We decided to bring bicycles to Lake Arrowhead last week, anticipating much family riding (like at our Chincoteague camping trips). We bought a brand-new fancy bike rack for the minivan which we felt would be a worthy investment as there are more bicycles to tote now.
The day we left on the trip, I extracted the new bike rack from its box and began the process of mounting it. In small letters in the instructions I discovered that, in order to mount children's and women's bikes on it, there was an (optional, unadvertised and, you guessed it, unpurchased) crossbar needed. So it went back in the box, and the old one went on.
I am convinced that the ultimate anathema to anyone preparing for a family vacation is fitting bikes on a car bike rack. After our week with the extended family, we had planned to leave Lake Arrowhead for home at 7:30 a.m. so as to arrive in time for pizza/movie night in the air conditioned comfort of our own home. Getting the bikes up on the old bike rack took the better part of 45 minutes (two bikes, one women's, one kids') so we ended up getting in too late for pizza or movie after the drive from Pennsylvania--granted, I also failed to pack my computer bag which I fortunately realized before we turned in the key for the gated lake development in which we were staying, and that added more time as well. I fought with the plastic locking straps, trying to get them around the bike frames; I struggled with keeping the carrier's straps taut inside the hatch door frames. It was a hard fight, Ma, but they stayed on for the whole trip with only a little attention.
And just how much did we bike, you may be asking? Apart from the 10-year-old going out on his for about 3 minutes, not one bit.