For many cyclists, the idea of towing a bike trailer seems alien to the ‘free and easy’ experience of cycling – however there are many reasons for wanting to take a bike trailer when touring with your bike. Unlike using a set of full panniers, you will not find your balance affected as much by a bicycle trailer with a low center of gravity. Whereas, full bike panniers may cause a slight imbalance at the rear of the bicycle, a trailer will not – as it is a grounded weight that follows the track of the rear wheel of the bicycle. Primarily this is a safety concern but it also enables the cyclist to feel more confident when traveling, safe in the knowledge that their packed items are behind them and they still have a bicycle free from additional items.
Another safety benefit is that a bike trailer will not impede movement around the pedals and chain of the bicycle. Although a well-designed pannier will also avoid this pitfall, there is still a risk of the pannier coming into contact with the mechanisms of the bicycle and the legs of the cyclist. A bike trailer, on the other hand, is always kept well away from these areas and will not impede any moving mechanisms or the legs of the cyclist.
For convenience, a bicycle towing a trailer is also free to use a kickstand when stationary. Although this may not seem like a big deal, consider that there may be plenty of times where you are not able to perch your bicycle against a mile marker or wall – requiring a kickstand to rest the bicycle. Those fitted with panniers are unable to do so whereas trailer-laden bicycles can. Single-wheel bike trailers are more difficult to park using a bicycle kickstand. If you’re shopping for a bike trailer, consider the Maya Cycle bike trailer with a kickstand that holds your bicycle and trailer upright, CLICK HERE to learn more about Maya Cycle bike trailers.
One clear benefit to a trailer is the sheer amount of space within them, and therefore the amount of items that can be carried whilst touring. With a larger single space, bulky or heavy items can be carried easily. Unlike a pannier, which usually has several smaller compartments which prevent larger single items from being transported, a trailer allows the cyclist to carry items of a much larger mass and may therefore be much more useful for trips which require longer tours.
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