Smaller than a travel trailer but big enough to be a tent. It must be the reason pop-up campers are becoming popular among the masses.
With its popularity, even adventurous folks who like to bike find it convenient. However, bikers will have a little challenge attaching their bike racks to a pop-up camper as the latter attaches itself to where the conventional hitch bike racks are supposed to be fastened.
Pop-up campers obstruct the bike racks access to the trunk area but, this should not keep the campers from bringing their bikes along with them. There are still a number of ways to have your bike get on the camper.
Read on and find out the best bike racks for your pop-up camper.
Bike Racks and Pop-Up Campers
More and more cyclists have found convenience in using bike racks when traveling than removing the wheels of their bike and having them rest in the back area of the car. Bike racks have been precisely engineered to hold bikes during travel. The main purpose is to get them transported from point A to B without getting in the way of your other travel necessities.
Pop-up campers are turning out to be more common as time goes by. The convenience of being smaller than an RV at a relatively affordable price makes it the general choice for most campers.
What is throwing down the gauntlet with these two, is that both are usually attached to the hitch. So, is there a way to put together your love for biking and your fondness for pop-ups?
As pop-up campers are becoming more and more popular, a lot of bike racks have been designed to accommodate bikes during travel without having to share the vehicle’s hitch. Hence, yes. There is.
What Bike Rack is Best for use with a Pop-up Camper?
Your vehicle’s trailer hitch could very well be employed with the pop-up camper, but it shouldn’t get in the way of enjoying your camping with a bike. There are ways to bring along your 2-wheels as you camp in a pop-up. A few pieces of research here and there got me some tips on how to do this.
How to Carry Bikes?
- Hitch Mounted Bike Rack
- Front Mount Hitch Bike Rack
- Tow Vehicle Roof Bike Rack
- Ball Mount Bike Rack
- Truck Bed Bike Rack
- Camper Roof Rack
Best Bike Racks For Pop Up Campers
Hitch Mounted Bike Rack
This type of rack slides into the receiver of a trailer hitch on a car or a truck. A lot of bikers prefer this over roof-mounted bike racks as it eliminates overhead clearance problems and at the same time, is more aerodynamic.
Hitch mounted bike racks are seldom used with pop-up campers since both are attached to the hitch. But, pop-up campers have, over time, made way to do this. There are pop-up campers that approve the use of some hitch-mounted bike racks.
If the manufacturer for your camper doesn’t offer this option, you may go with adding a trailer hitch receiver for your pop-up. This can either be attached to the camper bumper or fixed on the camper frame itself.
Make sure of the trailer bumper’s strength as well as the width of your camper. These are the determining factors to know which hitch type will work well for your camper. If it isn’t reinforced, it might not be good carrying additional weight. In this case, the frame mount hitch is your best option.
|May be used on the tow vehicle when the camper is not attached||Need a trailer hitch to use|
#1. Pro- Series Reese Eclipse 4 Bike Rack for 2″ Hitches – Basic but sturdy bike rack for pop-up camper
Reese has been around since 1952 making it a household name in the heavy-duty hauling industry. It takes pride in having a line of products that cater to heavy-duty fifth wheels such as trailers, RVs, and pop-up campers.
Approved for use on a motor home, fifth wheel and pop-up campers, Reese Eclipse 4 Bike Rack, an economically priced hitch mounted bike rack allows you to get to the rear of your vehicle by lifting a pin to tilt the rack down.
What’s better than it is compatible with pop-up campers? It is designed to work with different types of bikes. Bring a mountain, road, women’s, or even kids’ bike and you won’t even notice they are there.
With Reese Eclipse Bike Rack, the levelness of the bike is attained with a bike adapter bar. While it can still be used without it, one end of the bike may be kicked up a little higher than the other end. This system is designed to pass a cable lock through and around each bike for added security.
- Hitch-mounted rack that can haul up to 4 bikes at the back of your vehicle
- Sturdy cradles with rubberized pads as well as heavy-duty hook-and-loop straps secure bikes to rack
- Integrated with anti-rattle hitch bolt that helps reduce movement of rack in hitch receiver
- Application: 2″ x 2″ trailer hitch receivers
- Carrying capacity: Up to 4 bicycles
- Weight capacity: 120 pounds
- Works with Car, Truck, SUV, Van, Fifth Wheel, Motorhome, Towable Camper
- Limited 1-year warranty
|Comes with fasteners that are pre-coated with thread lock||Room is not enough between the slanted bar and chain|
|Can be assembled and put up in 15 minutes||Frames are sturdy but poorly weld
|Sturdy due to the heavy metal
Front Mount Hitch Bike Rack
If the rear receiver hitch is taken, another way is to go up front. Up until now, a lot of motorists have not realized just how useful and functional this part of the vehicle yet. Utilizing this part of your car allows you to mount not just your bike rack, but winch, or plow, or even a step plate.
Some campers prefer to transport bikes on the front of the vehicle, so their precious two-wheels stays in sight from the driver’s seat. Keep in mind that putting anything in front of the car may obstruct the headlights and block the airflow to the radiator. Make sure your bike doesn’t cause that or the camping trip may just be cut short.
|All the extra space at the back can be solely for the pop-up camper||Bikes could get in the way of the airflow to the vehicle’s radiator|
|Can monitor your bikes easily|
#2. Swagman XC 2-Bike Rack Platform Style – Tried and tested for long drives
Swagman’s founder had one vision when they started out the company in the early 90’s – to ride, paddle, explore, and to seek your adventure. With this philosophy, they shaped the way to transport bikes no matter the outdoor environment can be.
A stress-free way to transport your bike, especially when you bring along with you a pop-up camper. This can be used traditionally at the rear hitch or at the front of the vehicle if the tow vehicle has a front mount hitch.
Featuring a 4-inch shank rise, it gives you an additional ground clearance whether you mount it in front or at the rear hitch. It is finished with powder coat making it resistant to rust and corrosion. The same finish also adds up to the overall look of the bike rack.
Another good thing about this bike rack is it being a great space saver when not in use. Just pull the pin to fold it down or put it back to get your bikes standing safe on the platform.
- Can carry up to two bikes
- Mounting design makes it a snug fit with most bikes despite frame sizes
- Wheel hoops add stability for the platform in carrying the bikes
- Application: 1-1/4″ x 1-1/4″ (Class I and II) and 2″ x 2″ trailer hitches
- Carrying capacity: Up to 2 bicycles
- Weight capacity: 70 pounds
- Works with Car, Truck, SUV, Van, Motorhome,
- Limited lifetime warranty
|Rack weighs less than most bike racks at 26 pounds||Plastic knobs crack when overly tightened down
|Wheel holders are adjustable and ratcheting arms help to seat bikes securely||Many parts to put together
Roof Bike Rack
One of the most popular methods in transporting bikes is to carry it on top of the roof. These mount racks are convenient in carrying multiple bikes on a trip. It won’t matter what kind of bike you bring along, each can have the rack it needs.
The only thing to take into consideration when using a roof bike rack is the additional height to your vehicle. This could be a challenge especially if you have to pass through underpasses with low vertical clearance.
Another challenge this type of rack presents is loading and unloading your bike to it. With the height of the newer trucks, it could need you a step ladder or anything you can use to reach it.
|Allows bike to be carried on the roof of the tow vehicle, whether or not the pop-up camper is mounted||Adds up height to the car making it a challenge to pass through tunnels with low vertical clearance
#3. Yakima FrontLoader Wheel Mount Bike Carrier – A Must Have for Carbon Fiber Frames
Since 1979, Yakima has been providing trusted solutions for making outdoor experiences a breeze. Backed with extensive involvement in packing, safety, hauling, and design sensibility, their solutions resulted in an effective way of traveling with gears.
Carry one bike up the roof safely and securely with Yakima FrontLoader Roof Bike Rack. The unique mounting system it features grabs the front tire, holds it in place, all by tightening a knob. Worried if it is compatible with your existing roof rack system? You shouldn’t be. Its universal clamping system lets you fit it around your system, whether it’s round, square, aero, or elliptical.
Yakima FrontLoader Roof Bike Rack can provide accommodation for bikes with 10 to 29-inch wheel sizes. That means you can load your off-road bike or your kid’s tiny 2-wheeler.
Being mounted on the roof means, it can best be taken on a road trip when you have your pop-up camper along. It won’t get in the way of the trailer hitch the camper is supposed to be attached to.
- The design allows you to load your bike without having to remove the front wheel
- Fits any crossbars without the need for adapter
- Has a built-in, lockable cable that clings to the bike for additional security
- Application: aero, round, square and factory roof-rack crossbars
- Carrying capacity: 1 bicycle
- Weight capacity: Up to 40 pounds
- Maximum tire width: 3”
- Limited lifetime warranty
|Easy installation with almost zero assembly||Too easy to install and uninstall – even for thieves
|Can be used with almost any size of tires||Have to purchase additional security locks|
|Handily folds flat when not in use|
Towing Bike Rack
Towable bike carriers can either slide into your hitch or clamp. This goes between the vehicle and the camper by using a bike rack that mounts on to a ball mount. Towing bike rack usually has either an integrated ball mount or, they mount around a 2-inch ball mount shank.
Towing bike racks come in different styles. They can have the bike hanging or stand on a platform and can typically carry 2 to 4 bikes.
|Can be used to carry bikes between the tow vehicle and the pop-up camper||May only be able to carry up to three bikes
|Utilizes ball mount shank for hauling|
#4. Curt Clamp-On 3 Bike Rack – Ideal for Pop-Up Campers
CURT takes pride in being the leading manufacturer of US made custom-fit trailer hitches. They offer a complete line of hauling merchandise that can be used for practically every vehicle on the road today.
They have since 1993 aspired to be the industry leader in towing products and have built reputation enough to grant them a spot in CURT Group.
Curt Clamp-On 3 Bike Rack is your perfect solution in hauling your bikes while tagging along with your pop-up camper. Simply fastening it around the existing ball mount gets you a rack that can accommodate up to three bikes. The dual arms that provide support for the bikes are stamped with reflectors for added visibility at night.
The cradles are made of soft plastic that has patterned channels to have room for lines and cables. The sturdy steel construction is coated with nice black powder finish making it resistant to rust and corrosion.
Watch the video below to see just how effective it is in hauling your bike along with your pop-up camper.
- Convenient and lightweight bike rack that clamps around your ball mount keeping your ball mount still accessible for towing purposes
- Durable and soft plastic cradles rotate to allow fitting of various bike shapes and sizes
- Excellent bike brace provided by dual arms
- Application: 2″ x 2″ ball mounts
- Note that you may be required 1-1/2″ of space on the shank of the ball mount
- Carrying capacity: up to 3 bicycles
- Weight capacity: Up to 135 pounds
- Bike Rack Weight: 13 pounds
- 1-year limited warranty
|Makes use of the dead space above the hitch, between the towing vehicle and the camper||Construction is too strong that it is a little hard to release or fold the clamps
|Has lockable cable that you can use with a lock you can purchase separately to deter off thieves||Straps were too hard to put over the bikes
|Versatile and folds for easy storage||#colspan#
Truck Bed Bike Rack
More and more prefer to take trucks on an adventure trip? Because, the space in the back, needless to say sells it. That same space can be converted into the easiest and most secure place to stand your bike during a road trip.
A truck, a pop-up camper, and a truck bed bike rack can get your outdoor experience up a notch.
|It is as simple as loading your bike on top of your truck bed||Space that the bike occupies may be used for other items to haul
#5. Topline 2 Bike Carrier Truck Bed Mounted Expandable Bike Rack – Ideal for hauling bikes in a pickup truck towing a pop-up camper
Topline Manufacturing has been in the RV accessories industry since 1974. Over forty years later, they have penetrated the market with their roof racks, bike racks, and tire steps that provide convenience for the outdoor traveler in you.
Topline 2 Bike Carrier, as the name suggests is a two-bike carrier that allows the bike to stand firmly a top of the truck bed. The rubber pads on the inside give a snug fit, as well as protection for frames against scuffs or scratches.
The idea that it allows the bike to be carried at the back of the pickup truck makes it ideal to use when towing a pop-up camper along. The hitch can solely be used for towing and not for sharing with the bike rack.
- Clamps to bed rails on almost any pickup trucks
- Easy installation can be mounted in minutes
- Carries 2 bikes
- Clamps attach to bike frames up to 1-1/2″ in diameter
- Limited 1-year warranty
|Comes with a cable lock tie-down hooks to prevent theft||May need to drill or cut bed liner
|Easy to install and holds bikes rock steady
Tongue Mount Bike Rack
Another way to mount a bike rack onto a camper is with a trailer tongue where you stand the rack at the front of the travel fifth wheel. This is usually custom-done and requires metalworking. There are manufacturers who sell this at retail shops, but the options could be too little and may just not work for the purpose you need.
|Keeps your 2-wheelers within sight without obstructing the view out your windshield||May be hard to find a bike rack and a camper that it can be compatible with
#6. Jack-It 2 Bike Rack for A-Frame Trailers – Best for Trailers and Campers
The company started in 1958, with the manufacturer manufacturing galvanized mobile home roofing. Over time, their steel works have expanded into projects that included a variety of innovative products from chassis to windows, to electronic components, and of course, recreational vehicle accessories.
Carry up to two bikes of any size or style with a bike rack that installs on you’re A-frame trailer – no adapter bar necessary. Jack-It bike rack holds onto your bikes safely behind your tow vehicle, right where you can see them.
The adjustable wheel carriers have foam linings to protect your bike’s finish. It straps the bikes by the wheels, so you won’t have to worry about it getting in contact with the bike’s body.
This bike rack’s sturdy steel construction is made even more durable with the black powder coat finish that resists rust and corrosion.
- Tall V-shaped design ensures level transport for your 2-wheelers
- Cushioned pads keep the bike from scratches brought by bike-to-bike contact
- PowerTower frame keep the tongue jack from damage during impact
- Application: most A-frame trailers
- Carrying capacity: 2 bicycles
- Weight capacity: Up to 80 pounds
- Bike Rack Weight: 25 pounds
- 1-year limited warranty
|Bikes hung perfect and are always within your sight||We got nothin'|
Camper Roof Bike Rack
Probably the best you can pick from all the options is the camper roof bike rack. Some manufacturers design their pop-up camper with a roof mounting system integrated. This saves you from the hassle of looking for an aftermarket roof rack to add.
Certainly, you can go with a roof rack sold separately if the pop-up camper you have doesn’t include this. This style works well in hauling your bikes atop of the camper. Unlike carrying your bike on a vehicle roof rack, this method does minimal effect on aerodynamics.
Having the bikes carried on the pop-up camper reduces wind drag from the 2-wheels since they are at the back of the tow vehicle. Not to mention, it is likewise easier to load and unload your bikes from it since the roof of a pop-up camper is relatively lower than the tow vehicle.
|Keeps the height of setup low||Can still affect aerodynamics a little
|Reduces wind drag|
#7. Rhino-Rack MountainTrail Rooftop Bike Carrier – Versatile and works well with camper roof tops
Rhino-Rack has made their name relatable to the roof rack industry since they started manufacturing world-class roof racks in 1992. The decades of experience have defined them to be the most diverse and innovative when it comes to producing high-quality gear to all engineering segments.
Made with lightweight aluminum material that resists rust and corrosion, Rhino-Rack MountainTrail Rooftop Bike Carrier is ideal not just for your towing vehicle but for your camper too.
It fits on almost any roof-rack crossbar configurations with universal mounting hardware. The package comes with the needed Allen wrench, so you can tighten the straps around the crossbars with ease.
- Low-profile design decreases drag and wind noise
- Box includes locks to secure your bike to the rack and the rack to your crossbars
- Stylish matte black coat finish
- Application: round, square, aero/elliptical and most factory crossbars
- Carrying capacity: 1 bicycle
- Weight capacity: Up to 35 pounds
- Lifetime limited warranty
|Sturdy and well-designed; decreased wind noise||Overtightening the locks may cause the mechanism to fail
Camper Bike Racks
Bike racks for pop-up campers are less upfront than most bike racks. The reason is due to them requiring the use of multiple products to conjunct each other.
A lot of times, they need to be mixed and matched to make sure they work well, separately and independently.
|Racks can be mixed and matched to get the most customized piece to work for you||Having to mix and match it may take a lot of time and effort
#8. ProRac 4 Bike Tent Trailer Proformance – Best Option for a Pop-Up Camper
Focusing on designing their products to be rugged, but functional, Pro Rac has paved their way into the world of automotive systems. Since 1993, their name has been synonymous with quality and well-engineered roof racks, truck caps, covers, and RV accessories.
ProRac 4 Bike Tent Trailer may be expensive but having it won’t get you to purchase an additional rack. Everything you need is included. It works well with almost any pop-up campers and trailers. Not only that, it can telescope to different elevations of racks.
This bike rack can hold virtually any bikes securely without having to alter your camper. Experts say that while it is sold as 4-bike rack, it can actually hold up to 6 bikes, provided, you have the expansion hardware set. That makes it the most versatile option for your camper.
- Consists of two vertical support beams and one horizontal bar that attaches to your bike’s fork
- Allows you to carry more than 4 bikes with the additional straps than are sold separately
- Type: Fork-mounted
- Weight capacity: 6 bikes (~200 pounds.)
- Rack weight: 23 pounds
|Can haul multiple bikes without putting a hole on the camper’s roof||Plastic straps used to stabilize the bikes may be flimsy
|Very easy to assemble. Bikes fit well with proper spacing||Front tire needs to be removed to load to the rack|
|Mounts easy to the tongue||Straps can be wearisome
What to Consider in Getting a Bike Rack for Pop-Up Camper
Finding a pop-up camper bike rack could be confusing but as long as you know which factors you should look for, you may land yourself the best item that can work for your needs.
To decide on a bike rack, ask yourself:
Do I have a spare tire at the back of my camper?
If yes, then you are in a good position. Most racks are manufactured to attach onto the back of a spare tire, whether it’s on the back of an SUV or a camper. They are flexible and can be configured in many ways.
Does my camper have a large back bumper?
If so, a bumper hitch receiver can make the back bumper of the camper fitting to a 2-inch hitch.
Other than those camper checklists, narrow down your list with the following criterion;
Reliability and Durability
- Racks should feel sturdy even when loaded with bikes
- The mechanism should be strong enough to be holding the bikes in place
- No functionality should be compromised when holding multiple bikes
The simplicity of installation is subjective. It may vary depending on the car make or model as well as the person who is installing it. What we can consider on this part is the difficulty or the ease of putting up and unloading the bikes on the racks post-installation.
Don’t always go for the name. As long as it features durability, convenience, decreased wind drag, and versatility, it is the item worth paying for.
Weight and Load Capacity
Considering that we are using it on or along with a camper, it is particularly important that they are not too heavy to cause wind drag or an increased effect on gas mileage.
Our Top Pick
Going through all the considerations and factors in getting a bike rack for a pop-up camper, the one that stood out is the ProRac Bike Tent.
This all-in-one option is easy to install, does not damage your camper, and can hold up to a set of 6 bikes without compromising functionality. The makers of this bike rack have carefully engineered it to work best with trailers and pop-up campers.
Check out this video for more information on the ProRac Bike Tent:
Large wheel trays, rubber padded arms, and well-engineered bike technology are just some of what sells in the bike rack industry. But, at the end of the day, you will still have to choose wisely, depending on the application you will use it with. Your personal choice, spending plan, as well as your desire to hold your bike securely, should always be kept into consideration in deciding which bike rack is best for your pop-up camper.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: How many bikes can I transport on a camper rack?
A: There are many factors on the loading capacity of a bike rack. Take into consideration the bike’s frame and the size of the wheel. While most racks can carry up to 3 bikes, it will still depend on how your bike is built.
Q: Will a bike rack damage my camper or bike?
A: There is always that risk. Anything that holds something can cause minimal wear and tear injuries to whatever they are holding. More so, some racks require drilling to hold it up the roof of the camper. Pick a high-quality rack that can securely mount down your bike with reduced chances of getting in contact with harmful surfaces.
Q: Are there DIY camper bike rack options?
A: Yes, there are. But, as a bike enthusiast, you wouldn’t want to expose your precious 2-wheelers to DIYs that may just cause them damage. Manufacturers have studied and engineered their products to perfection, so it is highly advisable to check them out first.