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Motorcycle Touring Tips

Touring Tips from Pfaff Harley-Davidson®

Riders across the country embark on touring trips with their Harley-Davidson motorcycles. They hit the pavement and don’t stop until they reach a new city or state. Touring is a great way to explore the country, find adventures, and make the most of your motorcycle. We put together a guide to motorcycle touring to make your next trip as seamless as possible. For all your Harley motorcycle needs, visit Pfaff Harley-Davidson. We proudly serve those in and near Toronto, Ontario.

Planning Your Itinerary

A good touring trip starts with planning. Where do you want to take your Harley? Make a list of your must-see spots. Then figure out the best way to get there. Do you want the fastest route? Do you want country or nature views? Do you want to cut through the heart of downtown? There’s many routes you can take, so pick one that meets your travel style.

Now that you planned out your touring route, you can scope out meal locations along the way. Of course, you don’t need to plan every meal in advance. But it’s good to check that there aren’t any long stretches of time without food options. If there are, you’ll want to plan your meal before you hit that stretch. You’ll also want to plan the places you’ll stay. The farther in advance you book, the better deals you can find. Finally, you will want to plan breaks to give your body a rest from riding. Plan them around fun local places to eat meals or stop by scenic viewpoints.

Checking the Weather

Weather impacts your trip. It could affect the routes you take. An incoming thunderstorm could prevent you from riding one night. Blistering heat may keep you from riding in the afternoon. Bitterly cold winds may make riding in the evening unbearable. Remember too that you might feel fine embracing bad weather, but it could be harmful to your Harley to do so.

Weather can also affect what you wear. Adapt to rain with waterproof outer layers. If you layer on a hot day, you’ll spend your ride sweating uncomfortably. Taking a few minutes to check the weather before your trip, and the morning of each journey, will make your touring trip smoother.


You’ll need to bring all the essentials of a normal motorcycle ride: a first aid kit, a mini-tool kit, waterproof outer layers, gloves, eye protection, and a helmet. But you’ll also need to bring along the essentials of a long touring ride, like plenty of water and snacks. If you are spending the night somewhere, you’ll need enough clothes, toiletries, and medications. Your Harley-Davidson should be able to fit it all. But you can also purchase additional Harley saddlebags if you need more storage space for longer trips.

Pre-ride Inspection

All touring rides should begin by inspecting the Harley. A small issue with your bike now could become a big problem on the road. Check for anything out of the ordinary and get any issues addressed as soon as possible.

Begin with a tire pressure check. Use a tire pressure gauge to ensure the motorcycle’s tires are inflated per the owner’s manual guidelines. Examine the tread for wear. Check the levels of your oil and brake fluids. Test your brakes, clutch, and throttle in a low-traffic neighborhood. Examine the headlights, brake lights, and turn signals for visibility. Make sure your Harley is in good working condition before attempting a long trip.

If you discover your motorcycle needs maintenance before your touring trip, bring it to Pfaff Harley-Davidson. We proudly serve those in Toronto, Vaughan, Markham, and Newmarket, Ontario.