Colombia – Part 1: Learning

November 2018

πŸš΄πŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸš΄πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ Cartagena – Santa Marta (250km)

Arriving into Colombia was an experience like no other! We built our bikes right beside the baggage carousel whilst we waited for our panniers, loaded them up and wheeled our way directly through customs. We cycled out of the airport and were immediately on small back roads with next to no traffic, worlds away from the 8 lane highways we had left behind in the states. As if that wasn’t enough, we soon turned onto a cycle path right next to the beach. We had made the right decision.

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USA – California

September/October 2018

πŸš΄πŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸš΄πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ California Border – San Francisco (500 Miles)

A small blue sign marked the entrance from Oregon to California, the last state of our Pacific Coast route. Shortly after was a checkpoint. A border control between states? Yes! The import of any fresh produce into California is illegal. For a second we were worried we would be arrested for smuggling kale and other vegetables in our panniers but, as usual, being on bikes didn’t register as a (produce related) threat and the border police waved us by. We were in Cali!

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USA – Washington & Oregon

September 2018

πŸš΄πŸ»β€β™‚οΈπŸš΄πŸ»β€β™€οΈ San Juan – California Border (1300km)

We arrived by boat at what may be the quaintest entry point into the United States – Friday Harbour. A harbour large enough for just one ferry and a small shed, within which the two border guards resided, on the island of San Juan, the largest of the 170 San Juan Islands. Testing the assumption that all small islanders are friendly, even border guards, Lucy ran straight over the border keen to pedal to the campsite before dark. Unfortunately, border guards are still border guards, the smiling face turned to a frown and I was pulled back to the arbitrary line to show my passport.

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Canada – B.C.

August 2018

πŸš΄πŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸš΄πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ Vancouver – Victoria (550km)

On leaving Asia and telling our tales of people’s immense kindness, we were told not to expect anything like that from our next leg through the Americas. People with more give less, said almost everyone on hearing our stories and learning of our future plans. Two and a half weeks in Canada has blown that out of the water entirely!

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Scotland

May 2018

πŸš΄πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ Ardrossan – Inverness (800km)

After bobbing around in Thailand, England and Germany, Lucy and I decided to split up. Just for a couple of weeks, that is. After being in the saddle for so many days, it was time to stretch the legs before we would embark on another epic trip later this summer – but first things first. While Lucy enjoyed the time off, not having to pedal for hours every day, I remembered that northern corner of the United Kingdom I never had the time to properly visit, while I had lived in England. The itch was back and I packed up to visit the rugged coast of West Scotland.

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Myanmar

March 2018

πŸš΄πŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸš΄πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ Myawaddy – Myawaddy (800km)

The decision to cycle in Myanmar was quite spontaneous and so we arrived a bit unprepared in Mae Sot, the Thai-side border town. Luckily we met local resident and cyclist Ton, who gave us, and many passing tourers before us, essential knowledge on how to survive a trip through Myanmar. Things we learned:

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Thailand

February 2018

πŸš΄πŸ»β€β™€οΈπŸš΄πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ Satun – Mae Sot (1300km)

β€œMr. And Ms. Bicycle, over here!”, welcomed the Thai border officer at the small Wang Prachan border crossing leading us straight into the Thale Ban national park. The sun was buzzing as we descended the main road towards Satun. Other than trying to avoid main roads in the upcoming weeks, we had made few plans and so we cycled on bicycle/motorbike lanes until the sunset.

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