So it  began with I saw an ad in “adventure cycling” magazine about the Andes trail. It seemed very interesting so I contacted “bike-dreams” in Holland and signed up.  There is a 65 year age cutoff and I squeak in, turning 65 in October. I could not sign up for the whole trip from Quito to Ushuaia, as the entire trip was already full, but was able to go from Cusco. The entire trip leaves August 1 and  I join them in Cusco September 15 and riding from there. It is said that is a rough place to begin as they are doing 80 miles days and

Bike-dreams Andes Trail route
Bike-dreams Andes Trail route

it is at 12,000 feet elevation. Hence Jeanne is joining me and we leave August 30 for Lima, Peru then on to Cuzco where we have arranged a trek into Machu Picchu and we will stay at altitude for 2 1/2 weeks, hopefully acclimating  so I can ride without embarrassing myself, by going too slow, which is my usual. Jeanne, will return home to continue working.

Bike-dreams highly recommends only a 26 inch bike as it is Third World and parts are hard to come by. I only have a full suspension mountain bike 26 inch which is way more suspension than needed for  the dirt roads we will travel on. Thus I purchased an ibis tranny and build it up from parts on my 29 inch karate monkey. It is a very sweet bike, with a removable rear triangle so easy to transport, i.e. cheap. Delta airlines charges $200 for a bike box.  The frame and such fits inside a duffel bag. I’m still working on the wheel bag, but I think we will make one.


I’ve been riding a fair amount. Almost 2000 miles ridden thus far this year. Did the fireweed bike ride, riding the entire 200 miles, five days out of my wrist cast. I broke my wrist in March walking on icy steps of the ski jumps. Conditioning seems to be going okay, the only problem is getting time to ride enough.


Also trying to fit in all the details of preparation, not only for the trip, but getting home life squared away and getting in shape again. It is exciting getting ready with all the details, knowing that when I leave I just have to forget the details and leave.


So I will try and write an occasional blurb and keep folks informed. Internet will be infrequent perhaps every week or two. So if anyone is interested to follow the progress. Is this site and the other following sites which I will try and keep up with.   this is the  andes trail ride. They have a Facebook page and post pictures.     This is a site which hopefully will list the route as we go along by way of GPS tracker.  I have not fully set up yet but this address should get you to site then find south america trip.

Please let me know improvements needed or comments.  Thanks


2 thoughts on “Beginnings

  1. Wishing you well on this incredible adventure. Take lots of photos, eat lots of quinoa, and drink lots of coca tea. Travel safely!
    Ann and Scott


  2. Do I dare say this will be entertaining for a guy sitting at his desk in St Louis, as you approach a 4,000 foot climb? Almost like saying an execution appeared to go well. I’m not in the middle of the climb, nor am I the one being executed, but I will say I’m with ya the whole way JR. Can’t wait to see South America through your eyes. Keep us posted. All the best! John, Jeanne and Bret


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