Posts in: latest-content

Latest content

Female keynote speaker UK – Vanessa Ruck

Vanessa Ruck – female keynote speaker UK

Vanessa is a motorcycle rider, Keynote Speaker and Influencer. As a female keynote speaker UK, she speaks passionately and authentically about the challenges of recovery from a life changing accident and making the most of every day. After being hit by a car while cycling in 2014, Vanessa’s world was turned upside down, resulting in 7 surgeries and a roller-coaster of mental and physical recovery spanning 7 years. Through her recovery she discovered motorcycles, becoming known as “The Girl On A Bike”.

the girl on a bike vanessa ruck keynote speaker uk
Vanessa Ruck keynote speaker UK

Helping Inspire Others to Make the Most of Each Day

Combining her ten-year career in marketing and her resilience for life, Vanessa has built a following of over 170,000. She now inspires others to get up and tackle the battles life throws at us with gratitude and happiness. Instead of adding to the sometimes-toxic social media landscape filled with ‘all so perfect’ lives, she’s real and honest, sharing the highs and the lows. Showing the strength needed to come out stronger against life’s curve-balls.

Vanessa is on a mission to show that nothing is impossible if you work hard enough, even as a slightly reconstructed person following the accident. Vanessa has successfully leveraged the power of social media, passionate storytelling and marketing to share her story and inspire others. She empowers others with the lessons she has learned through her emotional, thought provoking and highly engaging story.

​If we can pull her away from her bikes, she will bring an incredible energy to your speaking events – female keynote speaker in the UK – motivational speaker for pure resilience, determination and inspiration.

What the audience can expect

An exciting story of sports and challenges from the point of view of Vanessa, who as a fit and active individual with many passions was struck down by an easily avoidable accident and went on to find new ways of slaking her thirst for adventure by becoming “The Girl on a Bike”.

Presentation Approach

Vanessa speaks from the heart, and as such will take your audience on a journey of emotions. They will feel they are with her through the adversity and adventure alike and will come away from the presentation with a renewed vigour and outlook.

If you’re after a female keynote speaker UK please do get in touch.

Latest content

Top tips to starting motorcycle mechanics

Top tips to starting motorcycle mechanics

As a home learned dabbling mechanic I know how intimidating getting started on bike maintenance can be. However, doing our own work on the bikes can be in every ones reach! Here is some of my thoughts on starting motorcycle mechanics, some tips on how to make it easier, where to start, and ultimately just giving it ago. I really hope this gives you a little more confidence to try working on your motorbike yourself.

These are of course some of my ideas on how to get started but I’d love to hear from you on your advice for others? Also, what was the first job you ever did on your bike?

You can see the full video on starting motorcycle mechanics on my YouTube:

A few things to think about

  1. Realising that it’s okay not to know it all but the first step in learning is trying
  2. Key benefit for me is money saving but even more so when you do your maintenance you start to understand your bike, learning how it works and so when you’re out on the trail or road and have a failure, you’re more likely to be able to fix it yourself road side and get home
  3. Identify the first task, such as
    • Oil change
    • Fuel filter
    • Wheel bearings
    • Chain cleaning
    • Air filter
  4. Find your bike manual and see what info it gives
  5. Do you research, get online and google it, find YouTube how tos, look for instructions on how to
  6. Make some notes as you go through the above and have them with you
  7. If you have a friend or loved one who knows how to do it, ask if they can supervise you [not essential]
  8. Give it a go, take it slow and follow the steps you’ve read

Tips

  • Keep your work surfaces clear and tidy. Organisation
  • Work out ahead what tools you might need, or might not have. Such as specialty clutch plate holding tool or torque values
  • Dedicated enough time to the task without distractions, less likely to forget a sequence or procedure.
  • Labels / making carboard frames for remembering where things go
  • Take photos of the process as you go so you can remember, such as wire looms and hoses, helps you appreciate / remember what they’re rooted through
  • Get into a good routine of washing your bike after a ride, gives you time to visually check your bike over and spot issue before they arise. Lose bolts, play in places it shouldn’t be, damage from the ride.

Remember, you have a few scenarios…but the bike maintenance needs doing, that’s a fact

  1. You pay a garage to do it – costs money
  2. You try yourself and fail, you take to a garage – cost money but you’ve learned something in the progress and no damage done – try again next time
  3. Do nothing…bike breaks – costs money
  4. You try yourself and success – saves money and you learn

Don’t be afraid to give it ago. You won’t learning it over night but it’s a journey.

If I can do it, you can do it.

If you’re new to my page – it’s more than just dirt bike riding and racing, I’m on a mission to prove that nothing is impossible if you want it bad enough. See more about my story plus read about my life changing accident, which started it all.

You can find me Vanessa, The Girl On A Bike over on InstagramFacebookLinkedIn and YouTube, and www.thegirlonabike.com.

Latest content

Solo female Atlantic rower – Emma Wolstenholme

Solo female Atlantic rower – Emma Wolstenholme

Who’s that bad ass blonde I hear you ask? I’d like to introduce Emma Wolstenholme – my best friend and the most capable female I know. But why?

Emma is gearing up to row solo across the Atlantic Ocean on a mission to raise money for the Royal Air Force Air Cadets while beating the Guinness World Records for a female solo cross Atlantic row.

Yes you read that right! Solo…Atlantic…and row!

emma wolstenholme atlantic solo row air cadets 1
emma wolstenholme atlantic solo row air cadets 1

She’s on a mission to show that anything is possible when you put your mind to it and given my history with the accident I 100% align to her kick ass energy.

If you want to support Emma with her adventure please do head to her JustGiving page – if you’re a fan of aviation, action and adventure, love sports and getting to know people then you’d absolutely love the Air Cadets and what they do [100% of donations go to them].

Her goal is to raise £80k to celebrate the 80th Anniversary for Air Cadets. If you can spare the change in your pocket or something more it would mean the world to me. And I hope you know that I do not make a habit to ask for money, this really is something from my heart and Emma is a total bad ass who’s going to make this happen!

Stay tuned as Emma is going to be taking me rowing too… #thegirlonaboat anyone?

If you think I’m a little crazy you should follow Emma – Atlantic Roar

Please donate here to support Emma the female Atlantic rower:

https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/soloatlanticrow…

Current big sponsors: Lockheed Martin

Latest content

Top ten tools – my must have tools as a motorcycle rider and mechanic

Top ten must have tools as a motorcycle rider and mechanic

As a home-taught dabbling mechanic I’ve picked up knowledge and tricks as I’ve gone along, including my favourite top ten tools. 5 years ago I wouldn’t have been able to change my oil, do wheel bearings, change cams and rods on my Harley or even change a tyre – let alone change it in 4m22seconds. But with my post accident discovery of bikes I’ve been on a mission to learn and grow my mind and capabilities.

The girl on a Bike top ten tools motorcycle mechanic teng tools
Here are my top ten tools as a motorcycle mechanic

Being quite honest, we would not be able to do the riding we do without putting in the time to do the maintenance ourselves. It’s just a bit too expensive for us to pay a garage.

So as time’s gone on I’ve learned what my top ten must have favourite tools are. Here’s the list. Let me know what you think and what tools are in your must have list? Anything you swear by I’ve missed?

This is just a list – to understand why I love each of these head to my YouTube for the full video – my top ten tools:
1. T bar
2. Speed brace
3. Torque wench [details here + video here]
4. Rabaconda
5. Wire lock pliers
6. CTEK Battery Chargers [available here]
7. Multi-meter
8. Ratchet spanners [available here]
9. Socket adapters [available here]
10. Bearing puller [available here]

See this list on Amazon: https://www.amazon.co.uk/shop/thegirlonabike

This is part of my Garage Life mini series:

If you’re new to my page – it’s more than just dirt bike riding and racing, I’m on a mission to prove that nothing is impossible if you want it bad enough. See more about my story plus read about my life changing accident, which started it all.

You can find me Vanessa, The Girl On A Bike over on InstagramFacebookLinkedIn and YouTube, and www.thegirlonabike.com.

Latest content

CTEK CS Free adventure product review

CTEK CS Free adventure product review

Brand new to the market from my most trusted battery brand is the high spec, most advanced and fully mobile battery charging device ever! The CTEK CS Free. I’ve used the CTEK maintenance smart chargers for years so this product has me excited. I genuinely believe this portable battery and adaptive charging unit is going to bring all new versatility to the battery land, particularly for motorcycles and flat batteries.

What is the CTEK CS Free?

It’s effectively a starting device but a very clever one! If you have a flat battery, the adaptive charge enables the device to intelligently read the battery and fast charge it to enough juice to get you going again. But it does this wisely with an understanding on how batteries work, so it won’t harm your battery or vehicle electronics.

The girl on a bike CTEK CS Free 3
CTEK CS Free

Did you know a normal jump start can actually damage your long-term battery health?

I know I didn’t know this until I started swatting up. The intense surge a traditional jump pack gives can actually have detrimental implications for your long-term battery health. The good news is that the CS Free prevents this.

Battery health and the CTEK CS Free

Battery health is a far more complex game that we really know – I try to explain how batteries work in this video – Icy adventure riding on the Africa Twin testing the CTEK CS Free – real life product review – jump to . I feel few of us realise that jump starting a turbo-charge of power into a battery to get started can actually really damage a batteries health. Plus with modern vehicle electrics the surge in power can damage electrical systems too. But not with the CS Free.

I’ve been a long time fan of CTEK smart maintenance chargers, which can extend battery life by 3 times – this means a unit literally pays for itself – you can see a full review of the MXS 5.0 smart charger here [available to buy here]:

Technical details of the CS Free

Weighing in at around 980grams it’s not a small device, however on a large motorcycle or car it’s well worth its weight in space with its functions:

  • Adaptive boost to start any flat battery – lithium or lead-acid
  • Adaptive boost will tell you how long it will be until your battery is ready to start your vehicle
  • Easy to use with safety features to ensure you can’t get it wrong – plug and play
  • Forms a battery pack for charging other items, such as laptop, drones and GoPro
  • Pack will remain charged for up to 1 year with no use           – Chargeable from mains 3 pin plug, 12v battery via crocodile clips or via portable solar panel

I took the CS Free out with me on an icey adventure ride with the Africa Twin. My motorcycle, thankfully, didn’t have any battery issues so I actually staged a flat battery. Purposefully draining the battery so I could use the CS Free to start. Using the crocodile clips I attached the CS Free, turned it on and waited, enjoying a cup of coffee in the wilderness.

Here’s how to never fine a flat battery again.

When you plug in the CS Free the start button light flashes, it will then start to intelligently charge your battery. CTEK say this can take between 5-15 minutes depending on the battery. Mine took around 9 minutes and the light went solid. The solid light indicates that it’s ready to try starting. I was then able to start and continue my ride.

Ready light

Unlike regular charges the CS Free tells you when the battery is ready to start. This is really cool! If you don’t know it’s easy to try too soon when there is not yet enough charge to start. This then drains the battery and puts you back at square one. The CS Free tells you when it’s ready, saving the guess work and potentially more time wasting.

The part of the day I could not have scripted was returning to my van to find the battery flat… thankfully the CS Free worked on my Mercedes-Benz Viano and in around 12 minutes the van was started.

The girl on a bike CTEK CS Free starting Viano
Thankfully the CTEK CS Free for my Viano started or it would have been a cold night

Charging the CTEK CS Free

You can charge in a range of ways, from a:

  • normal three pin domestic plug
  • service battery by crocodile clips
  • via a car cigarette 12V plug
  • via a CTEK solar panel

During my weekend away I tested all of these options and the unit will fully charge in around 1 hour.

CTEK solar panel

On a super cloudy day it really exceeded my expectations by kicking out 19 volts giving me the ability to charge up in the wilderness even in mid-winter. It’s also super portable with it’s folding suit case style, making it practical to carry around.

Charging from the CS Free

Total charging freedom is the CTEK ling and that’s because it works like a mobile battery bank

More than just a starting device the CS Free is also a power block. Able to hold charge for a full year if unused it’s always there ready when you need it. With a USB-C and USB-A port you can charge items such as your iPhone, camera and laptop out on the road. I was sat by an icy lake with a warm coffee editing photos on my laptop and charging my iPhone ready for more action.

Price

You’re looking at near £300 for the CTEK CS Free, which is a lot if you think of it as just a starting block. BUT it is so much more than just a back up for a flat battery. With its long life and impressive power capabilities it’s a mobile support for your electronic needs.

Summary of the CTEK CS Free

Never worry about a flat again, it’s mobile, small enough to take with you and capable of powering your charging needs, AND getting you out of trouble when you get a flat. With it’s intelligent charge it won’t impact the long-term health and thus life of your battery or vehicle electronics too.

Big thumbs up for me and I can already say I will be taking my CTEK CS Free with me on all my adventures.

See my full days icy riding adventure

For more info see https://www.ctek.com/

If you’re new to my page – it’s more than just dirt bike riding and racing, I’m on a mission to prove that nothing is impossible if you want it bad enough. See more about my story plus read about my life changing accident, which started it all.

You can find me Vanessa, The Girl On A Bike over on InstagramFacebookLinkedIn and YouTube, and www.thegirlonabike.com.

Latest content

Why it’s ok to ask for help

Why it’s ok to ask for help

Requesting support when we’re struggling can often make us feel vulnerable and weak. Almost like we feel we shouldn’t need help, I should be strong enough already. We usually think (somewhat erroneously) that we should be able to do everything ourselves or that by admitting we need help, we are somehow being weak.

Following my accident there were many dark moments, times when the world seemed to be towering in on me. Beyond the physical implications, I was on a roller coaster of emotions; my body has changed, my daily activities, my ability to do sports, my views on the world, views on life, recovery and even pain have changed. When people say ‘recovery’, you typically think of returning to how you were before the accident, before the illness or the life-changing event. But there is no going back. You do not merely recover, you reinvent yourself. You learn so much as you fight through, you find strength you never knew existed, you learn things about your body unbeknown before; it’s an irreversible journey. I am now a stronger and more determined person than ever before. I’m more grateful than ever for what I do have, more thankful for the wonderful things around me. I have a fire in my soul only this type of recovery could light

But it’s so important for me to take a moment to say that I didn’t solely battle this alone. Yes I was the only one with the real power to change my situation and push on but with support that was so much easier.

I asked for help!

With CBT therapy I was able to work through some of the mental challenges I was facing. Change disorder was the hardest. With my broken body, I no longer saw myself as me. ‘Me’ was the fit, capable pre accident Vanessa. The body I stood in now was just a broken version, it wasn’t me and I found myself talking about myself in the third person. It was only with CBT support I was able to work through this mental block. Learning to accept the new body I was in, the body that had always been me and need my love and positive energy more than ever [more on CBT and how it works here].

Talking isn’t always easy

This is so important to know. I remember session after session where I was in tears almost the whole time. It was exhausting. Mental draining. Painful. We worked through my battles, my inner struggles and it hurt. Talking about the accident, it hurt. It was scary. However, the end of the tunnel was in sight and getting brighter with every month that went by.

“…with time and patience, I knew I would get there — only I had the power to make it happen, and hard work pays off!”

The girl on a bike the accident hip surgery 3
I asked for help, and it helped

I believe that we all need help and support once in a while. And this is perfectly fine. Life is tough enough and we cannot and shouldn’t expect that we can do it all on our own.

If you’re new to my page – it’s more than just dirt bike riding and racing, I’m on a mission to prove that nothing is impossible if you want it bad enough. See more about my story plus read about my life changing accident, which started it all.

You can find me Vanessa, The Girl On A Bike over on InstagramFacebook and YouTube, and www.thegirlonabike.com.

Latest content

Top ten tips for coping with pain

Top ten tips for coping with pain

After being hit by a red light jumping car in March 2014 I’ve battled with pain for years through my recovery and wanted to share some of the tips I’ve used to help coping with pain and cope with every day life. For more on my accident please read here.

  1. Take your painkillers: the magic with painkillers is that they really can work. But even low over the counter doses can become much more powerful, if taken correctly [always follow doctors orders]. Taking a painkiller every so often is far less effective than taking them back-to-back. This continual dosage builds a base of pain relief. Therefore if you know, you’re going to have pain stick with the dosage prescribed by your doctor and keep that base-level pain relief going and stick rigorously to the timings.
  1. Use distractions: the magic of keeping your mind occupied really does help one to keep off their focus from the constant pain. For me having uplifting country music or chilled out relaxing tunes, finding a TV series to keep me hooked, watching the odd movie or even reading a book all helped in occupying the brain away from how my physical self-was feeling.
  1. Don’t ignore the pain: pain is there for a reason; normally it is the body’s way of highlighting that an area of the body needs healing energies. Ignore this at your peril. Ultimately, if doing something causes an above 4/10 pain, I would say avoid doing it. I would also recommend focusing some mental energy on the areas of pain to shift your mental and physical energy to this point; it can only help in the healing process [Mindfulness is a great tool for this – see point 8].
  1. Get some treat food: by this, I certainly don’t mean junk food; I mean something that is going to excite you but will still provide much-needed nutrition for your recovery. For me, this was lovely sweet mangoes or grapefruit. These are both items I don’t normally justify the cost of but are invaluable as a little treat pick-me-up, something to enjoy and look forward too. Sometimes it is the simple things.
  1. Don’t push your friends and family away: when in pain it is so easy to isolate yourself and push people away. You’ll be amazed how much uplift even a 5-minute phone call can provide, yes it takes some energy, but it is worth it.
  1. Be aware of the effect your pain has on you: be conscious that you might be a little moody, snap, or burst out from anger. It is only natural when in such discomfort. The trick is simply trying to recognise it. You want / need people around you, and ultimately they will be hurting too through seeing and sympathising with your pain. Try to let them in and support, and try as much as you can not to let the effects of your pain come out on them, if you do [which I certainly did] just be aware of it and say sorry. They are there to help and will understand. An apology goes a long way and might just help you get the next cup of tea you’re longing for.
  1. Try to keep on top of life: yes pain is crippling and can lead to not leaving the house; however, pain is affected by perception. Therefore if you perceive that your pain is preventing you from attending a friend’s birthday, seeing your favourite movie release, going to your Dad’s 60th, then it is going to give you a very downing perception, which will actually add to the level of pain. Try, and function in life, even a trip to Tesco for milk had a huge uplift effect for me. Yes, I then paid the price for the rest of the day, but I was simply out of the house.
  1. Stay positive: this is a lot harder that one can imagine. It takes a lot of mental strength. I found the art of Mindfulness Practice really helpful [this is a great place to start with some simple guides and steps: http://www.mindful.org/meditation/mindfulness-getting-started/]. The key to positivity for me is that, no matter how bad things get they could be worse [I could have died in the accident for example, but I didn’t], and there are always things you can count your blessings for. Try to absorb the environment around you, savour the smell of fresh air, enjoy the soft feeling of your bed sheets, and smile at the birds in the garden. Basically be thankful for what you do have. Even on low days, there are people who would give the left arm to be where you are. Life is precious, so cherish it.
  1. Conscious mind: using elements of DBT remember you have the ability to control your mind. Try to recognise the triggers in behavour that see you push the body to far or the mental triggers where you get upset. What first happens? Do you turn stubborn and decide to just grit your teeth? Could you spot this with a conscious mind and break the cycle? A good read on this is here.
  1. Stop taking your painkillers: yes you need them for pain, but painkillers can have some terrible side effects and cause all kinds of problems from nausea, constipation, headaches, itching and so much more, including addiction. It is really important that you control your pain, but it is also important that you get off the painkillers as soon as you can. Start slowly but the uplift you will have when the side effects go is very much worth it.

The AccidentTop tops for dealing with pain

In March 2014 I was hit by a red light jumping car while cycling home from work. It was a life-changing moment; my physical and mental recovery has been long and challenging. Today, years since the accident my body has been through a lot, countless steroid injections, months and months of physiotherapy, key-hole surgery followed by full ACJ shoulder reconstruction, multiple hip surgeries, and all of it meant high levels of pain over a prolonged period of time.

If you’re new to my page – it’s more than just dirt bike riding and racing, I’m on a mission to prove that nothing is impossible if you want it bad enough. See more about my story plus read about my life changing accident, which started it all.

You can find me Vanessa, The Girl On A Bike over on InstagramFacebook and YouTube, and www.thegirlonabike.com.

Latest content Vitiligo

Living with Vitiligo – learn to love your body

Living with Vitiligo -learn to love your body

It doesn’t’ hurt and it isn’t contagious. It is just white. With lock-down meaning I’m not covered head to toe in motorcycle armour…I’m getting asked about my white skin…

It’s vitiligo. I’m living with Vitiligo and that is okay.

Vanessa Ruck with Vitiligo

I remember some horrible encounters growing up with kids saying nasty things. Children can be so cruel, but over the years I’ve learned to love my skin and also realise that most comments only come because of a lack of understanding. That is partly why I’m determined not to hide living with vitiligo, if by showing my vulnerability I can help spread awareness of vitiligo then maybe it will help others learning to accept their patches.

I did a post last year braving a bikini and talking about my skin and you’ll see that I have patches all over my body [click here to see it – 6th Oct 2019]. My vitiligo is all over my face, hands, chest, back, legs. It is everywhere!

Young women Vanessa Ruck with Vitiligo
Vanessa Ruck living with vitiligo

Vitiligo is a hereditary skin condition that causes your immune system to work against itself and kill the pigmentation of the skin. Causing white patches. That is it. Skin with no pigment and so white in appearance, and purely cosmetic. Unlike many skin conditions vitiligo thankfully has no negative effects other than a higher risk of skin damage from the sun due to having no melanin. At 13 a got my first patch and ever since it has spread across my body. [see British Skin Foundation for more]

If you’re a mummy or daddy, or grandparent, sister or brother, please show this to the younger generations in your family and explain to them what vitiligo is. Understanding will help so many others with vitiligo who have not yet found the strength to stand tall with their skin.

Remember, some battles go more than skin deep and words really can hurt.

Love the skin that you are in and please share this message to help those learning to live with Vitiligo

Something that has really helped me with coping with my skin is being more conscious about how I feel. It’s a practice that stems from some pretty deep psychological therapies but can be applied to many other elements in life. DBT, developed by Marsha Linehan. It works by teaching people to be conscious about our behaviors, recognizing our triggers and how the events leading up to the behavior before making a conscious decision which coping method is best to apply. With vitiligo it’s easy to slip into a self-hate. To stare at the mirror and be appalled. Standing beating myself up mentally, crying about my skin. A downward spiral of sadness. This for me was the start of a trigger of emotions. With conscious thought I’m now able to catch myself before my mind flies off into a spiral. I can actively pull myself way and remind myself that our differences are beautiful. That I am unique and my skin is part of me.

Please feel free to get in touch via my social channels and ask any questions and for more on me see here.

To learn more about how I camouflage my face please see my camouflage article here. I also recommend taking U Perform Active Collagen to support a smoother, healthier skin complexion. More information here and get 10% off.

Vitiligo
Love the skin you’re in

If you’re new to my page – it’s more than just dirt bike riding and racing, I’m on a mission to prove that nothing is impossible if you want it bad enough. See more about my story plus read about my life changing accident, which started it all.

You can find me Vanessa, The Girl On A Bike over on InstagramFacebook and YouTube, and www.thegirlonabike.com.

Latest content

What kit to wear in Iceland on motorcycles

What kit to wear in Iceland on motorcycles

Here’s what kept me warm, dry and protected with the right kit

Riding in Iceland is an intense environment, a land of extremes, and so knowing what kit to wear is vital. Here’s a run through of what kept me warm, dry and protected. Please note that I am not paid for this video or information, and it is created to help others from the experience I had. There are of course different preferences and opinions on kit.

Warm and dry riding motorcycles in Iceland is priority number one!

Iceland is a land of absolute extremes and riding here on motorcycles going through the rugged terrain and mountains puts you in some seriously, seriously cold conditions so I’m here to talk to you about what kit I have brought with me to Iceland.

  1. The most important thing I would say is making sure that you are warm and dry if you are dry and warm you are going to be enjoying this environment so make sure that you have some waterproofs that you can trust and I’ve learned from experience that when they say they’re waterproof it doesn’t necessarily mean they can live up to Icelandic extremes of waterproof so I’ve been in the Adventure Spec jacket and I have not had a drop of water come through it. Absolutely incredible highly trust it
  2. I’ve been wearing military waterproofs on my lower half and again they have kept me incredibly dry.
  3. Underneath that I’ve actually had a Gore-Tex layer. Now the reason why I’ve had both is because I don’t personally always trust Gore-Tex gear for the duration of the waterproof requirements that we’ve had in Iceland and here it’s wet from above and below because you’ve got water crossings and puddles everywhere.
  4. As well thinking about waterproof we always ride with our Cardo intercom systems as well and a lot of the intercoms on the market would not withstand the requirements of the weather here, so make sure you’ve got a decent intercom if you’re going to be using it. When we think about the terrain out here the ability to chat between us is really good for safety because there is random unexpected obstacles that we can warn each other about and make sure we’re all riding safely as a group. See here for 15% off Cardo Systems and here for why I use intercoms.
  5. A woolly hat definitely essential when you stop to take those photos or have a break. It’s amazing how cold your head gets when you take your helmet off, so make sure you’ve got a nice woolly hat with you.
  6. When it comes to your feet… they’re going to get wet. If you are lucky enough to have waterproof boots that’s fantastic. But within the group we have found out that waterproof boots don’t necessarily mean your feet are going to stay dry, because when you’re in a river water is going to go over the top! Waterproof SealSkinz socks is an absolute must I’ve got through the week six days riding with two pairs of socks. They generally don’t dry overnight so it means you’ve got a pair on and a pair off drying, and this means that your boots can be absolutely saturated but the contact with your skin is remaining dry.
Iceland is full of water crossings
Iceland is full of water crossings
  1. Depending what you like to ride with gloves are a really important one for keeping you warm. I tend to enjoy an enduro pair of gloves which are not waterproof and I find that when I’m physically warm and riding even if my hands are soaking wet they don’t get cold. I’ve got two pairs of Hebo enduro non-waterproof gloves, which means I’ve got a dry pair and then I do have some SealSkins fully waterproof gloves. They’re a lovely treat in those last couple of hours of the day when I want to warm my hands up and keep them keep them dry.
  2. I have two pairs of goggles and I’m going to be honest, I actually have only used one pair because I haven’t got them wet enough that I’ve needed to switch them out so with these goggles I’ve gone for the Scott Prospects, which have a light sensitive lens. Changing with the light from sunglasses if it’s bright or if it’s dark cloudy and overcast they will go clear. This means that you’ve got the best of both worlds as far as far as your vision goes.
  3. The bikes out in Iceland with Ridewithlocals have Enduristan panniers but having a camelback with some of your essentials and water is a really, really good recommendation. Mine is a Leatt and this is fully waterproof so anything I put inside is going be alright… especially if I was to have an unlucky dip in a river.
Enduristan panniers
Enduristan panniers
  1. If you think Iceland is going to be a gentle poodle on motorbikes think again. Coming with Ridewithlocals we are doing some insane enduro train across lava fields and peaks and mountains so the body armour very, very important. If you do fall off you want to know that you’re protected, because if you have an injury out in the mountains in Iceland it’s going to be a difficult rescue. I’ve got the Leatt Airfit, which I find incredibly comfortable, super protective.
  2. I’ve got Leatt knee guards as well. I decided to wear the knee guards because of the sort of riding. I didn’t feel like I needed my full x-frame protection.
  3. As far as warmth goes I have decided to go for a layering system so underneath my gear I have full merino leggings and top. The beautiful thing about merino is that if you sweat and get wet and or accidentally get a little bit damp…and the wool is still warm to wear. I then layer it so on some of the more freezing cold days I’ve actually had four merino wool tops on underneath my Adventure Spec jacket and I have been warm and toasty it’s just a case of you working out how many of those layers you need
https://www.instagram.com/p/CD_7ScNhgkn/
  1. A snood is an absolute must keeping that wind protection off your face so I have two snoods because they do seem to get a little bit wet when you’re riding along out here so pack some of these. Hoorag is a good shout for custom snoods.
  2. You’re going to want a pretty solid pair of boots riding in this terrain obviously, it’s enduro. I’ve got the Leatt5.5 GPX. I absolutely love them. They are not waterproof and they don’t pretend to be waterproof so that’s where the waterproof socks are really important. Just anticipate that you’re going to have wet boots for the whole of your riding experience but with the right socks on you don’t have wet feet.

That is a run through of the kit that is keeping me warm and dry here in Iceland.

You can see the full adventure in my two-part video of riding Iceland:

Part 1:

Part 2:

We did six days riding on Husqvarna 701s, covered roughly 1400km doing 9 to 11 hour riding days and got to see the real Iceland – which is unseen by most tourists.

Learn more about Iceland with my 15 facts to know article and video.

For more on the company we rode with see www.ridewithlocals.is

If you’re new to my page – it’s more than just dirt bike riding and racing, I’m on a mission to prove that nothing is impossible if you want it bad enough. See more about my story plus read about my life changing accident, which started it all.

You can find me Vanessa, The Girl On A Bike over on InstagramFacebookLinkedIn and YouTube, and www.thegirlonabike.com.

Latest content

15 Iceland facts for a motorcycle adventure

15 things you need to know about Iceland for a motorcycle adventure

Following a weeklong motorcycle adventure in Iceland, here’s 15 thing you need to know about Iceland for a motorcycle adventure. Let me know what you think about my Iceland facts in the comments.

Here’s my video, but if you’re more of a reader please cross down for the 15 things you need to know about Iceland for a motorcycle adventure in a written list of Iceland facts.

  1. Mental enduro terrain
  2. Water drinkable
  3. Water crossings
  4. Very wet – wear the right gear [see here for my kit suggestions]
  5. Legal terrain
  6. Mountain huts
  7. Top spots you want to see – geyser, tectonic plates, motorcycle you see stuff normal tourists can’t see
  8. Horse – breeding and eating
  9. Unique foods – dried fish and butter
  10. Hot spas
Hot spas in Iceland riding motorcycles
Hot spas in Iceland riding motorcycles
  1. Scenery – changing, indescribable variation
  2. Safety – comms and support, knowing terrain – signal is good but huge black spots
  3. Weather changes in minutes – have the right gear – waterproof doesn’t mean waterproof 
  4. Ride with locals
  5. Everything is more fun with a viking or three

You can see the full adventure in my two-part video of riding Iceland:

Part 1 Iceland motorcycle adventure:

Part 2 continuing the Icelandic bike adventures:

Reference number 14, we did the trip with RideWithLocals, the only Icelandic enduro company. A fully-inclusive motorcycle Iceland trip on Husqvarna 701s with a support vehicle, fuel, food, mountain hut accommodation, trail snacks, beer and all the local gen from the Vikings running it. We had six days riding, covered roughly 1400km doing 9 to 11- hour riding days and got to see the real Iceland – which is unseen by most tourists. Expect to pay around €4400 per person. www.ridewithlocals.is

If you’re new to my page – it’s more than just dirt bike riding and racing, I’m on a mission to prove that nothing is impossible if you want it bad enough. See more about my story plus read about my life changing accident, which started it all.

You can find me Vanessa, The Girl On A Bike over on InstagramFacebookLinkedIn and YouTube, and www.thegirlonabike.com.