Before I begin, please forgive me for what may seem like a self-indulgent post.
I love two wheeled machines. As readers of this blog may have guessed, bicycles are like a religion for me. The mountain trail is like a church and I try to faithfully attend service more than once a week. Others who know me also know how much I love bikes of another kind–the sort that requires a throttle. Out on the open road, motorcycling is the closest you can come to flying.
For the longest time now, I’ve been trying to find a way to fuse my two passions. Years ago, whenever I wanted to go to my home trails in Tanay, I had to drive through Marilaque in a car. It always irked me to know that I could be riding my motorcycle instead of driving to the rendezvous point for the trail ride. Padyakoldaway is always an option, except when you have to get back home on a limited visa.
As someone who regularly rides Marilaque, I know just how much fun it is to carve those twisty mountain roads on my motorcycle. I needed to find a way to carry my mountain bike on my motorcycle. I needed a bike rack on my motorcycle.
Googling the interwebs showed that this was possible. There were surfers and wakeboarders who carried their own boards on their motorcycles, so why not a bike?
And apparently many other riders had already done it. There were various hacks for a bike rack on a motorcycle. Some of them were quite ingenious and beautiful. While others… not so much. I’ll leave you to decide which ones look good and which look awful.
There was actually a US company that made racks for motorcycles, but they just seemed too damn expensive. And they didn’t have a model for the Royal Enfield, which was my motorcycle.
Meanwhile, the guys who make custom steel bikes at Breadwinner cycles seem to have it all figured out. Their custom motorcycles had custom racks for the custom bicycles which they build and ride. Watch the video below and you’ll be amazed.
To get my own bike rack, I also had to go custom. Thankfully some friends in the custom motorcycle scene were happy to lend a hand, a welding torch and some heavy duty bits of metal.
Initially we toyed around with a design similar to 2×2 Cycles. But it was just too complex. What my friend came out with was simpler, and it worked on the Royal Enfield.
The design and fabrication of the rack still need some fine tuning. But I’ve already tried it in Marilaque, and it worked very well. Now, to get Falcor (my motorcycle) and my still unnamed MTB to the Cordillera to have some real mountain fun.
PS. Lest someone mistake me for a guy who wants to ride his motorcycle on singletrack, let me just say that as much as I love my motorcycle, the last thing I want to hear up on trails like Mt. Ugo, Bobok Bisal or the Bataan Killer Loop is the sound of an engine. I believe that we go to these places precisely because we want to disconnect from noise of modernity, and to reconnect with silence and nature. That may sound cheesy to some, but that’s how I see it.
As much as I love the open road, a road is still a dagger placed in the heart of wilderness, to quote a late US Supreme Court justice and environmentalist. We need more wilderness.