Bikepacking wouldn’t be possible without proper bags. Said proper bags have mostly been developed over the past decade in a grassroots manner. People wanted to ride their bikes in remote places, for longer distances, and bring the gear needed to survive with them, so they made bags for bikepacking.
Blackburn Design was one of the first brands creating panniers and saddlebags for multiday bike trips, and they recently doubled down on dedicating efforts toward modern bikepacking bags. UK-based bag maker Apidura also invests a great deal of time and effort into designing its bags to not affect bike-handling feel. Then there are indie makers like Porcelain Rocket, Rockgeist and Road Runner.
Now, Rapha is joining the mix. While not technically the brand’s first set of bikepacking bags (it worked on a collaboration with Apidura in June of 2016), this is the first time that the brand tackled the concept in-house. The collection features a waterproof frame pack, top tube pack and handlebar bag. Each is constructed from highly wear-resistant materials like PU-coated ripstop polyester and waterproof zippers. The frame pack comes in three different sizes (5L, 4L and 3L), while the top tube and handlebar pack come in one size only.
Rapha’s addition of bikepacking bags to the Explore Collection only further illustrates the brand’s dedication to the broader culture of cycling. Bikepacking as a trend has grown tremendously over the past three years and the gear required to undertake a bikepacking trip is finally catching up in terms of quality and ease of use.
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