Jan 25, 2016

7 Essential night riding safety tips

Night riding is way different that riding by day, not only your eyesight will be diminished even using the best lights in the market, but also will be much colder and, of course, more dangerous. Of course at night you will find less people around, so here on possible accident you should and you must not ride alone at night, for your own safety.

First of all be safe, especially if it is your first ride at night, don’t speed more than what you are capable of and don’t practice new skills that you are not familiarized with, also even you are more than able to do big jumps it is not the time to make dangerous jumps or tricks.

Here are some tips to make your night riding safer and comfier:
  1. Bring 2 lights on and 1 spare unit in your backpack, one mounted on your handlebar and one in your helmet. Your bike light should be more powerful, and your helmet one can be at around 800 lumens so it gives you an extra light beam so obstacles can be more easily detected avoiding shadows from only one beam, of course this configuration will make you able to light where you are looking and not only where your bike faces. For your spare unit can be a less powerful one but reliable, in case that everything else fails you would be able to return safely home. A few weeks ago I bought a light from a Chinese seller that was promising, check our Nitefighter BT21 first impressions, this could be a good option to a use as a powerful light even on one of the low light settings could be used on your helmet due to its small size and adjusted price.
  2. Get layered up, as we already stated at night the conditions are colder, but also more wet and unexpected. On cold nights dress up with a thermal base layer that has good sweat evacuation, then a thermal jacket or jersey with good perspiration and finally a protective layer, like a windbreaker jacket. Finally get in your backpack a waterproof jacket for unexpected weather changes.
  3. Get protected! Even if it is at night clear glasses are a must, you may don’t see what’s coming, maybe an insect, a branch or a splatter of strange woods substance. Also it is a good idea to bring knee pads that you can store in your backpack for the trail sections and without saying a helmet and gloves.
  4. Be ready to stop, even if it’s getting some food or some repair, stop your bike light to avoid wasting battery and use your backup or head light. Also put on an extra layer to avoid getting cold. Also if you crash you should review our checklist after a bike accident.
  5. Get a good sized backpack, and as you usually should bring water, food and tools for repairs. Also, as we said before, a spare light and a waterproof jacket.
  6. Use tech to your advantage and get an app that share your location with your relatives and gives you the option to share your location to emergency corps. Many states offer apps that offer these capabilities and are integrated with local corps systems.
  7. Have fun! Night riding can change completely a trail that you have ridden a lot of times, be aware of its dangers to overcome any inconvenience and get connected with nature in much less crowded trails.
This post was published first at Put in your basket, 1:09 PM