Gear: Sturdy cargo carriers for bicycle travel

BOB Ibex Plus
By Roy M. Wallack, Special to the Times

The travel, the adventure, the fitness. Bike touring, currently enjoying a massive renaissance, is the same body-and-mind journey of discovery it’s been since the Jack Kerouac era, with one exception: The gear’s a lot better. The top-of-the-line cargo carriers here — heavy-duty, waterproof, huge — let you lug along all the creature comforts you can’t live without ... for decades. They even do the job if you’re not into touring any farther than the end of your neighborhood. In a time of soaring gas prices, they’re handy for commuting or ferrying a couple bags home from the supermarket.

Irvine-based Roy M. Wallack was one of the first Americans to bike-tour the Soviet Union and is the author of “The Traveling Cyclist.” Reach him at

BOB Ibex Plus: 3 1/2-foot-long, single-wheel trailer with a built-in suspension.

Likes: Stable, maneuverable and efficient for carrying a tent, camp stove, gallon jugs of water, a small TV set — you name it. Even when packed to its limit of 70 pounds, you barely notice the Ibex on flat or downhill roads or dirt trails (climbing is another story). On the TransGabriel Challenge, a three-day mountain bike camping trip across the Angeles National Forest, we even took BOBs on single-track trails. Very easy set-up; the trailer clips on to the rear dropouts of the bike in a couple of seconds. Fender, flag and Dry Sak included.

Dislikes: Negotiating tight spots in crowded urban areas can be a challenge. And it adds more baggage expense to air travel.

Price: $399. (800) 893-2447;

Reviewed: BOB Ibex trailer, Ortlieb Back-Roller pannier, Old Man Mountain Cold Springs rack, Arkel OverDesigns handlebar bag.