29 April 2012

Cargobike Fail

Yesterday was the Tacoma Bike Swap, usually the largest single event of Bike Month in the area.  It's held at the UPS Field House, not quite 1 mile from my house. So how did we get there?

We drove.

WHAT??!! Yes, we loaded up the minivan and drove there. It took 2 minutes. I lost track of how of many friends found me at the 2nd Cycle booth and asked, "Where's your bike?"

It simply wasn't feasible to get the pop-up tent, folding table, cases of magazines, and kid supplies on the Xtracycle.  Even if I could have strapped these large and heavy items on-board, the bike would have handled like a migrating salmon, forcing me to focus more on my handling and less on directing my kids through traffic. They could have ridden their own bikes, but they are still learning how to ride in the road safely and Super T's 12" tires limit her to a snails pace.

We could have taken more then one trip, but it would have been a lot of work for the kids.  A hand-truck or wagon would have worked, but I own neither. A similar issue arose with a load of lumber last week. Is it time to find a cargobike replacement for the Xtracycle? Maybe a cycletruck, Mundo, or Ted trailer? Or do I need to just suck it up and drive these short'n'heavy trips?

In the end, I brought back all of our stuff, plus a bike that was donated on-site to 2nd Cycle (plus two tired kids and their bikes.)  The van was a good choice.

But I still wish we could have biked there.


tacomee said...

As much as I love bikes..... cars just work better for some trips. I also think walking and public transit are also better than cycling sometimes. It's OK to pick the right mode of transportation for the trip. Thanks for helping out 2nd Cycle!

Matt in Tacoma said...

Ok, I just found this Xtracycle
Sidecar kit that's available for pre-order. Might be my cheapest/easiest solution.