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  #1  
Old 27 Jan 2011
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Visordown's Top Ten Adventure Riding Books...

Visordown Magazine have published a list of their top ten adventure riding books. Now, I have to admit to being a little biased because they've included mine and Austin's but thought I would post it here in the HU Bar. After all, everyone likes a lively debate in the 'pub'...

Adventure Motorcycling inspirational book list - Motorcycle Top 10s - Visordown
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Old 28 Jan 2011
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Obviously not that lively Lois, it's been 12 hours since you did the original post. Maybe service at the bar is a bit slow

Sad to say I've only read two of them (and neither of them yours ). I was give the EnC one as a Christmas present a few years back and actually bought Chris Scott's one with my own money .

I'm not sure I'd call a number of them inspirational. Interesting, factual, helpful maybe but inspirational's function is to stir the soul rather than help you decide whether to go left or right at the next junction. I've not got enough time this morning to come up with my list of ten but there are two books on my desk here at the moment - Jupiters Travels and Dan Walsh's These are the days that must happen to you. Both of those have inspired me at different times although Dan's book could probably have benefited from a pharmacology section at the end . My copy of EnC's book is also left lying around the house in the hope that my wife will absorb it's spirit by osmosis. .

I would just mention one other book I took on board in my early overlanding days (70's), Robert Pirsig's Zen and the art of Motorcycle Maintenance. Much too hippy philosophy for today's "just the facts" approach but probably the way to go then without the internet to guide your every move.
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Old 28 Jan 2011
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The AMH

For me, the AMH was the book that really got me fired up - great advice but also fantastic real life stories by people had actually done what I wanted to do and all with a nice element of humour.
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Old 28 Jan 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lois View Post
For me, the AMH was the book that really got me fired up
I was planning my first trip to West Africa in the early 90's when Chris Scott's original Desert Biking book came out - the A4 version with plastic ring binder. That book was a life changer - information about how to get across the Sahara, fantastic It's really not just an endless expanse of sand where you save the last bullet for yourself. My previous attempt to go south in the late 70's had foundered for a number of reasons - no maps, unsuitable bike (Gold Wing!) wilting in August heat etc, but Chris had written up his mistakes while I was trying to forget mine. I've still got the book and must get him to autograph it sometime.

By that time though I already had 20 yrs of "overlanding" experience. What got me going in the first place was a combination of a friend who'd driven the hippy trail to India a couple of times - he made life on the road sound great, together with watching a couple of movies - Easy Rider (and at the other end of the spectrum) Cliff Richard in Summer Holiday.

We took the bike idea from E.R. and the destination from S.H., stirred in a bit of teenage enthusiasm and simmered for a year or two until we had the bikes, the money and the girlfriends all at the same time. All of this was pre Ted Simon, nevermind Lonely Planet. Apart from "Zen" I can't think of any books on overland biking that were around at the time (not that Zen is one). If there were any I certainly didn't come across them. The books we took with us were Gerald Durrell's "My Family and other Animals" as a guide to Corfu and Robert Graves's "The Greek Myths" as a guide to the mainland. That and a leaflet about the Athens wine festival!
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Old 29 Jan 2011
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So lets start a debate

I wouldn't put any of those too high on my list of "inspirational" books, although I've read a few of them.

Where was Jupiters Travels? And I found Old man on a bike and inspiration (If Simon can do it I'm not too old yet, as I'm much younger than him). I'd also give a honourable mention to riding the edge and riding the ice. Not the best written travel books, but you have to be inspired by the way Dave Barr overcame his injuries (NOT disabilities - he is as able as anyone here). More generally, the travel bug first bit me with Peter Fleming's News from Tartary.

Before anyone else says it, you're right, at the moment I'm spending too much time reading and not enough riding, but I'm intending to ride down to Devon for the film fest - see you there.

Last edited by MarkE; 29 Jan 2011 at 11:41. Reason: must lern to spel
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Old 29 Jan 2011
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there is not many adventure books that I don't enjoy reading.

First Overland is a great read

but a recent book Rocking and Rollers by Brian Johnson is a great read funny from start to finish although not strickly bikes or adventure

Running with the moon kinda started it all off for me closely followed by Chris Scotts books

currently half way through Old man on a bike and loving that too
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Old 29 Jan 2011
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[quote=stuxtttr;321843]there is not many adventure books that I don't enjoy reading.

Personally, Dan Walsh is a hero of mine...

I was a teenager reading his adventures in 'Bike Magazine', and TBH his book/articales are 1 of the reasons i ride a motorbike...

Lois my apologies. Your first book is still in my pile of ''yet to read'' paperbacks + hardbacks...
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Old 30 Jan 2011
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Sorry to see Ted never made it as it was Jupiter's travels that inspired me to get out there, but perhaps it is just a bit old now. Although Dreaming of Jupiter should give a little encouragement to those who think they might be too old to travel. Apart from that some good choices.
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Old 30 Jan 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lois View Post
For me, the AMH was the book that really got me fired up - great advice but also fantastic real life stories by people had actually done what I wanted to do and all with a nice element of humour.
Aye men to that brother (I mean sister) !!
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Old 30 Jan 2011
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Quote:
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For me, the AMH was the book that really got me fired up - great advice but also fantastic real life stories by people had actually done what I wanted to do and all with a nice element of humour.
What about that handsome looking bloke on the cover?! Did he fire you up? (cough, splutter, vomit )

3 books that should be there, but aren't (in no particular order): Running with the Moon (Jonny Bealby), Jupiter's Travels (Ted Simon) and 10 years on 2 wheels (Helge Pedersen).

Books that shouldn't be on the list: the 2 by Looney Plan-not and E&C's ghostwritten offering.

cheers
Chris
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