Bicycle Bags and Panniers
One of the limitations of a bicycle is that generally, there isn't much space to carry anything. While you can always wear a backpack while riding, that puts more weight on you, limiting the benefits of using a vehicle. Bicycle bags and panniers give your bicycle the cargo space you need, whether youre going on a long bikepacking trip or just down the street to the grocery.
Panniers are a great choice for anyone who wants to carry a lot of cargo a relatively short distance. Normally mounted on a rack that attaches to the back of the frame, they usually come in pairs to balance the weight for a more stable ride. While rear panniers are the most common, you can also get front panniers that attach to the wheel hub.
With the advent of long-distance bicycle tours, theres been a growth in the industry of bikepacking bags. Two common designs are bicycle frame bags and bicycle saddle seat bags. As the name suggests, frame bags fit inside your bicycle frame and are a good choice for heavier things because they are lower to the ground. Seat bags are suspended below and behind the seat and above the rear wheel. They are easier to ride with than panniers, staying out of the way, and offering better wind resistance.
Mounting right behind your handlebars, top tube bags give you immediate access to things like food and hydration packs without the need to stop. Some even give you access to your mobile in a protective case. You can also mount bags in front of your handlebars. One nice thing about these bags is that they turn with your wheel, making it easier to maintain your balance on the road.
Choosing the Right Accessories
When looking for bike accessories like bags, its important to know what you want. Multiple pockets make it easy to organise your cargo, while water resistance is very important if you end up riding in the rain. Large handled zips and velcro give you easy access, especially for top tube bags.