Gravel riders are well versed in the need to obtain sufficient bag capacity to adequately stow the many accoutrements that form part and parcel of the gravel riding ‘scene’.
The permutations of bag set-up are endless and gravel riders know only too well he anxiety caused by a sub optimal array of crap-carrier. One London rider posting on the hugely popular ‘Aggregate Rider‘ forum reports having his own very vivid existential crisis having managed to pack his whole life’s possessions onto his bike but having then lost his phone somewhere onboard, he was therefore unable to browse the internet for new bags. A leisure – retail disconnect that caused him significant anguish.
The poster who writes on the forum under the user name ‘SingleOrigin’ writes that whilst considering the fully laden bicycle, he tried to remember why he’d brought a gravel bike in the first place seeing that the only gravel near to his home was at the local branch of Travis Perkins and then only available in 1 tonne bags.
Other posters suggested that he may have brought into the Gravel scene because of the ‘more relaxed geometry’, the promise of instagram-worthy coffee stops with gravel buddies or simply a love of preposterously priced bags. Whatever the motivation for lapping up the bicycle industries’ most profitable wheeze of recent years, this certainly isn’t the first time gravel bags have caused riders to consider their life choices.
In 2021, an American gravel enthusiast launched her bike into Iowa River after managing to fill every angle on her bike frame with an array of pouches, rolls and holsters. Most of which we covered in elaborate weapons-grade webbing. Having covered her bike in around $500 worth of bags – she simply had nowhere to go. She had reached the limits of 3rd Dimension Bikepacking. She became all-consumed by the question of a 4th dimension having been proven to exist or just theoretical? If it were to exist, this would open up a whole new Universe of physical gravel bag-related possibilities, and it would certainly pave the way for a new holy grail of Bikepacking: to harness and access these additional dimensions. But without evidence, its existence is still purely speculative at this point.