By Ron Ayres of AYRES ADVENTURES - Official Travel Partner of BMW Motorrad
During the last 20 years I’ve probably owned at least two different riding suits from every major provider of riding gear—domestic as well as European. I have now settled on gear that I expect to stay with for a long time: the KLIM Badlands Pro Jacket and Pants.
Although other riding gear has recommendable qualities, I don’t know of any other outfit that does everything as well as it’s done by KLIM.
The most important requirement of a riding suit is that it protects the rider in the event of an unfortunate get-off. KLIM uses high-end integrated armor for the limbs, plus back armor and comfortable, non-intrusive front chest armor.
After safety, I value the comfort of the Badlands Pro. Not only is the suit comfortable to wear, but I can really appreciate the built-in kidney belt support system. I’m much more comfortable wearing a kidney belt on very long riding days, and with KLIM I don’t have to remember to pack an additional item. Not only is it convenient to have the kidney belt built into the jacket, but the integrated belt helps to stabilize the jacket and adds to the overall comfort of the suit.
Although any riding suit is hot while sitting at a stoplight in a 100 degree Texas summer, the suit has sufficient air intakes and back exhausts to do a good job of ventilation while you’re on the move. Chalk up another one to comfort.
After safety and comfort, the single most important feature that I appreciate about the outfit is that it’s waterproof—really waterproof. As long as you take care to zip the suit properly and close the ventilation flaps, you can forget about dragging either a rain suit or rain liners along. I have always found it to be a nuisance to have to stop to place a rain suit over an expensive riding outfit simply because, contrary to most manufacturers’ claims, the suits are not really waterproof in a prolonged deluge. It’s even worse to have to remove the riding suit to insert liners, only to have to stop to remove the hot liners when the rains have subsided. With the Badlands Pro, I put it on and don’t worry much about what Mother Nature decides to throw at me.
Sufficient pockets and storage areas should be a given with any top-line outfit, and the Badlands Pro certainly leaves nothing to be desired. It has sufficient pockets inside and out.
Okay, to be honest, I also love the way this gear looks. After safety and comfort it’s nice to also wear an outfit that is stylish. In the past I’ve tried “over street clothes” gear but it’s so uncomfortable to walk around in, as well as conspicuous, that you want to take it off before entering a roadside restaurant. It is just something else to have to lock up or carry around with you. With the Badlands Pro, I’m happy to wear the gear all day long.
I’ve been using the gear for several years now and I’ve also arranged for our tour leaders to have it, too. As professionals who are in riding gear all day long, sometimes for weeks at a time, they love the gear as much as I do.