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Monday 9 June 2014

Our Family Wheels

Our family "car" got an update this weekend.

Ok, you're right. Our family doesn't have a car. I'll start again...

Our family "bike that fits as many people as a small car" got an update this weekend. That's better.

We've had our Yuba Mundo cargo bike for just over two years now. When we first bought it Lola was only one and a half years old and needed to sit in a baby seat. The set up at the time was as per the pictures below: Kim or I riding, Ava sitting behind with her own set of handle bars (attached to the seat post) and Lola at the very back in her baby seat.

Now that Lola is a big girl she's not such a fan of the baby seat. It is for babies, after all! She now prefers to sit directly on the back of the bike just like Ava. This works just fine when Ava rides her own bike along side (which she is doing more and more often) as Lola just moves forward into Ava's spot. 

However, there are plenty of times when it's not practical for Ava to ride her own bike and she needs to go on the back of the cargo bike. It will be quite some time before Mathilde will make use of the baby seat so for now we've taken it off. This give us so much more space on the back of the bike for the girls. There's even enough space for them to bring a friend along. But just what can all those kids hold onto to make sure they don't fall off? Monkey bars! The monkey bars are a frame that sits around the tail of the bike giving passengers something to hold onto. Ava and Lola helped Kim install the monkey bars. Along with the addition of the monkey bars we added an extra soft spot cushion to keep little bottoms comfortable!

Ava's handle bars that had been attached to the seat pole had to come off to make way for the monkey bars. The big girls had fun playing with the handle bars and "rode" their imaginary bike around the garage while Kim worked on the bike.

With the new modifications made to the bike we headed off to the park for a test ride.

There was one more modification that we made to our bike as well. Remember I said that Ava likes to ride her own bike as much as possible? Well, sometimes it's just a little too far for Ava to ride the whole way. To alleviate this problem we added a towing tray to one of the running boards. The towing tray is pretty much a running board with a slot that fits a bike tyre (adjustable from 12" up to 29"). When Ava is too tired to ride her bike any further we can just slip the front wheel of her bike into the towing tray, strap it up and she can jump on the back of the big bike. Her bike is then towed alongside. We've actually been wanting to get one of these for quite some time but with the previous set up the foot rests of the baby seat were in the way.

Of course, we'll be making changes again in about 9 months time when Mathilde is big enough to ride along in the baby seat. I guess we could always go for something like this set up I saw at Pedalfest in 2012!

Swap baby seat on the back for the monkey bars and the whole family really could fit on that. With Kim pedaling of course!


  1. OMG! I l-o-v-e the monkey bars and the towing 'tray'!!! The bike shop close by has got this exact bike as an el-bike. It is soooo tempting, particularly with the extra pedalling-help. The one they have in stock is green. It is way cool! I still have my cargo bike, but considering an el-engine for that as well. Although now they are all riding everywhere, we rarely use it anymore. Only for shopping really or if we take the train to town and I don't want to keep a track of them all on their own bikes. Wow, your bike is amazing, Sally.

    1. The monkey bars are the best! I can see you pedaling around on one of these with your three little monkeys on the back :)

      We've thought about getting the e-assist for our bike but for now we're fine without it. Berkeley has some pretty huge hills but it's relatively flat where we live and there's only one big hill on the way to pre-school which is where we ride it the most. If we ever move up into the hills though we'd definitely have to add it!

  2. Super cool modification! Very Burning Man-esque!


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