Thursday, February 19, 2015

The Bike Haul Challenge vs KABC radio host

So on the way home today I heard this from a local radio host:

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Paraphrasing: [They want to narrow the roads so bikers and pedestrians have more room. They want to put us on a road diet! Let's talk about a road diet when you can get a whole load of groceries home on a bike.]

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Yes, let's talk about it!

Judge Cristina Perez, allow me to introduce you to the cargo bike. You can find a cargo bike to suite almost any need HERE.

Madsen Cycles Kg271 Bucket 40 gallon capacity

Why would this radio host hold such a low opinion of a bike's capabilities? There are two main factors that might deter you from shopping by bike if you aren't familiar with your options.

Distance: I have grocery shopped in five urban and suburban communities as Californian thus far. Not one store has been more than 2.1 miles from my home. Most food shopping as well as other household errands happen within five miles of home. So we are not talking about complete a stage of the Tour de France.

Weight: Groceries are heavy. The bikes you are about to see can swallow a weeks worth of shopping for a family four and the rider would barely know it. 

Enter the Cargo Bike: Let me start with what I know. The Cetma Cargo which is hand built in sunny Venice, CA., is a prototypical example of a Long John. There are many quality options on the market. This bike can easily handle five bags of groceries in it's standard form. If you option the rear rack and add two panniers your haul could end up at seven or eight bags. 

Cetma Cargo Largo with new dishwasher

What easy pick up, delivery and recycling with the Cetma

There is also the Long Tail. Xtracycle, Yuba, Surley and even Trek offer great options. With the right accessories including bags and straps you can handle five of six bags of food without feeling much of a difference between a cargo bike and a regular bike.

Red bag on each side holds two bags or groceries each

Speaking of regular bikes, singles and small families can handle the weekly or semi-weekly (if you eat like we do) grocery run with simple tools like the trailer below. 

Travoy by Burley Design
My favorite is the Burley Travoy. This commuter trailer is a go anywhere hauler. It is a folding dolly with removable bags. When you are finished shopping simply attach it to the seat post of your bike and off you go. 

I think you get the point. Groceries by bike can be a cake walk. 

Judge Cristina Perez if you are willing I'd love to take you on a ride and then we can talk road diet. Yes?

Calling all bike commuters and cargo bikers. Please share a photo of your best grocery and errand hauls on the Bike Locally Facebook page. Let's enlighten and broaden some minds.

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