Posts Tagged ‘Night’

Up in the sky, millions of stars glow above you and small clouds drift lazily overhead.

The sounds of small animals echo throughout the empty silence that engulfs the surrounding land. Leather clings to your body as you sit on your bike, and as you turn your key the speedo lights up and the headlights shine far into the distance. Cat’s eyes jump out from the chip seal and all sorts of bugs and crawly things crawl back into the darkness that envelopes the side of the road.
As you press the ignition the bike roars into life and then sits at idle, humming away and breaking the night silence. You kick it into gear and throttle off down the road, every time you come up to a corner it disappears as you try to look ahead of the corner, to where you want to go. You simply have to hope you are going in the right direction, the road continues on as your tires warm up beneath you and your grip increases, corner after corner you glide through the night like a bat out of hell. A straight looms in front of you and you twist back on the throttle, the engine screams as you rocket down the road, changing up gears as you come into illegal speeds, the whine of the engine penetrating your mind and your eyes brighten in response.

You come up to a tight right hand corner and you apply the brakes, find your position and start to lean off the bike, and then throttle through, the bike pivots through the corner and you are off on your way again.

Night riding is a fascinating experience, with a different skill set needing to be applied and your senses ever aware. Decreased visibility means that you have much less of a chance of seeing a possible hazard so you must tread carefully, but in saying that, because you cannot see the hazards you tend to ride smoother which translates to faster.

One of the most annoying and exciting aspects of riding through the dark is that your head lights don’t follow your head, which is a big problem when you want to be looking through the corners and looking where you need to go not where you are.
It takes getting used to and once you are much happier to throw it into a corner in total blackness. Many non riders would call that stupidity I am sure, but then this blog is for people with a limited fear of anything.

There are nights when the wind is so cold, that your whole body freezes and goes stiff, you are sure that your nose has frostbite, especially when it starts to run and stays there. It becomes harder to focus at that point and that is when you have to be extra careful not to do something stupid, because it can usually mean your life. If you’re lucky, you will hit something soft.

Another aspect of riding in the dark is oncoming vehicles, those big lights that light up the country side are one of your worst enemies. If you meet it mid-corner and they have their high beams on, it’s pretty safe to say that you won’t see anything for the next 2 – 3 seconds, which is a little scary when you are on a corner.
Then there are those 4wd drivers, who have around 6 high beam lights on the front of their truck. They refuse to switch them down to low beam when you are in front of them but I’m not sure if that is because it is so bright that not even they can see, or they are just pricks. Either way, you need to watch out for those ones.

But nothing really compares too night riding, if you are one for adventure and you take a long route to some place in the middle of nowhere, surrounded only by the bleats of nearby sheep and cow dung then I am sure that you will agree that it is simply magical to be able to look up at the night sky and see every star that litters the universe. Shooting stars are in abundance and you can’t wish fast enough for a new bike before a new shooting star appears.

Here is a video of what you can see when riding at night time.

Night Riding



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