Touring on your motorcycle is one of the most gratifying forms of biking. You get to see the world, ride your bike and get away from the humdrum of everyday life. It is a win-win situation for every motorcyclist.
Which is why in India we see so many motorcyclists throwing a leg over the saddle and disappearing into the distance. As with any other sport, having the right equipment makes the entire experience significantly more enjoyable.
There are riders who tour on sports bikes rather than dedicated touring motorcycles. A few decades back, bikers had no access to proper touring equipment and would make do with bits and bobs stolen from the mother’s cupboard and the father’s toolkit!
Life is different today, as we have significantly more and better options for all our riding gear. Boots being no exception.
If you are wondering about ‘how to choose your motorcycle boots’, then check out our blog. We often get the question, why invest in waterproof riding boots in India? Does it really help with our overall enjoyment of riding a bike?
Valid questions. You need to ask yourself these questions. And figure out whether waterproof boots for riding is required for you.
Challenges of touring in the rain
There’s an old motorcycling adage which goes, ‘if you don’t ride in the rain, you don’t ride’! That statement may or may not be entirely correct. But the truth is that, if you go touring, at some point of time you are going to ride through wet conditions.
Being prepared, is half the battle won. Since, touring provides a host of challenges like:
Nervousness: The first thing to hit the rider is a case of the nerves. Being inundated by the heavens from above can make most new riders contemplate pulling to the side of the road and stopping.
Reduced Traction: Reduced traction of the road surface is one of the biggest challenges.
Low Visibility: All road users experience reduced visibility. That includes you, the rider, and drivers who may find it hard to see you.
Wet Clothes: Riding in the wet ensures everything you are wearing is soaked. Being wet for prolonged periods of time is uncomfortable and takes away the joy of motorcycling.
Wet Luggage: Your luggage is exposed to the elements as well and you reach your destination to know that even your fresh dry clothes in your bag isn’t dry anymore!
Road Hazards: Small potholes, mud and other objects on the road can become lethal for motorcyclists in the rain.
Foot Slippage: One of the most irritating and dangerous experiences for riders in the rain is, their shoes slipping off the foot pegs. Waterproof boots for riding help considerably in this regard.
Riding in the rain is significantly more challenging and dangerous than motorcycle touring on dry roads. To overcome these increased challenges, we need to prepare with waterproof riding gear, luggage and boots.
Wet Feet are Bad for Health & Comfort
Dry feet are the only ‘happy feet’ when motorcycling in wet conditions.
Having your feet soaking wet for extended periods of time is harmful and uncomfortable.
Foot Sores: Wet socks and shoes will increase the friction between your foot and the shoe. The constant friction causes sores and blisters on your feet.
Athlete’s Foot: It was prevalent amongst athletes. Which is where it got its name. This is caused by dampness of the foot for long periods of time. The dampness is a perfect breeding ground for bacteria and fungus. If not taken care of soon, it can spread and take considerable time to get rid of.
Trench Foot: Soldiers earlier would wear wet boots and spend days and weeks in the trenches. Being exposed to the cold and wet conditions caused havoc on their feet, resulting in this being named ‘Trench Foot’. In this case, the nerves, skin and blood vessels are damaged due to over exposure to the cold. Recovery is long and painful. In worst case, the damage to your feet can be permanent.
Frostbite: Riders who tour in the Himalayas might experience this. This is a real danger. Extremely low temperatures coupled with wet feet results in frostbite. Severity of frostbite varies, depending on the duration and extent of exposure. In extreme situations their even amputate the toes. When it is beyond rehabilitation.
Benefits of Buying Waterproof Riding Boots
Going motorcycle touring without waterproof boots for riding is at best uncomfortable and at worst a health hazard. Waterproof riding boots in India are slightly more expensive than regular boots. But if you spend a decent amount of time touring, then it is well worth the extra rupees you spend.
Dry Feet: The biggest and most obvious benefit of the best waterproof riding boots is that you ride with dry feet. Having wet feet while riding your motorcycle is extremely uncomfortable.
Hygiene: Leaving your wet shoes overnight and wearing them again in the morning becomes a vicious circle. You end up not having dry footwear for days on end.
Durable: Water spoils pretty much every material in the long run. Water filled up inside your boots, will spoil the insides of your riding boots as well. The best waterproof riding boots keep the boot dry from the inside, which reduces spoilage and increases durability.
Anti-Slip: Waterproof boots for riding are built for wet conditions. As such, such boots will definitely have an anti-slip sole as well. This helps you ride more securely with less chances of your feet sliding off the pegs. Even walking becomes safer with anti-slip soles.
Prevent Foot Diseases: Riding with wet feet continuously has major health downsides. Waterproof boots will help prevent foot diseases.
Warmth: If you are riding in the mountains, then dry feet aren’t just good for preventing foot diseases. Dry feet also help you stay warm, as the temperature plummets. This benefit of buying waterproof riding boots is worth its weight in gold!
Hassle Free Stream Crossings: When crossing streams on your motorcycle, as is common in Ladakh road trips, waterproof boots for riding are a boon. As you can splash through without worrying.
Enjoy Your Motorcycle Tour: There are many things you need to worry about when touring on Indian roads. When riding in the monsoons, having waterproof boots, leaves one less thing to worry about. Making your tour all the more enjoyable.
Night Troubles: If your riding shoes are soaked at the end of the day of riding. You spend half the night drying out your shoes. Stuffing in newspaper, taking it out, filling in fresh dry paper. This repeats on loop till infinity! Having dry shoes is one less task at the end of your ride.
Helpful in Commuting: While waterproof riding boots in India really shine when you go touring. Even for commutes it can be helpful. Especially if you live in coastal regions which sees regular rain for months.
To Buy or Not to Buy? That’s the Question!
The best waterproof riding boots in India cost more than regular boots. Orazo’s waterproof boots for riding also cost more than their water-resistant line up.
If you tour a lot on your motorcycle, then there are huge benefits of buying waterproof riding boots. Your feet will thank you for investing that little bit extra, to keep them dry, safe and happy!
Here’s wishing you Happy Feet on all your motorcycle adventures…