The Trip

  “From Deadhorse down”?  The name of the blog comes from the original idea for this trip, which was to ride my motorcycle from Deadhorse, Alaska…the northernmost town accessible by road in North America….all the way down to the southernmost town in South America….Ushuaia in Tierra del Fuego, Argentina. This trip has been bouncing around in my head for years, but through a combination of life events….now the timing seemed to be as good as it will ever get. So, I resigned from my job and set about putting my life on hold.

The plan for the trip is to not have a plan. Yes there are some places I want to see, people I’m going to visit and roads I know I want to ride. But, I have no schedule to keep, no time frame to be back and no exact route to follow….maybe I’ll be on the road 3 months, maybe a year or more….I certainly don’t have job to go back to! If I like the place where I’m at I’ll stay for a while…if not, I’ll move on. The trip will end when I’m tired of traveling or the trip money runs out….whichever comes first.

 If everything works out, I will leave New Jersey in mid August 2010 and head for Deadhorse, Alaska to take a picture, and then point the bike south. With a little luck, a few months and 16 countries later I should be in Ushuaia, Argentina at the southern tip of South America. Then, unless my KLR650 acquires the ability to swim, the only thing left to do is to head back north through Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil  and into Venezuela (via the Guyana’s) to Caracas where I’ll fly myself and the bike back to Miami…then ride home. Well, that’s the thought anyway…because it’s all subject to change! I was told I should call the blog “No Agenda”, which is a fitting name, as that is the only thing I truly have….no agenda.

TripMap 

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46 Responses to The Trip

  1. kim wilkins says:

    Best wishes Lenny!

  2. Tracy says:

    See you in Guatemala!

  3. Sherri Peguero Fatovic says:

    Happy trails….

  4. lisa says:

    So excited for you!

  5. lisa allen says:

    Enjoy every minute and safe riding!!

  6. Paul Bell says:

    Can’t wait to break (in) your KLR for you. Me you and Lance will go for a little ride.

  7. Deborah says:

    Amazing journey, Lenny! This will be an awesome life opportunity! I do see, however that you are skipping New Mexico entirely…(kinda like Thelma and Louise with Texas)….do consider a minor dip from Kansas to ABQ and back up to Denver and beyond from here!!! We’ll be following your blog! Have fun!

  8. Marika says:

    Helmet! Sunscreen! Adventure! Good luck!!

  9. Nancy says:

    Ah…just checked this out! Fantastic blog. Sorry I missed Friday night but getting from Long Beach, LI to anywhere can be a nightmare 🙂 It’s looks like you had a proper send off…complete with plenty of good booze and good friends!

    Enjoy this time in your life as I know it’s been high on your bucket list 🙂 I look forward to following along on your amazing journey. Be safe but more importantly have fun 😉

  10. Arlene says:

    Looks like you are moving along. Enjoy your time with Kim, to Paul and kids and send our love.
    Be talking to you. Luv ya, Mom

  11. Erik says:

    Nice Job with the site techmeister! Sorry I missed you at John and Sabines! Karl and Leif were in town and Dad had other plans. The Colorado 500 was great…..to bad we couldn’t link up…WE hit some great singletrack on the Timberline Trail, Deadman gulch, Green Lake trail, etc. …It would of been fun seeing you flog the KLR over Engineer Pass at 12,800 ft!…..I blew out my shock on the KTM halfway through day 4, so had to ride the Orange pogo for the last day and a half…..I thinke we covered about 700 miles (85% offroad) over the 5 days. Bob rode with us on day 3….

    Have a great trip!

    Erik, Robyn, Leif and Karl

  12. Nancy says:

    Hi Lenny,

    I have become a regular here on this blog. Very addicted to each day of yours filled with fabulous stories and beautiful photos. Thank you again for bringing a big part of the world to me that I would have otherwise never known about.

    Wishing you many more days of fun travels and stories to tell 🙂

  13. jarla says:

    Bill and I are following your adventure. Best wishes and safe journey.

  14. John Durrua says:

    Been keeping an eye on progress….. Enjoy!

  15. Beth Appel says:

    Neal and I are enjoying following you on your journey. Ride safely and continue to enjoy the journey!!!!

  16. Patricia says:

    Hey Lenny, slow down a bit! you are zooming through the trip! We want some local tales of rendezvous and escapades and tales of loves’ wows of a travelling man!

  17. Hey, Lenny rember one thing… Stay thirsty my friend!!!

  18. Lukasz says:

    Great Trip!! Amazing ! I’ve just found your rr report on advrider.com and had subscribed…:) I’m planning on doing very similar route in 2012. Leaving from NCarolina to Deadhorse and back south to Ushuaia. I will ride my 08 KLR… Good luck! Be safe.

    forman

    • Lenny says:

      Awesome Forman! Well if I can help with anything let me know! I think the 08+ KLR is a great choice, especially south of the border…just check your oil level OFTEN! Also, I put on a 16 tooth counter-shaft sprocket and it made a huge difference on the highway. For Mexico and south I put the 15 tooth back on…I’d highly recommend it…

      Cheers!

      -Lenny

  19. rosemary riviere says:

    Only someone with great self-confidence would attempt a trip of this magnitude…you are an awesome guy and I’m so proud to know you…the blog is fabulous…ready for the travel channel when you return…your blog would be a perfect resume…enjoying every photo and caption…want to hear more in person when you’re back on Castle Drive…God bless you and keep you safe.
    Rosemary

    • Lenny says:

      Thank you for all the kind words Rosemary…I appreciate it! The truth is it’s not that hard…one day at a time…one town at a time…one mile at a time, that’s all there is to it. 🙂
      I’m looking forward to catching up as well when I get back! Take care until then… -Lenny

  20. Bill says:

    Hey just joined your blog .I am planning a trip of my own for next spring and a friend recommended your blog as a ‘beginner’s guide’ for what I can expect etc..So far so good and thanks for all the ‘heads up’ info ,it’s appreciated. Too bad I didn’t know of your trip earlier I could have stopped some stupid mistakes on my part.
    I am considering maybe 1 buddy BUT am probably more apt to go alone, no problems that way , no arguments of where to go and time etc ..What’s your take on that issue at this point of your trek ?
    PS..planning Dead Horse ..Starting Ohio on a 05 Road Glide ?????? I think your course would be too much to expect our of such a pure street bike but how about Alaska?

    • Lenny says:

      Hey Bill! Glad to have you on board! I’m happy to help with your trip however I can. As for traveling solo, that might be a more important decision than what bike to take. Traveling with someone else will drastically alter your trip in many ways…some for the better, and in my opinion some for the worse. For me, I’m glad I’m doing it solo, but clearly that is not for everyone. On the plus side, you have someone to watch your bike at borders, help if you run out of gas or crash, split traveling costs and may bring other skills to the table that you may not have…like language, first aid or mechanical ability. Also, if you take the same bike…you can half the amount of spare parts you have to pack yourself and share them. So…there are some clear advantages. However, you are also somewhat tied at the hip….and like you said, everything is a discussion from where to eat to where to stay or when to stop. Obviously you’ll need to get on with that other person extremely well. As for the bike…take whatever YOU want to take. I’ve read/heard/seen every manor of bike make this trip. Right now on the road south is a guy on a Road King flogging it all over Patagoina, an Italian guy on a 40 year old Vespa and 2 crazy Scandinavians on 1938 Nimbus side car hacks. Can a HD make it to Deadhorse to Tirra del Fuego…yep. Is it what “most” people would consider ideal, no. But your not most people, so take whatever you want! Practically speaking, the HD will somewhat limit your choice of roads and make some roads very difficult or not possible, but it definitely can and has been done. “Most” experienced (and sane!) riders will agree that a dual-sport makes the most sense for a trip like this as it gives you the most flexibility with roads and road conditions. They are generally durable and most are fairly easy to maintain. Personally, I’m a big fan of corroborated 650 thumpers…simple, easy to maintain and fix, with enough grunt for highway speeds and light enough to move around reasonable well off-road….hence my choice to take the KLR. Here is my email if you want to email me directly: apreskibum at yahoo.com

  21. Wendy Weiner says:

    hey Lenny,
    I just got ahold of the blog. Its the bomb. Great scenes from the trip. Keep up the great work.
    Buen Suerte amigo.

    Wendy

  22. Bill says:

    Wanted to say hello before another day slipped by.Glad to see you still on the road, for a moment I thought it was over already.
    I have to say that you gave me alot to think about before I leave on my trip. I have been busy gathering needed mods to my bike so when i start the mechanical preparation I’ll most of what I need to complete the projects in a reasonable amount of time.
    Back to you. I’m going back to catch up on your trip and then return to comment..Great Ride, Stay Safe, warm and dry….Bill

  23. just wanted to drop a line and say hi…my name is paul. I’m flying into ushuaia on march 21st and riding to prudhoe bay and then west to virginia and south to louisiana, doing almost the same trip the other way around, my blog is http://www.ridethedivide.wordpress.com, ADV user name dmh65. we might bump into each other somewhere along the way, i’ll be watching out fo your KLR, i’ll be on a XT660 Z

    • Lenny says:

      Hey Paul!

      Awesome!! That just might work out perfectly timing wise…my arrival in Ushuaia will be around mid-March at this point. If not I’ll definitely be in the neighborhood so to speak, so let’s try and get some miles or at least put a few beer and steaks away in Argentina. I just rode with a guy from Poland on a Tenere….sweet ride for sure bro.

      Safe Travels!

      PS: My ADV name is DirtyBones and I’m cross posting my blog there as well…

      • this where we’ll be march 21st to march 24th, got to get the bikes out of customs (there around twenty ridersin the group i’m with, never met any of them yet)

        if you check out my blog it has the route we are taking, once we hit the US border everyone splits, unless they do so before that and then i will be doing around 18,000 miles on my own…for sure keep in touch…need to set a few days aside to read your whle blog, is it the same here as on ADV?

        Hotel Mustapic
        Piedra Buena 230
        USHUAIA
        Tel: + 54 2901 421718
        Contact: Anna
        http://www.ushuaiamustapic.com

      • Lenny says:

        The RR on ADV and the blog are the same, but as a rider of course you’ll find the commentary more interesting on ADV…

        Holy crap…20 of you! That’s a rolling party for sure, though I can’t see how 20 riders will be able to stay together from TDF to the US…..too many variables, but I guess you never know! Hell, I can barely stay together in my group of 1! LOL

        Hopefully I’LL see you and the gang in March!!

  24. yea i know what you mean, the trip was arranged by Nick Sanders, i’m sure you came across his name a few times when you were doing your research…so a few of these riders have ridden around the world with him before so they will be in there own little groups. I’m thinking of riding groups or 3 or 4 each day…party at night, we’ll see

    i got this email a few days ago about fuel…long and the short of it see agas station fill up at everyone, below is the email i got forwarded

    Hi Everyone

    Just received this email from a friend who does a lot of biking down in South America

    Cheers

    Richard

    Shaun,

    I’m reading a French motorcycle riders blog that seems to be talking about
    strikes, demonstrations and no fuel (petrol) in both southern Argentina and
    Chile

    Is this correct?

    Hi Trevor,

    This is correct. There have been demos in Chile recently due to supplies and the cutting of the tax benefits of fuel (petrol, gas oil etc.) in the south. It caused the blockage of the border between Chile and Arg. in recent weeks. Lot of people from TdF stranded going north in thier cars on holidays.

    However the general liquied fuel matter in the south is a much more long term problem tht we have had to deal with and the global shortages have been showing up here first in these remote places since about 2006. We can no longer pay by card since about 4 years. All must be cash. Many times we are limited to rationing of tank filling. The oil shortage is a serious matter down here.

    What is more, is that if we have an emergency such as an earthquake then all gas and fuel is cut off as we are south of the Magallenes tectonic fault in Ushuaia. In Bs. As. the problem rises it head every holiday season when many people want to use their car to go to the coast so when everyone wants to fill up then the gas oil/petrol runs out!

    When it comes back on line following a few days the price also goes up!

    All best,

    Shaun.

  25. Rob H says:

    Hey Lenny,

    Mick told me about this trip (I’m his lil bro and mountain bike instructor).

    Had to check it out, so cool….now I know why you missed this years VT 50.

    I’ll be tracking your progress. Keep the dirty side down…

    • Lenny says:

      Hey Rob! Great to hear from you! Yeah, I was bummed to miss the VT 50 last year…maybe this year though if I can get my ass in shape in time…maybe even enough to ride it on an SS 29’er like you! Glad you like the blog… 🙂

  26. Wayne says:

    Hi Lenny, been following your trip and was wondering how many miles you have ridden since leaving home? What are your total miles on the KLR?
    You have done a great job keeping your blog up to date.

    • Lenny says:

      Hey Wayne! So far I’ve ridden around 35,000 miles on this trip…the bike has around 39,500 on it and it’s holding up great so far..knock wood!

  27. Fabiano says:

    HI Lenny.
    How are you?
    The boat trip to manaus went ok?
    Good bless you.

    • Lenny says:

      Hey Fabiano…

      The boat trip up the Amazon was great! I’m currently in Manaus and will have more posts on the blog soon….

      Thanks!

      -Lenny

  28. Hi Lenny! Your trip certainly looks like it has turned into something truly epic, cant wait to back track and read it all. Not sure you remember me, Franklin and I ran into you and a couple of friends you were riding with high up on the altiplano close to the Bolivia-Chile border, we were the guys on 125’s. Gotta say, thanks for the black market fuel, came in handy!

    So you know, we made it to Bogota alive but im now looking to Alaska, after reading your blog I started writing one of my own about the trip, I hope it does it justice.

    All the best on your home stretch, Ill be keeping tabs

    Chris

  29. Jeff says:

    Hi Lenny,

    Enjoyed the trip, thanks for sharing~! 🙂

    Jeff

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