Bikepacking is on my 2022 “must do” list, and the new line of Bontrager Adventure bags are coming along for the ride. After testing them on recent gravel rides, they have me dreaming of my next adventure.
These water-proof, roomy bags fit enough gear for a quick overnighter or a multi-day quest. They attach quickly to the bike frame with easy access to grab another layer or some gear for a quick mechanical fix.
But these bags aren’t limited to a gravel adventure; they also work well for the commuter. There’s ample room to stow clothing for a gym workout or purchases from a shopping run.
A common feature of all three bags is the oversized zipper pull tabs. They have large loops making them easy to unzip even when wearing thick winter gloves.
Material: Water-proof material; water-resistant construction
How Obtained: Company sample
Availability: Online and retail
RBR advertiser: No
Bontrager Adventure Handlebar Bag
Cargo Capacity: 549 cu in (9L)
Dimensions: 52cm (l) x 24 cm (w)
This handlebar bag has some great features, but I appreciated how it sits lower on the bars than other brands and does not obstruct the front light. The 9L capacity bag provides easy access to a rain jacket, extra layers, or other ride necessities. There’s also an additional exterior bungee cord and strap providing even more storage.
For those longer rides where extra hydration is essential, there’s a zipper pocket with the capacity to hold a 1.5L Osprey Hydraulics LT Hydration Pack Lumbar Reservoir (not included). There’s easy access to a silicone hose port and a magnetic clasp to keep the hose securely in place.
Bontrager Adventure Boss Frame Bag
Cargo Capacity: 80 cu in (1.31L), 104 cu in (1.7L), 153 cu in (2.5L), 183 cu in (3L), 305 cu in (5L), 360 cu in (5.9L)
Dimensions: 42cm (l) x 5cm (w) x 11cm (h), 45cm (l) x 5cm (w) x 11cm (h), 48cm (l) x 5cm (w) x 12cm (h), 51cm (l) x 5cm (w) x 12cm (h), 52cm (l) x 5cm (w) x 13cm (h), 54cm (l) x 5cm (w) x 14cm (h)
Attachments: Top-tube straps or optional thumbscrews (threaded boss mounting on new Trek Checkpoint)
When selecting the appropriate size frame bag, be sure to check the company’s website for a sizing chart. The bag is designed for Trek’s new Checkpoint, but it fit my Trek Domane, which I use as my gravel bike. My bike’s 60cm frame requires the 5.9L version, and the snug fit prevents the bag from shifting or hitting my legs while pedaling.
Installation went quickly using three straps across the top tube, one on the seat tube and one around the head tube. The straps have a soft rubber coating to reduce abrasion and damage to the frame. Optional thumbscrews work with the threaded boss mounting to secure the bag to the top tube if you have the new Checkpoint.
One clever design feature is the bag’s hi-viz lining. Most bags have a black interior, and it’s impossible to find anything. The large main pocket has a hi-viz lining and several interior pockets to keep you organized, making it easy to find what you’re looking for without pulling everything out.
Bontrager Adventure Saddle Bag
Cargo Capacity: 549 cu in (9L)
Dimensions: 66cm (l) x 20cm (w) x 15cm (h)
For even more cargo capacity, add the 9L Adventure saddlebag. It attaches quickly and securely using two straps with buckle closures around the saddle rails and a seat post strap. An additional bungee cord and top strap make it easy to quickly stow a rain jacket, an extra base layer, or other gear.
The rear of the bag has a roll-top closure that closes securely with a buckle. If you’re traveling light, don’t worry, the bag maintains its shape due to a removable internal poly frame, which doesn’t take up space. There’s a strap that you can mount a rear light; however, I found that it doesn’t always hang perpendicular to the ground. I had just enough room on my seat post to attach my Garmin Varia radar. Being tall, I have a lot of real estate on my seat post, and a shorter person may have an issue.
Bontrager’s new line of Adventure bags are perfect for your next bikepacking trip. They provide ample room to stow away enough gear for a one-day or multi-day excursion. The possibilities are endless.
Sheri Rosenbaum regularly contributes articles and reviews products for RBR. She’s an avid recreational roadie who lives in the Chicago area and a major advocate for women’s cycling, serving on the board of directors and volunteering with the Dare2tri Paratriathlon Club. Click to read Sheri’s full bio or visit her web site sunflowersandpedals.com.