First and foremost, I need to protect my noggin from wind, bugs, rain and, hopefully not, the eventual crash, so I am obviously taking my helmet along. It is an AGV Sport-modular that I bought at the beginning of 2019. It’s a light, full-carbon sport-touring helmet. I have already ridden in it for over 5000 km in the tour of the Baltic countries. Our first stint together, however, has not been a good start to our relationship, as the top vent suffered a catastrophic failure that required me to tape it shut with some stickers. I hope the 3 months it took AGV to get the damn thing fixed will be worth it and I will not be facing any more issues on the other side of the freaking planet.
The riding suit is the Dainese D-Explorer Gore-tex and, it now needs to be added, 1. That’s because, two months after I bought my new touring suit, Dainese decided they wanted to launch the D-Explorer Gore-tex 2. Anyways, let me tell you, firstly, why I chose this suit and, secondly, why I think I would still buy it even after the second variant was launched. In my books, the D-Explorer (1) is one of the last true all-season motorcycle touring suits. Due to its extreme modularity, you can easily be comfortable riding it in the heat, the cold or the rain.
The suit breaks down into three layers: the outer shell, also carrying all the protections, the waterproof, Gore-tex, layer and the thermal layer. You can configure it in any way you need, depending on the weather conditions you are riding through. Needless to say, the jacket and trousers come already fitted with all the protections, including the back protector. The second variant of this suit takes away from the modularity, having the waterproof layer permanently laminated to the outer shell. I don’t really dig that, since all the air that cools you down needs to find its way through the Gore-tex before reaching your skin. It boasts some really nice colors, tho.
I already used the suit in the Baltic tour in temperatures ranging from 3 to 25 degrees C. No matter how hot or cold it got, I managed to find a suit configuration that was appropriate for the temperature. The only drawback I found was that, even though the waterproof layer is Gore-tex, I still had some rain making its way through the suit on the last day of the trip. My best guess is that I did not properly connect the jacket to the trousers.
But in order to make sure I stay dry, I am bringing along this next piece of kit – the rain suit. I know the waterproof layer in my suit is Gore-tex, I know it’s guaranteed to keep you dry for life, but I still think plastic is the best option for waterproofing your ride. Therefore, I got the cheapest plastic I could find at Polo Motorrad. It’s the DXR rain suit and, although it is the jacket in the picture, the color I have is a very striking neon green. Plain, simple, plastic suit that you can quickly put over your normal riding suit. Find your way through this, rain. Ha!
For the warm weather gloves, I chose the Dainese Mig C2. This was a no brainer for me. I have owned a pair of these gloves from the first day I sat on a motorcycle. I liked them so much that, after 2 years, when it came time to renew my gloves, I bought the exact same pair. They are short sleeve, leather gloves, with suede inserts on the palms for better grip. I have, fortunately enough, never had to test the rigid protections on the knuckles, but they are very comfortable while riding. The mesh inserts on the top of the hand provide enough ventilation to avoid sweaty hands, even with the hand guards on the GS taking some of the wind away.
Since we are in the glove department, it’s only fair I should mention the cold weather gloves. Unlike the ones above, the rain gloves have always been a pain in the ass to choose. I think I had already tried two types of gloves before settling for the ones I bought for this tour. The problem with cold weather gloves is that you need to find the perfect balance between the waterproof liner, the thickness of the thermal liner and the bulkiness of the gloves. Combine that with choosing the right size and you have a hassle on your hands. I ended up getting the Dainese Scout 2 Gore-tex. I haven’t tried them out before this ride. Not sure that’s a good idea, I mean, wearing something untried for 5000 clicks, but in the old ones, my hands were soaked after two hours of rain. Not cool!
Last, but not least, the boots – the TCX Baja Gore-tex. Rugged, tried, tested and generally bad-ass. I’ve ridden these babies through everything – sun, rain, fog, mud. I even took them to the beach. They never let me down and were very comfortable along the way. Not to mention that they look the part. Not saying these are the best adventure-touring boots, but I don’t want to hear of any others, if you catch my drift.
And that wraps up my Patagonia riding gear. As you have probably seen, I am a big fan of Gore-tex and even though I do not trust it enough to not bring along a dedicated waterproof suit, I still think it is the best choice.Oh, and I nearly forgot. I will always be wearing the full gear. Don’t ride in shorts. It’s plain stupid.
See you tomorrow, when I will be telling you about the base layers. Nobody talks about them, but they makes or break your ride. Keep sharp and make life a ride. Peace out!
P.S. The pillion just read the article before I published it and said it sounded like a commercial for the gear. It’s no commercial, I am not sponsored in any way, shape or form.
Thanks for reading and please consider subscribing to our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/motovlogro. The entire Patagonian adventure will be documented there. Until then, you can spice up your holidays with the English subtitled Baltic Tour adventure. Peace out!