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Showing posts from 2013

The Dakar Rally 2014… Official Teaser

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5 days and counting down! Check out the official teaser with some great beauty shots.

The Dakar Rally 2014… A Preview

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The Dakar Rally… 6 days and counting down! Check out this preview which captures a little bit of the landscape, the vehicles and the passion.

The Dakar Rally… It's almost time!

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It is almost time for the 2014 Dakar Rally!
The rally starts on January 5th in Rosario, Argentina, then passes through Argentina, Bolivia and Chile, finishing on January 18th in Valparaiso, Chile.
When I was motorcycling through South America I passed by some of the same cities and over some of the same terrain… although at a much slower pace. I can guarantee that the scenery will be incredible.
Check out this video of the Backroads of Bolivia.
Whether you are a fan of the motorcycles...
the quads...
the cars...
or the trucks… the Dakar Rally is the most amazing motor rally in the world.

I will try to post updates as the competitors move through the various stages, so stay tuned.

For more info check out the website for the Dakar Rally.

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

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The Secret Life of Walter Mitty may be the best new adventure film for the new year.

Walter Mitty (Ben Stiller), a day-dreamer escapes his anonymous life by disappearing into a world of fantasies filled with heroism, romance and action. When his job along with that of his co-worker are threatened, he takes action in the real world embarking on a global journey that turns into an adventure more extraordinary than anything he could have ever imagined.
Check out the preview (2 minutes)

Merry Christmas

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Merry Christmas!

15 Minutes of Fame

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The local neighborhood newspaper, The Allandale Neighborhood Reporter, was dropped in my mailbox.
Inside there was an article about my trip from Texas to Tierra del Fuego. My 15 minutes of fame.

TransAmerican Trail by Land Rover LR4s

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The TranAmerican Trail is a mostly dirt route from the East coast to the West coast across America. The trail is usually traversed by adventurous spirits on motorcycles. Some friends of Jay Leno decided to travel the route with Land Rover LR4s.
Check out the video.

Traveling North Korea by Adventure Motorcycle

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Vice.com shared this short documentary about a group of adventurers who traveled by motorcycle through North Korea and South Korea. Their choice of motorcycle was the Suzuki DR650. The group of five New Zealanders include Joanne Morgan, Gareth Morgan, Dave Wallace, Brendan Keogh and Tony Armstrong.  The real journey began years ago, when they decided they wanted to ride the Baekdudaegan, a mountain range that stretches the length of North and South Korea's shared peninsula. After countless hours of negotiation and coordination with both governments, they were granted permission. It was, the Morgans believe, the first time anyone's ever traveled through both countries like that since the partitioning of Korea in 1945.  During the entire journey they were escorted by North Korean security. Joanne and Gareth shot the entirety of their trip.  By making the trip they hoped to demonstrate how Koreans can come together over what they have in common. To symbolize this, the group took…

Basic Course on Adventure Motorcycling Riding... How To Ride Off Road

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A long, but pretty decent video documenting an introductory course by RawHyde Adventure on basic adventure motorcycle riding. 
The video covers off-road riding position, balance, acceleration, clutching,  turning, breaking and picking up a dropped motorcycle. (1:40 hour)

KTM1190 Adventure R Review

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A good review of the KTM1190 Adventure R motorcycle.
 Check out the video. For more info see the KTM website.

ENGINE
Design 2-cylinder, 4-stroke, spark-ignition engine, 75° V arrangement, liquid-cooled
Displacement 1,195 cm³ Bore 105 mm Stroke 69 mm
Performance 110 kW (148 hp)
Starting aid Electric starter
Transmission 6-speed, claw shifted
Engine lubrication Forced oil lubrication with 3 rotor pumps
Primary gear ratio 40:76
Secondary gear ratio 17:42
Cooling system Liquid cooling system, continuous circulation of cooling liquid with water pump
Clutch PASC™ anti-hopping clutch/ hydraulically operated
Ignition system Contactless, controlled, fully electronic ignition system with digital ignition timing adjustment

CHASSIS
Frame Tubular space frame made from chrome molybdenum steel, powder-coated
Forks WP Suspension Up Side Down Shock absorber WP Suspension monoshock
Suspension travel Front 220 mm
Suspension travel Rear 220 mm
Brake system Front 2 x Brembo radially mount…

How to make friends while traveling solo

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Some people are puzzled when I tell them that I enjoy traveling solo. Don't get me wrong, I have traveled with family, friends, large groups and small groups and have had some amazing experiences along the way. However I have noticed that when I travel in a group I tend to interact primarily with the people in the group. 
I have found that when I travel solo, I often find myself in situations that I would never have encountered if I was traveling with a group. And, traveling solo forces me to interact and become friends with new and interesting people. Sometimes traveling solo can be lonely, but if you learn to apply a few simple rules of the road, you will never be lacking of community. So I thought that I would share my thoughts about...
How to make friends while traveling solo.
1. Smile at everyone.

2. While waiting in line for an airplane, bus, train or just about anything, give a compliment to the person next to you. Even if you do no speak the local language you can point a…

Best Christmas Gifts for Travelers

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Bandana - $2-4, Bandanas are an essential part of my gear because they can be used for so many functions. I use mine as a scarf, hat, towel, pot holder, day pack, protective cover, mosquito net, etc. They are inexpensive too. Platypus Collapsible Water Bottle - $15, Hard water bottles are essential, but these new collapsable water bottles are pretty sweet too. They are small and light. They can hold about a liter of water and as you drink the contents the form factor collapses.  Buff - $20-30, It seems like a lot of money to pay for a thin tubular piece of material, but I became an believer in Buffs a while back and now will not travel without one. I actually like to bring two. They have many of the same functions as a bandana plus they can be worn in many different configurations such as a scarf, hat, mask, head band, eye mask for sleeping or balaclava. They can be used to screen oneself from the sun or warm oneself from the cold.
Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter - $40, Previously I would bu…

Hope... share it

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I saw this, liked it and thought I'd share it... Hope!

Happy Thanksgiving

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Happy Thanksgiving!

And here is a little how to video about deep frying a turkey for Thanksgiving.

Reveal the Path - The Movie

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I recently had the opportunity to watch this documentary film called Reveal the Path. The film chronicles the journey of a group of friends that travel around the world by bikepacking with mountain bikes. The adventurers do not actually ride around the world, but they ride, hop, bus, train, fly and just move.  The group travels through locations like Scotland Switzerland
Morocco Nepal and Alaska.

While the locations do provide some interesting scenery, challenging environments and unique cultural experiences, the film is not really about the destinations, but the journey that the group undertakes. Isn't that what travel is really about?

Check it out on Youtube, watch it on Netflix or download it from the website of Reveal the Path.

Contrarian Travel Tips

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Do all of your travels end up being unremarkably similar? Do all of your vacations involve staying at a hotel, taking guided tours, eating with other tourists and coming back home with photos that look just like your neighbor's photos from their vacation the previous year?

Here are some of my contrarian travel tips which will hopefully add a little variety and adventure to your next trip.

1. Booking an all inclusive vacation?  Instead, wing it.  Book your flight, upon your arrival, locate a hotel or hostel near the city center and take local transportation (not taxis) to get around. Make it up as you go.

2. Taking an organized city tour?  Instead, take a walk and wander. Try to ask locals about the places, things and people you encounter.

3. Just relaxing?  Instead, schedule an activity that might push your limits. Go bicycling, horseback riding, canyoneering or just go for a walk and get lost.

4. Doing something?  Instead, relax, spend the day in bed, read a book or just meditat…

The Modern Indiana Jones

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I recently re-watched one of my favorite adventure films of all times... Indiana Jones - Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Indiana Jones has always been associated with his trademark look and style... the fedora hat, leather jacket, khaki clothing, whip and satchel. Inside his satchel he often carried a pencil, notebook, pocket knife, revolver pistol, canteen, flashlight, handkerchief, gloves and artifacts.

And so just for fun I was wondering, what would a modern Indiana Jones carry with him?

Below is a list of items that I think he would carry or keep close.
1. Mountainsmith Tour Waistpack
2. iPhone
3. Leatherman Juice Multitool
4. Black Diamond Headlamp
5. Space Pen
6. Paracord
7. Duct Tape
8. Buff/Bandana
9. Gloves
10. Artifacts