So you’re planning a trip and have decided to bring your bike along? We think that is a great idea! Riding your bike in a new location is a fantastic way to see the area and can help you renew your love for cycling.
Of course, bringing your bike isn’t as simple as loading it into your vehicle and heading out, it requires an extra amount of planning – but we think it’s well worth the effort! We’ve put together the following list of things to consider when planning to travel with your bike.
1. A bike rack
When traveling by car, there is no better way to transport your bike then on a rack. Trust us when we tell you that loading a bike into a fully packed car is not an easy or enjoyable experience. Towbar bike racks have become quite popular over the years for their ease of use with a variety of bike types. Hanging towbar bike racks are good for larger groups and families who want to carry up to 5 bikes. Trunk mounted bike racks work if you don’t have a hitch receiver and want a solution that is easy to take on and off. And roof mounted bike racks are best for those who want to always keep a rack on their vehicle.
2. A bike travel case
Traveling by air? No problem, consider using a bike travel case to bring your two-wheeler with you. The Thule RoundTrip collection has all types of cases that work with a variety of bike styles and budgets. Note that you will have to partially disassemble your bike to use these cases, so you’ll want to pack the right tools to put it back together when you get to your destination. These cases also work for shipping a bike, if you’d rather send it to your destination ahead of time.
3. Gear duffel
Keeping your cycling gear such as helmet, shoes, apparel, sunglasses and tools organized will make it that much easier to get out for a spin once you get to where you’re going. The Thule RoundTrip Bike Duffel is a purpose-built bag designed to keep every piece of your cycling gear in a dedicated spot. It even has two tarpaulin lined pockets to put shoes or dirty clothing after riding.
4. Bike trailer or child bike seat
If you're taking a trip with young children, make sure they don’t miss out on any of the riding! Pack a bike trailer or child bike seat and bring them along on your rides. The Thule Chariot Cross and Thule Chariot Lite are great multi-purpose trailers that you can tow with your bike and then transition to a stroller for everything else you’re doing. Don’t have room for a trailer? Consider a child bike seat! Thule has seats that mount to the front or back of your bike.
If you’re looking to have a real adventure on your bike, then you’ll need to make sure you’ve got your bike outfitted to take all your gear with you. A good rack is the starting point for creating a storage system on your bike. The Thule Tour Rack has a patented design that fits all types of bike geometries in both the front and rear. Once a rack is installed you can start strapping gear like a tent or sleeping bag to the deck and attach panniers to the side. Thule Shield panniers are a favorite of many adventure riders because of their burly and waterproof design. Remember to pack heavy items at the bottom of your panniers and try to keep your overall load balanced between the front and back wheel.