…is the story of a bicycle ride around the world. This coming December 10, I leave to cycle around the world…that’s “cycle,” as with a pedal-bike. The ride will start and stop in Palm Springs, CA. It will take up to 14 months and cover a total of 34,000 miles across 28 countries, often following the most primitive tracks available. This is a self-supported ride, meaning I’ll travel without the help of a support team or support vehicle. When finished, I’ll be 71 years old and my knees will probably hurt 🙂
Doing something like this isn’t a new idea for me. I started riding about seven years ago after I retired, and even back then I knew I wanted to ride around the world some day. My original plan involved a circumnavigation in stages, where I would ride six or seven months per year for four consecutive years, starting each year from the point where I left off the previous year. But before I set that plan in motion, I knew I needed to spend some time riding around North America (where I live) to develop a basic touring skill set. That I did.
Two years ago I left on the first stage of this planned world ride, the leg through South and Southeast Asia. Unfortunately, a bus ran over my bike in India and left me bikeless. For the remaining time allotted to the trip, I continued on by public transportation around Asia, meaning lots of tuk-tuks and “local buses” crowded with people and chickens. It was an amazing experience but it didn’t move my stage-riding the world plan forward the notch I was hoping. In fact, it left meback at ground zero.
But starting over again also meant re-thinking the goal, or at least the time frame. Like everyone else, I’m shuffling along this mortal coil towards a pointed conclusion, and this understanding raised a question: At my age, could I depend on having four more years of cycling left in me to make and extended stage ride? Statistically, I would be foolish to conclude that the odds were in my favor.
And so the plan changed. Instead of a four year long stage-ride, I would compress the entire journey into a single year. At that time also, I contacted Guinness World Records (GWR) and petitioned them to open a new record category: “Oldest person to circumnavigate the planet by bicycle” They agreed and approved my application and my attempt (Guinness Reference Number: 180330142339optc)
Since I began my involvement with Guinness, many things have changed, but one thing has remained constant: I’m going all the way around. The plan to make a True Circumnavigation of the globe is alive and well.
This blog is a record of that journey, about planning for it and then about actual entries from the road once I start riding. This site is laid out in a format that many people should be familiar with–a WordPress blog. No bells, no whistles.
You’re welcome to come along for the ride…