|10-16-2010, 08:54 AM||#11|
Joined: Jan 2005
Location: The Badlands (of NJ)
However, these super-long distance adventures always require months if not years of available time.
The same problem is with organized group tours. While requiring much less preparation, these still take an amount of time I cannot afford - it's not the money, it's the time. Just recently, with great trepidation, I went away for 2 weeks - this was the first vacation of that length in well over 25 years. (Yes, I can hear the snickering from our European inmates...).
This is how I came to my traveling formula, where it comes to oversea trips: fly, rent and do your own ride. I feel comfortable and familiar anywhere in Europe, so a whole trip can be done on my own: I fly in, rent a bike and within half a day from picking it up I am on exciting motorcycling roads. I have ridden in almost every country there, by myself and with a few other riders - and the rides were as short as 4 and as long as 6 days in the saddle. Perfect for my schedule.
Elsewhere, my short travel window is not well suited for exploring on one's own. I have found that it is best to hire someone to ride along and assist with all arrangements, especially if in a language I do not speak. It is the most effective combination of convenience and the ability to determine my own schedule and itinerary. It is also quite educational.
For example, when we have ridden with Lewis in South Africa and Swaziland, we rented bikes from SAMA in Pretoria and paid for an accompanying rider - in the end, the company owner went with us. We were able to have a wonderful adventure in just 6 short days, we did see a lot and we learned a lot about the country and the people from our guide.
Similarly, with the Patagonian adventure, having Roberto allowed us to just ride and enjoy the vistas, not worry about other arrangements. In particular, his knowledge of Spanish was invaluable during the complicated border crossings. That is how we could squeeze a Patagonian outing into just 5-6 days of riding. Still, it is far away: the whole trip took about 11 days, which included one-day stopovers in Santiago and in Lima.
Robert in Northern NJ __ '09 R12GS, '03 R1150RT, '01 F650GS
-->> James Bay & North Road Solo Blitz -->> Patagonia / Tierra del Fuego Cappuccino Tour
-->> Trans-Labrador Highway Solo Blitz --->> South African Cappuccino Tour
rdwalker screwed with this post 10-16-2010 at 09:03 AM
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