Midget Bushtrekka bicycle trailer with tent affords above-ground sleeping
The Midget Bushtrekka from Kamp-Rite is a really rather handy-looking tow-along tent-cum-bicycle trailer for extended cycling trips. And as large as it is - 56 pounds (25.4 kg) in weight packing in 180 liters (48 US gallons) of storage - Kamp-Rite does not intend that the Bushtrekka be confined to sedate cycle paths. Rather, it sounds as though Bushtrekka is designed for fairly serious off-roading. But is it up to the job?
Uneven ground should be no obstacle for the Bushtrekka if Kamp-Rite's spiel is to be believed. The trailer features a "pivoting wheelset" in which the wheels on each side operate independently. There appears to be no axle stretch across the unit's underside, which might prove useful when negotiating more uncivilized surfaces.
The trailer is adjustable in a number of ways. The ride height can be adjusted to suit bicycle wheel sizes from 20 up to 29 inches. The trailer also includes leveling jacks so that, when the tent is set up, you don't roll out in the middle of the night due to being parked up on a gradient.
About this tent, then. The trailer comes with one of Kamp-Rite's Oversize Tentcot tents, which can be erected atop the trailer. Once up, it measures 90-in long, 32-in wide by 40-in high (or 2.3 by 0.8 by 1 meters in metric lore). And there's the rub: at 32 inches wide this thing is is very much a one-person tent, which is probably why Kamp-Rite recommends purchasing one or more additional Tentcots alongside it. Like the Bushtrekka/Tentcot combo, standalone Tentcots provide off-ground sleeping arrangements for those concerned about invading nocturnal fauna - or the ground-going varieties thereof, at any rate.
In my book, for the not insignificant US$899.99 outlay (okay, a little less from Amazon) for the Bushtrekka, I'd ideally like it to sleep two, perhaps by means of a specially-integrated tent designed specifically for the unit, perhaps with a system of unfolding legs to provide the additional floor area that would be necessary.
An additional word of caution courtesy of the folks at Red Ferret, who observed a pair of Amazon customer reviews from less-than-satisfied customers that suggest the bushings supporting the wheel assemblies are rather prone to failure. Caution, then, unless you're made of money.
Sources: Kamp-Rite, Amazon, via Red Ferret
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As a designer of said contrivances....
I guess it all comes down to really specialising FOR that particular trip, because the average body - it does not take much to see how limited the human engine is in terms of output and how much power is needed to drag a half ton "parachute" into a head wind, on half flat wheel barrow wheels.
It's best to REALLY plan your trip, with energy dense foods, plenty of electrolyte rich water, water stops to pick up more and places to stop and reasonable distances between camps - and being mindful of the expected weather.
The main aim of the planning is to travel as light as you can, with the essential gear only and a bar of soap and a spare pair of undies and socks.
If it's not bush fire season, use 4 long thin steel tent pegs and a box of matches and a cigarette lighter (in a sealed plastic bag) for your stove - make an alcohol burner.
Cook your food and hot drinks in the one container and consume it all from a big stainless steel mug.
All these things to enjoy doing far more with far less - and you can wash your jocks and socks and dry them and have a fresh clean dry pair every day.
It's GREAT going camping on a bike - with all your gear in the trailer - the bike feels light and responsive, instead of like riding a one wheeled piano, and you can carry enough for 3 or 4 days at a stretch with out overly taxing yourself in the process.
Even better if there is a small group of you, to share the loads... it's great fun, great to plan it all and it's a damned nice way to travel into out of the way places.