People use our StowAway carriers for all kinds of reasons. In fact, our customers continually find new ways to use our cargo carriers that we would never think of, and many of those customers share those experiences with us. A lot of people ride bikes and although we offer a bike rack that attaches to our hitch mounted SwingAway Frame, folding bikes don’t fit well on a bike rack. As it turns out, our StowAway Max Cargo Carrier makes a great companion for anyone who owns and hauls a folding bike. (more…)
Between now and the onset of winter, several weeks of great biking weather are ahead. Regardless of whether road biking or mountain biking is your preference, StowAway2.com is all about making it easier for you to enjoy your bike. Same, too, if you commute to work by bike.
Trends in Cycling
Biking is a great way to maintain a healthy lifestyle and is gaining more recognition as an alternative form of transportation in the U.S. Bicyclists seem to be gaining more perks in many natural areas and parks. Last year, the Virginia State Park System announced a policy to give touring cyclists designated camping spots even when campgrounds are full. The Virginia Bicycling Federation helped promote the new idea.
Joe Elton, Virginia’s State Parks Director, was quoted on the federation’s website as stating: “I credit the Virginia Bicycling Federation with helping us understand the special circumstances that long-distance touring cyclists can find themselves in when the campgrounds are full and there is no reasonable alternative place to overnight.”
Along with this trend, many cities are bolstering infrastructure to support the biking lifestyle.
A recent study released by the University of Massachusetts shows that bicycle project spending creates jobs and supports the economy. In this study, on average, every $1 million spent on cycling related infrastructure projects creates nine jobs within the state. If you add interstate employment through the supply chain, another three jobs are added per $1 million spent.
One bike blogger, Elly Blue, who wrote Bikenomics, says that bicycle infrastructure can be an economic, social, and public health boon for cities. Blue writes: “Bike lanes cost anywhere from $5,000 to $60,000 per mile to add to an existing road … Freeway construction in Michigan’s countryside clocks in at $8 million per mile.” That’s a lot of taxpayer money.
Some cities have successfully removed old highways from downtown areas in favor of smaller roads and bike commuters. It’s happened in Seoul, which tore down the Cheonggyecheon Freeway; in San Francisco, which decided not to replace the Embarcadero Freeway after the 1989 earthquake; and in Milwaukee, which replaced its aging Past East Freeway with a boulevard.
Commuting by Bike? What to Know
If you are commuting by bike, here are some things to remember:
- You don’t need the most expensive bike on the market.
- Make sure you are comfortable with the equipment you have and take it to a shop for a quick tune-up.
- Scope out your route. Take traffic under consideration.
- Carry spare tools: a tube, patch kit, pump, and tools to make a quick tire repair.
- Consult local traffic rules and wear the proper protective equipment.
- Secure front and rear flashing lights to your bike for cycling after dark. Reflective clothing also is a good idea.
- Have Fun! Unlike your job, commuting by bike shouldn’t be stressful.
Be Prepared with a Car Rack
StowAway has many bike rack options for your other mode of transportation — your vehicle. Our racks are rear-mounted and are available on fixed or swinging frames, which make them much easier to load up when distance is an issue. Our racks also are available with a cargo rack to carry your helmets and other biking gear.
Cycling benefits your health, the environment and even the economy. So give cycling a try, whether it’s commuting to work or taking your bike to your city’s new trail. You’ll love it.
In its yearly Memorial day travel forcast, AAA predicts that 5.5% less people will travel through the air this year with only a 1.2% increase in car travel. With less people deciding that a vacation is a valuable way to spend their money in these economic times, one way you can still have some fun on a budget is by packing up your hitch cargo carrier and going on a fun day trip. Here are a couple day-trip ideas that utilize the StowAway hitch cargo carrier to have fun on a budget this Memorial day weekend.
What better way to kick off summer than to take a trip to the beach to sit back and relax in the sun? The waves crashing down on your feet, the breeze coming off the ocean, and unfortunately the sand that will somehow end up everywhere for the next three months because of that one trip. Fortunatly with the Stow Away Hitch Cargo Carrier, you can help offset this sandy nuisance by putting your beach chairs, beach towels, beach bag and most importantly sand castle molds in your hitch cargo carrier instead of over crowding your back seat with beach trinkets and ending up with a never ending supply of unwanted sand.
Bike riding is as much a part of spring as flowers, rain showers and, well, Memorial Day. Why not take a day trip to explore a new town or area with a bike ride? With the StowAway Bike + Gear Rack you can fit the whole gangs bikes with you, plus unlike a conventional bike rack you can fit other gear like a cooler and some backpacks as well. Plus if you’re still getting some spring rain, with a hitch cargo rack you don’t have to worry about getting mud from the tires all over your trunk. Simply store your bike on the outside of your vehicle and your upholstery will forever be tire mark free.
Although it’s technically not a day trip, camping is great for an inexpensive night away from the house with friends or family. With the StowAway Hitch Cargo Carrier you can bring along all of your camping gear without the worry of breaking tent poles or risk not bringing something you may need because you can’t fit it. Never leave a crucial piece of equipment like tarps home again to save space because you “don’t think it will rain,” only to have a torrential downpour ruin your night in the woods. With the Stow Away Hitch Cargo Carrier never worry about bringing a couple extra “just in case” items that can save your trip.
So even though you may not be able to a afford plane tickets or a night in a hotel room this Memorial day, a StowAway can help you enjoy day trips that will remind you of one of the most important things about Memorial Day Weekend: spending time with friends and family. Safe travels everyone!
Spring is sprung,
the grass is riz
I wonder where the birdies is!
It’s been a long time coming. It always seems like an eternity. But Old Man Winter is slowly starting to take a hike. Which means you’re ready to start taking yours.
With the weather slowly improving and the days getting longer, hikers, bikers and golfers who have put their favorite activities on hold are now chomping at the bit to get back to the Great Outdoors and do their thing. But just because climatic conditions are a little gentler, doesn’t mean the landscape is.
Anyone who has done any early Spring hiking knows that, depending on the location, hiking trails can take quite a while to dry out, making some areas more suited to mud wrestling than to trekking. If you’re a golfer, you know that there are water hazards on the course in April that won’t be around in August. And what mountain biker hasn’t finished an early season ride without a new racing stripe down his or her back. But is that going to stop you? No way! Whose afraid of a little mud? Not us!
Not until it’s time for the ride home that is. Who wants all those wet and muddy hiking boots, gaiters, socks, jackets, backpacks, trekking poles, golf bags, pull carts and doggie wipe-off towels inside their clean, dry vehicle? No one, that’s who! You could bag everything up in plastic garbage bags, but what a hassle. And, you still have to snuggle up to them on the ride back home.
That’s where a StowAway Hitch Cargo Carrier comes to the rescue. Not only is a StowAway, with its 16 cubic feet of storage space and 200 pound carrying capacity a great way to haul your gear, it’s the perfect option for transporting that wet, filthy apparel and equipment home. Everything remains outside the ride. With it’s easy ground level access, you don’t have to lift all that drippy stuff above your head as you would with an inconvenient rooftop box. Plus, there’s a built in drain plug to make the post-adventure cleanup easy as (mud)pie! (Have fun hosing out a rooftop carrier!) And if bikes are involved, the StowAway Hitch Cargo Carrier has been designed to be used simultaneously with the StowAway Hitch Bike Rack, a 4-bike and bike gear rack that can also be used separately.
So what are you waiting for? The weather’s warmer. The days are longer. Get on out to that trailhead, singletrack, or golf course and get messy. With a StowAway you can leave the outdoors outside where it belongs.