The temperature has started dropping, the leaves are changing. It’s really happening. The summer is almost over, but that doesn’t mean the gasoline has stopped pumping through your veins! If you need one last pick-me-up before old man winter rears his ugly head, you need to take a look at our list of 3 dirt bike events you need to see to believe! Come on, one last ride before we put the two-wheelers in storage, what do you say?
The Most Extreme Dirt Bike Events
*WARNING* these events are not for the faint of heart. Strap on your helmet and get ready for some extreme motocross viewing!
1. Monster Energy Supercross – Monster Energy Cup
High stakes, high risk, high reward. The Monster Energy Cup is letting racers put it all on the line in Las Vegas, Nevada. Three dirt bike events happen in the course of one night, and if a rider takes first place in all three? They get to take one million dollars home for all their hard work.
If that wasn’t enough excitement for you, how about FanFest that starts before the cup? Rider autographs, BMX and skateboarding demos, and live music are just a few of the awesome spectacles to behold before the big show.
2. Red Bull Hare Scramble Series – Erzberg Rodeo
This is far from Red Bull’s first rodeo. The Erzberg Rodeo is a legendary event that has happened annually in Austria since 1995 as part of Red Bull’s Hare Scramble series. It is absolutely the most famous and biggest dirt bike event in all of Europe! Each year 1,800 riders come from across the continent to prove their chops
This 4-day event has everything you could want from an extreme motocross event. Long endurance races, steep hill climbs, high-speed madness. What more could you ask for, really? Don’t take our word for it, though. Check out this recap from the 2019 races.
3. Hard Enduro Series – Hell’s Gate
Let’s forget about all the mud and the mayhem for a moment and travel to beautiful Tuscany, Italy. Tuscany is one of Italy’s most historic regions, home to beautiful Rennaissance art by legendary artists like Michelangelo and Botticelli. Tuscany is also home to one of the most difficult and aptly named races for motocross riders, Hell’s Gate.
What awaits riders at Hell’s Gate? Nothing but pure Hell, of course. Riders qualify in a race held in the morning. For the final 11 mile race in the evening, riders are eliminated lap by lap until the final few battles it out over muddy hills, huge rocks, and the final steep climb toward the mouth of Hell. You can’t believe these conditions without seeing them, so please, be our guest.
Are You Ready to Race?
It’s all right if you’re not. Truth be told, we might skip out on participating in these ones as well. Good thing you don’t have to have more guts than brains to watch these incredible dirt bike events. If you want to relive these events for yourself, check out some of the past years’ races here and here.
Our Favorite ATV Trails and Ride Parks in the U.S.
ATV riders have their favorite trail systems all over the United States. But if you’re not from the local area, how would you know? There are so many different offroad riding areas and ATV parks over millions of acres across the country, but where are the best ones? Well luckily for you we’ve done the research; here are the best ATV parks to visit this summer!
Our Favorite ATV Parks and ATV-Friendly National Forests
Miles of trails for thrilling rides ahead! Get your helmet on and get ready!
Tall Pines ATV Park – Andover, NY
Tall Pines park is one of the best camping trips ATV and dirt bike riders could take in New York state. The park has 70 miles of thoroughly maintained trails, with 49 individual trails and features. There are trails for all riding levels, easy field trails, mud bogs, and obstacle courses for the most daring riders!
The park has its own one-stop-shop, the Tall Pines Store, where you can get everything you need for your ATV, camping, or anything else. Kate’s kitchen serves three meals every Saturday, and Sunday, and there is even an on-site shower.
Kentucky ORV Trailhead – Talladega National Forest, Alabama
Alabama has some of the South’s most beautiful national forests that the National Forest Service has to offer. There are plenty of places where the ATV clubs can gain access to, but the Kentucky ORV trailhead is an amusement park for ATV riders. The trail is open from the beginning of April all the way to December for anyone on wheels.
The trail is listed as “easy to moderate”, with four loops over 23 miles through the forest. It might not be worth a trip for riders looking for a real challenge. However, there are few ways you can enjoy the Alabama wilderness this much on an ATV
Longdale Trail System – Valley of Fire State Park, Overton, NV
The Longdale Trails are some of the best sand dunes in North America, open 365 days a year to riders of all types, as well as horseback. There are 200 miles of trails through the park. It’s a great place to go back again and again and never ride the same trail twice. There is also a host of rare plant and animal life inside the park as well as beautiful petroglyphs left by the site’s ancient inhabitants.
While this isn’t a national park and preserve, it is advised that riders be very respectful of the space and its features. This will help preserve this as a place for outdoor fun for many years to come.
Bundy Hill Offroad – Jerome, MI
If you’re looking for an ATV park where you can also get your primitive camping fix, Bundy Hill Offroad is a great destination! The park opened in 2012 when they let riders loose on 350 acres of offroad riding paradise. The park has intricate trails, rock crawling, steep hills, mud, and a host of other riding challenges for experienced riders. It’s like a theme park for motorheads!
Camping rates are also extremely reasonable at $20 for the first night and only $10 for each night after! The spots fill up fast though, so make sure you make a reservation. If you’ve got friends or family who are more avid campers than riders, don’t worry! Bundy Hill offers rentals as well!
Gator Run Offroad Park – Easton, Texas
Everything’s bigger in Texas, but Gator Run Offroad Park is actually the biggest ATV park in the Lone Star state! The park is open every weekend, year-round to everything on wheels. Not to mention, ample camping with electricity for those who want it, and primitive camping for those who like to rough it. The park sits on a huge plot of land containing both wet and drylands, which makes for great mudding!
The park is open to ATVs, UTVs, even monster trucks! They even have their own ATV club if you’re local. There’s something for everyone at Gator Run, but if you want something to get you excited, watch this!
The Best of ATV Parks and Trail Systems
We hope you enjoyed this little walk through all of our favorite ATV parks in the U.S.! The best part about getting your ATV out in a new place are the adventures you have with the people you love.
That’s why we would always highly suggest the sites where you can camp and make a weekend of it. So get some buds, get your helmets, and get ready to have a great summer adventure!
Our Favorite Dirt Bike Trails Across the United States
If you like to venture out on dirt bike trails, there’s really no shortage in the United States. From San Diego to the coasts of Maine, there’s a trail for every rider and every style. So where are some of the best riding areas, you’re asking? Well, that’s precisely why we made this list!
So strap on your helmet and get your bike gassed up! Because we’re not talking about your grandpa’s mountain bike trails. This is our list for the top dirt bike trails in the U.S.
10. Crosstimbers ORV Park – Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Crosstimbers ORV Park is one of OKC’s greatest places to be on two wheels. The park is 960 acres and 55 miles of trails for dirt bikes, ATV’s, and even some for motorcycles. The park is closed between November and April, but for the rest of the year, it’s open 7 days every week to Crosstimbers ORV Park Permit holders.
The trails have different consistencies of dirt and sand, great for riders of any experience level. The trails will take you through some beautiful woodland scenery all right next to Lake Stanley Draper. The lake is also open to fishing, water sports, and camping, making this a great vacation destination!
73,000 acres of land, 300 miles of trails, all in one place. Windrock Park is one of the best places you could possibly visit if you’re ever in Tennessee. They feature the full gamut of trail types so every rider can feel like they have the proper trail. Gravel trails for easy-mode with increasing difficulties all the way up to heavy-duty boulders and cliffs for the truly daring.
Windrock Park has its own general store so you can stock up on anything you need for a day of fun. They also have campgrounds if you want to make a vacation out of it. If you have someone with you that doesn’t ride, no worries! Windrock also offers daily UTV rentals.
8. Moab, Utah
The trails in Moab are legendary for a reason. Moab has some of the most breathtaking desert views you can ask for. Not only that, but Moab is as big as your imagination. The trail systems expand across the whole desert with all sorts of different loops and side journeys you can take. The White Rim loop by itself is over 100 miles!
The Paiute Trail in south-central Utah is another pride and joy of the state’s dirt bike riders. The trail sits on 750,000 acres and is a staggering 275 miles long. You could head back to the Paiute trail week after week and never see the same section of trail twice. That’s a big reason why it’s so popular.
Another reason is that it’s a great place to go rafting and fishing. If you’re a true outdoorsy person, the Paiute trail is a great place for you. From Spring to Fall it offers great riding for the whole family. If you wanted to go on a solo journey, going during the winter also provides unique and fun challenges!
6. Ogemaw Trail – Rose City, Michigan
The Ogemaw Trail in Rose City Michigan is a great place for every riding style and skill level. There are tracks that are continuously groomed for folks who want to practice racing. There’s even a kid’s track for kids 12 and under to build up their riding chops.
But we’re here to talk about trails, so where are they? Well apart from these tracks, there is a 4-mile obstacle course that runs through the woods. That’s not enough? Well, we’re not done. Ogemaw is the access point to hundreds of miles of ORV trails taking you through the beautiful Michigan landscape. If this sounds like a place you’d like to visit, you’re in luck because they also offer camping!
5. Red River Motorcycle Trails – Bulcher, Texas
Red River Motorcycle Trails has been a staple for riders in Texas for nearly 40 years. It was once a private playground, but is now open to the public! There is a riding fee of $25 for non-members, and you can only access the trails on the weekends as a non-member.
If you do become a member, however, you’ll get lower riding fees and access to the park during the week with a reservation. You can also make a camping trip out of it! So if you’re in Texas and looking for a great place to ride, try Red River Motorcycle Trails.
4. Katahdin Lodge – Moro Plantation, Maine
Katahdin Lodge in Maine takes trail riding back to the golden age. The lodge acts as the access-point to 1,600 miles of trails through the Maine wilderness. You can get a great view of the Maine coastline. If you’re lucky, you might even see a moose or a bear!
It is also located right next to Hale pond where you can go fishing, take the canoe out, or just settle in and have a nice campfire. Katahdin Lodge is open year-round, and in the winter these trails are perfect for snowmobiling.
3. Hidden Falls Adventure Park – Marble Falls, Texas
Hidden Falls Adventure Park is another great destination in Texas for fans of all things dirt and wheels. They’ve got trail access for dirt bikes, UTV’s, and ATV’s. They charge a riding fee to enter, but they also offer memberships to get those rates down.
There is also an event area so you can host a nice get together for birthdays, holidays, or just for fun!
2. Imperial Sand Dunes – Glamis, California
The Imperial Sand Dunes are a legendary destination for folks on two wheels. In fact, you could think of it as the “Disney World” for people who love gasoline. If you’re unaware of the Dunes, you’ve got to see it to believe it. From October to April there is a registration fee you have to pay to be able to gain access to the dunes. However, for the rest of the year, it’s open season on all 40 miles of desert.
Of course, there are some rules you need to follow when you’re out in the Dunes. Make sure you take a close look and follow them closely. The Dunes are one of the best places to ride your dirt bike, so don’t get yourself kicked out!
1. Hatfield-McCoy Trail System – Williamson, West Virginia
The Hatfield-McCoy Trails in West Virginia are some of the most expansive in the country. There are over 700 miles of trails in fact, and they’re open year-round! The Hatfield-McCoy trails have received praise from Dirt Wheels, ATV Magazine, The Outdoor Channel, and many more as “Trails Heaven”.
The trails do require registration and have a set of rules that must be followed to ensure everyone’s safety. There is also a required registration. But once you’re ready to go, you’re looking at a world of nearly endless possibilities in the beautiful West Virginia wilderness.
The Best Dirt Bike Trail Runs Anywhere
There’s really no end to amazing trail systems for your dirt bike in the United States. These are some of our absolute favorites, though! Camping, riding, relaxing, these destinations can offer you a little bit of everything. If you have more structured riders in your life, maybe you should check out our list of the best dirt bike tracks in every state of the U.S.!
If you see a jet boat race first-hand, it’s easy to understand why people call it the Formula-1 of water sports. Jet propulsion super boats are making some serious waves, and personally, we’re here for it. If the thought of extreme class 130 mph super boats excites you, you’re in good company. So if you want to see the best in jet drives and powerboat racing, keep reading to see our list of incredible jet boat races in the U.S.
The Best of the Best Jet Boat Races
American Sprint Boat Racing
One of the most iconic events in the world of propulsion systems powerboats is American Sprint Boat Racing. While the 2020 race hasn’t yet been announced, the 2019 races took place in Saint John, WA this year at Webbs Slough. ASBR is a weekend-long event with several different classes of races. Enjoy a weekend of camping, fast-paced racing, and fun in the sun with your gas-fiend friends.
In 2020, we’re celebrating the 36th annual Salmon River Jet Boat Race in beautiful Riggins, Idaho. Any other day this quiet little mountain town only has about 400 inhabitants. But, as a result, for one weekend every April, that number swells as they welcome some rowdy racers.
The weekend starts with a BBQ and a “shine and show”, your chance to get face-to-face with some national championship powerboats. Meanwhile, Saturday is an all-day race event. And it’s followed by an incredible fireworks display. In conclusion, everything ends with the final races on Sunday morning and the afternoon awards ceremony.
Watch this to get some first-hand experience of the Salmon River racers.
Race the Joe
Meanwhile, not far from Riggins, St. Maries, ID is home to the Race the Joe every May. Of course, this year’s race has come and gone, but they’re always getting ready for next year. Each year the weekend kicks off with a chance for attendees to get a close-up view of all of the jet boats. This is followed by incredible fireworks shows at dusk.
Most importantly, Saturday and Sunday feature all-day racing beginning at 10 a.m. with these high-speed monsters tearing up the Joe River from St. Maries all the way to Calder. That’s more than 20 miles of high-octane fuel consumption, and best of all, this event is free to attend!
Are you Ready to Get Wet?
First of all, these aren’t races for your grandpa’s fishing boat. These races test the skills of some of the best boat drivers the world has to offer. That is to say, jet boats are purposefully designed with speed in mind. And these races showcase this in an unprecedented fashion.
So if you want to get out and see some of the most exhilarating racing you can see, check out these incredible jet boat races. You aren’t going to want to miss out!
One of the best parts of motorcycle culture is all of the great art that is inspired by the bikes we love. There are so many great films that focus on motorcycle racing, the freedom of the open road, and of course, the outlaw and biker gangs. No matter how big a gear head you are though, there are always those things that slip under the radar. So for our veteran riders, we’ve got some great new films. And for the younger crowd, we’ve got some of the classics, too. So break out the popcorn and get comfortable! Check out our list for the 10 best motorcycle movies.
The Born Losers is the tale of Vietnam veteran Billy Jack (played by Tom Laughlin) who seeks to escape society by moving to a quiet beach town in California. However, he is unable to escape trouble as he saves a person from a violent altercation with a biker gang, The Born Losers. Unfortunately for Billy Jack, he is the one who ends up getting arrested for firing his rifle to stop the fight.
The gang terrorizes the local town, committing all sorts of terrible crimes and threatening anyone who would dare testify against them. Billy Jack is eventually released only to be taken hostage, along with a woman named Vicky Barrington (played by co-scriptwriter Elizabeth James). Billy Jack escapes and tries to get the police to help him, but they refuse, so he has to take matters into his own hands. Does Billy Jack have what it takes to rescue the damsel in distress all by himself?
Coming after the success of Clint Eastwood’s many Westerns including Dirty Harry, he really took the world by surprise with his comedic role in Every Which Way but Loose. It was not well-reviewed by critics upon release, but slowly grew to be a huge success, and one of Eastwood’s highest-grossing films. Definitely worthy of being labeled as one of the best motorcycle movies!
Eastwood plays truck driver, Philo Beddoe, who lives in the San Fernando Valley with his brother Orville, and his pet orangutan, Clyde. Philo meets a country singer that he falls in love with Lynn Halsey-Taylor (Sondra Locke). Everything is going well until she mysteriously disappears. Philo travels to her hometown in Colorado to confess his love for her, but not without angering a biker gang called the Black Widows along the way. Now when we would expect this to turn into Dirty Harry, it plays out a lot more like The Three Stooges. If you’re looking for a hilarious, action-packed film, this is a good choice.
Hells Angels on Wheels is the story of a gas-station attendant named Poet (played by Jack Nicholson) and his introduction to a notorious biker gang, the Hells Angels. Poet meets the Angels when he is involved in a motorcycle accident with them. Poet, who is a bit thick-headed, demands the Angels pay him back. While he would normally be treated to a gang-wide beating, the leader, Buddy (Adam Rourke), says they will compensate Poet. He just needs to help them a little bit.
Little does Poet know that “a little help” sometimes involves murder. Poet becomes an official prospect after he proves himself worthy of the Angels, but gets himself into trouble when he meets Buddy’s girlfriend and falls for her. In the end, the two go head-to-head, but only one will survive.
The Wild Oneis considered to be one of the first films looking at the American biker outlaw. And, in our eyes, one of the best motorcycle movies! Of course, it stars Marlon Brando in one of his most iconic performances as Johnny Strabler, leader of the Black Rebels Motorcycle Club. Johnny and his gang of rebels are the resident “tough guys” in town until a rival gang, the Beetles, come to challenge them.
Brando simultaneously falls for a young woman who just so happens to be a local police officer’s daughter. Watch as Johnny and his gang balance the on-going love story in between bouts of gang violence and general mayhem.
The Wild Angels is a landmark film for biker culture because it was the first to put actor Peter Fonda on a Harley Davidson. Fonda plays Hells Angels chapter president, “Heavenly Blues”, opposite Nancy Sinatra as his girlfriend, Mike.
After a scuffle with a local Mexican gang, Blues and his gang attempt to evade police, but one of their own, “The Loser”, is shot and taken to a hospital. Blues and the Angels devise a way to break him out of the hospital and get back on the road, but things don’t go according to plan.
The World’s Fastest Indianis a New Zealand biopic following the life of infamous speed bike racer Burt Munro, played by Anthony Hopkins. The movie follows Munro’s story from small-town motorcycle hero to his introduction to America.
Munro saves up enough money as a young man to board a cargo ship headed for Los Angeles to achieve his dream at the Bonneville Speedway. But things don’t go quite as smoothly as he would have hoped. Accompany Munro on his journey through the trials and tribulations of an uncertain entry to a new world, and his eventual rise to the top.
TT 3D: Closer to the Edgeis a British documentary showing the exploits of TT riders Ian Hutchinson and Guy Martin. More specifically, it showcases the dedication and commitment needed for riders to participate in the Isle of Man’s TT race every year.
The film is narrated by Jared Leto. It’s shown in 3D, following races as they prepare and participate in the TT race. It also features Bridget Dobbs, a widow of one of the riders who died during the race that year. It is an emotional look at the dedication and love these riders have for their sport.
Riding Solo to the Top of the Worldis a documentary. It is filmed by and stars Gaurav Jani as he journeys on the Chang Pas in India. This trail is one of the most treacherous motorcycle trails in the world. And Jani travels it alone on his Royal Enfield Bullet motorcycle.
Watch as Jani tests his endurance and his sanity against himself and the world in this solo adventure. This film is a true testament to what riding a motorcycle can teach you about the world and about yourself.
Easy Rider has got to be one of the most iconic films of all time. And certainly one of the most iconic motorcycle films. It is the story of Wyatt and Billy; two drug smugglers who have just sold off a load of cocaine in California. Played by Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper, respectfully, who also wrote and directed the film. They’re headed to New Orleans to have some fun at Mardi Gras… when they get arrested. And then they meet George Hanson (played by Jack Nicholson).
The three go on some adventures and do some hard-partying before their outlaw ways finally catch up with them. This film was an integral part of the counter-culture movie scene in the late ’60s and early ’70s. And it was also a huge success, grossing over 60 million dollars from a budget less than $50,000.
On Any Sunday is a documentary directed by Bruce Brown. It features the intense skills and determination needed to participate in motorcycle racing. The film shows the different approaches and mentalities towards the world of racing. It was partially funded by Steve McQueen, popularly known as “The King of Cool”, who was an actor and motorcycle enthusiast.
It features professional and famous riders like Mert Lawwill and Malcolm Smith. It’s very widely regarded as perhaps the most important film about motorcycles. It is also credited for popularizing BMX riding across America. Because it was the first major film to show it on screen, as featured in the opening sequence.
The Best of the Best Motorcycle Movies
What do you think of our list of the best motorcycle movies? There are so many amazing motorcycle films, we, unfortunately, don’t have the time to list them all. But we definitely think we hit some of the best motorcycle movies! Let us know if there were any that you think should have been on the list.
Also, make sure to watch these with all the motorcycle lovers in your life! We’d hate to think that there was a whole generation of riders who had never seen a classic like Easy Rider or The Wild Angels! And, assuming you love your bikes… be sure to look at our list of these awesome custom paint jobs!
We’re not always so gentle with our ATV’s. You bring it out on the trail, cover it in mud, run it ragged until it’s out of gas and then bring it home to hose off in the backyard. It’s a good life for us, but it’s hard on your ATV. We treat them pretty rough, but deep down, we love our ATV’s and we want to take good care of them. That includes the off-season as well, which is why it’s so important to find a good cover for your ATV.
With so many different materials and types of covers on the market, it’s difficult to know what features are worth your money and which ones are better left for those who didn’t do their research. Luckily we did the research for you, so keep reading to find out all of the things you should be looking for in your ATV cover.
Do I Really Need an ATV Cover?
An ATV cover might seem like one of those superfluous accessories. It’s a nice thing to have, but not entirely necessary, right? Well, if you don’t have a cover, your ATV will still work, but the purpose of a cover is all about protection.
If you leave your ATV outside in the off-season, or even during the season, your biggest enemy is always the elements. Depending on where you live, rain or direct sun exposure is the real killer. For some of us, it’s both. Your cover is your ATV’s first line of protection against the weather.
Types of ATV Covers
While you can find a variety of different materials and features for ATV covers, they are divided into two basic categories: indoor and outdoor.
Indoor covers are usually made from a softer material like cotton or nylon. They are not usually UV resistant, and because of the materials that are used, they are rarely water-resistant. The primary use for an indoor cover is to keep dust off of your ATV. The real advantage over outdoor covers is that they are made from breathable material. This allows air to flow freely around the cover and your ATV and reduces the opportunity for mold and mildew to form.
Outdoor covers are built to handle just about everything from light rain, to relentless UV ray exposure and even snow. They are made from a few different materials that are generally better at protecting your ATV from extreme nature. Canvas, micro fiber, PVC, and Tyvek are the most common materials used, and each offers different benefits. They range in effectiveness between water-resistant and waterproof, so make sure you know!
Canvas is a good general material. It’s tough and water-resistant, but not waterproof.
Microfiber is very soft, and it offers breathability that other outdoor materials don’t, but it is not as tough.
PVC is the material you want if the water is your main concern, but you should keep in mind that it is not effective at deterring UV rays.
Tyvek is one of the best all-around materials. It’s breathable, water-resistant and UV-resistant.
The Mark of a Good ATV Cover
So now that we know a little bit about the different kinds of covers and the materials they’re made of, let’s talk about the features that make the best covers.
Elastic hem at the bottom of the cover’s fabric edges should be the first thing you look for in a cover. The elastic hem keeps the cover pulled down and in place. This way the wind isn’t going to blow it away, and more importantly, it won’t blow it upwards allowing dust and debris to get under the cover.
This is going to be your mark for a very durable ATV cover. If you don’t know much about stitching seams, follow us as we get a little lost in the weeds. A plain seam is just a seam sewn between two pieces of fabric on the raw edges. Double-stitched seams simply add an additional seam to give the material enhanced durability. This is going to keep your cover from fraying and falling apart easily over time.
Durable Water Repellant
Durable Water Repellant, or DWR, is a synthetic coating added to ATV cover materials (or really just about anything) to make them hydrophobic, or water-resistant. Please remember that there is a difference between water-proof and water-resistant, so figure out what you need and make sure your cover complies.
Breathable fabrics are important for your indoor-covers. It protects your ATV against mold and mildew by allowing moisture to freely flow in and out of the cover. It is important for your outdoor covers as well. The outdoors are always more extreme, and moisture that causes mold inside causes rust outside.
You need to keep your body protected from overexposure to UV rays, and the same is true for your ATV. Too much exposure to the sun causes your ATV to look faded. That includes the paint, the chrome, and all of the other finishes on your ATV. While a faded-looking ATV doesn’t seem like the worst fate, it opens the door for worse events. Like paint chipping, heat damage, and discoloration.
You’re Now a Certified ATV-Cover Expert!
Rejoice, you’ve graduated from ATV Cover University! You now have the knowledge to wade through all of the subpar covers to find one that’s actually worth your money! You love your ATV as much as we love ours. So go out and get an ATV cover to protect your baby! Keep it safe for many years to come. And if you’re curious about some other ATV accessories you may find useful, check out this blog!
Everything Motorcycle Enthusiasts Need to Know About 3-Wheeled Motorcycles
It seems like every year 3-wheeled motorcycles, also known as trikes, get more and more popular. Manufacturers like Harley Davidson, Polaris, Can-Am, and Honda have taken notice and are producing more models with bigger improvements.
Maybe you’ve been wondering what all the fuss is about, or maybe you’re considering getting one for yourself. Well, we have just the thing for you! A buyer’s guide for the world of 3-wheeled motorcycles.
So how can you enjoy an open-air vehicle while feeling a little safer? A 3-wheeled motorcycle, of course! What exactly does that offer over a traditional motorcycle, though?
Increased Visibility – This is probably the most important factor. According to The Hurt Report published in 1981, a large portion of motorcycle accidents involve riders who aren’t visible to other vehicles on the highway. Trikes are much wider and larger than traditional bikes, closer to the size of a small car. This makes their visibility much higher to other drivers and riders alike.
Increased Stability – This is a bit obvious, but worth mentioning. The cause of many accidents are riders who lack control over their vehicles. People lack confidence. They target fixate, counter-steer far too little and end up on the pavement. The stability and traction control also makes it a great choice for older riders who might not have the leg strength to hold up their hog at a red light these days.
Easier Handling – Counter-steering on a motorcycle is a bit unintuitive for folks who have never ridden before, but is picked up with by muscle memory in less than a week of riding. It’s not the counter-steering that’s difficult, but rather the commitment to the corner, leaning, and looking to where you want to go. Controlling your trike is as easy as pushing your handlebars one way or the other. It’s easy handling for the riders who need it and a fun and comfortable ride for everybody. No matter your experience, less wheel slippage is definitely a good thing.
The Best 3-Wheeled Motorcycles
The world of 3-wheeled motorcycles isn’t always as expensive as their 2-wheeled cousins. But here are some of our favorite hot rod trikes from a few of our favorite manufacturers.
Polaris Slingshot SL
One of the most popular options for trikes and the one you probably see on the road most often is the Slingshot SL. The GM Ecotec 2.4L DOHC 4 Cylinder engine under the hood gives this beauty 173 horsepower at peak performance. The wheelbase at heart 105” gives you all the control you could ever ask for without sacrificing any of the power.
Anti-lock braking systems and traction control both come standard on the Slingshot SL, and all of the lights are LED for maximum visibility. All of this, and you still got all of the luxuries you could want in a personal vehicle like a 7” touch-screen (with glove touch technology of course) and a 200-watt Rockford Fosgate audio system for your favorite tunes.
The Can-Am Ryker is another quality option when looking through available 3-wheeled motorcycles. It has two engine options, the Rotax® 600 ACE™ in-line 2 cylinders, liquid-cooled with electronic fuel injection and electronic throttle control. As well as the Rotax® 900 ACE™ in-line 3 cylinders, liquid-cooled with electronic fuel injection and electronic throttle control, giving 50 HP and 83 HP respectively.
The Ryker is a little more stripped down than the Slingshot. It does not include an audio system and it is built for a single rider. But it has all of the high-tech features you want in the controls. Standard features for the Ryker include anti-lock brakes, traction control systems, and Hill Hold Control. In order to counteract wheel slip on steep inclines.
A new-comer to the world of trikes, the Yamaha Niken is the perfect pick for riders who want safer handing in their bike but don’t want to give up the traditional motorcycle feel. The Nyken has an 847cc liquid-cooled, DOHC, inline 3-cylinder engine and a 6-speed transmission. The most notable feature of this trike is the incredibly unique Leaning Multi-Wheel chassis. The two front wheels lean in unison. This gives you the stability of a trike with the riding style of a standard motorcycle. It allows for better handling and increased stopping power, it’s the perfect trike for seasoned motorcycle riders.
Of course, Yamaha didn’t skip on the awesome electronics. Nikens come with a high-contrast LCD display you can easily see in daylight. It also includes adjustable traction control so you never lose traction, and even a cruise control system.
Excellence on 3 Wheels
3-wheeled motorcycles aren’t for everybody, but it’s a great option to have for folks who can’t ride motorcycles for any given reason. Whether you got bad knees and can’t hold up the hog like you used to, or maybe you’re just getting into the world of open-air vehicles.
No matter the circumstances, 3-wheeled motorcycles (aka trikes) is a great option. If you’ve got a trike-curious person in your life, show them this article, and tell ‘em TMS sent ya!