In this guide, we’ll cover everything from what gear you need to how to find the best campsites.
Motorcycle camping is a great way to see the country and explore the outdoors. It's also a lot of fun! But if you're new to motorcycle camping, it can be a bit daunting. There's a lot to think about, from what kind of gear you'll need to how to set up your campsite.
Don't worry, we're here to help. In this guide, we'll walk you through everything you need to know about motorcycle camping, from packing your bike to choosing the perfect campsite. We've even included some tips on what to do in case of emergency. So whether you're a seasoned camper or just getting started, this guide will help you plan the perfect motorcycle camping trip.
Motorcycle camping is essentially just like camping, but with a motorcycle instead of a car. This means packing light and being prepared to camp in more primitive conditions than car campers may be used to. However, don’t let that deter you – motorcycle camping can be a great way to see more of the country and enjoy some time outdoors.
1. You can get to places you can't get to with a car.
One of the best things about camping with motorcycle is that it allows you to get off the beaten path and explore places you wouldn't be able to get to with a car. If you want to camp near a river but the only campsites are on the other side of a mountain, no problem! Just strap your tent to your bike and go for it.
2. Motorcycles are more fuel-efficient than cars, so you can save money while you camp.
Another great thing about motorcycle camping is that it's affordable. Motorcycles are much more fuel-efficient than cars, so you'll save money every time you hit the open road. Plus, if you're traveling solo, you won't have to worry about splitting gas expenses with anyone else.
3. You can carry more gear on a motorcycle than you can on your back, so you don't have to skimp on creature comforts.
If you've ever gone backpacking, then you know that every ounce counts when it comes to packing your bags. But when you're packing for a motorcycle camping trip, there's no need to skimp on creature comforts! You can bring along all your favorite camping gear without having to worry about carrying it on your back—just strap it down and hit the road.
4. You'll make new friends!
One of the best things about motorcycles is the strong sense of community among riders. When you go camping with other motorcyclists, chances are good that you'll make some new friends who share your love of adventure (and maybe even convince them to try out motorcycle camping for themselves!)
5. Camping by motorcycle lets experiencing nature in an up-close-and-personal way that's not possible when driving a car.
There's something special about experiencing nature from the seat of a motorcycle. When you're driving down country roads with nothing but trees and fields around you, it's easy to feel like part of the landscape instead of just an observer passing through it . And when it comes time to set up camp for the night , there's nothing like parking your bike next to your tent and knowing that everything around is absolutely silent except for the sound of crickets chirping in the distance.
Now that you know the benefits of motorcycle camping, it's time to go through our moto camping gear list. Let's take a closer look at each one:
One of the best parts about motorcycle camping is that it gives you the freedom to explore. You can go where you want, when you want – and all you need is your bike and some basic camping gear. But not just any bike will do.
The first thing to consider is what kind of terrain you'll be covering. If you're mostly sticking to paved roads, then any kind of street-legal motorcycle will do. But if you're planning on doing some off-roading, then you'll need a bike that's designed for that purpose. Adventure motorcycles like the BMW R1200GS or the KTM 1190 Adventure are good choices, as they're built for both on and off-road riding. Just keep in mind that these bikes can be expensive, so it's important to make sure that motorcycle camping is something you'll actually enjoy before making such a substantial investment.
Another thing to consider is how much gear you'll need to bring along. If you're planning on doing some long-distance touring, then you'll need a motorcycle with plenty of storage space. Motorcycles like the Honda Goldwing or the Yamaha Star Venture are great choices for touring, as they come equipped with large saddlebags and top boxes for storing all your gear. On the other hand, if you're only planning on bringing along a few essentials, then a smaller bike like a Ducati Monster or a Kawasaki Ninja might be a better choice.
Finally, think about what kind of budget you have to work with. Luxury bikes like the BMW K1600GT or the Harley-Davidson CVO Limited can cost upwards of $30,000 – which is fine if money is no object. But if you're working with a more limited budget, there are still plenty of great options out there. Bikes like the Suzuki V-Strom 650 or the Honda NC700X are both very capable motorcycles that won't break the bank.
Related: Best Motorcycle For Camping
The second item on our motorcycle camping gear list is a tent. When choosing a tent for motorcycle camping, however, there are a few things you'll need to keep in mind. First, since you're limited in space, you'll want to choose a smaller tent—one that's big enough for you and your gear, but not so big that it's cumbersome to set up or take down. Second, since you're likely to encounter all sorts of weather on your trip, you'll want a tent that's made from waterproof and breathable fabric. And finally, since weight is always an issue when packing for a motorcycle trip, you'll want to choose a lighter-weight tent whenever possible.
If you plan on doing any off-road riding, then a four-season tent is a good option. These tents are designed to withstand high winds and heavy rain. They typically have more poles than three-season tents, which makes them more sturdy in bad weather. However, they are also heavier and more expensive. Three-season tents are a good choice for most motorcycle campers. They are lighter weight and usually cost less than four-season tents.
If you're not sure where to start, check out this blog post for the list of the best motorcycle camping tents.
Another essential motorcycle camping gear is a sleeping bag. Again, since weight and space are at a premium when camping with motorcycle, you'll want to choose a sleeping bag that's lightweight and compact. Down sleeping bags are usually the best choice in this regard, as they're lighter and more compressible than synthetic bags. However, down bags don't perform well in wet conditions, so if you're planning on camping in wet weather, synthetic might be the way to go. Whichever type of bag you choose, be sure to pick one that's rated for the coldest temperature you think you might encounter on your trip.
A sleeping pad is optional but it can add comfort to your sleeping setup. If you plan only car camp or you will be carrying your sleeping gear on your bike, then size and weight are not as important considerations and you can choose any type of pad you like. If you plan on backpacking with your gear, then choose a lightweight pad such as an inflatable mattress or foam mat. We highly recommend getting our UL80 Inflatable Sleeping Pad if you're not sure which one to buy. It is super light and can be easily packed on your bike, making it perfect for motorcycle camping.
If you're planning on doing any cooking while on your motorcycle camping trip, you'll need some basic cooking gear. This includes things like pots and pans (preferably lightweight aluminum or titanium), utensils, plates and bowls (preferably plastic or other durable materials), and some kind of portable stove. If you're only planning on doing simple cooking like heating up canned soup or making sandwiches, then a camp stove might not be necessary—a small campfire will do the trick. But if you're looking to do more serious cooking, then an portable stove is a must-have. Just be sure to pack plenty of fuel—propane tanks for gas stoves or charcoal for campfires—to last the duration of your trip.
Not sure what kind of cookware to bring? Check out this list of the best motorcycle camping cookware.
A lantern is essential for evening activities such as cooking dinner or playing cards around the campfire. LED lanterns are a good choice as they are bright and lightweight. Solar lanterns are another option; just make sure to charge them during the day so they will be ready to use at night.
When you’re out in the middle of nowhere on your motorcycle, the last thing you want is to be stranded with a broken down bike. That’s why it’s important to always have a repair kit on hand. Here’s what you should include in yours.
Tire repair kit: A must-have for any biker, a tire repair kit includes patch kits, an air pump, and everything else you need to fix a flat.
Chain lube and cleaner: A clean and well-lubricated chain will prolong the life of your drivetrain and make your ride smoother. Be sure to pack some chain lube and cleaner in your kit.
Multi-tool: A multi-tool is an essential piece of gear for every biker. It can be used for making adjustments on the go, tightening bolts, and a host of other tasks. Be sure to get one that includes a set of allen wrenches, screwdrivers, and a knife blade.
Spare parts: Depending on the type of bike you have, you may want to pack some spare parts like brake pads, cables, and fuses. It’s always better to be safe than sorry!
Not sure what to include in your tool kit or repair kit? Check out this list of essential tools and repair items for motorcycle camping.
• Clothes for both warm and cold weather conditions, including rain gear.
• Sturdy boots or shoes.
• A first-aid kit including supplies for any medical conditions you may have.
• Toiletries including toilet paper, biodegradable soap, and a toothbrush/toothpaste.
• A map of the area where you’ll be riding and camping
• A cell phone in case of emergency.
After getting all the essential gear, the next step in planning any motorcycle camping trip is packing your bike. You'll need to pack both your personal gear and your camping gear, and you'll want to make sure everything is secure and easy to access. Here are a few tips for packing your bike for a motorcycle camping trip:
- Use soft bags instead of hard cases. Soft bags are less likely to scratch your bike and they're easier to strap down.
- Try to keep your personal gear light. Remember, you'll be carrying everything on your bike, so you don't want to overpack. Bring only the essentials, such as a change of clothes and toiletries.
- When packing your camping gear, remember that space is limited. Choose compact items that serve multiple purposes, such as a tent that doubles as a sleeping bag or a camp stove that also charges your cell phone.
- Make sure everything is securely strapped down. Nothing is worse than having your belongings fall off your bike while you're riding! Use bungee cords or ratchet straps to secure everything in place.
(Tip: If possible, pack heavier items on the bottom and lighter items on top so that your bike stays balanced.)
This may seem like common sense, but it is important to map out your route before you leaving. This way you will have an idea of where you are going and can plan accordingly. If possible, try to find a friend or family member who is familiar with the area and can give you some tips on where to go. If not, there are plenty of resources online that can help you plan your route.
When on a motorcycle, it is always important to avoid taking risks. This means no speeding, no driving under the influence, and no driving in bad weather conditions. These risks can put you and your passengers in danger. Not to mention, you have to obey all traffic laws and be aware of your surroundings at all times. Additionally, you should remember to take breaks often. This will help you stay alert and refreshed for the rest of the journey. It is also a good idea to stop at least every two hours to stretch your legs and take in some fresh air.
If you're looking for the perfect mix of comfort and convenience, look no further than Iron Horse Campground in Sturgis, South Dakota. This family-owned campground is just minutes away from some of the most scenic riding routes in the country. And when you're not exploring the Black Hills on your motorcycle, you can take advantage of the campground's many amenities, including a swimming pool, laundry facilities, and a general store.
For those who love nothing more than getting away from it all, Beartooth Basin is the perfect choice. This remote campground is situated on the Montana/Wyoming border and offers breathtaking views of the Beartooth Mountains. There are no hookups or showers at this primitive campground, but there are plenty of beautiful hiking trails to explore and ample opportunities for fishing and wildlife watching.
Related: 5 Best Motorcycle Campgrounds In The US
Located in Kamloops, British Columbia, Madtrailz is the perfect place for those who want to explore all that BC has to offer. With over 200 miles of trails and breathtaking scenery, you’ll never get bored at Madtrailz. And when you’re ready to call it a day, relax by the campfire or take a dip in their on-site pool.
Nestled in the heart of Alberta’s Rocky Mountains, Wild Rose Country Campground offers some of the most incredible views in all of Canada. With over 100 miles of trails to explore and plenty of amenities on-site, Wild Rose is perfect for motorcyclists of all levels of experience.
The first stop on our list is Lenchford Meadow Campsite, located in stunning Shropshire. This campsite is adjacent to the River Severn, making it a perfect spot for fishing, swimming, or just relaxing by the water. There are also plenty of walking and biking trails nearby, perfect for exploring the area on foot or by bike. And of course, there are plenty of spots for pitching a tent or parking your RV. Lenchford Meadow Campsite is truly a paradise for anyone who loves the outdoors.
The second stop on our list is Summerhill Campsite, located in beautiful North Yorkshire. This campsite is situated within walking distance of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, making it the perfect spot for nature lovers. There are also plenty of walking and biking trails nearby, as well as numerous opportunities for fishing, swimming, and canoeing. Whether you're looking to relax in nature or explore everything that the UK has to offer, Summerhill Campsite is sure to please.
With the right planning and preparation, motorcycle camping can be an enjoyable experience for both novice and experienced campers alike . By following the tips in this guide , you can ensure that your next motorcycle camping trip is one to remember—for all the right reasons!
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