While Giant Loop didn't invent the horseshoe design it was one of the first companies to see the benefit of this design for offroad and adventure luggage. The Great Basin and the smaller Coyote saddlebags have proven to be an interesting option for travel.
Giant Loop is a USA company making and designing all their products in Oregon. With ownership changes recently we hope to see some new and less expensive options out of the company soon.
The Great Basin is mostly made of a durable trucker’s tarp with ballistic nylon in high wear areas. The bag features YKK coil zippers with a magnetic water deflection flap and sewn in center organizer. The inner bags of the tested bag are not waterproof, although the newer version comes with sealed dry bags.
- Fits a variety of bikes
- Easy to install
- Made in USA
- Not water proof
- Single bag design makes repairs or damages a big deal
- No slack management for straps
While the Giant Loop products have a large following there are some other players with great products that may be better in some areas.
The Green Chile ADV kit (reviewed here) is an excellent example of a kit that is much cheaper with more expandability options. Starting at around $269 for a full kit and offering many options the GCAG kit is worth a look before making a decision.
Another option is the Wolfman Expedition Dry Saddlebags (reviewed here). This kit includes two vinyl style saddlebags that are both waterproof and durable in a throw over design. These bags can be used without a rack on some models. Starting at about $259 (without rack) these bags can be used in conjunction with a tail bag if needed. If one bag is damaged it does not ruin the entire kit. The downfall, is they usually need a rack.
I love the idea of no hard rack needed and do not agree with taking a light capable bike then adding 20 pounds to it. For this reason the Giant Loop products sparked my interest.
At this price point I had hoped for a fully waterproof outer shell, but in order to fulfill the claim of waterproof the newer version comes with waterproof inner bags with a water resistant outer bag. This means anything not placed in a dry bag has the possibility of getting wet.
The single bag design does leave some durability to question. If you were to tear the outer bag on any side there is no way to simply replace that bag or piece. The entire Great Basin would be ruined. With no slack management options we ended up damaging one of the lower straps. If this strap broke, a new strap would have to be sewn in before use. (see photo)
Adding additional storage is simple if you only add one additional dry bag behind the Great Basin. But there is really no other expansion option.
For in town or commuting use the Great Basin seemed huge and out of place. For most this wouldn't be a deal breaker. I would rather have a smaller bag with expandability built in to make it more versatile.
I hate being this critical on this piece of luggage, however the price point is quite high.
I do hope to eventually test and review the smaller Coyote bag and I do feel that at its size and price may be a viable option. Look for further reviews of Giant Loop Products here on Spirit Strike.
Giant loop products can be purchased from various retailers including:
This article author is Jacob Roby.