In addition to a couple new bikes and some revamps, Salsa has introduced its new line of bags, the EXP series, for 2017. These bags are designed specifically to fit on their bikes, though most of them seem versatile enough to put on many other mountain bikes as well.
Salsa first designed this frame bag around the Cutthroat, their drop-bar, mixed-surface bikepacking rig, but model-specific bags for other bikes will be available eventually. These bags feature weatherproof material, a divided, large compartment on one side, which also houses an internal D-ring to keep a hydration reservoir securely in place, a small map pocket on the other side, and my favorite feature, a stash cord on the top tube.
Following the company’s highly-successful Anything Cage, which was a frame that fit onto water bottle mounts and could hold a dry bag full of just about whatever you wanted to put in it, the Anything Cradle holds a load securely on your handlebars away from the bars themselves, freeing up space, especially on drop bar bikes. It consists of aluminum arms that clamp around the bars, and an injection-molded plastic cage, to which you can strap just about whatever you want. It was tested on carbon bars and designed to hold up to 8 pounds.
The Cradle itself retails for $75, but Salsa also designed a lightweight 15-Liter drybag specifically designed to fit in it, as well as an extra pouch that straps to the drybag to hold smaller items.
MSRP for the whole setup is $150.
Top Tube Bag
Last year, Salsa started putting bolts for a top tube bag on the Cutthroat, but this year, those mounts will be available on a wider variety of models, including the redesigned Mukluk and brand-new Woodsmoke.
And now, there’s a specific bag to fit those mounts. This bag can, of course be bolted on, but it also includes straps so that it can fit onto any bike.
Salsa’s new seat bag is designed to hold 10-12 liters and 8 pounds. It’s designed to be waterproof, with a special material on the underside to protect from spray from the tires. It includes a light mount on the back and stretch cord on top to stash things like extra shoes or wet clothing.
Overall, these bags seem to be very well conceived. They look good and seem to be pretty durable, but of course only through long-term testing can we know for sure.
All of these bags should be available for purchase sometime in the late fall.