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Route Planning Where to go, when, what are the interesting places to see
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  #1  
Old 16 Mar 2010
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info on the americas

Hi I guess all these questions have been asked before, but I'm looking for info, I have around a year to plan so real early stages. And this is such a great site, I know you would all like to share all your knowledge.
My trip.
Ship bike from uk to Alaska. then into Canada, south coast of America, Mexico, then South this is where I get abit lost, where to head, where to avoid, and where to finish and get the bike home?
Solo trip unless someone wants to come? No time scale, will have to see how the funds go.
Africa twin bike of choice.
Cheap as poss travel, camping, cheap hotels.
Thanks in advance for any info.
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  #2  
Old 16 Mar 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by insainwayne View Post
Ship bike from uk to Alaska. then into Canada, south coast of America, Mexico, then South this is where I get abit lost, where to head, where to avoid, and where to finish and get the bike home?
Hi Wayne ,

I was in the same boat a few years ago as it was all overwhelming. I knew what I wanted to do, but didn't know how to either do it or get there. This site has a ton of information. You can use the search button or the navigational panel on the left or even browse some of the travel blogs to see what routes others have taken or try and attend a HU meeting in your area.

South means C.America and S.America. Most riders go from Prudhoe Bay (Alaska) to Tierra del Fuego (Argentina). My best advice is either purchase some maps or browse thru' some maps at your local bookstore to get an idea of the countries here or purchase a few travel guides to learn about the countires in between and see what the highlights are and what you are interested in.
I know, it may not answer your question directly, but half the fun is researching and planning these things out.
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  #3  
Old 17 Mar 2010
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Hi Wayne,

A mate and myself are doing a similar trip this summer, like you its going to be on the cheap as neither of us have much money. So will be camping, not eating out etc. Have managed to get a charity on board, the Colin McRae Vision and that has helped getting free stuff from companies, easing the financial pressure!

Have pretty much sorted out a route now, have a look at our website for more info Mainly Due South. You can contact us through there if you need to know anything specifically, any donations to the charity would be welcome and always helps grease the wheels!

Good luck and take it handy
Mav
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  #4  
Old 9 Jun 2010
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Originally Posted by PlasticMaggot View Post
Hi Wayne,

A mate and myself are doing a similar trip this summer, like you its going to be on the cheap as neither of us have much money. So will be camping, not eating out etc. Have managed to get a charity on board, the Colin McRae Vision and that has helped getting free stuff from companies, easing the financial pressure!

Have pretty much sorted out a route now, have a look at our website for more info Mainly Due South. You can contact us through there if you need to know anything specifically, any donations to the charity would be welcome and always helps grease the wheels!

Good luck and take it handy
Mav
Hey ya!
I too was thinking about involving a charity, however Im still trying to figure out what benefit I can provide to them. In what ways did you arrange with your charity? Thanks, and have a safe and enjoyable adventure!
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  #5  
Old 10 Jun 2010
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Some things to think about you may be spending more shipping your bike than it is worth at the end of your ride. Once over to Alaska once over the gap (or a boat as it is cheaper) and then home. The gap can not be stopped but getting your bike here and home can be. Buy it in the USA and sell or give it away down there or ride it back up.

You may want to think about more what you want to see than what you to give a miss. And there is lots to see on the way down.

Camping, cheap hotels: I like to camp for free if I have the time a bit more work but can save you lots in the states BLM is free and national forests (some times you need a permit). Cheap hotels I use them more and more. Motel 6 in the states boring and dull but cheap. I some areas about the same as camping (like California) cooking for your self can save a fair bit but you miss something of the areas you go pass doing this.
South of the USA it seems a toss up as to what people do a $5 camp or a $15 hotel, I like street food my self it is good and cheaper than trying make it. Still I take my tent and stove with me.
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  #6  
Old 10 Jun 2010
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..this may help

Hi there insainwayne
yes..it can become a little too much sometimes! even after 7years of my 'job' being the route planner!!
you may find that our website - link here Adventure Motorcycling Around the World
and also at the bottom of this reply - may help.
we rode 'the America's a few years back (we are now in Nepal)
our site has a fully downloadable GPS track log which includes things like gas stations, border posts, guest houses, good camping spots etc etc. this can be found at the bottom right of the main index page of our site.
we also have loads and loads of journal up online too.
just go here: 2ridetheworld.com : diary
and then select which part of the world you want to read about...

I hope this will all help....
Note: if you plan to go from Central America ie Panama to South America try not to miss out on Colombia. for getting between the two you can use the airfreight company called Girag. There is probably more up-to-date information on the HUBB about them as we used them quite a few years ago...but were still pleased.
cheers
goodluck planning!
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  #7  
Old 1 Jul 2010
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You've got the right idea with no set schedule and seeing how the finds go.

I did cross-Canada to Panama, but I originally wanted to head all the way to Tierra del Fuego in one shot. I met people on the road that were in such a rush because of the "weather window" in TDF. I decided it was better to travel slow and really enjoy the places I was going through. Much better! I had a great time and will start my next trip where the last one ended.

Don't miss the southwest US (death valley, monument valley, grand canyon etc.) that was classic and beautiful.

Baja is great and makes for an easy border crossing (don't need any passport till halfway down the penninsula - I'm a Canadian, maybe diff for UK?)

Explore the middle of mexico as well as the coast. San Cristobal great city, Yucatan penninsula is great, Palenque Ruins are fab'.

I skipped through belize due bad weather, can't say good or bad

Guatemala was incredible, mountain backroads a bit dodgey but be careful, you'll be fine. Guatemala City, sketchy but exciting! Antigua was my favorite city on the trip.

El Salvador is amazing, find a local to show you around, careful in San Salvador. Loved that country, and it's relatively untouristed. Amazing backroads.

Costa Rica felt very tame and safe after excitement of the other countries, but it is top for natural beauty, I want to go back and spend more time.

Absolutely learn some Spanish before you go! It made borders and police much easier to deal with, I had no troubles at all (it's still a pain though!)
Interacting with the locals is the most enjoyable part of the trip too.

Keep in mind that the distances are small, but when you are there the area feels huge! You just can't cover the same distances as you can in Canada/US

Hotels are cheap, camping can be difficult (dense population)
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  #8  
Old 2 Jul 2010
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I went to the Americas without a plan and did the whole road north to south.

While doing the south I had no idea about anything, I mean from Mexico on down, I never even knew the distances involved and so my ideas of what I could achieve went out the window.

I am sad about that, because there were places I heard about that I missed, and I also went places that I could maybe have avoided.

In retrospect, I would have done before going what I am doing now for the next leg of my journey. That is, buy a good map or maps, then go to the library and get out a lonely planet or equivelent and just do some general reading, not in depth, about what they advise for tourists in each country I intend to visit. Some things may strike you as , WOW I would like to see that, and you can put it on a general list of things to "Must Do".

Do that for each country and maybe only select the top 3 or 4 things that are definates for each.

From these a basic route can be set down and a sort of idea of how long you will need for each country. Don't set any of this in concrete, because as you travel, other riders you meet will tell you "you just have to do this road, or see this castle or whatever", even if it leads nowhere near where you thought of going, you need absolute flexibility to be able to decide to do that and fit it in.

Of course you could do what I did, and go without a clue, and learn on the road

I hope this is of some help

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  #9  
Old 2 Jul 2010
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Hi insainwayne,
I'm in the final stages of planning for the same trip in reverse (south to north). We leave in 3 months. Aside from the logistical stuff like budget, time, shipping etc. we have just earmarked 'must see places' out of a lonely planet guide and then we'll just join the dots as we go. That isnt much help to you really, is it?!

What really did help us though (whisper it...) was another site called advrider dot com. There is a ride reports section that is truly a great resource with some amazing rides documented. Antontrax (who has posted on this thread and may be too humble to tell you himself) did a brilliant ride report called way out west (or something similar, cant remember exactly). It gives you a good flavour of all the countries you are likely to see. Be warned though that if you look at too many ride reports it may spoil your own journey!

Dont want to knock the HUBB, but the ride reports on the 'other site' are much more pleasant on the eye and tend to contain much more detail. Dont want to start an argument on this (not on this thread anyway), just pointing out what is a really useful resource.

PS - Antontrax: Thank you for a wonderful read!
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