Jasper Heffernan-Wilker with father Derek"See you later," says Jasper Heffernan-Wilker. "Daddy and I have places to go and people to see."
Running errands with kids on bikes requires some planning when it comes to loading and unloading both kids and groceries. Here are a few of our favourite lessons learned.
- When Anna Sierra was a wee lass riding in the front seat of my bike, we had a rule on busy streets. As soon as I scooped her out of her seat, she had to hold onto the bike rack while I locked up our bike. We followed the same routine when we got back to the bike with groceries to go into the panniers. When we were locking up close to grassy fields or parks, she was allowed to run wild.
- Try to distribute the weight evenly between left and right panniers. If you are loading extra-long cargo bike panniers, try to place the heaviest weights closest to the front of the panniers to improve your bike’s balance.
- Be aware that your bike is going to handle differently with kids riding on it and loaded panniers. The first time I carried home a case of soymilk and a full week’s groceries, my front wheel really wanted to do a pop-a-wheelie. I braced hard on the handlebars and made it home in good shape.