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Every red-blooded motorcyclist dreams of making the Big Trip—the Adventure Motorcycling Handbook is the comprehensive manual to make that idea a reality. Timbuktu to Kathmandu or Patagonia to Mongolia—it's all here. This expanded and re-designed new edition is packed with essential advice and practical know-how on the vital preparation for undertaking a long journey off the beaten track, be it in a nearby wilderness area or on the other side of the globe. So whether motorcyclists are planning their own Big Trip ...
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Every red-blooded motorcyclist dreams of making the Big Trip—the Adventure Motorcycling Handbook is the comprehensive manual to make that idea a reality. Timbuktu to Kathmandu or Patagonia to Mongolia—it's all here. This expanded and re-designed new edition is packed with essential advice and practical know-how on the vital preparation for undertaking a long journey off the beaten track, be it in a nearby wilderness area or on the other side of the globe. So whether motorcyclists are planning their own Big Trip across Africa, Alaska, or Asia, or just enjoy reading about other people's adventures, this handbook is guaranteed to illuminate, entertain, and above all, inspire.
This book covers:
• Documentation—what travelers need and how to get it
• Choosing a destination
• Preparing a bike for long-range touring
• Off-road riding techniques
• Shipping or airfreighting a bike
• Transcontinental route outlines across Africa, Asia, and Latin Americas, plus backcountry riding in Southwest USA, Northwest Canada, and the Australian Outback.
• Navigation and Survival—what to do when things go wrong
• A dozen first hand accounts of biking adventures from the Sahara, Central Asia, East Africa, Colombia and Bolivia, the Yukon, and even Idaho!
What exactly is adventure motorcycling? As far as this book is concerned adventure motorcycling involves a challenging journey into the wilderness or a significantly strange country. For most of us living in cities in developed countries, a visit to a wilderness involves leaving the security of the paved highways of Europe, Australia and North America and heading onto the dirt, while a strange country adds all sorts of Third World challenges that are all patiently waiting for you out there in Central and South America, Africa or Asia.
Mainstream touring is a fun way of getting to nice places or enjoying the thrill of a sharp-handling bike. But the Adventure Motorcycling Handbook sees motorcycles not as toys, but tools with which to escape from the mundane and predictable and explore the wild or exotic regions of our planet.
In Latin America, Asia and Africa, or in mountains and deserts closer to home, reaching out into the back country requires planning and confidence in your abilities, be they riding half a ton of bike through mud, or dealing with a shipping agent in a foreign port. In some situations the unfamiliarity adds an edge to your travels that you won't necessarily appreciate at the time. You'll be pitted against your patience, stamina and resourcefulness, and in all cases you'll find you have greater reserves of these qualities than you'd expect.
Sure you'll be glad to cruise restfully along the blacktop and stay in hotels once in a while. But ask any of the many contributors to this book and in most cases they'll vividly recall the places where the riding was most demanding, where every day was hard-won and threw up an unexpected challenge, a breathtaking view or a bizarre human encounter.
This book broadly spells out the practicalities of paperwork and cost, the choice of location and machine, as well as preparing your bike for the Long Ride. It's followed by an outline of routes around the world and ends with a dozen tales of two-wheeled adventure from all corners of the globe to give you a taste of what to expect.
Adventure motorcycling is not for everyone; besides the obvious dangers of 'a risky undertaking with an unknown outcome' (as the dictionary defines 'adventure'), the sheer tedium and expense of preparing for a journey into a remote or culturally unfamiliar area will demand a huge commitment.
There'll be times when you curse the very notion of leaving home. But make no mistake; it will be a lifetime's achievement that will remain with you forever.
(1) Part 1: Practicalities (Planning and preparation, Getting information, Documentation, money and information, Money, Choosing a motorcycle, Survey of suitable motorcycles, Bike preparation and maintenance, Engine, Chain and sprockets, Fuel tanks, Tyres, Load carrying, Baggage systems, Equipment checklist, Clothing for the long ride, Shipping overseas, Life on the road, Keeping in touch, Attitudes to security, Crossing borders, Changing money, Women and adventure motorcycling, Off-highway riding, Dirt roads, River crossings, Road riding, Navigation and survival, Rules of survival , Health and water); (2) Part 2: Continental Route Outlines (Africa: Continental route outlines, North Africa and the Sahara, West Africa, East and the Horn of Africa, Central and East Africa. Asia: Overland to India, India and the Enfield experience, India: you're standing in it', Caucasus and Central Asia, South-East Asia, Indochina. Central and South America: Mexico and Central America, South America. Australia: Major Outback tracks, Life on the Outback road, Cape York, The Central Deserts, The Kimberley. North America: South-west USA, North-western Canada; (3) Tales from the Saddle: 12 new motorcycle travel adventures; (4) Appendices: Books on motorcycle travels, Interview with Ted Simon, Contributors, conversion tables and index
Posted March 18, 2008
This book sits next to my toilet and plays a large part in my motorcycling adventure dreams. In fact it helped turn them into reality in no small measure. It shows that planning helps, but through the real life examples, how chance still brings the touch of adventure, even when the plans are set in stone.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.