Labor Day 2004 dawned cool and refreshing here in New York. The sunshine was brilliant and the breeze was gentle, but what was really great was what Lee said to me right after we woke up!
"Hey Gar, whaddaya say we have breakfast? Then you walk the dogs and after that, what do you say we take the tandem with the trailer and Olivia (my Grandaughter) and pick up Michael (her cousin) and go for a ride to feed the ducks?"
After I recovered from the surprise I readily agreed and set about getting all in order to depart. First I walked the dog as directed. Then pumped up the tires and lubed up the chains on the Burley Tandem (It has a LOT of Chains!). Then I unfolded and set up the Burley d'lite, an aptly named little bike trailer if ever there was one.
Since the day was a bit more leisurely than most, I had the chance to do some in depth looking at the strap structure for the seats and restraint system in the d'lite and I was suitably impressed! I had never before noticed that there is actually an anti-whiplash net behind the heads of the occupants, a particularly nice touch, indicative of some serious design thought. With every strap and connection the basic structure of the trailer got stronger and stronger. It never ceases to amaze me how light and yet sturdy this trailer actually is.
Once I had the trailer and tandem all hooked up, I stood it next to Candice's Toyota for comparison. Well, you can see for yourself how it stacked up! When you tool down the streets with this rig you get noticed!
We loaded Olivia into her "Wiggles House on Wheels" along with Baby Casey and Baby Lucy, her dolls, as well as:
- bread for the ducks,
- all the gear necessary to support an almost two year old in the field,
- my bike backpack along with
- cell phone
- and the normal contents of Lee's purse
And off we went! It is not a long ride to Michael's house, maybe two miles or so, but it was a nice little ride and once again we hardly noticed the trailer on the tandem. This set Lee off to constantly whipping around to see if Olivia was still there. Since she was totally amused Olivia was actually quiet which only served to re-enforce Lee's insecurity about whether the trailer was there or not! (It was!)
At Michael's we unloaded Olivia from the trailer. When Michael's sisters Amanda and Kylie saw it they immediately asked "Can we try the trailer?" Amanda weighs in at 75 lbs. and Kylie at 60, and for their weight and age they are tall, but although it was snug they fit! Lee was busy with Olivia and Michael so I set off for a solo pull on the Tandem with 135 lbs. (Maximum weight recommended by manufacturer is 100 pounds) in tow in the trailer! Honestly it was not bad! OK I might not want to climb Mt. McKinley with this particular rig, but once you get it rolling, keeping it rolling was not a big chore and all the equipment functioned perfectly! This is the view from the trailer-Ugh! I guess they had the telephoto set on the camera lense! Note the empty seat in back!
We spun around a few blocks and then we stopped back for the rest of the crew. Amanda and Kylie grabbed their mountain bikes and we loaded up Olivia and Michael into the trailer, which with their reduced size made it look like a palace in comparison to their larger relatives! Well you can see how they felt about it!
The rest as they say is history, we went down to Silver Lake and pedaled through the park a few times, stopped and fed the ducks and turtles, chatted with some people walking their dogs, and pedaling their bikes. We met up with Dan and just generally had a really great family day! A day which simply could not have happened without the Burley D'lite trailer, and The Burley Design Co-operative Tandem!
For More information on Burley Trailers you can go to:
The Burley Nomad Review and
The Burley D'Lite Pre Review