Waterproof Your Adventure

For its 50th Anniversary in June, SHAD debuted its newest motorcycle soft bag in Barcelona, Spain, and now Shad TR40 Terra Adventure Saddlebags are available in the United States. Each lightweight bag offers a 32-liter capacity and up to 22 pounds of load per bag.
Installation of the rack was easy with a little help from fellow rider Steven Polk of Dallas, Texas, who has been turning wrenches for years. We had ridden to the BMW MOA Rally in Springfield, Missouri, and with temperatures soaring into the upper 90s and little shade, we were grateful for the quick install. Once the rack was mounted on my BMW F 750 GS, the bags were
a cinch to put on and pop off with Shad’s 4P System mounts.

Each TR40 Terra locks to the bike in one fell swoop on four locking points to protect not only
entry into the bag but the removal of the bag from the bike. The Double Locking System is easy
to use. For access into a bag, slip the key into the keyhole and give it a twist, remove the lever on
the cam buckle from the mount, and unroll the closure. To remove the bag from the bike, twist
the key, release the lock mechanism, and pull the bag upward at an angle. In all, removing and
remounting each bag takes only seconds.

The bags’ material feels solid and durable, like a heavy canvas, with reinforced stitching and a
solid base. The closures have Velcro on each fold along the sides and top for quick and easy
access and closure. They’re created from high abrasion-resistant material and compliant with
REACH and Oeko-Tex Standard 100. Shad says its bags are tested up to 1,500 hours of UV exposure.




I tested them from Missouri to Mississippi in June and July, more specifically, through one rainstorm after another. I was able to remove all the contents of my previous 8-inch hard panniers and fill the TR40 Terra with room left over. Shad provides a couple of accessories with the TR 40s that have made my life easier, including an exterior dry bag and a bottle harness (gas or water, your choice) that attaches easily to the exterior of the bag through the MOLLE webbing.


I filled the dry bag with extra tools, an air compressor, a tire pressure gauge, and items for my bike I might need in quick reach, like cleaners and wipes that had previously sat at the bottom of my hard panniers.
In all, there are eight reinforced tie-down spots for added accessories and six DuraFlex cam buckles to adjust the bag per load.

Inside each bag, Shad provides a sturdy dry bag with enough material that the clasp creates a loop that can be tossed over a shoulder for easy carry. The rain and mud on this trip had been pretty constant and bad enough to pull under a bridge at one point, but everything inside the bags remained dry, to my delight.

Reflective material on the side of each bag assists with visibility. The padded handles help with carrying comfort.
$579 | shadusa.com

For a similar story, see Heather Lea’s Mosko Moto Collection

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Marianne Todd has been a professional photojournalist and writer since 1987. Her career began in newspapers and rapidly spread into national news magazines. Her work has been featured on the pages of Time, Life, National Geographic, Newsweek, and the Wall Street Journal, where she was nominated for Photographer of the Year International. Todd became a publisher in 2009, creating titles reflecting the music, arts, and tourism industries of the South (she still sports the accent), and her work as the official photographer for Governor Haley Barbour led her to photograph everything from Hurricane Katrina to presidential visits. Since moving to New Mexico four years ago, she has left hard news coverage to travel on her trusty BMW F 750 GS, journeying the roads of America and beyond.