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Photo by Will Saunders
Bikerafting opens up new possibilities for bike travel.
While looking for a new adventure, Will Saunders was inspired by a group of mountain bikers he had spotted using packrafts to cross bodies of water on rides. Combining the thrill of off-road riding and the adventure of traveling by raft, bikerafting turns old routes into a new riding experience. Bikerafters ride with a small inflatable packraft, life jacket, and paddle strapped to their bike. When you get to a body of water, you inflate the packraft, break down your bike, and strap it to the front of the packraft, and paddle.
Saunders, along with Evan Smith, owns and operates Big City Bikerafts in Dallas, TX. “There is potential for bikerafting anywhere,” said Saunders. “Here in Dallas, we’ve bikerafted on the Trinity River and across some of the lakes in the area. I took a packraft to Washington, DC, and crossed the Delaware.”
Big City Bikerafts packages include a packraft, straps to tie the raft to the front handlebars, and a backpack containing a life jacket and collapsible paddle – everything you need for a bikerafting adventure on your existing bike. Saunders says that bikerafting is perfect for anyone capable and confident enough to ride a bike, take the wheels off, and paddle a packraft solo. “We’ve had our wives, friends, and family on the rafts, and the result is all the same – they love it,” said Saunders. “Our next big trip will probably be to Big Bend in Southwestern Texas, and then maybe Costa Rica.”