THE BLOG

Review: GSI Ultralight Java Drip Coffee Maker

Changing over to a lightweight bikepacking setup for South America forced us to shift a fair amount of equipment off the bike. This meant there was no room for our beloved Snow Peak, Titanium French Press (review here). Not that it was heavy, it was just an...

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Using SLOG2 on the Sony RX100iv

This is my first time shooting and grading Sony's slog2 camera profile. All video shot in Tech Info Sony RX100iv - amzn.to/2pJ6itL Shot 1080p at 120fps. Edited and graded in FCX. LUTs - deluts.businesscatalyst.com/deluts-set-2.html Music by Lee Sparey -...

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Touring Report: Cycling Colombia – March 2017

Rested and caffeinated up it was sadly time to leave the town of Jardin. A mammoth climb out of the valley awaited us, topping out at 9400ft, it would be the highest we've climbed so far, and to make matters more interesting it would be on loose gravel with grades...

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The Random Way Down – VLOG 11

Sam and Julie make it to the city of Medellin for a well deserved break. Then it's a 35 mile descent down to the Cacus River before back up to 5000ft to the coffee triangle of Colombia. Here they sample some of the finest coffee in the world. They climb to the highest...

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Touring Report: Cycling Colombia’s Coffee Region

We started off the month in the city of Medellin, we needed a rest after the first assault on the Andes, the first two passes kicked our butts. Sixteen days off in the city seemed like a great idea to us. Julie attended Spanish school for two weeks, I updated the...

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Our Tandem Bikepacking Setup

We knew the Andes were going to be tough going on the tandem, the mountain roads are notorious for being steep dirt roads which touch the heavens. We needed a plan to drastically cut the bikes weight down as we were starting to find the roads in Central America a...

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Touring Report: Cycling in Colombia – JANUARY 2017

We started off the new year with a memorable voyage sin tandem. Meeting up with our friend Hannah in the steamy port town of Portobelo, we decoupled Chewbicca and boarded the sailing boat, Quest, to take us all the way to Colombia, via the San Blas Islands. Sea...

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The Random Way Down – VLOG 010

Starting in the City of David, Julie and Sam cycle toward Panama City to meet up with their friend Cat, on the way they bump into a bunch of cycle tourists also heading to South America. After Panama City it's on to the small port town of Portobelo, here they meet up...

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Photo Essay – August 2016

On the first day on entering Guatemala, Hurricane Earl made landfall over Belize, delivering lashings of rain and wind. We were right in the storms path so we were forced to seek shelter in a hotel for 2 days. The hurricane knocked out the road we had intended to...

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Photo Essay – JULY 2016

The month of July was frustrating to say the least. 6 months on the road without too many major problems or incidents, this month threw everything at us. Plagued with mechanical problems and having to wait for replacement parts, we ended up staying put for the...

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Bicycle Route – Touring the Tabasco Coast, Mexico

The little state of Tabasco is often overlooked by travellers and is one of the least visited states in Mexico. It's easy to see why--the majority of its coastline, jungles, and swamps has been swallowed up by the oil industry. Ciudad de Pemex (City of Pemex) is the...

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Photo Essay: June 2016

As soon as we left the highlands of Oaxaca into the steaming jungles of Veracruz it came apparent it was going to be a tough month along the Gulf of Mexico. Steep hills and the sticky humid air slowed our progress as we banked around the dormant volcano of San Martin...

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Photo Essay: May 2016

The start of May was spent hanging out in Mexico City. We stocked up on some much needed bicycle parts, drank good coffee, took in the incredible acrobatic sights of the Lucha Libre - Mexican Wrestling. On the way back to the city of Pachuca, where Chewbicca was being...

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Photo Essay: April 2016

During the first week of April we were stuck in the gorgeous mountain town of Saltillo, this was because we were waiting for a set of new tires to be delivered from the UK. Twiddling our thumbs, marathon binge watching of Game of Thrones, and eating large amounts of...

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What we’ve broken, sent back, lost, and loved

173 days ago we left Julie's moms house in Alabama. We now find ourselves in the central highlands of Mexico, just shy of the 3000 mile mark. At this point I would say that we have our equipment and clothes figured out for the next 10000 miles or so. We know what...

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Cycling from New York City to Montauk

I remember that punishing day like it was yesterday. I had been in New York for over a year and had explored all five boroughs extensively on my bicycle. I always believe the best way to adjust to a city is by going out and exploring the surrounding, and it's even...

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PHOTO ESSAY: MARCH 2016

It was time to get going after three weeks off the bicycle. We left the city of Chihuahua and headed south on highway 45 through the Chihuahua desert, the days on the bike were hard with temperatures reaching 30°C and long distances between resupplies. Drinking 8...

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Our Surly Long Haul Trucker Build

Edward has been part of the family since 2012. Julie named it after the vampire in the film, Twilight. She says her Long Haul Trucker has a 'goth-like' paint job which sparkles in sunlight. I'm not sure about the name, or yet to see it sparkle, but it's not my bike so...

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Koga Signature World Traveller

Say hello to Battle Cat, my 26" Koga Signature World Traveller, 2011 edition. Named after He-Mans faithful feline companion, he's my workhorse and my go anywhere adventure bicycle. To be frank, when researching touring bikes back in 2010 I had very little knowledge...

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CO-MOTION: EQUATOR TANDEM BICYCLE

A bicycle made for two. Yes, we're 'that' couple now. We bought a touring tandem, happily named 'Chewbicca'. We wanted a our tandem hand-built in the USA, so we saved up our pennies, sold off some bikes and had the Oregon based, Co-Motion build our first tandem frame....

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Photo Essay: February 2016

We made it. We made it to our second country, Mexico. Arriving in Chihuahua City for a well deserved break after 3 days of remote desert riding from the border towns of Presidio/Ojinaga. The 150 miles was our first logistical test as we loaded up the tandem with 12...

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PHOTO ESSAY: JANUARY 2016

Leaving Austin on January 2nd, we soon found ourselves in Texas hill country. The hills were relentless for a week, a consistent up and down of 7% to 17% grades. Still, it made our legs strong, we could feel ourselves getting fitter and faster. Texas had not finished...

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PHOTO ESSAY: DECEMBER 2015

December 3rd 2015 we set off from the tiny town of Hodges, Alabama on our tandem bicycle. We cycled into Mississippi and rolled down the beautiful Natchez Trace Parkway, a historic trail which extends 440 miles from Nashville, Tennessee to the old port town of...

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Packing List for the Cycling the Pan-American Highway

Deciding what to pack for a two year bicycle tour is no easy task. Still, it's one of my favorite things about the planning stage of bicycle touring. This is our full kit list for our two year trip down the Pan-American Highway. CAMPING Tent - Nemo Equipment: Obi 3...

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SAN FRANCISCO, THE TENDERLOIN DISTRICT

A stones throw a way from the tourist friendly area of San Francisco lays the Tenderloin district. A stubborn, dilapidated district of the city. Fueled with gang violence, prostitution, and blatant drug use. Non-profit social service agencies, soup kitchens, homeless...

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Jones Loop H-Bar 710 – 1000 Mile Review

I loved touring with my butterfly trekking handlebars. They were so comfortable and a joy to use on a long distance touring adventure. I had them installed on my Koga World Traveller since 2011, and had no intention of using anything else. However, my old creaking...

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The Dog Butchers of China

It was still early when I navigated the streets of Yangshuo's central market, by the time I arrived at the main entrance there was already a hive of activity. Streams of old women were busy unloading an array of unusual looking fruits and vegetables from waiting...

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Fallout: The Day I Toured Chernobyl

You must not walk on the moss, OK?' A thick Ukrainian accent echoing throughout our rusty soviet made minivan. We all sit in silence nodding our heads furiously. 'I repeat to you, do not step on the moss when we reach reactor four, OK?'. 'What happens if we do?' pipes...

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Centralia, PA – The Real Silent Hill

The front fender of our underpowered rental car catches a raised piece of concrete as we enter the makeshift car park on the edge of highway 61, rural Pennsylvania. Julie and I exit our tiny ash grey Nissan to inspect the damage, luckily everything looks fine so...

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A BICYCLE MINI ADVENTURE: USE YOUR WEEKEND

**WINNER OF THE 2nd BICYCLE TRAVEL CONTEST ** Click here for details Use Your Weekend is a short film from my first bicycle trip to the Catskills Park during the winter of 2013, NY. At 700,000 acres, the park has plenty of opportunities to immerse yourself in the...

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PHOTO ESSAY: WILLIAMSBURG, BROOKLYN

I thought I'd show you around the birthplace of the 'new age hipster', and my new home; Williamsburg, Brooklyn. From these photographs you might think that I live in a bit of a slum, but I really don't, it's an extremely vibrant and colourful place to live. Anyone...

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BICYCLE TOURING THE USA: VLOG #8

Random Sam makes his way up the Mississippi to Minneapolis and then on to Fargo. Music by Grumb http://twitter.com/grumb http://soundcloud.com/grumb Theme tune Lee Sparey...

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BICYCLE TOURING THE USA: VLOG #7

Random Sam makes his way across the American Midwest, through timezones, and has a book club in his tent. 1600 miles cycled so far. New theme tune by Lee Sparey http://www.grooveyard.co.uk/ Music by Grumb http://soundcloud.com/grumb...

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