Any motorcyclist sooner or later faces the problem of proper uphill and downhill parking. Therefore, it is essential to know the basic parking rules. The main thing is the safety of your bike and the convenience of other motorcyclists. When parking a motorcycle on the hill, you should keep in mind certain points.
How to park your motorcycle on a hill:
- Choose a parking spot
- Put on your flasher and make sure your not followed too closely.
- Get past your parking spot a motorcycle-length
- Stop your engine in first gear, or put your motorcycle in neutral.
- Park your motorcycle at the correct angle
- Put the bike in gear
- Put the bike on the side stand
- Turn the handlebars
Further in the article, we will look at everything in more detail.
Table of Contents
Practice on a safe street first
Parking for the first time on a hill when you are stressed or when there is a lot of traffic may not be the best idea. You should practice your parking skills at least once every year in a safe environnement. If you have a lot of difficulty, you should practice it more. Being confident when you ride is primordial. Don’t hesitate to ask a friend motorcyclist to help you practice your parking skills. If you still struggle to park on a hill, take a one-hour class with a driving school that will give you invaluable advice.
If you aren’t confident, just don’t park on a hill. It’s perfectly okay to walk a bit more and be safer. Choosing a safer place to park is always a good idea.
How to Park a Motorcycle on a Hill: Steps for Safe Hill Parking
Parking seems simple and familiar, of course, we park at least twice a day. I drove up, got up, turned off the engine, took the keys, and went about my business – that’s all. Nevertheless, there are some subtleties when you are on a hill, especially if you drive a heavy motorcycle. Let’s talk about them.
Find a parking spot
When it comes to parking your motorcycle, you want to find a spot that is safe and easy to get in and out of. You also want to avoid parking in a spot that is too close to the curb, as this can make it difficult to get on and off your bike. Here are a few tips to help you find the best spot to park your motorcycle:
- Look for a spot that is well-lit and visible. This will help deter thieves and also make it easier for you to see your bike when you are coming back to it.
- Do not park too close to other cars. This will make it complicated to get on and off the motorcycle and also increases the risk of your bike being hit by another car.
- If possible, park in a designated motorcycle parking spot. These are usually located in well-lit and visible areas and are often free to use.
- When parking on a hill you want to always park your bike uphill, specifically if you are driving a big motorcycle. Since a motorcycle doesn’t have a reverse, it will be way easier to park your motorcycle by letting gravity do all the work.
By following these tips, you can be sure to find a safe and convenient spot to park your motorcycle the next time you are out and about.
Put on your flasher and check your surrounding
The first step in the parking maneuver is to signal your intention to the other road user. Start by lighting up your flasher as soon as you select your parking spot. After, make sure you are not followed too closely by an impatient driver. Don’t be afraid to take the space you need to park, remember than Just 7% of two-vehicle crashes involving a motorcycle occurred when the motorcyclist was struck from behind. More than two thirds (76%) were head-on collisions. As staded by this articles from Forbes.
Take a glance at your surroundings and make sure that it’s a safe place to park. Pay particular attention to the parked vehicles close to you and ensure they are not in movement.
Brake and height consideration
If you are on a very steep hill and you are short, remember that your left foot may be even higher while seated. In an uphill situation, your front brake may not be enough to keep the motorcycle at a stop because all of the weight is now on the rear wheel of your bike. If it’s your case, you must stop the motorcycle in gear before you back up. This way, your feet won’t have to be on the back brake, and you will control the speed you are backing up with the clutch lever. More on this later…
Stop your motorcycle in first gear or put the motorcycle in neutral
Here you have a choice…And not everybody will agree.
Most importantly, if you let the motor idle while you park, you must be in neutral. Backing up your motorcycle on a hill presents multiple challenges, and your foot can easily slip. Even if you are not parking on a hill, you should always put your motorcycle in neutral, that is something you should have learned in your courses.
Method 1: Stop the motorcycle in first and back-up
This is my favourite method (And the one I judge the safest) since the engine will help if something happens. Placing the motorcycle in first gear and turning off the engine means that without touching any controls, your motorcycle cannot move. That’s just perfect.
So after you stop your motorcycle, release the clutch, then release the back brake. you will not need to use the brake at all for the rest of the maneuver. While keeping the balance of your motorcycle, slowly engage the clutch and you will start to go backward. If something goes wrong, release the clutch and everything will stop. Now you just have to backup slowly in your parking spot.
Method 2: Put the bike on neutral and back up.
This method is less secure because if you slip, your motorcycle is in neutral and will naturally roll downhill. But hey, If you like risk who I’m I to judge.
So now that you are in neutral, release the clutch and leave your right foot on the brake. Remember that your left leg will be higher than usual from the ground. You can mitigate this by getting you butt out of the seat on the downhill side.
Slowly reach your parking spot by releasing the pressure on your back break.
Park the Motorcycle at an Angle to the Curb
The best way to park your motorcycle is at an angle to the curbside. This will help keep your bike from tipping over and avoid any damage to the bike or yourself. Usually the best angle to the curb is between 45 and 55 degree. You don’t need to get your compass but remember to park at an angle that will make it easier for you to merge in the lane when it’s time to leave.
Put the bike in gear
If you chose the method one earlier, this step is already done. If you choose method two, just put your bike in first gear and turn it off. That’s pretty easy.
Go for the Side Stand Position
This will allow you to keep the bike from falling over. In the heat, put something underneath, otherwise, it can go into the molten asphalt and fold, resulting in the bike falling. If you don’t have anything to put under it, you can try if it’s safe to put it on the white marking line; it gets less hot and holds up better.
How to Keep Your Motorcycle From Falling Down While Parked on a Hill
The Right Balance
Many people do not even pay attention and put their bike is not stable. At first glance, it seems to be standing level, but as soon as the wind blows on it or someone touches it slightly, it falls down. Always make sure that your bike is stable.
The fewer bikes in the parking lot, the easier it is to park your bike. At motorcycle parties and all sorts of hangouts, when motorcycles are in close rows, park incredibly responsibly. It is better to roll the bike into a narrow place with your hands than, having made a mistake, to fall up the entire line.
No Neutral Gear
I never get tired of repeating – Forget neutral gear forever when parked. When parking on a hill, the bike must be in gear. Believe me, this will keep your bike and you safe.
How to Get Your Motorcycle Out of a Parking Spot on a Hill
If you’re not careful, it’s easy to get your motorcycle stuck in a parking spot on a hill. Here are some tips to help you get your motorcycle out of parking on a hill:
- Make sure your motorcycle is in first gear before you start to move
- Apply the rear brake and slowly release the clutch
- When you get to the edge of the parking spot, Check that it’s safe to merge in the traffic.
- When the motorcycle starts to push forward, release the rear brake, and the motorcycle should go forward without changing anything else.
- As you’re moving forward, keep your weight balanced and centered on the motorcycle.
- Let the clutch go slowly and enjoy your ride.
Following these tips will help you get your bike out of the parking space without any problems. Just be careful not to go too fast, and make sure to keep your balance.
- Choosing a Parking Spot:
- Select a well-lit, visible, and safe spot.
- Avoid parking too close to the curb or other cars.
- Prefer designated motorcycle parking spots.
- Always park uphill, especially with heavy motorcycles.
- Parking Maneuvers:
- Turn on the flasher to signal intention to park.
- Ensure not being followed too closely by other vehicles.
- Pay attention to the surroundings and nearby parked vehicles.
- Braking and Height Consideration:
- On steep hills, ensure the front brake is sufficient to hold the bike.
- Short riders should be cautious of their foot height when seated.
- Stopping and Backing Up:
- The motorcycle can be stopped in first gear or neutral.
- Method 1: Stop in first gear, then slowly engage the clutch to back up.
- Method 2: Put the bike in neutral and use the back brake to back up slowly.
- Parking Angle and Side Stand:
- Park the motorcycle at an angle of 45 to 55 degrees to the curb.
- Put the bike in gear and use the side stand for stability.
- On hot days, place an object under the stand to prevent sinking into asphalt.
- Ensuring Stability:
- Ensure the bike is stable to prevent it from falling with slight disturbances.
- Avoid neutral gear when parked on a hill.
- Exiting the Parking Spot:
- Ensure the motorcycle is in first gear.
- Apply the rear brake and slowly release the clutch.
- Check for traffic safety before merging.
- Practice and Confidence:
- Practice parking skills in a safe environment.
- Seek help from friends or take a class if needed.
- It’s okay to avoid hill parking if not confident.
- Uphill parking requires attention to the slope and surface.
- Following proper rules ensures ease of parking and safety for all.
Uphill parking is not an easy task for a beginner. Before parking, it is necessary to check the slope of the hill properly. Always park on the slope so that the bike does not slip on an uneven surface.
Motorcycle parking may seem like a simple procedure, but there are certain rules that must be followed. Following the above points, you will not only make parking easier for yourself but also help other drivers.
Meet Simon, the 46-year-old aficionado behind YourMotoBro. With a lifelong passion ignited by motocross dreams and a Canadian Tire bicycle, Simon’s journey has been nothing short of extraordinary. From coaching underwater hockey to mastering muddy terrains, he’s an authority in thrill and adventure. Certified as an Off-Road Vehicle Excursion Guide and trained in Wilderness First Aid, Simon’s love for bikes is as diverse as his collection—from a robust BMW GSA R1200 to the memories of a Harley Davidson Night Train. By day a respected telephony consultant, by night a motorcycle maestro, Simon’s tales are a blend of expertise, resilience, and undying passion. 🏍️✨