Today we took our new cargo bike out for its first test run to Dun Laoghaire. We are based in Deansgrange so the journey is not too taxing nor too long.
- Destination: Dun Laoghaire
- Trip Distance: 14km round trip
- Trip Time: 55 minutes
- Average Speed: 15km/h
- Number of Passengers: 3 children + cyclist
Dun Laoghaire is a nice seaside town on the south side of Dublin city. There is typically a market there on Sundays with various stalls selling goods & food. There is also a nice playground which we take the kids to on a regular basis & plenty of green space for them to run around if they want. We went there today for a quick visit, more to test the bicycle out than anything else but we also enjoyed a little picnic. We cycled down to the park & simply wheeled the bicycles to a park bench for a sit down.
There is a short shared cycle/walk path running alongside the train line. We decided to have a look at where it goes. To be honest it is more useful for the locals to get around, there was not much to see, but at least we know now thanks to having the bicycles with us!
The impact of road quality or rather bad road quality is one learning of the day. I had the opportunity to test the Babboe bike out a few weeks ago as a ‘test drive’. During that time I gained a feeling for how the bike handles but today I could test it on a longer journey. Irish roads & where they exist cycle lanes, in my opinion verge from average to absolutely appalling in terms of design & maintenance. On that basis you need to be mindful of surface quality. While the bicycle is quite stable especially with the two wheels at the front, it can become unstable in terms of control if you hit a pothole or surface defect of that nature.
Another item to consider is planning your journey. Unfortunately there aren’t that many cycle lanes or space for bicycles to cycling alongside cars in/out or in the environs of Dun Laoghaire. With this bicycle as it is wider than my hybrid bicycle, it is not always possible to cycle alongside cars. With that in mind, I planned my journey in as much as I could where there are roads with some cycle lane coverage & as wide/straight as possible to allow motorists to pass by where possible.
Bicycle feature test: Electric Battery
I also got to test the electric battery on the bicycle. This is the first e-bike I have ever tried & I am impressed. It is not to move the bicycle for you, rather help you along your way up hills etc. It has a few different level settings which I tried. I am glad we went for this model, as the kids get bigger & heavier combined with me getting a bit older, the battery assistance will come in use, especially since Deansgrange is at the bottom of some steep hills!
The day went well & the kids had a great time being transported around!