Bikepacking seems to be becoming more and more popular, especially considering the number of bikepacking products we saw at Interbike this year. One of the most interesting products that caught my eye, the Topeak Bikamper, actually isn’t a new product at all.
The Topeak Bikamper is a tent and rain fly system that ditches the tent poles in favor of using bike parts to support the shelter. This three-season, one-person tent weighs about 3.25 pounds and packs down nicely for bikepacking. The foot of the tent is supported by a bike wheel while the head of the tent attaches to the bike’s handlebars. Topeak recently tweaked the tent design to make sure it’s 29er wheel compatible, though sadly it doesn’t work with a 26-fat wheel. Oh well, this is a three-season tent after all.
The tent is just long enough (78.7″) and wide enough (35.4″ at the widest point) for one person and you’ll probably need to stash some of your gear elsewhere. But still, this is a pretty cool solution for getting rid of tent poles and going light on the bike without sacrificing protection from the elements.
Topeak wasn’t the only company showing off a tent at Interbike. Yakima had their rooftop tent, the SkyRise, on display, and it looked every bit as good as in the press release from earlier this summer.
I also spotted a tent from NSR Riding that’s designed to be extra tall so a bike fits inside the tent. There’s even a special wheel pocket to make sure your wheel isn’t hanging out in the cold all by itself. The company claims the tent provides theft protection, though keep in mind it’s still a nylon tent. Wasn’t there an ad or a photo from back in the 1990s that showed a guy sleeping with a bike in his tent, with his girlfriend left out in the cold? Now everyone, including the bike, can share a tent!