It may be blasphemy on the HUBB, but I also have this book and disagree completely on it’s value—it is not useful. You will get more valuable and practical info in an hour of perusing Grant and Susan’s site than in the couple of hours it would take to slog through this very overpriced book. It contains mainly photocopies of Dr. Frazier’s visas, a bunch of personal e-mails, and photos of bikes he encountered along the way. The editing of the text is also terrible. Met a number of people in Mexico and Central Amer. that have read this, but Chas is honestly the first person that found it worth the price. Frazier’s Alaska book is OK and has some nice route descriptions, but his GS’ing book is also poor and overpriced. I haven’t seen any of his other books.
Whitehorse press does carry a great number of good books. For a fun read on riding south, get “Odyssey to Ushuaia” by Andres Carlstein. Carlstein’s book is basically a travelogue of a trip by KLR, accompanied by 2 GS riders. Not strictly of motorcycling interest, but he did have a lot of fun adventures and describes a good deal of bike problem solving along the way, including a head-on accident and a subframe break. In “Odyssey,” Carlstein describes Frazier’s book as something like, “not bad…when compared to a terrible book.”
The book “8 around the Americas” is OK, but not really heavy on practical cycling info and written in a drab academic style that is not very entertaining.
"Mi Moto Fidel" by Christopher Baker describes a trip by GSPD around Cuba. Has limited motorbike info, but is very well written by a journalist that has written for National Geographic and has won several awards. Wouldn't leave this book or the Carlstein book lying around before the big trip though...both contain tales of exploits with women encountered on the road. "Riding South" wasn't penned by a priest either. I guess "My butt is so sore" can make for a novel pick-up line (citation: a rider I ran into in Southern Mexico.)
For the best book on adventure touring, I’d recommend Chris Scott’s Adventure Motorcycling Handbook without reservation. You should definitely get this book from whitehourse press if planning a big trip.
It’s easy to respect a guy that has gone RTW 4 times (to date), and I don’t want to slight Greg for his contribution to HU and for helping to popularize adventure touring. However, Frazier could really use a new editor and maybe some other contributors to his books, which appear to be thrown together over a late-night
session. I think I recall some critical discussion of Frazier’s books on the HUBB some time ago-you might find something with a search.
kevinmichigan on HU