|Somebody has to do it, right?|
This is the type of advertising that I find humorous. There should be more. We do take ourselves way too seriously as a race.
Ok, now, on to the Arkel panniers. Several years ago, perhaps 2009, I met up with a couple of bicycle tourists up in the Gila. These two women were coming up Sapillo Hill, which is a kick-your-ass 3 mile climb up from the intersection of Rt. 15 and Rt. 35. They were doing a more scenic, but harder, section of the Adventure Cycling Association's Southern Tier Route. The first woman waved and kept riding, while the second woman stopped to chat, which, considering the climb she was on, amazed me. Anyways, I noticed her panniers and inquired about them. Turns out, they were Arkel panniers. Love at first sight. Not the woman. The panniers. These are made in Quebec, Canada, and are made with material from the U.S.
What I truly like about them is the different compartments on the rear and front panniers. Top loading panniers, while functional, create a situation that makes me think harder than I want to or should have to. When packing gear, etc, into a top loading pannier, it is a requirement to plan precisely what goes where. If this process isn't followed, frustrations will escalate and...sooooooon....stuff will be flying all over inside the tent, motel room, wherever you might be, trying to locate EXACTLY where the hell did I put that item that I'm looking for??? To be honest, this isn't critical mass stuff, but, for less stress, compartments make life, and searching, easier. It's not required to remove EVERYTHING from the pannier to locate something. When I cycled across country in 2010, I did manage to put everything exactly where I wanted it and had minimal times where the searching ensued. With the Arkels, that is significantly reduced. The ones that I particularly like are the GT-54 and GT-18 panniers.
Here's a video about the GT-18 and GT-54 panniers and the waterproof covers that are an integral part of both of these panniers, besides the pannier itself being waterproof:
Now, a few photos:
|Arkel GT-18 Front or Rear Pannier|
|Arkel GT-54 Rear Pannier|
|Arkel Tailrider Rack Bag|
To my wife, Eileen, thanks and ssssmmmooooocccccchhhhheeeeesssss!! You do know how to do things right.
After I've given these a try, I'll do a little review of them. From what I've seen, I do believe that I'll be enjoying these panniers for many years down the road.
Ok, now, a tune to exit for, and a grateful thank you to, all the military personnel and civilians who were at Pearl Harbor all those years ago and exhibited bravery, fortitude, and a strength on a scale that seems beyond human endurance. The Andrew Sisters doing, "Bugle Boy of Company B".