By Tim Notier
With Black Friday and Cyber Monday upon us once again, it is time to start pondering what to get our two-wheeled riding loved ones for Christmas, Hanukkah, whatever gift-giving traditions that the church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster may have, and even for the atheist in your life that likes receiving gifts on a cold December day.
Here is a brief list for those motorcycle enthusiasts in your life. These are some of our favorite items which have served us well on our round-the-world trip. We are not sponsored by any of the products below, and bought each item ourselves with our hard-earned money. These are simply our fair, honest opinions after putting them through hell over the last two years.
For the past few weeks, Tim and I have been making preparations to ship our motorcycle and ourselves to South Africa from the US. The plan is to then ride up the eastern side of Africa up to Egypt, and from there, ferry over to Europe.
We recently shipped our bike from Argentina to the States, and that process was fairly painless, but shipping to Africa has turned out to be a completely other beast. That is not to say that Africa won't be worth all the trouble. I think the moment we take our first picture with our bike and a giraffe standing behind it, all these difficulties will feel a million miles behind us.
After twenty months of being on the road, going from our home in Chicago all the way down to the southernmost point in Argentina, I’d say Tim and I have learned a thing or two about living as travelers. Especially since both of us have to pack everything we’d ever need onto one motorcycle, we really have gotten to know what’s absolutely essential, and what isn’t worth its weight.
By: Tim Notier
With over two years on the road are now in the books (and soon to be in physical books). From Chicago to Ushuaia, and back up to Iguazu Falls, the questions are now: what worked and what did not?
Yes, it looks awesome: the mirror effect of the largest salt flats in the world during the wet season. But don't let the surreal image of us riding through the Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia fool you, because it has rendered our motorcycle immobile.
The amazing photographers who took this shot are our friends Kira and Brendon Hak, the fellow KTM-riding duo called the Adventure Haks. We met up with them for Christmas in Sucre, Bolivia, and then headed south together a few days before this epic failure-of-a-ride.
By Tim Notier
After having been on the road for over a year, it is time to look back at our favorite items, and some that didn't make the cut.
The following is a list of the things we brought with us and why. We have not received any discounts or free merchandise for promotional purposes. We purchased these items with our own money, and due to that fact, better-quality and more expensive items may exist out there. These are simply our honest, unfiltered opinions on what we decided to bring on our trip.
One of the seven wonders of the world and rightfully so, the lost Incan city of Machu Picchu is on many people's bucket list. But as picturesque, breathtaking, and mysterious as it is, in recent years it has become a tourist hot-spot, and an expensive one. And I'm not just talking about the ticket price. The Peruvian government knows that they can get more than twice the ticket cost out of every visitor because Machu Picchu is inaccessible by road, which forces everyone to take overpriced train rides there (from Ollantaytambo it's $45 per person one way, from Cusco it's $75 one way!).
For many people this is fine, as they have been saving up all year to spend a weekend in Peru seeing the sights, and the train is certainly the quickest and most comfortable way of getting to Machu Picchu. But for long-term travelers trying to keep to a budget, getting there can be such a headache and a dent in the wallet, that many are now missing it simply for the cost involved. And that is a real shame.
In the 15th century, it was the largest empire in the world, and it still captures the hearts and minds of people today. Though the Inca Empire didn't last long, it made its mark on South America by reshaping the landscape and creating structures that are still marveled at by people from around the globe.
Getting up-close and personal to Peru's Incan past has been a dream of mine since I was a child. And now that Tim and I finally found ourselves in Cusco, the old Incan capital, I could just feel the excitement mounting inside me. I wanted to see and experience it all.
And so we made a plan.
By Tim Notier
There are many things we have learned along the way and I would like to share what are my top ten travel tips.
I have rough camped in all sorts of places, but each and every time is a new experience. So I wanted to be sure we would have the proper equipment to do this in, and to start building the expertise to be confident we would survive the elements once we are out in the true wilds of the world, not just an hour from home.
While testing our gear, I came up with a short check list that Tim and I should go through while on the road.
1) Do Your Research (when available)
What I mean by this is first, figure out the laws concerning camping in the area you wish to go to, and make sure it's legal before you get out there. We never want to wake up to police writing us a citation, or a farmer with a shotgun yelling, Y'all best be moving along down the road now, ya hear?
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