Going the distance means having reliable gear customized for bike packing, that hybrid undertaking that melds cycling and backpacking. Here are three specialty bikes and four cargo carriers that will make the going easier.
REI Co-Op Cycle ADV 4.2. Aluminum framed mountain bike with swept-back, upright-position flat handlebars, 27.5-inch wheels with 2.8-inch tires, disc brakes, shock-absorbing seat post — and lots of mounts for cargo bags.
Canyon Grail CF. Carbon-fiber gravel racer/bike packer road bike with 700C wheels, spacing for 42-mm tires and two innovations: a two-level flexing road-style handlebar that absorbs shock to the hand from the front wheel, and a flexing seat post.
Why we like it: Unmatched comfort for your hands because the “floating” top section of the two-part carbon handlebar acts like a shock absorber. Most gravel bikes destroy your hands; this one doesn’t.
Specialized AWOL Expert. A long-distance specialist with a durable chromoly steel frame, numerous rack, fender and water bottle mounts, a kickstand plate, 700-by-45 tires, tall, upright-position stem, a battery-free, Dynamo generator front hub for lights, and a one-of-a-kind suspension seapor...