My Burley Travoy bike trailer let us carry 25lbs of apples and a pickling crock – without a bike

travoyAhhhhhh, March, that month that every REI member looks forward to because it means we get our yearly dividends. This year I took my rebate and headed over to the mothership, and finally picked up this funky bike trailer I’ve been wanting forever: the Burley Travoy.

I don’t ride my bike to the store much thanks to the fibromyalgia, and I don’t commute by bike, so while I loved this design, and the videos on the Burley website sucked me in so desperately, I never really considered buying one. It didn’t seem like I’d use it much for the price.

But! Then my crappy little shopping cart for walking the Farmer’s Market died, and well, while I’m dreaming of a Brompton (the Travoy and the Brompton play very well together), I figured why not make my Travoy dream a reality (with a lot of help from my REI rebate). I could just use the Travoy as a shopping cart, couldn’t I?

Yes! It works great off the bike! Greg shuttled Jason and Beth and I down to Market Street today, where we walked to the Ballard Farmer’s Market. The Travoy really earned its keep. I found a deal on apples: 25 lbs for $25, and there’s no way we could have carried all that without the trailer, but we were able to slide the entire box right into the lower bag. It fit perfectly. I’ll be dehydrating apple chips for the next two weeks.

A few booths later, and we discover that our friend Darby from Daily Bird Pottery had something new – a PICKLING JAR! A huge, hand-thrown crock, with some weights and a nice lid (with a little indent for gas to escape), and it was beautiful and exactly what I needed. But it was so big, and weighed a ton! Having one of us carry this through the market would have made our arms fall off. No problem, it sat comfortably in the top bag of the Travoy. Darby was pretty impressed.

I was quite pleased with myself. Twenty minutes into the market and I was already in love with my bikeless bike trailer. It tracked surprisingly well through the crowds. I thought I might be bumping into folks, but I had no trouble at all. People with strollers had a lot harder time getting around than I did. It didn’t look like anything other than a sturdier version of a shopping cart, but in reality it can so so much more (including fold down to hardly anything – it fits great in the car).

My Novara is going into the bike shop soon for a tune-up, and when it’s done, I’ll rig the Travoy up and start cycling around the neighborhood, and see how far I can get before the pain kicks in too badly. If I can get to where I can bike back home from Market Street, even if I have to walk part of the way (up a big hill), then I can experiment with getting groceries by bike. Or library books, or Beth’s craft supplies, or any number of things. Any amount of time I can spend in the fresh air, getting exercise, out of the car, is a personal triumph.

travoy with apples

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