Chariot Cougar II Child Trailer review£429.99

This trailer has proven exceptional in all conditions over the past year. The bare aluminium chassis and fabric rain cover look just like new despite being used along muddy lanes and forest tracks and only hurried rudimentary cleaning.

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This trailer has proven exceptional in all conditions over the past year. The bare aluminium chassis and fabric rain cover look just like new despite being used along muddy lanes and forest tracks and only hurried rudimentary cleaning. Handling off-road is predictable but requires some forward planning on the rider's part, and my wife felt it had a tendency to track to the left (although this was traced to a loose adjuster on the leaf suspension - easily rectified). You could even fit knobbly BMX tyres if you or your little one(s) feel the call of the bridle path.

The ball type hitch, while very secure and well engineered can be a little tricky to locate in the frame mounted bracket. Ordinarily it's second nature but proved a little challenging when an excitable toddler tries to clamber on board at the same time. Wheels are suitably stout for most conditions, remaining true and free from oxidisation. Comfort and safety for passengers seems excellent; my son - either mesmerised by the view or dropping off readily - was held safe and sound by the up and over harness.

Bike braking and gearing might require a rethink, however, as with any trailer, as stopping distances are greatly increased compared with a solo ride, especially downhill or in the wet where 11 additional kilos plus passenger weight makes itself known. While an older mountain bike makes an excellent trailer tug for this, a mid range tourer coped well enough, but you might want to consider swapping to flatbars or 44/46cm drops for greater leverage and therefore control.

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