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Horizons Unlimited
Motorcycle Travellers'
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in cooperation with
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Are you a TRAVELLER? Are you interested in Colombian lady-men robbers, cruising anacondas, rancid goats milk for breakfast, hitchhiking escaped convicts, massive Mongolian mud baths, the chilled afro-latino vibe of Mozambique, catapulting into dead animal carcasses, converting guanaco pee to Evian, dead armadillos in Arkansas, the HU tattoo... and much more?

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Motorcycle Travellers' News Report

September/October 2012, 93rd Edition

Welcome to the 93rd Edition of the motorcycle travellers' e-zine! This is the September/October 2012 edition, first one since June/July in case you were wondering if you missed one!

First the medical report. Grant had his prostate surgery on Aug 28 (the day after we got back from Nakusp!) and the news is all good. The pathology report said the tumor had shrunk and no sign of spread, no positive surgical margins, and his PSA in mid-Sep is <0.04 (that seems to be as low as the test goes!) So the surgeon says no further treatment is needed at this time, though they will continue to monitor his PSA for years to come. There is a HUBB thread for anyone who would like more details, including his hospital escapade! He's trying to be more patient with himself, which is hard ;-) His doctor says he should expect up to 6 months to fully recover from such major surgery. We're walking every day again but building up slowly, no marathons for awhile!

We are very grateful for the clinical trial, which gave him better treatment choices and a great surgeon; for the Canadian health care system (the only cost to us has been prescription drugs during chemo, vitamins and $320 for a semi-private room at the hospital for 2 nights); and most especially for all our good friends everywhere who have been sending messages of support our way. Thank you all so much, and please guys, get your PSA tested annually and keep an eye on the curve.

What else have we been doing? Well, since the last edition, we have had another 6 HU meetings, some of which we actually got to! We made it to Nakusp for the Canada West meeting, which went very smoothly thanks especially to Kevan Ibbotson and volunteers. Ekke and Audrey Kok, our usual meeting organizers, were travelling this year, but skyped in from Lake Baikal, which was very cool! Gabe and Char Bolton did us proud in Mendip at the UK Autumn meet, then left on their long-overdue honeymoon! Mike Kilpatrick, Peter Bodtke, Steve Anderson and the North Carolina (Stecoah) team rose brilliantly to the challenge of running a much larger meeting at Iron Horse - well done guys!

Catharine St. Denis, Les Clarke and Jody Hatch from Dual Sport Plus launched the first meeting in Ontario (Barrie) in a field provided by Horseshoe Riding Adventures. I went to the Ontario meet, it was great to meet all our eastern friends. Weather could have been worse - it wasn't snowing... but I think we're going to do it earlier next year (and someplace with showers)!

Grant was recovered enough to drive down to California (Cambria), where Mike Dimond, John Button, Bill Miner, Carla King, Flip Morton and Allen Barnes worked with a slew of volunteers and presenters to make it almost effortless for us! We just got home last week, to discover that summer has long gone and winter is looming here on the wet coast.

Finally, the intrepid Jens Ruprecht has just hosted the autumn Germany meeting last weekend. According to Seb & Kim from Belgium, they had "sunny beach weather, 30+°C and a bikini contest... oh wait... that's just me dreaming..." Or maybe it was -5 C (look on the bright side - at least it wasn't -5 F ;-)

All the meeting reports have been excellent, so thanks to the organizers, the presenters, the volunteers and all the participants :) Planning is well underway for all the 2013 meetings, so stay tuned for announcements! Registration is open now for HUBB UK, Ireland and Canada West, Australia, Germany and UK Autumn details coming soon, and more to come. Dates and more details on meetings below.

Where are our intrepid travellers this month?

Wow, we've got heaps of folks out there, making us bitter and twisted with envy! We've got great stories from Argentina, Bolivia, Botswana, Canada, Colombia, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Hungary, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia, Mongolia, Mozambique, Pakistan, Peru, Russia, Tajikistan, Thailand, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, and even Arkansas and Texas!

...And those are just the ones we tracked down! What about you? Get out there on the road and make your own adventure, and don't forget to write! Seriously, there are so many travellers out there now that it's hard for me to keep up with them all. If you send me a couple of paragraphs and pics every month you'll have a much better chance of making it into the e-zine!

Susan Johnson, Editor

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How to contribute, and become an HU Member

Finances have been especially tight this year, so we are grateful to all our generous supporters for helping us to keep going. For those who haven't yet contributed, or haven't recently contributed, here's how you can help, and the benefits to you of becoming a Horizons Unlimited Contributing Member or Gold Member!

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Our advertisers and sponsors help us to make the website and e-zine available to you. We hope you'll check out their products and services and if you plan to buy these products, please start your purchase from our site or links. If you do use the services of one of our advertisers/supporters, we hope you'll let them know that you're buying from them because of their support for HU - and of course that they have a great product or service! :)

If you know anyone who should be advertising with us (anyone who sells motorcycles or motorcycle accessories, riding gear, camping equipment and clothing, transports motorcycles, organizes motorcycle tours, or has motorcycles to rent should be advertising), please let us know or even better send them to our Advertisers page with your recommendation.

Want to see your stories here?

Please submit news reports, web links etc. to us for inclusion in this newsletter.

We try to link to your website if you have one. If you don't have a website, we can help, and it won't cost you anything.

This newsletter is provided as a complimentary service for travellers everywhere, both on the road and (temporarily ;-) off. Your support is greatly appreciated.

your editors, Grant and Susan Johnson, (about us, contact us)

Horizons Unlimited
New Links.

Too many to list! If you haven't checked out the Links page it's time you did - it's huge, and a fascinating browse.


Get your website listed in the LINKS Section

by listing Horizons Unlimited on YOUR web site, let me know you've done it by mailing me a link to the page, and you may get listed here in the next newsletter and on the Horizons Unlimited web site Links page. To make it easy for you, we even have our logo and link code here! From there you can request your link.

All sites will be considered for listing, but must be a MOTORCYCLE or TRAVEL site, useful or of interest in some way to travellers. We reserve the right to refuse to link back.










Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!
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Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!










up to top of pagespacerWho are they?

When you meet people on the road, and they haven't heard of this e-zine or the website, we'd appreciate it (and hope they would too!) if you'd get their names and e-mail addresses and send it in to me.

Thanks, Grant

 

Request for info

Wouldn't YOU like to know all about the border you're approaching - what it should cost, paperwork required, 'tips' needed, and who to talk to, etc.?

When you cross ANY border, take some notes, and pass them on to us. Thanks!

 

Shipping

The Shipping page on the site is HUGE! It can be reached directly or from the Shipping link on the Trip Planning page.

 

Travel Advisories

The Foreign Office in London's Travel Advice Unit advises against travel to all sorts of places. Check out the listing before you start!

The US State Department regularly issues updated travel advisories, information and/or warnings.

 


up to top of pagespacer Books

Motorcycles, Women, and Danger...RTW with Rock Pounder.

Motorcycles,
Women, and Danger...
RTW with Rock Pounder!

Available NOW from Amazon:

 


 

American Borders - A Motorcycle Misadventures Journey

American Borders
A comedy of breakdowns...
by Carla King

Available from:

 


 

Into Africa

Channel Islands to Cape Town by Motorcycle...
by Sam Manicom

Available from:

 


Distant Suns, by Sam Manicom

Adventure in the vastness of Africa and South America

'Sam Manicom's dynamic third book transports you to Southern Africa, South and Central America in an action-packed three year voyage of discovery. a thought-provoking mix of scrapes and encounters with people which illuminate some moments of true darkness. acute observations on everything from human behaviour, to remote and stunning locations. Distant Suns grabs you, enthrals you and spits you out as a convert to the dream of overlanding these amazing continents.' Buy direct from Sam here!


 

Tea with Bin Ladens Brother, by Simon Roberts.

Tea with Bin Laden's Brother,
by Simon Roberts

An Adventure motorbiking graphic novel telling the gripping story of a solo ride through Iran, Pakistan and India to Nepal. Take a look inside...

 


 

Mi Moto Fidel

Motorcycling Through Castro's Cuba...
by Chris Baker

Available from:






Motorcycle Adventurer

"The longest, most difficult, and most perilous motorcycle journey ever attempted" - in 1912
by Greg Frazier

Available from:






Obsessions Die Hard

Motorcycling the Pan American Highway's Jungle Gap...
by Ed Culberson

Available from:






One Man Caravan

RTW in 1932!
by Robert Fulton Jr.

Available from:






Old Man on a Bike

A Septuagenarian Odyssey
by Simon Gandolfi

Available from:
































up to top of page A host of
volunteers for 'People en route!'

There are many 'Helpful People' listed on the Links page, a huge thanks to all of them. How about you? Or you can join a Community, or start your own!

 

 

 

up to top of pagespacer Repair Shops.

Do you know of a good shop 'on the road,'

. in other words, somewhere there isn't a large number of shops? (Also of course any shop that specializes in travellers equipment and repairs is of interest.) But we're particularly looking for those rare items, good repair shops in South America, Africa and Asia etc. Please post your info in the Repair shops around the world Forum on the HUBB.

There are now 100's of shops listed in out - of - the - way places, from Abidjan to Ghana to Peru! Be sure to check out the HUBB 'Repair shops around the world' forum if you need work done!





























up to top of pagespacer Horizons Unlimited DVDs

Inspiration and information

Road Heroes - Motorcycle Adventure Travel Tales - Part 1.

Road Heroes Part 1!

Get your Road Heroes DVD now for inspirational and funny tales from the road!

Achievable Dream DVD series - The Motorcycle Adventure Travel Guide - Part 1 - Get Ready!

Part 1 - Get Ready!

Get the Achievable Dream DVD's NOW and learn how YOU can get on the road!

Achievable Dream DVD series - The Motorcycle Adventure Travel Guide - Part 2 - Gear Up! 2-DVD Set!

Part 2 - Gear Up!

Get the Achievable Dream DVD's NOW and learn how YOU can get on the road!

Achievable Dream DVD series - The Motorcycle Adventure Travel Guide - Part 3 - On the Road! 2-DVD Set!

Part 3 - On the Road!

Get the Achievable Dream DVD's NOW and learn how YOU can get on the road!

Achievable Dream DVD series - The Motorcycle Adventure Travel Guide - Part 4 - Ladies on the Loose!

Part 4 - Ladies on the Loose !

Get the Achievable Dream DVD's NOW and learn how YOU can get on the road!

Achievable Dream DVD series - The Motorcycle Adventure Travel Guide - Part 5 - Tire Changing!

Part 5 - Tire Changing!

Get the Achievable Dream DVD's NOW and learn how YOU can get on the road!

up to top of pagespacerWho's on the road, and where.

Belinda Sinclair, UK, Gobi Gals, in Mongolia,

"Checked out of the hotel, in which we had had to stay after not being able to get our Chinese visas until later than expected on Wednesday. That meant that our plans to visit Khustain National Park were also scuppered because there was no time. So we dumped the bags at the ger before going to the Oasis to borrow some tools to dismantle the scoots.

Unfortunately, I dumped myself too, on a steep gravelly hill. The roads are so rough that you have to really rev it to get up slopes but it makes the bike bounce almost uncontrollably - and passing bitey dogs know this. Plus I had the bags on the back, so the front end was light. Consequently, one charged, I revved, almost made it but then hit a big bump and was catapulted off. Had a softer landing than expected though - right onto the partial carcass of a dead animal - possibly a goat or another biker who'd not got as far as me - which was lovely and smelt great. Not. By the time Nads appeared, I was just picking the last of the matted decaying flesh off my arm and shoulder. Nasty.

Rainy streets in Ulan Bator, Mongolia.

By the time we left the Oasis, the sky was green and the heavens were about to dump on us. Could we make it back before it hit? Nope, not a bit of it. The road was 10cms deep in water in no time - mud, dust and debris flowing out of nearby streets and ditches and into the road. Not that it stopped UB's drivers though; they sped past as they always do, drenching us further. The only consolation was that the water was warm, if filthy.

Rainy ride in Ulan Bator, Mongolia.

We almost made it back to the ger, but then 100m short we both came off, and this time, it hurt as there was no soft landing. Again it was on a steep gravelly hill, but this time, no dog was involved. The torrential rain had soaked the track so much that it became unstable and the surface started to slip down the hill. We were lucky though and were both flung off as we slipped with it. The bike stopped quite quickly but we didn't, somersaulting backwards back down the hill until getting hooked on some rocks. It must have looked funny though - two whities, soaked through, covered in mud and now lying in a mud river. The bike was hard to pick up because it had landed with its wheels higher than the engine, but after several goes, we managed it ok."

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Rome to Sicily with Edelweiss Bike Tours!

Next Tour Dates: April 24 - May 04, 2013 | May 6 - 16, 2013

This one-way Edelweiss motorcycle trip commences in Italy's impressive capital of Rome, an exciting city. Making our way through the breath-taking beauty of Italy's southern regions, we have time to stop and admire such famous landmarks as Mount Vesuvius, the world-famous Costa Amalfitana and the buried city of Pompeii outside Naples. Riding through unpopulated, hilly roads, we bisect this country from north to south or the other way round depending on which date you choose. After seemingly endless curves with the distant view of Mount Etna always in sight, we reach our final destination, Catania, just in time for a last cappuccino in the Old City before our Southern Italian dream comes to an end.

Sherri Jo Wilkins, Australia/USA, RTW, in Colombia, KTM 690 Enduro,

"I have to admit, first day on my own in a long time was filled with the feeling of freedom and rock and roll! I rode fast to the music and stopped whenever I wanted to stop. There are pluses and minuses to riding on your own, and today is a plus day!

Intrigued by these water houses... from what I can tell, they are set up for fish farming.

Fish houses, Colombia.

Fish stall, Colombia.

Fresh fish anyone?

I traveled along the water until I needed to turn inland a bit.

Water rat warning sign, Colombia.

I've seen a lot of weird animal warning signs... bears, moose, koalas, but never rats. I assume that is a water rat anyway.

Things got a little rougher here and I had an unusual experience. I came up to a couple cars that were stopped in the road and several people around them in the opposite direction. As I got closer, I noticed the brown rope, so I slowed down and stopped.

The people here were men, but they were dressed like women, very dirty in a rough dread-locky sort of Mad-Max way. I was warned about these rope people. Highway robbery! This is my first and only time it ever happened, so by the time I worked it out, they had surrounded my bike. Only some of them. The others were still working on the little red car on the other side of the road.

They were speaking to me in Spanish and I just pretended I didn't understand, I spoke to them in English. During my nervous conversation with them and pretending to be totally confused about what they were asking for, they let their guard down and were holding the rope only half as high as before. If they were smart, they would have stood in front of my bike, but I quite honestly think they were on drugs anyway. I'm also thinking they were not so forceful with me because I was a woman and alone. I don't know that for sure, but maybe.

With lady-men on each side of my bike, I knew if I rode through the rope, my tire would be enough to push it down and I gunned it!

I was shaking most the rest of the day. That was really scary. No way was I going to take photos, and let them see my camera, but they were quite a sight. I remember the long black dread locks, dresses and skirts, earrings and lipstick, mustaches and very hairy legs. Very surreal, it would have been worthy of a movie scene!

I've been told that sometimes they pull the rope up just as you're passing so you fall off the bike and they rob you then. Since it never happened before, my guard was down. Now I'll keep an eye out for them."

Sean Patrick Dillon, Ireland, Alaska to Argentina, in Guatemala, Honda Cub,

"A Visit to the Cult of Maximon, San Andres Iztapa ...We walked into the church yard and saw the previous fires were dying down and the poor chicken was now being dismantled. A large portion of the concrete yard was scorched black and black smoke hung in the air. We headed into the shrine. There were several tables with candles burning on them and people making their offerings to San Simon. At the back up on steps was the man himself the roque San Simon, people were in line waiting to go up to San Simon and make their requests.

Maximon.

We watched as two men went up. They were well dressed and not like most of the other regular looking Guatemalans about. They looked like the were no strangers to seeing Maximon and perhaps had called on his services before. I imagined them to be gangsters. They pulled out their liquor and dosed the flowers in it and cleansed themselves thoroughly, whipping their entire body, then they drank some liquor and splashed it on the altar, after which they walked backwards from the shrine and stood by a table, lit some candles and drank some more booze.

The walls were covered with thank you notes and plaques to Hermano San Simon. Or brother San Simon in English. And sometimes more affectionately as Hermanito San Simon - Little Brother San Simon. Some said 'Thank you Brother San Simon for my car'. Others said 'Thanks you San Simon for my 3 cars'. And one said 'Thank you San Simon for our new fridge', and showed a picture of it full of beers. I guess San Simon would have been very proud of that.

We went outside to buy some alcohol to give to Brother Maximon. We were very confused what to do and we got chatting the a few kids outside who told us what they thought we should do.

Armed with little more knowledge Doris and I went back to brother San Simon. We cracked open the alcohol and asked that he keep us safe on our travels. I took a generous swig of the booze and splashed some on Maximon and gave him a few bob. Doris repeated the gesture and then picked up some saggy flowers and started to beat me with them, I think maybe a bit of revenge was on her mind from the soaking she had got. After we made our request and offering we left walking backwards..."

Ed. See the video of the ceremonies here on Sean's blog.

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Chad and Kyla, NZ, 2-up on a Chinese 250 in South America, in Brasil,

"We had filled up with petrol and were ready for 500km of jungle. Or so we thought. After 100km and a couple of these ferries, we passed an army base, the last of civilization for awhile. No private contractors were willing to rebuild the BR 319, so the army was sent in to do it. The road was originally built to maintain the communication towers every 50 or so km that connect Manaus to the rest of the country. It had not been maintained since the 80's. At the time the 10-15km after the army base was the worst part of the road. We had to repeatedly unload as we sunk stuck into mud up to the bottom of the bags, push the bike through and reload. After valiantly battling through 8km of mud in 2+ hours, the bike decided to completely consume her clutch.

Sunk in mud.

Right before the end of the clutch.

More mud.

Crap. It's getting on to mid afternoon. No people. No traffic. Decisions.

The bike is given a sad farewell and pushed into the bushes for a night alone. We start the walk back to the army base. Arriving just after dark the army boys are shocked to see two random gringos walking in. Although we can't talk because of our limited Portuguese we end up with an empty dorm room/container to ourselves and leftovers from the mess. I never figured I'd join the Brazilian army for a week but they were great.

After a few hand signals and trying to communicate in broken Spanish, I realised they would love to pick the bike up but they don't have enough diesel which is why they aren't working and why the generator only runs an hour or two a day. So off we trot back up the track with no bags this time and spend the entire day pushing the bike back through 8km of crappy mud with no functioning engine to help.

Getting in on dark we enjoy another meal of salty meat rations and retire to our quarters. The next day one of the army mechanics wants to take a look and it is confirmed. No clutch and the nearest possibility of a replacement is the small town about 100km and two ferry crossings away. The army can't give us a ride because they have no diesel. Joining the army seems the only option. Kyla told the guys somehow it was my birthday and they make pizza for dinner. A unique enough place for a 22nd birthday I guess.

Small fish with big teeth.

The next day, Renan, the commander returns to camp. He speaks English which is fortunate for us. So the story is they have been waiting longer than they usually wait for fuel because the ferry is broken. In a few days they will drive in a truck our side of the crossing 30km away where a small boat can ferry drums across (and us!)

Camp anaconda.

During the next few days we encounter an anaconda cruising through camp, I catch a small fish with big teeth and eat it, we read a lot and live on army rations. Life's not bad when you have a dry place to sleep and food in your stomach."

Ed. Read Chad's reports and great pics on the HUBB Ride Tales Forum!

Andi & Ellen Delis, New Zealand, Alaska to Ushuaia, USA

"On arriving at the park we purchased a National Park Pass as we will be in and out of the parks throughout our US part of the trip, next thing was to find lodgings for the night so we went to the information centre, the place was packed with people pouring in and out like bees from a beehive, the only campground showing up as available being 40 miles away at Lake Bowman so off we went to get there before it filled up.

Into the bush.

Now... we have two directions, Mrs. Garmins and the Park map... who to believe as they both showed different stuff. Sensibility won over on this occasion and we used the Park map, this turned out to be an adventure in the making as some roads had been blocked by slips so it was combo to get to camp, Mrs. Garmin then sent us down a goat track in which a local agreed we should go that way... I don't think he liked us. From shingle road to dirt track to gravel lump to quad track we came upon a dry creek, the only way through was down across and back up, I knew Ellen did not have the skills so I did the riding part, only another 50 meters and we were back on relatively normalish shingle roads, this then took us into Bowman Lake a neat ride in itself and good practice for Ellen standing on the pegs on loose gravel, powder, rocks twisting and turning up and down.

Four Vincents on way to Cultus Lake.

...On the way we were treated to four Vincents parked on the side of the road ... one of which was a hybrid of some descripts, still camera worthy tho."

Ed. We saw Andi & Ellen again at the HU California meeting, where they shared their adventures thus far!

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Uganda Bike Safaris for real adventure!

'The river Nile and the Great Lakes, mountain ranges and volcanoes, a pleasant climate all year round, and a wide variety of wildlife including the endangered mountain gorillas.'

Heike Fania, Switzerland and Filippo Fania, Germany, Europe to Australia and beyond, in Pakistan, BMW F650GS and BMW R1150GS,

"The train journey from Quetta to Lahore goes over a distance of approximately 1300 km - right across Pakistan. It took us 36 hours - 36 hours, which were quite an adventure, but, to be honest, which we don't really want to repeat - especially not with the heat during this time of the year. And we even were lucky, because we heard that the journey sometimes can take up to 50 hours...

Originally we wanted to travel this part also by motorcycle. But since we couldn't get the NOC, which is basically the permission to continue travelling from Quetta, due to security issues, we had to load the motorcycles on the train and continue to Lahore this way.

However, this had also some positive side effects for us: on the one hand there was of course a special experience and a new adventure waiting for us by travelling on the train; on the other hand we could also repair Heike's damaged rear tire. And we had decided to spend a little bit more to get tickets for the better air-conditioned class in order to escape the heat because the route goes through the apparently hottest area in Asia. Well, at least we thought we could escape the heat this way.

Catching a few zzz's on the train.

...We have been travelling through the Karakorum mountain range in the north of Pakistan, between Hindukush and Himalaya now for about 1 week. The landscape here is absolutely stunning and beautiful, and we are experiencing a completely different side of Pakistan than in the plains further in the south, where it is only hot and always dusty.

Karakorum mountains, Pakistan.

Some of the highest mountains in the world are located in this area, such as the Naga Parbat or the K2. These mighty and ice-covered peaks loom impressively over the barren and steep mountains that are mostly without any vegetation. At the bottom of the valleys big rivers have cut deep into the glacier deposits. In some areas of the mountains there are big trees and dense forests covering the mountains, e.g. around Murree, in other areas vegetation exists only along the river banks, and in the beautiful Hunza Valley in the north, the valley is full of orchards and heavily laden apricot trees.

GPS route through Karakorum Highway.

Argentinian riders on KKH, Pakistan.

In only one week we already crossed the almost 4200 meters high Bausar pass, we have covered many kilometers of the famous KKH - the Karakorum Highway, which actually has nothing in common with a highway - we have ridden through cold rain, and over hot and dusty roads, we have enjoyed the stunning panorama in Karimabad in the Hunza Valley, and we have visited the lake further in the north, which exists only because a massive landslide has blocked the valley and the river, and thereby cut off the road into China.

Naran, Pakistan.

Now we are staying in Gilgit for a few days, and we already have problems sorting the pictures and choosing some for the website. So, it is about time to publish some of them before we get completely lost."

Sara and Dan Pedersen, Canada, the Americas, in USA and Canada, BMW F650GS,

"Daniel did a major bike cleaning and maintenance and changed the oil. We were then ready to head south from Whitehorse. We stopped at Watson Lake for the obligatory photo at the sign Forest.

Watson Lake sign forest with Sara and Dan and bike.

Liard Hot spring was nice, but the mozzies were voracious. Thanks Barbara for the bug jacket.

Sara enjoyin gthe hot springs at Liard.

Muncho Lake Provincial Park is teeming with wildlife. We saw moose and lots of Bison. There will be no photos from the day we rode to Jasper since it poured for 7 hours. Luckily it cleared up that evening and we had some nice views of the mountains. The Elk here just walk thru town. We toured the sights at Maligne Canyon, Athabaska Falls, and the Columbia Ice fields. We hiked up onto the glacier and had lunch. Camped by the Bow River we were lulled to sleep by the rushing water. The route south thru Kananaskis and Peter Lougheed Provincial Park is incredible. Here we saw Rocky Mountain Big Horn Sheep and mountain goats. Our first UNESCO world heritage site was Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump.

Head-Smashed-In-Buffalo-Jump sign with bike.

Thanks so much to Stan and Shelley Davey for the 5 star hospitality at the Broken Rail Ranch! We headed for Montana at Chief Mountain. We were sitting in the sun at our campsite when ash began raining down on us. There was a huge brush fire near by requiring a visit from the St Mary volunteer fire department.

The next day we were lucky to have sunshine and a totally unimpeded ride on the Road To The Sun. We were disappointed to learn that bikers are not welcome at the National Bison Range. They told us bikes are not allowed because they have unpaved roads-do they know about the Dempster?"

Brian Foster, Australia, RTW, in Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan,

"I woke early to pack the bike and witnessed the centuries-old daily ritual of collecting water from the local well using a donkey. Most of the people in this part of the Pamirs are ethnically Kyrgyz not Tajik and their simple lifestyle doesn't appear to have changed for centuries. How they survive under such harsh conditions is truly amazing.

The daily ritual of collecting water from the local well by donkey.

The daily ritual of collecting water from the local well by donkey

The start to the day was cool but with crystal clear blue skies - a vast improvement over yesterday's Arctic winds. I wasn't the slightest bit hungry but I knew I should eat something, anything, to combat the effects of the gruel from last night. To my horror, the leftovers from the previous night were served up again for breakfast. The goat's milk had been left on the stove overnight and globules of fat and oil were floating on the top. I drank as much of it as I could stomach before excusing myself from the table. I felt sure I would pay for my good manners later in the day.

After breakfast, I finished packing the bike under the silent gaze of the homestay's owner. He seemed intrigued by my now-well practiced routine. The owner spoke no English and despite my many attempts I could never get my tongue around his name.

By 8 am I was on the move again. The 20km to the turn-off to the Wakhan Valley was reasonable bitumen if you call 1970's Palmerston Highway bitumen 'reasonable'. Harry and Linda had warned me that the road deteriorated badly after the turn-off and they weren't exaggerating.

No tress when needed!

You can never find a tree when you need one!

Within 5 km the road turned into rubble and sand. And I still had 100km to go. It was back to a 1st gear crawl for most of it. Sometimes I even managed to get into 2nd gear. About 15-20km after the turn-off the rancid goat's milk had its inevitable after-effect. I brought the bike to a sudden stop and, in the absence of anything resembling a tree, searched for a likely looking rock a discreet distance off the road."

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Chris and Chloe Granger, UK, Buenos Aires to Vancouver, in Peru, F650GS DAKAR and F650GS,

"Next stop, Pisaq. Dropping down into the valley to the north of Cusco, we enter the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Along this valley are dozens of ruins, mostly temple complexes, but also some substantial 'cities' such as Pisaq, perched above the valley, on a hilltop, surrounded by steep and precarious looking terracing. Medieval castle perched on a cliff springs to mind when looking at the grey stone walls and look-out posts scanning the valley below...

Sacred Valley of the Incas, Peru.Sacred valley of the Incas, Peru.

...We arrived in Ollantaytambo, yet another sacred Inca city, by late afternoon, ready for a beer and some gentle wandering about. Ollantaytambo is one of the prettiest and quaintest little towns we've seen yet. Huge, thick Incan walls rise out of the ground to support little roofs and make way for tiny narrow cobbled streets.

Ollantaytambo, Peru.

The original water system now restored, brings freshwater from the mountains, running down the streets, pooling in mini reservoirs, and rushing through open channels. The ruins of the temple complex tower over the town as the terracing marches up the hill, atop sitting the Temples and associated accommodation for the priests, priestesses and High Incans."

Patrick McCarthy, Pat around the Americas, in Texas,

"The arrival of some pretty hot weather saw us up and out well before dawn, as we calmly made our way up the 83 and onto the 90 west at Uvalde. The roads were predictably good, but the landscape unremarkable and generally flat. We didn't spot Southfork (the Dallas series has recently been regenerated in the USA - yep JR and Bobby are back - and are getting good reviews) but we did pass numerous ranch gates, some of which were quite artistic. We also passed some curious road signs, such as 'Hitchhikers may be escaped convicts'.

Bike at sunrise.

When the temperature got back into the 40s we, again, pulled in for the day - this time in Del Rio at a Motel 6 (a network of cheap motels which we were to use regularly throughout the lower 48). These places were also a great opportunity to meet up with fellow motorcycle travellers, and this was no exception. Mike Marrion (Harley Ultra), the impressively bearded former marine and police officer and I passed an enjoyable few hours talking about our respective travels. Cool guy who, now well in to retirement, was on his last distance bike trip revisiting the various states on a coast to coast run. The next day was another attempt to beat the sun as we trundled west (90) through Bantry and stopping in Sanderson for a refuel and some of the best coffee of the trip so far (at the small town petrol station, and made fresh by the owner).

Chatting to the locals at the fuel stop, saw us then continuing along the 90 through Alpine, a more scenic route, rather than heading up to the Interstate. I didn't enjoy riding the Interstates, which are faster and generally more exposed (they seem to all be built up from ground level) to the high winds currently battering the western half of the USA.

Empty road.

It was a pleasant ride, though I noted in my day log that it getting hot by 10 o'clock each day was a bit odd, and having to stop by 2 was surprising. But I was not going to ride without my armoured gear - and my armoured gear was not going to let me ride such high temperatures in comfort, despite being vented etc. I also concluded that if I was going to ride in such a climate again, I would not choose to use a black crash helmet - which only seemed to magnify the searing heat. So we stopped for the day in El Paso, right on the New Mexico border, which sounded just like another western movie - but didn't look it - it being a modern and bustling border city. A chance to catch up on some writing and do a bit of basic maintenance on Idris (as soon as that sun passed overhead and put the car park in shadow that is)."

Ed. See Pat's story on the HUBB Ride Tales Forum!

Ekke and Audrey Kok, Canada, Circumnavigation of Asia, in Russia, R1200GS, F650GS,

"In St. Petersburg - after a quick breakfast we decided to do a walking tour laid out in Lonely Planet. We had lost an hour crossing the border to Russia, so it was difficult getting up early. It was very pleasant walking up Nevsky Prospekt and it was just unbelievable how many really outstanding buildings we saw. At one time, everyone wanted to live on lively Nevsky, and a lot of nobles built huge mansions with courtyards there, all highly decorated with classical statues or columns.

Welcome to Russia.

Our walking tour went out the window when we looked down one street. At the end of the canal was the most beautiful sight. Golden domes sparkling in the sunshine, more domes a riot of colours, greens and blues and yellows, looking like giant soft ice-cream cones. We had to go check it out. The structure was the Church of Spilled Blood and was built on the spot where Tsar Alexander II was assassinated while riding in his carriage. What a great monument to him. After paying a small fee we were able to go inside. Every centimetre was covered in a beautiful mural depicting biblical scenes, gold and marble everywhere. We were awestruck.

Church of Spilled Blood, Moscow.

In Moscow - on our day off we thought that we could beat the crowds and go down to Red Square with the motorcycles for a photo opportunity.

St. Basil Cathedral with bikes.

Sure enough we found a spot in front of (or more accurately behind) St. Basil's Cathedral and snapped a few shots before various tour groups came through. Every one of them wanted to take pictures of us. And pictures of themselves with us. I think there were at least four separate tour groups (Chinese, Japanese, Korean and German) that came through. A Russian guy even wanted his picture taken with himself sitting on my bike. It was rather fun being a celebrity but we were soaked in sweat from standing around in the heat in our full motorcycle gear."

Ed. Ekke and Audrey skyped in from Lake Baikal to the HU Canada West meeting, so at least we got to see them, and we know they'll eventually be back to tell us stories about their adventures! Lots more great pics on their blog!

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Pete Foulkes and Jon Brookbanks, UK, RTW, in Mongolia, Suzuki DRZ 400S

"Mongolia provided an intense 7 day off-road experience which pushed us and the bikes to the extreme. A number of visa problems when leaving Russia cost us an additional day at Tsagaannuur, a dusty border town with little more on offer than the home brew available from what they call a supermarket. 'Tinned Fish Store' seemed a more appropriate name. Apparently we didn't fill out the correct visa registration form upon arrival at the first hotel in Russia over a month ago so the officials had us over a barrel. After plucking the final price from the air, once they were satisfied they had treated themselves to the remainder of our Russian Rubles, we successfully crossed the border into Mongolia. At this stage we were still on the Bridgestone road tyres which had made it all the way from the UK. The plan was to stick with the original tyres for as long as possible to ensure that the dirt tyres we had strapped to the back of the bikes made it back up to Russia and be in relatively good shape for the BAM road.

Peter and Jon on the road in Mongolia.

Well... that plan quickly turned to shit. As did the road. The tarmac turns in to a dusty trail immediately after crossing the border which then continues to climb to an altitude of around 2500 meters. The landscape was immediately different to the Altai mountain range we had just left in Russia and completely different to anything I'd ever seen before. It felt like we had just been dropped on the moon. It was late afternoon by the time we had covered the first 30 or so Mongolian miles after the border issues and some seriously heavy black clouds opened up above us. The road turned to a massive mud bath and we were stuck on the top of a mountain pass with no shelter from the elements and absolutely no grip from the tyres. It was our first real 'We're really in trouble here' moment and we'd been in Mongolia for less than an hour.

Mongolian rocks and bike.

We struggled as far down the pass as we could to a group of rocks which not only offered some shelter from the wind but later, once the storm had passed, acted as the perfect bike stand to change the tyres. The following day the bikes were re-born and ready for whatever off-road action Mongolia had in store for them.

On the advice of two Russian bikers we met coming in the opposite direction at the border, we opted for what turned out to be a desert route through the southern region of Mongolia. Our lack of exposure to riding in sand meant we had a lot to learn in a very short space of time. Short of a few low-speed crashes and some clumsy drops, we made it through the entire Mongolia experience with little more than a few bruises and a couple of scratches on the bikes.

All land in Mongolia is public land which means that we could camp wherever we saw fit. There are very few roads on in the Western side and it's nothing more than dirt trails connecting very small villages. Riding through it you encounter all sorts of surfaces and terrains. It's an off-road enthusiasts dream and would make the perfect setting for the Dakar race. There are simply no road rules. Of a morning we'd set the GPS compass to the direction of Ulaanbaatar, start riding and just see what river crossings and other obstacles are thrown up at you. If there is no trail then you have to make your own. It wasn't uncommon for us not to encounter any other vehicles for an entire day unless we ventured towards one of the villages in search of supplies.

Every night in Mongolia was spent camping quite literally in the middle of nowhere. The night prior to reaching Ulaanbaatar, we were both sat in the entrances to each of our tents facing each other, cooking up the daily default dish of noodles. Seen as we had made it that far we decided to really push the boat out and opted for the chicken flavour. I saw Jon looking behind me when he announced that there is a cowboy next to my tent. It was following the exact script of the Long Way Round. An absolutely text-book Mongolia experience.

Mongolian shepherd.

I jumped up to greet him and noticed he was dressed in full Mongolian attire and stepped down from his well-groomed horse. We shook hands. I looked at him, he looked at me. I don't know who was more surprised and fascinated but either way we just continued to stare at each other. We both made an effort to communicate but it seemed it was only a funny sheep noise he would respond to. We think we established that his herd of sheep was just over the next valley."

Ionut and Ana, Romania, Trans-Africa, in Egypt?, Yamaha Tenere,

"We need to admit this upfront: It's been a fast one. It's been hard to wrap our heads around it, with countries changing sometimes on a weekly basis. The East route is arguably considered The Easy One. Partly because you can basically drive a fully automatic city car all the way. It's tarred, except for the Moyale-Marsabit stretch, hailed as the suspension-killer of Africa. Frankly, the dreaded stretch was a bore. The Turkana route sounds far more adventurous and rewarding. We eluded the asphalt curse a few times, to pamper our Yamaha in some dirt and our souls in open horizons.

Ionut and Ana in Mozambique.

Mozambique

The East Route is also The Expensive Route. No more pricey visas, but less rice'n beans mamas, more 'budget' campsites, more temptations (safaris etc). Few of us out here manage to do the road and trek $500/hour gorillas while at it. Sometimes it's like spying from the street through the windows of a posh mansion where $25 per bottle bergamot-scented sea salt is a staple. A bit frustrating. Until you meet the people. East Africans are more mellow. Smiles flow, bush camping is a treat and hospitality paramount. Besides a sense of accomplishment, we note our only regret that we didn't linger.

Okavango Delta.

Flying over the Okavango Delta in flood made us want to go back to school and fulfill childhood fantasies of becoming naturalists.

The highlights of this segment of ITW have been: The uber hospitable motorcycling community of South Africa & the Jones family from the vibrant Johannesburg. Destination we'd most like to return to: Mozambique. The friendliest people, a chilled afro-latino vibe and lots of wilderness to get lost into across the little visited northern provinces."

Ed. Fantastic pics and stories on Ionut and Ana's blog.

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Ian Moor, UK, Wrong Way Round The World, in Bolivia, BMW F650GS,

"The following day saw us setting off after breakfast in the cold early morning and after an hour or so we were turning off the Pan Americana onto Highway Six, the direct road to Sucre. At a small mining town we stuck to what appeared to be the main road but ended up at a barrier at the entrance to the mine. Our road was on the other side of the river but after a chat with the mine security guards they allowed us to ride onto the mine property and cross the river on a rickety railway bridge. One of the steel plates bent alarmingly as the others rode over it but if it carried their weight I wasn't unduly worried, I was more concerned with getting a very wide bike over a very narrow footpath at the side of the railway track.

After the excitement of crossing the railway bridge and getting back onto Highway Six it changed to a dirt road although the surface was ok most of the time our speed dropped, particularly mine. The real problems started when we arrived at another road barrier. The road was closed until 6pm for roadworks. We could wait over four hours by which time it would be getting dark or take the detour. As it turned out it would have been quicker and easier to camp at the barrier and continue on Highway Six the following morning but at the time there wasn't any discussion we headed off onto the detour without knowing how long it was or what the road was like. It turned out to be a rough, narrow track which I found particularly tiring. We pulled into a village around 5pm which judging by the crowd that quickly assembled wasn't used to strange visitors on large motorcycles. Nick and Fletch went off to look for supplies and to see if there was any accommodation available while I kept an eye on the bikes. There was no possibility of getting to Sucre that day. The village didn't have anywhere for us to stay so we headed back onto the Alto Plano to find a campsite.

Campsite on Alto Plano, Bolivia.

Preparing for a chilly night on the Alto Plano (Photo by Fletch)

We found a scenic spot off the road and out of the worst of the wind, quickly got the tents up and rustled up some food with the scant supplies we had between us then climbed into our tents before it got too cold. Being slower than Nick and Fletch I set off first the following morning confident that it wouldn't take long for them to catch up. There was a rough, fairly deep river crossing that I got through but had to put a foot down; getting a boot full of icy water in the process. Knowing the others wouldn't be far behind I waited to get photos of them at the river crossing, the first of several we had to tackle that day.

Fletch Splashing Through One Of The Rivers.

Fletch splashing through one of the rivers

...On the Pan Americana Highway between Potosi and Oruro I came across my first and only Bolivian road blocked by demonstrators. A line of parked vehicles was the first indication; then the deserted road ahead was strewn with truck loads of rocks. I pulled up at the front of the queue where someone told me the next six kilometres of road were blocked. There was no sign of any demonstrators and I decided to walk further ahead to see what was going on. Over the brow of a hill I saw a group of fifty to sixty people with some flags planted in the middle of the road. I asked one man if I would be allowed to pass on a motorcycle and was redirected to the group leader who after asking a few questions agreed to let me ride through.

When I returned to the demonstrators on the bike half an hour later a lady in a bowler had deliberately walked in front of me to place a stick on the road between two rocks to block the gap I was riding towards. It was easy enough to find another gap but I made a point of waving and shouting my thanks to the guy who had given me permission to cross to let the other demonstrators know I was allowed to cross. There were several other groups of demonstrators scattered along several kilometres of road and I had to repeat my plea to be allowed to continue. I was worried that one group might refuse and I would end up stuck in the middle which nearly happened to me in similar circumstances in Guatemala. Whilst I was slowly weaving through all the stones hundreds of bus passengers were carrying their luggage across the area sealed off by the demonstration. The bus companies had buses at either end but passengers had to disembark and carry their bags to the buses waiting on the opposite side of the protesters.

In the end I didn't have problems getting fuel in Bolivia although I did fill up more frequently just in case. The forms at the filling stations were rarely completed, On one occasion the attendant forgot to charge the foreigner surcharge on fuel and I forgot to remind him. The country seems to be tackling the poor roads with more newly paved sections being completed all the time although in the short term this does create more delays and diversions because of the work being carried out."

Ed. Follow Ian's adventures in his blog here on Horizons Unlimited!

Alex Papadopoulos & Ping-Yi, Bicycling Chile 2011-2012, in Tierra del Fuego,

"The wind-swept, desolate archipelago that hosts the mythical town of Ushuaia, the end of the road for many a weary travellers' long journeys through the American continent. Land of the Fire - divided from mainland South America by the Strait of Magellan, it is the last piece of fragmented land before Antarctica.

So we're in Punta Arenas, right? We're there, we've seen the city, we have a plane ticket for a flight back to Santiago (capital of Chile, 2200km to the north) and four days to spare. We're a mere 1,400km off the coast of Antarctica and wondering how to best spend our last moments of a great journey.

The answer jumps right out at us, as these things usually do. Four cyclists on Long Haul Truckers (same model as our bikes) turn up at the Hostal Independencia where we're staying. 'The Ozzie Girls' (Megs & Jules) and Chris & Jako, all of who we had met before, some on the Carretera Austral, some as far back as the extreme Lagoon Route that connects San Pedro de Atacama to the Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia. They're heading South, to Ushuaia and tell us about a King Penguin colony that, remarkably, has established itself on the Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego. i.e. a mere 100km or so ride from Punta Arenas. Totally within our reach.

We don't need any convincing - we'll make the best out of these last days! We decide to follow them South till the penguin colony, and then hurry back to Punta Arenas to catch our plane.

Thus Team Surly is assembled (we all ride Surly bicycles, so thought it would be an appropriate name), and we all trot off to the port to catch the ferry that will take us across the Strait of Magellan onto Porvenir, the largest (only?) town in the Chilean half of Tierra del Fuego.

Team Surly landing on Tierra del Fuego.

Team Surly landing on Tierra del Fuego

We push on for most of the day, until we come to something that looks like a camping opportunity that must not be overlooked. We're been riding through barren lands today - no trees or dramatic cliffs of any kind to protect us from the wind. When you're on the bike and going in the right direction that's fine, but when you want to relax and cook, the wind can be a major hassle. Not to mention that winds in this region can tear your tent to shreds if you don't protect it adequately.

But here are a couple of trees that will provide some sort of protection and the opportunity is too good to be missed. So we camp.

Now, there's a small problem. We're running low on water. For some reason I thought that Tierra del Fuego would be this lush land full of rivers, but all streams we've seen are dry - probably because of the season. We have enough water to drink, but not enough to cook with. Chris and Jako are in a similar state.

So Chris and I puff up our chests, round up our largest water bags (a good 10Lt each) and announce to 'the women' that 'the men' will go out in search of water.

What a noble thing to do, right? (it also conveniently means we're off setting-up-camp duty)

So off we ride, Chris and I, on our bikes, heading further East, thinking that surely we should find water any minute now, with the sun already lowering towards the West, our legs already tired from a day's riding, our bellies empty and the knowledge that every pedal stroke we take, puts another one between us and the Team Surly camp.

I'm the first one to cry 'water! water!' when I spot something shining in the distance, a good 100m to the right of the road. I park my bike, take my water bag and start jumping over fences to reach what appears to be a natural puddle.

Water or guanaco pee?

Chris joins me a few seconds later, takes one look at the puddle and says 'This is a pool of guanaco pee'.

I'm slightly hurt by his harsh assessment of the water source I identified, but, unwavering, go on to try to convince him that our magical LifeSaver bottle (our water filter/purifier) can convert even Guanaco Pee to Evian.

For some reason Chris is unconvinced, so we turn back, jump on the bikes, and ride on.

A few miles down the road we find a much better source of water:

Water source.

Now, I know what you're thinking, but this drainage thing is completely kosher - it's not, I repeat *NOT* a sewage drain. Just a hole under the road to help the water streaming down the other end of the road make it across without sweeping the road over. You just can't tell from the photo.

So the stream is also dry, but luckily a small pool of water remains. We collect a good 20 litres of it and, our bikes heavy with water, take the road back to Camp Surly.

Back at the camp we enter victorious, follow Jules' advice to quickly hide the dodgy-looking water bags and immediately start filtering the stuff with our LifeSaver bottle, which, bless it, is starting to act up and is extremely difficult to pump. This is probably an indication of the filter having clogged and not doing its work, but I decide to keep that little detail to myself.

After filtering all water (which takes bloody ages with the LifeSaver bottle anyway, let alone with a malfunctioning one!) and putting it into 'clean' containers, we also boil our cooking water, and have a lovely dinner."

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Jet Jackson, Australia, Europe and the Americas, in France and Spain, F650GS Twin,

At least 2 years, 4 continents, 1 bike, and a few broken hearts... So far I have held out through a typhoon in the Philippines, trained in Martial Arts in China and taken the Trans Mongolian railroad across Russia. Now I am in London where I have bought an F650GS Twin to ride Europe. Since I am on 2 wheels now it is time to start a ride report...

...It's the homeward stretch to Avignon now, about 250k's of twisties and country roads. It's about 4 in the afternoon and I have been on the road for 8 hour with little more than a couple of 5 minute breaks.

When we came through this area weeks before everything was covered in snow. Now it has melted and the landscape is entirely unrecognisable to me. I hate to say, without the snow, it has lost a bit of the magic. I focus on pushing into the turns. Without Nicole on the bike I can really carve my way through the mountains. Pushing the bike, twisting the throttle, punching the brakes. Of course I am not the only thing on the road and often get stuck behind cars, slowing me down. I have a resolve to reach a destination and an adrenalin gland that might as well be hard wired to the throttle.

We slow into a town, 50kph and I see my opportunity to overtake. Dialling up a good 80k's I cross double lines to overtake the car. In only 3 weeks I have already started to ignore the rules, as the saying goes 'When in Rome...' but I wasn't in Rome anymore and the Gendarmerie are standing at the end of the road. They motion to me to pull over.

Shit. The adrenalin injectors in my stomach fire and my heart rate kicks into a higher gear. This is the first time that I have been pulled over by an official on my entire trip. I have only heard bad things about the 'Gendarmerie'. My insurance paperwork, my license - everything is going to be put to the test. The French cop asks for my papers. I get them out. He looks them over. Looks over at me and smiles.

'Slow down on the turns.'

Hands me back my paperwork.

Poker face. You can't look happy in this situation.

Poker face. You can't look happy in this situation. I pack the bike up while he pulls over the Kawasaki I passed minutes earlier.

...Back home in my office cubicle I had one particular fantasy. I am in the desert, alone, somewhere in the US, Arizona maybe, on a deserted highway, on a bike, the type of which is unimportant. The sun is shining through my visor. It's not too hot, just warm like a friendly hug. I feel excited and I feel free. I have the means to go wherever I want but I am in that one place, not because I have to be, but because I choose to be. I don't know where I am going in the fantasy but I am in transit. Between destinations. The important part in the fantasy is not where I am going but that I am going.

It is a rare and fleeting state, but in that ride to Can Jou in the North of Spain, with the sun shining on me I feel like I am living the fantasy. My transit takes me through the rustic parts of France to the border with Spain. Two years of Spanish classes under my belt and I am keen to put it to use. That being said I have made the decision to volunteer in Catalunya so I can be closer to Nicole and well, I like the idea of riding and working with horses in the mountains.

Breakfast time for the horses. There were a total of 35 horses on the farm.

Breakfast time for the horses. There were a total of 35 horses on the farm.

A typical day at Can Jou starts at 8am. Wake up and head down to the stables. Feed the horses, work them in the arena, send them out and then start work on any other tasks that might need doing. Greasing saddles and bridles, mending fences, trimming lawns and just general tasks around the farm. Horse blankets would also need washing, everyone's least favourite job as the smell was less than favourable..."

Ed. See Jet's video blogs, stories and pics on the HUBB Ride Tales Forum!

Tiffany Coates, UK, RTW traveller, picking up points in Arkansas, R80 GS,

"We'd arrived in Arkansas, and these little creatures were everywhere:

Dead armadilloes.

Dead armadillos, scattered along the roadside like discarded bowling balls, or maybe they were just sunbathing

I finally reached the Ozarks, and what pretty hills they are, I needed to gain points for the GS Giant Adventure Summit and so took a forest route, my first serious off-roading for a while. I didn't have a very good map, but the nice man at the welcome centre (they're an American version of Tourist Information Centres) had made a few suggestions and pointed me in the direction of some horse trails that were suitable for motorised vehicles. What a mistake that was, in England we have bridleways for people on horses and they tend to be leisurely tracks across fields. They are sometimes shared with other track users as well, after I entered the forest, I realised this was a very different situation.

I checked the signs as I headed along this trail

Bear signs.

Great, just to add to my problems I am now facing bears as well, I had no idea that there were bears this far south. I decided to keep moving.

The route ahead had some steps in it with a drop off at the bottom, I needed to try and haul rocks to make the drop off easier to negotiate. But Thelma was on a slope and I couldn't put the side stand down, hence I had to do this.

Forest route.Rock used as side stand.

I got through that bit, and the the upward slope on the other side was worse..."

Oh dear!

Ed. Read more of Tiff's travels in America on the HUBB Ride Tales Forum. See her story about Mongolia Mayhem on the Road Heroes Part 1 DVD!

More stories below...


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up to top of pagespacerPhoto Contest!


2012 Photo Contest
is closed! 2013 Calendar is now available, just in time!

We got hundreds of great pics, it was very hard, but the results are in! Congratulations to the 2012 Photo Contest winners: Martin Hurley, Austin Shelton, Angela Perry, Poya Pourghaderi, Amit Mukherjee, Marcos Da Fieno, Alberto Lara, Maximilian Volders, Hubert Kriegel, Werner Steffens and Claudia Sabel, Igor Djokovic, Naomi Tweddle and Gregor Zajac.

Photo By Martin Hurley, USA; of Benton Thompson, in the Black Rock Desert, Nevada, USA.

Grand Prize 2012 Winner (and Cover) - by Martin Hurley, USA of Benton Thompson, in the Black Rock Desert, Nevada, USA.
Martin wins the Compass Expeditions 9 day tour of Chile and Argentina valued at almost $4,000!

Photo by Austin Shelton, of Nishan Nalbandian, USA; The tunnels of Cañon del Pato in Peru, on Denver to Ushuaia ride, KLR650.

First Prize 2012 Winner (August) - by Austin Shelton, of Nishan Nalbandian, USA; The tunnels of Cañon del Pato in Peru, on Denver to Ushuaia ride, KLR650. Austin wins the Progressive Suspension Makeover prize valued at $650!

Photo by Angela Perry of herself. Down but not out on my first attempt at serious mud, between Zumba and Vilcabamba, Ecuador on my tour of the Americas, F650GS.

Second Prize 2012 Winner (July) - Photo by Angela Perry, Australia; of herself in serious mud, between Zumba and Vilcabamba, Ecuador, F650GS. Angela wins an HU Fleece jacket and t-shirt plus the new Road Heroes DVD!

Other Winners (all winners share in the 2012 calendar profits)

Photo by Poya Pourghaderi, Canada; of 2010 BMW R1200GSA; camping on the hills of Plitvice National Park, Croatia; Europe 2012 tour.

January - by Poya Pourghaderi, Canada; of 2010 BMW R1200GSA; camping on the hills of Plitvice National Park, Croatia; Europe 2012 tour

Photo by Amit Mukherjee, India; in Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India, 2008, on a tour of Himachal Pradesh. Royal Enfield Bullet.

February - by Amit Mukherjee, India; in Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India. Royal Enfield Bullet

Photo by Marcos Da Fieno, Peru; of Andy, Canada; eating breakfast north of Brasil, on a SA trip, KLR600.

March - by Marcos Da Fieno, Peru; of Andy, Canada; eating breakfast north of Brasil, on a SA trip, KLR600

Photo by Alberto Lara of Naomi Tweddle, Canada; Admiring the magical views of the Peruvian Sierra, La Libertad, Peru, F800GS.

April - by Alberto Lara of Naomi Tweddle, Canada; Admiring the magical views of the Peruvian Sierra, La Libertad, Peru, F800GS

Photo by Maximilian Volders, Belgium; Guinea-Conakry, riding from Senegal border to Mali-Yembering in Guinea, Coast, KTM 950 Adventure.

May - by Maximilian Volders, Belgium; Guinea-Conakry, riding from Senegal border to Mali-Yembering in Guinea, Coast, KTM 950 Adventure

Photo by Hubert Kriegel (France) of Jean-Louis Grauby, Dades Gorge, Morocco, during the 8th year of "thetimelessride" Ten years on the road in my Ural Sportsman.

June - by Hubert Kriegel (France) of Jean-Louis Grauby; Dades Gorge, Morocco, during the 8th year of "thetimelessride" - Ten years on the road in my Ural Sportsman

Photo by: Werner Steffens and Claudia Sabel, of Werner Steffens, Germany; Loading the bikes on a boat at the boardercrossing from Bolivia to Brazil, on our RTW trip, R100GS.

September - by Werner Steffens and Claudia Sabel, of Werner Steffens, Germany; Loading the bikes on a boat at the border crossing from Bolivia to Brazil, on our RTW trip, R100GS

Photo by Igor Djokovic, Thailand; Stormy skies on the way to Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India.

October - by Igor Djokovic, Thailand; Stormy skies on the way to Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India

Photo by Naomi Tweddle of Alberto Lara, Canada; Riding around majestic Torres del Paine National Park, Chile, F800GS.

November - by Naomi Tweddle of Alberto Lara, Canada; Riding around majestic Torres del Paine National Park, Chile, F800GS

photo by Gregor Zajac, Poland; Crossing Rothang Pass; India tour, Royal Enfield 350ccm.

December - by Gregor Zajac, Poland; Crossing Rothang Pass; India tour, Royal Enfield 350ccm

2013 Photo Contest is now on!

The contest is now an annual event, where you can showcase your best photos, and they can help inspire others to get on the road too.

Grand Prize is a South America Tour with Compass Expeditions!

Compass Expeditions - trips of a lifetime!

Dec 2013 to Jan 2014 - This wonderful 9 day tour by Compass Expeditions explores the scenic wonderland of the famous Chilean Lakes District, the frontier lands of Chiloe Island and the epic riding experienced as you cross the Andes and ride into Argentina. As with all Compass Expeditions rides the lucky winner will be aboard a BMW F650GS Twin. Approximate Value at time of writing: $3990. You are responsible for your transport to the start point of the Tour. Airfares and transport are NOT included.

First Prize is a Progressive Suspension Makeover, approx value US$650. (This prize is ONLY for winners in the USA and Canada.)
(The shock is available for popular models only, not all. Winner is responsible for any customs and duties payable. Progressive Suspension is awarded rights to use the Photo in promotion and advertising).

PSi - 465 Series Shock

The new Progressive Suspension PSi - 465 Series Shock

ALSO: The best 13 photos will be used in the calendar, and those photographers will share equally in half the proceeds. All Winners will also get a free 2013 calendar, and 1 year Gold Member status on the HUBB! Your photos could also be in an HU DVD!

To enter the 2013 contest, start here! Ends August 1 2013!



up to top of pagespacerMore Books

Motorcycle Therapy, by Jeremy Kroeker.

Motorcycle Therapy, by Jeremy Kroeker

From the Canadian Rockies to the Panamanian Jungle, Motorcycle Therapy rumbles with comic adventure as two men, fleeing failed relationships, test the limits of their motorcycles and their friendship. Get it here!

 


The Road to Getting Yourself Out of the Way

The Road to Getting Yourself Out of the Way
by Annette Birkman

At the age of thirty-one Annette Birkmann quits her job as a lawyer in Denmark, sells her belongings and travels to Buenos Aires, Argentina, to fulfill a childhood dream: to ride a motorcycle. The book is about the author's solo motorcycle journey through Latin America and her search for an effortless approach to living. It describes the lessons she learned living her dream and her realization that in every experience there was something familiar: herself. Get it here!




The University of Gravel Roads

The University of Gravel Roads...
by Rene Cormier

Join the adventure as 33-year-old Rene Cormier politely removes himself from the working world that surrounds him and cashes in what few possessions he has to finance a three-yearlong motorcycle journey around the world. Never one to let excessive planning get in the way of a good ride, Rene runs out of money half way through the tour and ultimately takes five years to cover his 41-country, 154,000-kilometre (95,000-mile) route. Get it here!

 


Red Tape and White Knuckles: One Woman's Motorcycle Adventure Through Africa

Lois' adventures in Africa!

'Alone. No support vehicles, no fancy GPS and no satellite phone. Leaving from London, finishing in Cape Town - and the small matter of tackling the Sahara, war-torn Angola and the Congo Basin along the way - this feisty independent woman's grand trek through the Dark Continent of Africa is the definitive motorcycling adventure.' Get it here!




Adventure Motorbiking Handbook.

Adventure Motorcycling Handbook, by Chris Scott

 


Into the Den of the Bear and the Lair of the Dragon on a Motorcycle.

'Into the den of the Bear and the Lair of the Dragon on a Motorcycle'. Werner Bausenhart was born in Germany and worked in Canada until his retirement. He has authored a number of books since getting bit by the motorcycle travel bug, including:

'Into the den of the Bear and the Lair of the Dragon on a Motorcycle'

'8 Around the Americas on a Motorcycle'

'Africa Against the Clock on a Motorcycle'

'From Nordkapp to Cape York on a Motorcycle'


All his books are available directly from Werner. Tell him we sent you and get US$5.00 off the regular US$20 price!

 


video cover picture

The Producers of Mondo Enduro present Terra Circa, Around the World by Motorcycle
(6 x 20 minute episodes).

Regular readers of this newsletter will remember Terra Circa's adventures around the world, and especially the Zilov Gap. Now's your chance to see it in video. Austin Vince is a very funny guy and the video is hilarious, as he leads his intrepid crew through misadventure after misadventure.

'This is adventure motorcycling' says Chris Scott, who wrote the book, so he ought to know!

See the recent interview with Austin and Gerald on Vimeo here.

 


Looking for a travel book for someone special?

Go to our Books pages, where we have listed some of the best motorcycle travel books, as well as a number of BMW books, general motorcycle books, and travel guides.

There's links to Amazon USA, Amazon UK, Amazon Canada, and Amazon Deutschland, so no matter where you are - you can order books at great prices, and we'll make a dollar or a pound or a Euro, which goes a very little way to supporting this e-zine.

There's also links to search Amazon sites for all their products, books, CDs etc., and yes, we get a tiny piece of that too. We really appreciate it when you start your book search from our website. Thanks for the support!

NOTE: If you buy a book starting with one of our links below, we get a little bit to help support the website!

buy from Amazon USA buy from Amazon UK buy from Amazon Deutschland Shop at Amazon Canada

Book suggestions please!

If you have a book or want a book that you think other travellers would be interested in please let me know and I'll put it on the site. Thanks, Grant






































Help support your favourite website! Here's how!


Road Heroes - Motorcycle Adventure Travel Tales - Part 1.

Road Heroes Part 1!

Get your Road Heroes DVD now for inspirational and funny tales from the road!

Achievable Dream DVD series - The Motorcycle Adventure Travel Guide - Part 1 - Get Ready!

Part 1 - Get Ready!

Get the Achievable Dream DVD's NOW and learn how YOU can get on the road!

Achievable Dream DVD series - The Motorcycle Adventure Travel Guide - Part 2 - Gear Up! 2-DVD Set!

Part 2 - Gear Up!

Get the Achievable Dream DVD's NOW and learn how YOU can get on the road!

Achievable Dream DVD series - The Motorcycle Adventure Travel Guide - Part 3 - On the Road! 2-DVD Set!

Part 3 - On the Road!

Get the Achievable Dream DVD's NOW and learn how YOU can get on the road!

Achievable Dream DVD series - The Motorcycle Adventure Travel Guide - Part 4 - Ladies on the Loose!

Part 4 - Ladies on the Loose !

Get the Achievable Dream DVD's NOW and learn how YOU can get on the road!

Achievable Dream DVD series - The Motorcycle Adventure Travel Guide - Part 5 - Tire Changing!

Part 5 - Tire Changing!

Get the Achievable Dream DVD's NOW and learn how YOU can get on the road!


Support Horizons Unlimited - check out the HU Souk for DVD's, map stickers, calendars and t-shirts!

Baby doll T-shirt - front.Check out t-shirts and other goodies at the HU Souk. Support your favorite website!Check out t-shirts and other goodies at the HU Souk. Support your favorite website!

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ISSN 1703-1397 Horizons Unlimited Motorcycle Travellers' E-zine - Copyright 1999-2011, Horizons Unlimited and Grant and Susan Johnson. All rights reserved.

Redistribution - sending it on to friends is allowed, indeed encouraged, but other than the following requirements, only with permission. You may forward copies of the Horizons Unlimited Motorcycle Travellers' e-zine by forwarding it yourself by hand. You must forward the issue in its entirety, no fee may be involved. Please suggest they Subscribe!

Legal gibberish: (particularly for those in countries that have more lawyers in one town, just for instance, New York, not to name any names, than some whole countries, as another example, Japan. Again, not naming anybody specifically you understand).
Recommendations are based on positive or negative experiences of somebody, somewhere. Your mileage (kilometrage if you insist) may vary. We are not responsible in any way for any product or service mentioned, and do not warrant any such mentioned product or service, and are not responsible for any bad things that may befall you. You are responsible for yourself! Act accordingly. We check all links and information given as close as possible to publication, and all info is correct as best we can determine at that time.

up to top of pagespacerShorts.

Brad Cougle, Canada, Calgary to Argentina, in Uruguay, Suzuki V Strom 650 ABS,

"Boat time! Up very early to make it to the ferry from Buenos Aires to Colonia, Uruguay with a new plan to head up to Paraguay and possibly sell the bike. I found out after a good search that it is impossible to sell a foreign bike or car in Argentina due to their government restriction which similarly apply in Chile, Brazil and Uruguay. But not Paraguay.

Stupid Side Story: On the way to the boat in reasonable traffic, about 30m ahead of me while a parked car sat in the lane where it shouldn't have, the driver of the car directly in front of me proceeded to climb the back of the parked car in a fantastic crash scene. It was like a miniature BigFoot exhibition and I had a front row seat. My only disappointment was I didn't get any photos as the traffic was too thick and I was more concerned about leaving my now blocked lane. It was very surreal that's for sure. A good lesson to the guy who didn't read the parking sign and just did what he wanted parking there in rush hour, stupid.

Once at the ferry terminal it all went pretty smooth, even though I only had about 20 minutes until the boat departed. Thank god it was during the week and in the off season or I wouldn't have made it. I hadn't even purchased a ticket ahead of time so when I arrived I had to do it all (safe play considering they do not give refunds or transfers if you miss your scheduled boat. That's crazy!).

Loaded up again.

Loaded up again

This time carrying an extra pair of boots and hand warmers David left behind. Oh and a used tire to replace my trusty Tourance which had done 16,000km."

Kieran Elliott and Patrick Mullen, Ireland, RTW, in Mongolia, BMW F650GS,

"Navigation in Mongolia is tricky as there are only a few sign posts. By a few I mean 5 or 6 in the whole country. We got lost one of the days, completely missed the turn off and ended up heading south instead of west. We had to take a 40 Mile detour across this muck track. There is some tarmac in Mongolia, maybe 1000km the rest is unpaved dirt roads. Fine in the dry, but real fun in the wet. Often times you get 2 or 3 roads running in all directions only to find that they all end up in the same place. It has been a learning experience to say the least.

Mongolian Road.

People always seem to appear out of nowhere when you stop. The other day we pulled in and both felt a little funny after some fried chicken for lunch in the previous town. We both grabbed the baby wipes and dashed to opposite sides of the road for this was waiting for no man."

Neil and Clarissa, Australia, RTW, in Thai Islands,

"Jungle life involves leeches. The sooner the better you realise they pass on no disease and are actually full of protein if you're hungry!

Leeches!

Leeches tracks!

Guard pig.

The guard pig at the motorcycle parts/workshop

Like the pig at my local car wrecker back home I would imagine it lives off a diet of used engine oil and spark plug leads."

Tortillas to Totems

by Sam Manicom
Tortillas to Totems by Sam Manicom.

The latest Adventure Motorcycle travel book by the legendary Sam Manicom
Motorcycling the magnificent landscapes of Mexico, the USA and Canada. 'Sidetracked by the Unexpected'

'One of the World's leading Motorcycle Authors' - Motorcycle Sport and Leisure
'Sam's descriptions are in Technicolor.' - The Riders Digest
'Inspirational reading.' - World of BMW
'Superbly entertaining travel writing.' - BM Riders Club
'Few travel writers can conjure up sights and smells so provocatively as Sam.' - Daily Record - Scotland

Signed copies available directly from the Author here.
Order your copy now! Be sure to tell Sam where you heard about him!

Jordan and Sandra Hasselmann, Canada, From Calgary to Argentina, in Argentina,

"For the first time in almost a year, we turned 180 degrees and pointed our bikes north. After visiting Antarctica and Ushuaia - the end of the world, we had completed our mission and it was time to turn back. Besides, we'd run out of road, you just can't ride any further south.

We'd been gone for 10 days on our trip to Antarctica, and by the time we got back we realized that we needed to hit the road, we were running out of Autumn. The day we left the temperatures had dropped to -2 C and there was a good chance there would be snow in the mountain pass. It was so cold we bundled under seven layers of clothing and plugged our heated jackets into our bikes. Of course this didn't help our hands at all - we improvised and wore rubber surgical gloves inside our riding gloves, a tip from our pal Alex at eatsleepRIDE.com. It helped. A bit.

The mountains just north of Ushuaia.

When we reached the mountains just north of Ushuaia, we were thrilled that not only was the pass snow-free, it was awash in gorgeous fall colours. The ride was inspiring and amazing, and our timing was perfect - 24 hours later the pass was covered in snow. We stopped at the famous La Union bakery for a hot coffee and delicious Argentinian pastries before heading into Rio Grande for a second time on our trip."

Pastries from La Union bakery.

Pastries from La Union Bakery help keep the chill off!

Ron Fellowes, The Old Bloke on a Bike, in Hungary, on FN,

"I try to avoid freeways for all the usual reasons but sometimes I just end up there and in Hungary it was the first time I was stopped by the police and told I wasn't traveling fast enough (60kmph) and I'd have to take the next exit. I'd actually shot myself in the foot as for reasons I won't allude to here (given it might incriminate me), as I carried a piece of paper that said the bike was only capable of doing 40kmph. This is the speed I'm most comfortable doing, but from here on I'll need to take extra care to ensure I either bypass the freeways or go somewhat faster, which isn't practical over any distance.

Still, the police were nice enough about it and I didn't argue. Budapest, with Buda on one side of the Danube and Pest on the other is well laid out with orderly traffic. It's nice not to endure the insanity on the roads in many of the countries further east. But it's still always with some trepidation that I approach major cities as I know how hard it will be to stop at lights, find street signs while watching the traffic and at the same time try to keep Effie's engine running.

Andras, a Hungarian I'd met some weeks ago in Sofia contacted a few people who might be interested in seeing the bike. As a result, the Transportation Museum arranged for a press conference to be held and it was a great surprise as I rode up through City Park to the entrance to be greeted by a crowd of motorcyclists, museum staff, journalists and other media.

With Andras translating, I gave a short talk about my journey and the bike, then was presented with a splendid commemoration medallion and certificate by Janos the organizer and museologist. This was followed by press interviews and questions. Later I was given a personal tour of this wonderful museum featuring an impressive collection of historic motorcycles, cars, trains and other forms of transportation. Special thanks to Andras and Janos and to all those who took the time to come along and welcome me to their city. Here is an article and short excerpt from one of the many interviews."

Help support the Horizons Unlimited E-zine - visit our sponsors!
Please be sure you tell them how you heard about Rukka
. Thanks!

The Rukka brand name has become a synonym for high quality textile motorcycling apparel, and year after year the Finnish manufacturer has caused sensations pioneering highly innovative solutions for those looking for maximum quality, comfort and protection.

Adventure motorcycling clothing for the demanding traveller
Grant: We've been wearing Rukka since 2002 and highly recommend it!

Daan Stehouwer and Mirjam van Immerzeel, Netherlands, the Americas, Africa and beyond, in Mozambique, Africa Twins,

"Mozambique, relaxed! Nice atmosphere, and a lot more energy in/around the people. At gas stations, 5 guys try to sell you nuts and sunglasses, we love it! We really missed the noisy Latino's and this change is just what we needed.

A man knows... what?

We ate breakfast in the dunes this morning, while watching the surf a humpback whale passed by, which was a real nice start of the day!"

Danielle Murdoch, Australia, Australia to Africa, in Kenya and Uganda, Suzuki DR350,

"I am pretty satisfied with my motorcycle. It's running well and nothing is leaking and my clutch is now working properly. I turned off the main road that heads back to Nairobi and followed a dirt track towards Uganda. Weaving between the northern and southern hemispheres, I marked the occasions with a quick photo stop and moved on to keep warm.

Uganda sign.

We arrived at the border control for Kenya with our modified road tax receipts, which once read valid for only one month and now read three months (saving myself at least $40). However the relaxed and friendly customs official didn't even ask us to display our nice little handiwork. We were just entered into the oversized ledger and told to visit the immigration hut next door.

With our passports stamped, the guards opened the boom gate that separated the two countries with this idyllic scenery and we took our first breath of Uganda air."

Ronnie Borrageiro, South Africa, RTW, in USA, BMW 1200 GSA,

"There were a few points on interest worth mentioning about the last two days of course, most notable being the ride through Glacier National Park in Montana on the first day, and today's ride through Yellowstone National Park..."

Yellowstone National Park, USA.

Mike, USA, RTW, in Kenya and Ethiopia, BMW R1150 GSA,

"My plan was to sit in the back of the truck with the bike and the boxes of cheap Chinese teakettles, but I was advised by the crew that that would not be too smart, 'the dust will be very bad'. Seated in the cab, I was glad to be off the road, but as soon as the driver launched the truck into motion, I knew it was not going to be a relaxing ride. I could hold myself down into the seat by bracing with my arms, but my legs continued to bounce up and down off the floor of the cab.

Bike into truck.Bike tied down.

The truck clearly did not belong to the driver because he was beating the shit of it. I also knew that my bike was in trouble as it was impossible to tie it down very securely. Nothing I could do about it now. Two hours later we made it to Moyale. The bike had shifted and one of the panniers had slid underneath it causing some damage. I also made the mistake of leaving my helmet back with the bike and it got beat up pretty bad.

The rest of the guys rolled in soon after I arrived. It had been a fatiguing 10-hour day and they were mentally and physically exhausted. We checked into the only hotel in town, which was Muslim owned. There were no beers on site, but we each quickly downed about four sodas each. The next day I walked across the border and arranged a truck to take me all the way to Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia and where my replacement shocks would hopefully be waiting. The 375-mile trip truck-hire would cost me $500, cleaning out the remaining US money that I had stashed under the bike's seat. Video of the ride."

Nacho Vaca Arenaza, France, RTW, in Uzbekistan,

"I had run into Neil before at the Georgian border but he was going a bit faster than me and he got a 1 day lead on me. Until his top case flew off. He was a bit unluckier than I and didn't see it fly off. It was lost to him and with it his bike's papers and Russian import papers, which are necessary for Kazakhstan too, along with a couple more useful things (he kept remembering stuff he'd lost for days). He was staying in a very expensive hotel so I just had a chat with him and went off to search for a cheaper one in the expensive, oil- empowered, expat-inhabited city of Atyrau.

The road into Kazakhstan also brought a surprise to me: Camels!

The road into Kazakhstan also brought a surprise to me: Camels!

He also told me that Iain, another one of the China group, was in town but he didn't know where (Iain's not big on email and technology). Never mind because as soon as I got to one of the hotels mentioned as cheaper in the Lonely Planet, I saw a red Ténéré parked in the garden. It was Iain's and so I knocked on his door, introduced myself and we were off to Neil's hotel to have some beers together."

Colin and Re (Underboning), USA, RTW on 100cc underbones, in Malaysia, on SYM Symbas,

"In the Cameron Highlands - the outside light had apparently been left on last night, and it consequently attracted the most amazing assortment of moths we've ever seen.

Moths in Malaysia.

Some were nearly three inches long, some looked like leaves, others were spectacular colors, and there were, literally, hundreds of them."

Ed. See Colin and Re's story on the HUBB Ride Tales Forum!

Clay Derouin, Canada, in Ecuador

"...the biggest Amara and Inca ruin in Ecuador is Ingapirca near the town called Cañar. It's off the beaten track and overlooked by a lot of travellers, but we really thought it was worth while.

Ingapirca, Ecuador

Inca baths, Ingapirca, Ecuador

If you ride up past the ruin there is a nice hotel/hostel there. We just parked the bike there and didn't stay so I can't tell you the prices, but it's really nice and peaceful up there. Turned out there are lockers at the gate to ruins, so if you go, you can always lock up your stuff there."

Bike near Canar, Ecuador.

Seen on the Road, at the HU Greece Meeting,

Taz Hirani and Joel Juergens, Canada. And I couldn't resist this picture of Joel sporting his new tattoo!

Joel Juergens, wearing his HU colors!

Overland to India

Overland to India book by Gordon May

by Gordon May

Paperback, 21x14.8 cm 234 pages incl 8 pages of colour photographs. £9.95.

Synopsis:

In 2008, Gordon May set off on an 8,400 mile ride from Manchester, UK, to Chennai, India, on his 1953 Royal Enfield. Despite encountering intense heat, suffering a crash in the Baluchistan desert and battling against some of the worst roads and driving standards on the planet, Gordon and his old Bullet did make it to Chennai.

In Overland to India Gordon describes how he restored his beloved motorcycle, the build up to departure, the larger-than-life characters he met and how he tackled the many challenges that came his way. He also recounts the more personal highs and lows of life on the road. Above all, Overland To India is a heart-warming book that reveals that there is much human kindness and hospitality to be found, sometimes in the most unexpected places and situations.

Review:

What I really liked about Overland to India was the sheer determination of the rider. Gordon's love of his motorcycle shone through too; he often thanks it for getting him to his various destinations along the gruelling route and I liked reading about his running repairs. I felt his joy, his euphoria, at being out on the open road. I also felt his exhaustion. When Gordon suffered a crash I could almost feel those bruises and also his fear following an attempted highway robbery. What was also really striking was the generosity, friendliness and humility of many of the people he met along the way, who Gordon describes with real warmth. It's uplifting to discover that it's a welcoming world out there. Overland to India is a lesson to all of us who have a dream and want to pursue it. Inspiring. Judith Coyle

£9.95

Leaving soon below...

up to top of pagespacerHorizons Unlimited presents...

Achievable Dream and Road Heroes DVDs!

Road Heroes - Motorcycle Adventure Travel Tales, features tales of adventure, joy and sheer terror by veteran travellers Peter and Kay Forwood (Challenges of travelling to 193 countries 2-up on a Harley Electra-Glide), Dr. Gregory Frazier (5 times RTW on a variety of bikes), Tiffany Coates (RTW traveller recounts her Mongolia Mayhem) and Rene Cormier (5 years in the University of Gravel Roads). Not to be missed!

Road Heroes - Motorcycle Adventure Travel Tales - Part 1.

If you've been inspired by the stories you've read in this e-zine and are keen to get on the road yourself, the Achievable Dream is the definitive 'How To' series on long-distance motorcycle travel.

The Achievable Dream Series - the Motorcycle Adventure Travel Guide!

This insanely ambitious 2-year project has produced an informative and entertaining 5-part, 18 hour DVD series: "The ultimate round the world rider's how-to DVD!" MCN UK.

The series features interviews with veteran travellers, such as Ted Simon, Austin Vince, Greg Frazier, Lois Pryce., Chris and Erin Ratay, Peter and Kay Forwood, Tiffany Coates, Sam Manicom, and many others. Over 150 contributors from all over the world tell their fantastic and entertaining stories, sharing their hard-earned knowledge from amazing motorcycle trips to every country on earth. Includes thousands of great photos, video clips, presentations and demos by experts.

The series was filmed in broadcast quality wide screen, with multiple cameras and custom written music. Filming took place at Horizons Unlimited Motorcycle Travellers meetings and on location in the USA, Canada, UK, Switzerland, Spain, Germany and the South Pacific.

  1. Get Ready! aims to inspire you to take the plunge, and start to prepare for the trip. Topics include planning, travelling solo or with others, money, paperwork for you and the bike, off-road riding, health and medical.
  2. Gear Up! covers the Kit - bike and other stuff, including what bike, preparing the bike, tyres, panniers and top boxes, riding gear, GPS and maps, what to take and how to pack it. This is a 2-DVD set, almost 6 hours!
  3. On the Road! What is it like to spend weeks, months or years on the road? In this 2-DVD set (5.5 hours!), our veteran travellers share their tips (and great stories) for staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure.
  4. Ladies on the Loose! For the first time ever, a motorcycle travel DVD made for women, by women! This inspirational and entertaining DVD is presented by Lois Pryce., veteran solo traveller through South America and Africa and author of 'Lois on the Loose', and 'Red Tape and White Knuckles'. Lois delivers action, entertainment and hot tips, as well as coverage of 'women only' topics. Austin Vince, of Terra Circa and Mondo Enduro fame, is her director and cameraman for this production.
  5. Tire Changing! When you're venturing off the beaten path, you can't just call your friendly automobile association! Fear no more - Grant will demystify the black art of Tire Changing and Repair in this 1.5 hour DVD full of expert tips and information to help you STAY on the road!

The 'Collectors Box Set' is also available - all 5 DVDs (18 hours of informative and entertaining content!) in a custom box at a gift price of $139.00. "The series is 'free' because the tips and advice will save much more than you spend on buying the DVD's."

Achievable Dream Collectors Box Set - 5 Motorcycle Adventure Travel DVDs!

After selling over 6,000 DVDs, we're pretty confident you'll like them. If you're not completely happy with them, just let us know within 30 days of purchase for a full refund or exchange. And you don't even have to send them back!

If by some chance you've never heard of the Achievable Dream and Road Heroes DVDs, you can see the trailers and read the comments for all the DVDs here.

 

up to top of pagespacerLeaving soon, or just left.

Gene and Neda, 'Lightcycle' from Toronto, just left on RTW trip, R1200GS and F800GS

"I've been a member of HU for years now, reading and dreaming, being inspired by all of you who take the plunge and go all in on that RTW trip, leaving behind everything you've built up to chase the four winds.

So here's our story, at last:

Neda and I got our motorcycle licenses together in spring of 2004, as an engagement present to ourselves. We thought it would be a neat thing to do. We took day trips, hung out at motorcycle meets, rode on group rides, did track days, took longer motorcycle trips, rode dirt bikes, became motorcycle instructors, took even longer trips, and then dealt with the aftermath, the ensuing ennui of 'real life' - the anchor of a home, the jobs and the bills; the maintenance of everything we've accumulated in our collective seven decades on earth.

So the solution seemed logical to us: quit the jobs, sell our home and everything in it, and set out on THE motorcycle journey with no route planned, no end in sight and no return date in mind.

Neda with all their earthly possessions.

This is what's left of our earthly possessions after a few rounds of Keep, Sell, Throw Away, Give Away. Now to get it all on our bikes...!

...Not too much to say about the ride to Quebec, we've done these roads tons of times, and we've decided to superslab it to see some new sights. We stopped off in Montreal to get a new rear tire fitted on my GS, something I could have done at home, but just didn't have enough time with all the preparations, had a quick grocery store lunch and then off to Quebec City, our first campsite (KOA!) Streets were deserted during the morning ride through old Quebec City.

Riding Quebec City.

I've always wanted to ride through the narrow streets of the old city, soaking up the European atmosphere. We passed through the city walls, remnants of the military presence in the 1600s and found the streets were soaked from the rains the night before. After a quick spin, the bikes were parked and we toured the rest of the town on foot, taking lots of pictures.

Rimouski stunt riders.

...We stopped in Rimouski to eat our lunch in a parking lot of a grocery store and we saw what looked to be a motorcycle school. We thought it was just a basic licensing course until they started doing stunts!

Neda hams it up at Cape Speer. Took forever to dry her off.

Neda hams it up at Cape Speer. Took forever to dry her off...

...The fog was pretty thick in the early evening as we rode the steep and windy road out to Cape Speer, the eastern-most point in Canada. It's just outside St John's, and Neda remarks how understated our tourist attractions are compared to the US. No wall-to-wall T- shirt/hot-dog stand/souvenir stalls here, just the beauty of the eastern Newfoundland coast. We stared out at the Atlantic ocean together and wondered what we'd see and where we'd end up next."

This is where our journey really starts.

This is where our journey really starts...

Ed. See Gene and Nada's story and more great pics on the HUBB Ride Tales Forum!

Sam Farah and Clare Southern (Pheebs), UK, to Europe, Africa, the Americas, then who knows, KTM 690s,

"Approximately a year ago Sam and I met through the wonderful world of the internet (what would we do without google nowadays - bosh in what you want and voila!) With Sam stupendously passionate about motorbikes and me being so desperate to learn to ride it seemed inevitable that our combination would be perfect for a motorbiking duo! This, coupled with the desire to travel and do something mega for charity, we figured 'What the hey, let's go all out and do a charity round the world trip on motorbikes' and that's just what we're doing!

Sam and Clare with new bikes.

Finally! Sam and I managed to lay our hands on these two beautiful KTM 690 Enduro R's!

I have never been on a motorbike before! I did have a scooter 10 years ago when I was 16 but had an unfortunate incident whereby a lorry didn't take time to look where he was going and ended up making me mount a roundabout to save myself from becoming a pancake! Due to this and my history in the police witnessing many bike incidents, close family and friends never encouraged me to get on a bike and excuses were made leaving me all dreamy eyed and a bit sad my bike love would probably never happen!

I am incredibly lucky to have Sam as my lovely other half for this trip as he already has completed a half-way RTW trip on his motorbike in the past. A few years back Sam and his mate took themselves from Dubai all the way up through the Middle East, Europe, Canada to Alaska before heading back to the UK. Despite riding for the past 8 years and having been half way around the world, his Dubai licence cannot be transferred to the UK soooo he has to take all the tests again! Utter bummer! However, he's keen to see what habits he has picked up and correct them. Right now though, his riding skills and knowledge of travel are proving to be invaluable!

With Sam to advise, we're plodding our way through all the relevant paper work (carnets, visas etc), finances and planning out a pretty hard core training program (both riding and fitness) for the next 6 months. Being an utter n00b myself I have been liaising with the national campaign Get On for some time now and they are giving us their full support in getting me up and running and Sam back up to scratch! Much of our trip will be followed by Get On through their website as they're hoping to promote lady riders, road safety and adventure planning. I'm chuffed as nuts about their support and excitement in the adventure - it's a bit of a booster for us lady riders and what's achievable if you put your mind to it!

We're doing this all to raise awareness of three main charities:

  • Wales Air Ambulance: Knowing we are off traipsing around the world, we really wanted to have a charity which was rooted back to our homeland.
  • World Land Trust: We're both pretty keen on supporting the natural world and the WLT are quite simply awesome in what they do to help preserve endangered habitats and species! Our route passes many of their projects, particularly in South America. We plan on visiting as many as possible on our journey!
  • Riders for Health: We first heard about Riders for Health early last year and were instantly overwhelmed by their tremendous work. With numerous projects all over Africa, Riders for Health have devoted teams who dedicate their time and expertise ensuring health workers have access to reliable transportation so they can reach the most isolated communities with regular and predictable health care.

22 Feb - we PASSED! Hoorah! It was a bit of a damp and dull day heading over to Swansea and I was awash with sleepiness, nerves, want-for-a-pancake (shrove Tuesday) but it was a lovely day all the same! Smart Motorcycle Training in Swansea were phenomenal. Ianto, who we have met a few times before, cracked me up so much throughout the day! He really knew how to blow away the nerves! With very clear, concise and simple instructions the guy was full of beans and keeping us on our toes all day! We made our way out onto the road and things seemed much easier gear changing than they had in the car park... I'm guessing this was due to more room for acceleration and movement! I was constantly chatting away to myself in my helmet though reminding myself of the actions (alongside Ianto talking to me all the time on the comms... he was such as star at reassuring me, such an absolute star). I did, however, manage to stall three times on my first roundabout...

First Stall... Me: 'Oh Bugger bum poop and fudge... right... must be the nerves... start her back up again... brumm'
Second Stall... Me: 'Seriously!? Seriously! Maybe too much clutch again!?'
Third Stall... Me: 'Whaaat the Monkeys is going on!?! Getting biting point... accelerating enough... why?! WHY!? I need to get my butt into gear.. oh. Oh hang on... gear. FUDGE I've been sat in second! You Pratt Southern!' Hahahaha! I felt like such a muppet! I think that was probably my only major glitch (on the busiest roundabout in history too... what a nincompoop!) I did have the odd boshing the gear into neutral as opposed to second but after an hour or so out I was much much smoother!

Ianto riding instructor.

Ianto, my Welsh instructor from Smart Motorcycle Training in Swansea and I outside prior to the day starting!

1 June - Managed to have the most tremendous birthday ever! Not only was it a gorgeous day, but we had the fun of tootling out and about on the bikes (Sam at the time had a courtesy bike of a KTM 990 SMT which was beautiful!)
When stopped off at our favourite lake (Blagdon) we took pew on a log in a nearby shaded wooded area to cool down.... when Sam completely threw me and popped the question! All caught on camera too as we were testing the Contour ROAM cameras we had. Needless to say I said yes!

Engaged!

22 Sep - Good news AHOY! After a few more meetings with the Docs we finally had a letter come through confirming that I have the all clear and do not require an op! Despite the fact it was only a minor op I was still not looking forward to the potential of it so am SUPER happy at this news! I'm still sad we had to delay things because of all the above shenanigans but it's best to be safe than sorry. Big thank you to my lovely hubby to be for being super supportive. Bad news though... we need to have pretty much every jab going for where we're heading!

After talking through various routes and looking closely at time scales, our route has changed for the last time! We've decided to chase the weather... always a plan batman! So leaving around 20th - 24th November (date to be confirmed in next 2 weeks!)"

Ed. Clare and Sam have been planning this trip for many months - minor details like learning to ride a bike, getting married(!), and some medical issues have delayed their starting date. See the HUBB Ride Tales Forum for their description, pics and video of the planning process thus far. We're looking forward to the trip reports!

up to top of pagespacerMake a Difference

Troy from Texas, Tejas a la Tierra, in Bolivia,

"...It had been a full day of riding when I came upon a small village. I guess that it was a bit unusual to have a traveler visiting this area... let alone a guy on a motorcycle. I mean, why would anyone stop in this small village that lay along a dirt road in the middle of nowhere.

A crowd started to gather. There were old men, women, teens and some kids. It was hard to make out the expressions on the people's faces because it was so dark, but they seemed to be enjoying the experience of watching this extranjero (stranger) set up camp. Of course I got the usual questions... Where are you from? What are you doing here? Do you like Bolivia? Where are you going? How much did your motorcycle cost? How much did your tent cost? Are you Chinese?

When people ask me if I am Chinese I always share that I am ethnically Chinese, but that I was born in the United States... a Chino Americano. Some people get it, some people don't.

I asked the group, now numbering about 15 people, if they had even had ever seen an actual Chinese person. Most of the group said... no. There were three teens that raised their hands eagerly and said that they had seen Chinese people before. I asked them where. They said that they studied in Sucre and had seen Chinese tourists in the city. Cool, I pondered a bit.

I asked the group if they had ever eaten Chinese food. There was silence. Nobody responded. Then one lady asked me what was Chinese food. I tried my best to explain. I said that there are basic ingredients like chicken or beef, vegetables like carrots, onion, scallions, and that all the ingredients are cut up into small pieces then cooked together in a big pot called a wok. She said that it sounded like some of the food that they made. I said that the seasonings and flavors might be different. One lady was really curious and asked if I knew how to cook Chinese food. I said that I knew how to cook a few dishes. She asked if I could teach her. Without really thinking... I said yes.

I asked her if she was serious. She said that she really would like to learn. I asked her... right now? She said that I could do it the following day. Well, I was not really planning to stay around this small town for much time. But, I was so overcome by the eagerness and openness of this small village that I said... okay.

I inquired if they had chicken... yes... rice... yes... onions... yes... carrots... yes... salt... yes... pepper... yes... oil... yes. And then I said we had all the ingredients, but usually I would use a sauce we call... soya (soy sauce). The lady said with great eagerness... we have soya! Wow, I knew that there were many places in Bolivia that had soy sauce, but I was surprised to that they would have it in this small village. We live in a global village.

We continued to talk while I set up my camp. But it was settled... I would teach the village how to prepare Chinese food the next day.

Camping in yard, Bolivia.

...The next morning I awoke. This is the house/store/yard where I had camped for the night.

I packed up my things and prepped my motorcycle.

Some of the townspeople were hanging around watching me. I asked them kind of half heartedly if they still wanted me to teach them how to cook Chinese food. Yes! the ladies replied. Okay, brunch would be served!

So I rattled off a list of the ingredients and asked them to compile them. I asked them how many people might be interested in cooking and eating. The one lady that was kind of the coordinator said... Oh, probably about 15.

Wow, 15 people. I have cooked for 8 to 10 people in my house before, but never 15. And I've always had all the proper ingredients, utensils and kitchen space. This was going to be interesting.

It took the group a little time to run around the village and gather all the ingredients. We moved to another house to do the cooking.

As I walked through the open courtyard and up to the house, I saw this scene. Two of the young girls had killed a chicken, boiled it to remove the feathers and were plucking the remaining feathers. It was probably the freshest chicken that I had ever cooked.

Freshest chicken ever!

I then proceeded to show the group how to cut the vegetables and chicken into small pieces. They had all the basic ingredients and most of them had been grown right around the village. If you look closely you will even notice that they had a bottle of soy sauce. For some reason they had brought mayonnaise and catchup. I told them that those ingredients would not be necessary.

Food prep for chicken fried rice.

After a little time, we had all the food prepped and we were ready to begin cooking.

I had never cooked Chinese food over an open fire. It was definitely a new experience. The heat was intense. I found it difficult to get close enough to the fire to stir fry the ingredients. Eventually, I turned over the responsibility of stirring the dish to one of the ladies.

Chicken fried rice over open fire.

In the end, it all worked out. We made a big pot full of chicken fried rice. I think that there were about 10 people that showed up to eat. They all said that they really enjoyed it. I do not know if they really enjoyed it or if they were just being polite. But... in the end... all the food was finished.

Women learning to cook chicken fried rice.

Here is the core group of women that I taught how to cook the meal. People that I have encountered along my way have been so willing to share their culture with me, it was nice to share a little bit of my culture with this community."

Ed. Fantastic pics, videos and stories from Troy on the HUBB Ride Tales Forum!

up to top of pagespacerHorizons Unlimited Travellers Meetings.

Why Come to a Horizons Unlimited Motorcycle Travellers Meeting?

You can meet people who don't think you're crazy for wanting to ride your bike to South America or Africa or across Asia! People who will encourage you, share their experiences and advice on how to do it!

Also, the meetings help to make HU more than just a website - a community of motorcycle travellers - real people, not just e-mail addresses ;-) And last but not least, they make a significant contribution to HU revenue, thus helping us to keep the HUBB and website going! So thanks to everyone who comes!

Meetings and Events, 2012-13. Mark your calendars and sign up now!

Argentina (mini-meeting) - 7-9 Dec, 2012, the 10th Anniversary meeting! Registration open now!

Thailand (mini-meeting), Chiang Mai, Jan 11-12, 2013. Registration open now!

HUBB UK - 30 May-2 Jun, 2013. Our intrepid organisers Sam Manicom and Iain Harper have re-invented the UK Summer Travellers' Meeting to create a brand new event for overland adventure travellers called HUBB UK. The premier overland adventure travel event for motorcyclists, cyclists, and drivers of 4x4 and other expedition vehicles is also supported by our good friend Dave Lomax at Adventure-Spec.com. This greatly expanded event is in an exciting new venue next to the famous Donington Park Racing Circuit. Pre-registration is open now!

Ireland, Enniskillen, 12-14 July, 2013. Same great location! Registration open now!

Colorado Campfire meeting, Grant, Colorado, July 12-14. Our old friend (not that he's old, just that we've known him for years!) Greg Frazier has volunteered to host this event, in addition to the Thailand mini-meeting - thanks Greg!

Canada West, Nakusp, BC, Aug 22-25. Same great location! Registration open now!

UK Autumn - Mendip, Sep 7-8 - Gabe and Char are hosting this again! Assistant volunteers needed!

Australia (North), Dayboro, Queensland. Sep 26-28. Registration open soon!

Australia (South), Cavendish, Oct 11-13. To be confirmed.

California, Cambria - October 17-20. Same great location on the Central Coast near Big Sur. Camp Ocean Pines in Cambria, CA is set in 13 acres of Monterey Pine forest overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Numbers are strictly limited!

Dates subject to change, more dates and locations to come as we get them. Check back here before you plan a trip!

Presenters

How about you? We're all here to learn, and there's LOTS to learn! We want to do more presentations and seminars - but we need volunteers to give them! Any topic you can contribute having to do with motorcycle travel, maintenance, planning, first aid, etc, lasting 20 minutes or more, would be great. Please contact us here to volunteer.

Volunteers and Hosts

Volunteers for all meetings are needed, just a couple of hours of your time makes it all a lot easier - and fun - for all. You can volunteer a few hours of your time for any meeting here. And volunteering is always a great way to meet a lot of people!

If you'd like to host an HU Meeting in your area, please see the How To Host a Meeting page for details.

Vendors/Traders sign up here to join us at a Meeting.

See the Meetings page for more details on all events.

See you there! Grin!

Grant and Susan


up to top of pagespacerHome again (or at least off the road temporarily).

Hubert Kriegel, France, Sidecar-ing the world, recuperating after surviving life-threatening medical condition!

"On July 17, I did not feel good after lunch, I could not swallow and I felt fever coming on me...

...I had multiple scans including a head to toe pet scan, they checked all my organs - heart, liver, stomach, lung etc - for a source of infection, but it came back clear. At least I had a full check-up of my body and I am in pretty good shape beside my neck and throat.

Scanned from head to toe.

I saw the professor of the service who told me 'you are a case of Fibrosis Radiation. The tissues of your neck radiated 17 years ago hardened making a cast iron that strangled your throat and stop you from breathing normally and eating or drinking'. In my 60 days of hospital, I lost 44 lb and all muscles being in bed 24h/day and I still could not eat!

Now we have a name of my problem 'Fibrosis', Lorraine went on internet and overnight found Doctor Sylvie Delanian at hospital St Louis of Paris who researched fibrosis for 15 year. I left the hospital and went to her office the next week. After looking at my medical file, she said 'I have my computer full of cases like you. There is no cure for fibrosis, but I have a treatment. Will you recover 100%? I don't know, how many month will it take?, I don't know either, but I guarantee you that in 90 days, you will feel much much better'.

I started her treatment the same day and 48 hours later my cast iron opened enough to allow me to eat full meals. 3 weeks later, I already gained 12 of the 44 lb I lost at the hospital.

Each bite I was eating was penetrating my body to all the pores of my skin from my toes to my hair. Each meal was a revival. On top of that it is all about protein like eggs, meat, fish and dairy products, all my favorite food in life!

My voice is still off, but it does not bother me as long as I can still tell my silly jokes. Eating and drinking required a lot of attention to swallow correctly but the breathing is open and life is good! Thank you Dr. Delanian.

Later, recuperating with family...

Barfleur is a wild fishing village at the end of the world.

Barfleur is a wild fishing village at the end of the world

Between the shopping, searching the best recipe, the cooking, the eating and the dishes, time flies!

Between the shopping, searching the best recipe, the cooking, the eating and the dishes, time flies!"

Ed. Please get well, Hubert - we miss your stories and pics! More great photos on Hubert's blog. Also see his winning pic (June) in the Horizons Unlimited 2013 Calendar!


MedjetAssist is an air medical evacuation and consultation membership program and is HIGHLY recommended by us and many others for all travellers. The regular MedjetAssist program is for citizens or residents of the US, Mexico and Canada, and gives hospital of choice protection virtually anywhere in the world and air evacuation as needed. (See below for more on the Foreign National Plan). Follow the logo below for US, Mexico and Canada citizens to find out more. (NOTE: It's still in progress for the final HU version, but you can get MedjetAssist now!)

Get MedjetAssist for your next trip!

For OTHER nationalities it is currently a little more complicated. There IS a Foreign National Plan, but you can't enrol online. It's a faxable enrolment and subject to underwriting approval. The rates are the same, but transport is restricted to 'back to home country - hospital of choice' rather than 'anywhere in the world - hospital of choice'. We are working on improving that, but at least it IS available! Go here to contact MedjetAssist and inquire about the Foreign National Plan. Be sure to mention Horizons Unlimited.

Michael Paull adds his endorsement of MedJet (and he DID use their services - twice!):

'. After an additional three days in Beijing, I was deemed stable enough for air evacuation back to the University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle, WA, in the company of my wife Aillene (who had flown in from Japan), and an air transport trauma nurse provided by the company that I had procured medical evacuation insurance from, MEDJET Assistance - without doubt, the best insurance coverage I have ever purchased in my life. A small plug here - these people were remarkable. If there was ever a better case for '. don't leave home without it.', MEDJET Assistance is at the top of my checklist, no matter where I travel (and I hope to do a LOT more).'

Note: Per the Medjet Assistance site: '. a medical transport between Europe and America can run more than $35,000. Middle East and South American flights range from $60,000 to $80,000. Transport from Asia often exceeds $100,000.' Sounds like $205.00 for a single is pretty cheap insurance!


up to top of pagespacerTraveller's Community News.

New Communities:

We've now reached an amazing 734 Communities in 110 Countries as of October 31, 2012! A big thanks to all those who took the first step and established the Community in their area.

If you are on the road, do check out the Communities - don't feel like you're imposing on people! They signed up for a Community because they want to meet travellers - that's you! You'll have a great time, so go to the Communities page and let them know you're coming. Please remember that they are volunteers and offering to help because they're great people - common courtesy helps! When you write, tell them who you are, that you're passing through, and would like to meet them. Let them know if you need anything, and I'm sure they'll help as best they can.

Remember that although some HU communities are very small, many others are large and could be more active in getting together for rides (even just to the pub!) or other activities. It's a great way to meet other travellers in your area - who knows, you could meet your next travel partner! All you need is for someone to suggest a place and time, kick it around a bit and make it happen. If there aren't any HU Travellers Meetings in your area, perhaps it's time there was one? A Community could do a Mini-Meeting, (just a get-together in someone's backyard or at a restaurant), or a full meeting! Let us know about it and we'll help promote it :)

For details on how you can join a Community in your area, or use the Communities to get information and help, or just meet people on the road or at home, go to the Community page. Send me some photos - with captions please - and a little text and you can have a web page about your Community! A few links to web pages about your area would be useful too.

Just a reminder to all, when you Join a Community in your area, send a note to the Community introducing yourself and suggesting a meeting, or go for a ride or something. It's a good way of meeting like-minded individuals in your own town.

Book special just for Horizons Unlimited Readers!

'Into the den of the Bear and the Lair of the Dragon on a Motorcycle'
'8 Around the Americas on a Motorcycle'
'Africa Against the Clock on a Motorcycle'
'From Nordkapp to Cape York on a Motorcycle'

Werner Bausenhart has written several books on his travels around the world, and has offered them to HU readers at a great price. Tell him we sent you and get US$5.00 off the regular US$20 price!

Contact Werner now via this link to get the deal.


Become a Horizons Unlimited Contributing Member or Gold Member!

To help with the cost of creating and distributing the newsletter and running a huge website, which has been a full time job for Grant for ten years, Susan for 3 years, plus occasional part time assistants, we gratefully accept contributions via PayPal, credit card, and cheque. Members also get additional privileges on the HUBB, such as more PM's, custom avatars, and more photo space.

Support this Newsletter by becoming a Contributing Member today, by PayPal, credit card, or cheque.

Become an HU Contributing Member!

Support Horizons Unlimited with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure!

If you want a t-shirt or other logoed merchandise, go to the Store.

All contributions will be acknowledged and gratefully accepted. If you later decide you do want a t-shirt or other member logoed merchandise from the store, let us know and we will arrange access to the Members Private Store.

More ways to support your favourite website!

How to Link to Horizons Unlimited

Also, you can just follow any Amazon link on the site and we'll get a small commission on your purchase of any Amazon merchandise - and it won't cost you any more!

Thanks, Grant and Susan

   

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up to top of pagespacerIn Progress.

I am working on a listing of people who have ridden around the world, as well as what I call 'significant journeys' e.g. the first across Africa. Any information you may have on this topic, please let me know. Preferably e-mail me direct. I currently have information on over 800 world travellers listed, but there are many more. Have YOU done it? Let me know!

up to top of pagespacerFinal thoughts.

We hope you've enjoyed this issue, and do please let us know your thoughts. It's your newsletter, so tell us what you want to know about!

It is not the unknown, but the fear of it, that prevents us from doing what we want.

We'd like to think that Horizons Unlimited; the website, the HUBB, the Communities and this newsletter help to push back the fear through knowledge and connecting with others, and teach all of us about the world and its wonderful people.

See you on the road!

Grant and Susan Johnson

Live the dream! at:

www.HorizonsUnlimited.com

Riding the globe...

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