Don’t underestimate the difficulty of riding in the dark. Choose a tricky route, and you’ll see how everything looks alien around you. The darkness covers everything, including the things you use to mark the turns. 

If you’re not ready to travel in reality, practice in a trail center. The tracks there are simple and don’t have obstacles like rocks or stumps. Therefore, you’re less likely to fall while training in this center.

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Gradually, you build enough confidence to take your motorcycle to the country trails. Keep practicing until you’re a seasoned rider. At that point, your only restriction will simply be the light batteries’ life. 

7. Make Friends

Riding alone has its own fun, but you’ll be surprised at how exciting it is to set off with a group of friends. Journeys on the bike with mates after work keep the boredom and mundane of life and work at bay. Many riding clubs across the country also hold night rides, which is ideal for one to find common grounds and make new friends.

Having riding buddies acts as a source of motivation on cold winter days. There are fewer daylight hours, meaning you’ll have to start the journey earlier. However, the biting coldness keeps luring you to stay at home, back in the warmth underneath your blanket. At these moments, mates are the missing factors to motivate you to get up and go for a night ride.

Lastly, the most basic reason to have many people accompany you on a trip is increased safety. You won’t have to struggle alone in case of accidents or mechanical problems.

8. Stay Safe

Staying safe is the first priority in how to ride better at night and in whatever you do. 

Going out in the dark comes with more risks. Your surroundings are less visible than in the daylight, making it hard to avoid obstacles, tricky turns, or other road users. When accidents happen, you’re also less likely to find other riders or road users to seek help.

Aside from preparation in lighting equipment, don’t forget to ensure you’re dressed warm enough (if it’s cold). Always factor in different kinds of weather so you will not catch a cold from sudden rains or temperature drops. 

Don’t stray away from your group. If you get separated, you must inform your buddies where and how long you will go.

FAQs

What Are The Must-Have Items When Riding At Night?

The first must-have thing you’ve got to have is a helmet. It has to be a high-quality one that can protect your head. Also, choose a fitting one that hugs your head comfortably and properly.

Next, wear properly. A good riding jacket and a pair of breathable gloves will let you travel in comfort and offer chest protection. Don’t forget to bring a tool kit in case of vehicle maintenance.

A bottle of water to keep you hydrated and a box of first aid kits will be of help when the situation calls for them. You can consider bringing snacks or energy food for short breaks among riding chunks.

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Is Riding At Night Good?

Traveling at night gives you precious time to yourself. Everything is quiet and peaceful, helping you relax your mind and let the darkness wash all the stress away. It is also a good way to end your day. You could have earphones in your ear, enjoying the cool breeze and taking in every relaxing smell of nature surrounding the small trail. 

Plus, after every ride, when exhaustion settles in, sleep will come to you immediately after you lie on your bed. The good thing is that post-riding sleep is always very deep, refreshing your body and mind when you wake up.

Conclusion

After reading our tips on how to ride better at night, are you confident enough to go on this exciting journey? Roaming on the road when the sun has set does have more dangers, but the feeling you get to experience will always be worth it. 

Don’t let inhibitions and fear prevent you from enjoying such valuable moments. With our help, create more memories at night with your bike starting today!

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