I was heading back from Elko Nevada last weekend after attending their Elko Motorcycle Jamboree – a great time by the way and highly recommended. However, the ride home on I-80 was cold and wet on Saturday. I had ridden in the rain before and had rode in high wind conditions before but this was new. The ambient temperature was about 60 degrees, the rain was continuous and the wind constantly gusting and changing direction. It was a challenge.
To be comfortable in these conditions you need to be prepared. First of all you have to cover up. By cover-up I mean a full-face helmet, heavy gloves, heavy jacket, chaps and heavy boots. Thankfully I had all of this with me. What I did not have with me was good and complete rain gear. I had covers for my gloves and boots but that was it.
The worst time when riding in the rain is when the rain first starts. The accumulated lubricants and dirt on the road seem to form a slippery film on the road when it first starts to rain. This slippery film dissipates as the rain continues but it is most slippery when the rain first starts.
I have tried rain-x and various anti-fog sprays on the inside of my helmet but nothing really seems to work like the back of your hand.
Rain gear that I have (but for whatever reason did not have with me at the time) should be brightly colored and the green yellow of highway workers seems to stand out the best.
While riding carve yourself out a piece of territory so other vehicles passing you and others you pass know where you are headed. If you are getting tailgated wave them on or slow down so they have to pass.
When lightening starts to rip across the horizon I try to get off under an overpass. I hear lightening while riding a bike can hurt.