“Let’s buy a tandem and ride down the Pan-American Highway” She Joked.
I’m 36 years old, over half way through my life. At this point I should be following the well trodden path to adulthood. You know how it’s meant to go. The house, the cars, the big TV. I don’t know what I want to be, but I know it doesn’t involves spreadsheets, getting excited about the latest cellphone, or how many followers I have on Instagram. My life is about living for the moment, the stories I share, and enjoying the little things in life which make living oh so worth it.
People often ask me if I’m scared when I leave for an adventure, heck no, I’m far more frightened about sitting at a desk for the next 30 years wondering ‘what if’. What if I bought that bicycle? What if I cycled that bicycle to South America? What if I never met my wife, Julie?
October 2015, is when our ‘what if’ moment became reality. In the last 3 years we’d saved up a bunch of cash, bought a tandem bicycle and are packing up our life in New York.
The idea is simple, we’re driving to Julie’s mom’s house in rural Alabama. Then we’ll be setting off on a tandem bicycle for a good thousand miles or so until we reach Mexico. From there we’ll pedal our way down through Central and South America. We haven’t planned a route as such, there’s no time limit, and if we feel like stopping for a month somewhere, we will. This adventure isn’t a race, its not to prove anything other than our curiosity for the Americas.
Sam is an eccentric British idiot. He has a lust for adventure, campfires, traveling by bicycles, and drinking good coffee. He constantly daydreams about the faraway lands, and if he’s not outside on his bicycle, he spends hours getting lost on Google Map.
Julie is the rear engine of the tandem. She’s also our translator because of her skill of picking up foreign languages extremely easily. When she’s not hanging off the back of the tandem, Julie is a talented portrait photographer.
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...
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...
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...
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...
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...
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...