Camping off my motorcycle is one of my favorite things to do. For me, it boils things down to the bare essentials. Like most things, you don't need half of what you think you do and end up with a real simple set-up and are free to enjoy your time instead of packing and unpacking unnecessary equipment. Using your motorcycle to camp with also frees you up to explore places you wouldn't consider. A bike allows you to take your adventure down a road you may not have otherwise driven down. And it provides the greatest amount of flexibility in picking a campsite. You don't need much room or amenities and you can roll up and set up camp almost anywhere which means you're gonna get a better spot than most.

That said, I can see how the thought of getting all your gear onto your bike could be daunting if you haven't done it before. Have no fear! We'll walk you through the ins and outs of moto-camping. When in doubt, just remember - take half of what you think you need and twice the money.

Bags Tip

Luggage choice is important because it's going to determine how you're going to get your stuff down the road and how much gear you can carry. This will vary from bike to bike, but my 2 favorite are Biltwells EXFIL 80 and a Kriega Drypack. I like to put my sleeping bag, towel and other essentials that need to remain dry in my Kriega bag to make sure there is zero chance of them getting wet. A cargo net and ROK straps are also must-haves.

Clothing Tip


Layer up, it will probably get colder than you think at night and you will want to regulate your body temps. Layering allows you to add or remove clothes to adjust for conditions. I usually have a fairly light jacket, flannel or sweatshirt, long sleeve shirt, long underwear, different thicknesses of socks and two different styles of gloves. That may sound like a lot but it’s not if you cut your clothing selection back, meaning don’t take as many clothes as you think. You can re-wear pants and overshirts multiple days or find a spot and do some laundry if you're on the road long enough. You’re not in church and people expect bikers to be smelly :)

Please don't poke the bear!

Gear


As a general rule I use hiking specific gear when I can, like tents, sleeping bags and small stoves. Hikers need their gear to be small and light which works well when packing a motorcycle. Make sure you also use a small sleeping pad with your sleeping bag, most sleeping bags temp ratings are based on having a pad underneath and it really helps keep you warm and comfy.

Other Must Haves

  • Hatchet
  • Water
  • Jetboil /coffee
  • Tool roll
  • Toilet paper
  • Flip flops
  • Battery
  • Lighter
  • Bug spray

Lastly, relax. You’re out there to have fun and chill. So find a good spot and do just that. Don’t worry about having cell reception, or who likes your Insta pics. Take some time and explore your area and I can just about guarantee you will find something interesting to do. And ALWAYS clean up. Don’t leave any trash behind. If you can't find a trash can or burn it, then carry it out with you. I think you’ll find you’ll really dig moto-camping. Give it a shot, you won't be disappointed.