The Learning Curve: Blind Corners

One issue all riders face, and one that claims new riders more than seasoned ones, is changing conditions in blind corners. Expertly guiding your machine along an appropriate line to the apex of a fast sweeper is one of the true joys in riding, but when you can’t see through to the exit, taking curves at drag-knee speeds is insanity.

Unknowns

If you’re on an unfamiliar road, show self-restraint. Highway curves can get progressively tighter. Entering one hot, you can easily sweep out into a ditch or oncoming traffic. Even if the bend is constant, off-camber pavement can force you off your line.

And if it can happen to you, it can happen to the texting driver on the cell phone coming the other way. Aggressive riding should be reserved for roads you know like the layout of your living room.

Known Unknowns

Even if you have a road memorized, though, blind curves demand respect. There could be an animal in the road, just beyond your line of sight. Another hazard that causes a lot of grief is that new, mid-curve patch of gravel. Scan ahead into a blind curve, and match your speed to your ability to stop or swerve to avoid hidden dangers.

Often, we intuitively know to slow down in blind curves, or at night when nearly all curves are blind. But, we forget ourselves when riding in a pack. No one wants to be last. If your buddies are determined to ignore the dangers of blind curves, let them go, and live to ride another day.

Learning From Other's Experiences

The below video shows a rider heeding (and surviving) the dangers of a blind curve.

 

 

Unfamiliar with the term camber? This article on SportRider.com provides a concise explanation of the principle.

Check out this article on safety site ridinginthezone.com. It includes a cautionary tale we should all heed, as well as advice for handling dangerous off-camber curves.

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