The Arkel Story
From left to right, Yves, Sarah, Kevin, Louise, Linda, Paul (front center)
Missing, Joe "Metal Cowboy" Kurmaskie
We’ve come a long way from our humble beginnings in 1988 when Serge set out to design what he thought was the best bicycle pannier bag available to cyclists period! This was the birth of Arkel. From the very first pair of touring panniers he made for himself, to every touring, off-road, commuter and randonnuer pannier with Arkel’s name on it sold through your favorite local bike shop, one thing remains true - we build panniers because we care about your experience on the bike. We’ve always made, and will continue to create, panniers from the best fabric (Cordura - made in the United States), the best zippers (YKK), the best hook systems (aluminum) with sound designs, that work... and make your tour, commute or bike ride more satisfying. We’re making the planet a better place to live by promoting cycling through advocacy with our partners from Velo Quebec, The Bicycle Trade Association of Canada (BTAC), Adventure Cycling and The League of American Bicyclists.
Our designs integrate countless hours of experience in the saddle and from tons of customer feedback. There’s no better place than the open road to gather information. We listen and continually try to improve our saddlebags. We back our products with a no hassle warranty so you have peace of mind when you purchase Arkel. We also provide the best possible customer service anywhere.
The People Behind The Name - You're only as good as the company you keep.
Arkel's owner, Paul McKenzie, is the company's tireless leader. He’s in the office before most of his staff, bringing his passion for panniers and his love of bicycle touring to every product and every customer. When he does sneak away from the office, it is for riding his bicycle with his wife Louise, testing new Arkel products in the four corners of the world. He loves exploring the hidden paths and enjoys meeting fellow cyclists doing the same.
Our technical, spiritual, and operational guru and second in command, Yves Cadieux came to Arkel in 2006 with 26 years experience in the outdoor / bike industry, bike mechanic and sales fields. When he can sneak out without Paul seeing him, Yves loves to play outside as much as he can, hike, climb, bike and ski. His two daughters keep Yves busy, not to mention an old House that needs a lot of love and trips to home Depot…
Kevin knows everyone in the industry and beyond it. He’s the man who brings customers and bags together. With Arkel since 1999, Kevin has helped design and innovate Arkel's line, when he's not out testing them, selling them or running booths at expos and trade shows. He came to Arkel after running a successful outdoor sports store.
Joe Metal Cowboy Kurmaskie
Sales/Customer Service, Spokesman and Business Partner
Bestselling author/performer, bike book publisher and TV host, Joe Metal Cowboy Kurmaskie has been testing and promoting Arkel bags since 1999. It was only natural for him to come aboard as a partner and help Arkel market the best bags in the business. Joe is a force of nature and really knows how to describe the form, function and accessibility of Arkel bags with humor and style. He has taken on the job of opening new markets, supporting all our existing dealers, sales and organizing our outside reps. And he makes all our lively videos. Check our his books at and other foolishness at www.metalcowboy.com
Linda will go where no one dares tread. She handles every aspect of the business beginning in 2003. Keeping all the numbers straight and keeping the bags flowing, purchasing, accounting, payroll, invoicing, all those little daily routines. After working with over 800 men at a pulp and paper company, she can take practically any joke. She hibernates most of the winter, but there’s no stopping her when spring arrives.
2010 Our newest recruit, we like to tease her as the rookie with a customer service background, and the organizational skills that come from being a full-time Mom, Sarah makes sure the bags get where they need to go and get there on time. Sarah' also takes orders and is often the first voice you'll hear when you call. Hockey and camping are pastimes Husband Tom two kids and a great dane are her passion.