Filling the Void Inbetween Trips

When not on a trip I often find myself like now wondering, thinking; and wishing I was on one. I spend hours thinking of “where to go next?” and what I’ll do. I research places around the world looking for somewhere or something which really makes me think “that is the place I want to explore”.

Personally I find it really interesting trawling through blogs, looking at pictures formulating possible routes in my head. However knowing these will eventually turn out as nothing more than pipe dreams, I persevere, until one sticks in my mind. A place. A route. An idea. Whatever it maybe, it has planted a seed from which I will be inspired to start the planning of my next adventure.

Inspiration is key. I find it’s what motivates me. I have found inspiration from many sources, there are many adventure, especially adventure cycle touring, books out there. Before my first trip I read Mark Beaumont’s ‘The Man Who Cycled the World’ an absolutely thrilling read which really showed what life was like for him on a bike for so long. It was a very enjoyable book and one I certainly recommend as it provides insight into doing big solo expeditions and the mindset needed, but more importantly what you gain and the enjoyment of a trip like that. His other book ‘The Man Who Cycled the Americas’ is still a superb read, although not as good as his first book, it is a better TV show.

YouTube, what a wonderful invention, access to millions of videos for free. More importantly access to adventure documentaries. In the evenings I find myself discovering new ones almost weekly –they are very addictive. Although I must definitely recommend Mark Beaumont’s -named after his books.

For me watching Mark’s documentaries on TV at home introduced me to the idea that with a bike you can go anywhere. As long as you have enough determination to see it through anyone can do it. He presents his view on “seeing the world at the pace of a bicycle” and from my experience I couldn’t agree more. You gain something special from doing an adventure like Mark something which cannot truly be described almost like a sixth sense of appreciation for what we have and take for granted in our everyday lives.

Rob Lilwall also produced a series detailing his ‘Cycling Home from Siberia’ I found these very good as well. I find myself immersed in the world of adventure watching these self-shot documentaries. I think it is this quality which is what makes them so powerfully motivating, this is a good quality because I think the more people who go out and do this type of trip the better! Seeing the world on a bicycle, you just can’t beat it.

Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman however thought you could, riding their motorbikes around and down the world. Although on a much larger budget I find it still provides true inspiration as they are thousands of miles away from a Hollywood set and still have tough times. ‘Long Way Round’ and ‘Long Way Down’ are both rugged down to earth documentaries which leave you wishing you were impulsive and could leave your armchair and go out and experience the world. What’s the best is that all of these and more are available on YouTube, so get watching and get inspired!

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