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The Travel Episodes

Day One

Rocky Mountain High

Colo­rado is famous for its splendid moun­ta­ins, to which John Denver’s anthem is dedi­ca­ted. Dirk Rohr­bach seeks their unique thrills, biking over some of the highest passes in the Rocky Moun­ta­ins.

I arri­ved only a few days ago in Cortez, to the far south-west of Colo­rado. I’m not far from the Four Corners Monu­ment, where four states meet and tourists love to take photo­graphs of them­sel­ves in whim­si­cal poses. While your hands are on Arizona and Utah soil, your feet can be in New Mexico and Colo­rado. I deci­ded against it. 

My forty-year-old truck had just broken down on the Navajo reser­va­tion. Dynamo issues. Luck­ily I had my phone, and an hour or so later, as the sun was setting, the tow truck drop­ped me off with my friends Judy and Gay in Cortez.

The mesas burned in the warm evening light slicing through the low-hanging clouds. 

I asked the Indian driver whether working in this scenery ever became routine.

‘Never,’ he answe­red succinctly.

I knew the area, having biked across America two years before. Back then I wanted to explore the USA from East to West, New York to Los Ange­les, travel­ling the byways of small-town America, which has always fasci­nated me. It’s the small, rural towns – their tran­quil­lity, the friend­li­ness of their occup­ants and the count­less stories – that keep me coming back.
 
 
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Like Gay’s, for instance, who hit the head­lines in the 1990s with his ‘prai­rie dog vacuum’. He’d repur­po­sed an old sewage truck to suck prai­rie dogs out of their holes, so they could be moved else­where. His services were espe­ci­ally popu­lar with property inves­tors, as the small rodents ruin the land with their tunnel-filled colo­nies, endan­ge­ring the stabi­lity of the houses on it. Since the property crisis, Gay has made ends meet by picking up jobs as a welder and setting up a small gun shop in his cellar, where he sells shot­guns and ammu­ni­tion to hunters.
 
 

Gay Balfour, the inventor of the ‘Prairie Dog Vacuum’, is an impressive man of traditional American virtues: ‘The only difference between success and failure is how long you keep trying!’

Gay Balfour, the inven­tor of the ‘Prai­rie Dog Vacuum’, is an impres­sive man of tradi­tio­nal Ameri­can virtues: ‘The only diffe­rence between success and fail­ure is how long you keep trying!’

Gay with his wife Judy. They got married in high school.

Gay with his wife Judy. They got married in high school.

With this repurposed sewage truck, Gay catches up to 1,000 prairie dogs per job.

With this repur­po­sed sewage truck, Gay catches up to 1,000 prai­rie dogs per job.

The integrated braking device restricts the speed at which they’re sucked in, and cushions ensure a soft landing…

The inte­gra­ted braking device restricts the speed at which they’re sucked in, and cushions ensure a soft landing…

... the adorable little rodent.

… the adorable little rodent.

Over the next few days, as his neigh­bour Bob takes a look at my truck, I’m going to explore the moun­ta­ins, biking the San Juan Skyway.

The over-four-hundred-kilometre round trip winds through spec­ta­cu­lar gorges, over some of the highest passes in the Rocky Moun­ta­ins, and past some histo­ric nineteenth-century mining towns. In those days, the earth’s buried trea­su­res lured many a hope­ful pros­pec­tor to try their luck. Gold, silver, mine­rals. The houses’ resto­red faca­des are a striking remin­der of the towns’ glory days. Durango, Silver­ton, Ouray, Tell­ur­ide – the names are evoca­tive of the great Silver Rush.

Though this time my trip will only last a few days, my bike is heavily laden with supplies: a tent, slee­ping bag, ground mat, change of clothes, toile­tries, repair kit and food. I leave the camping stove behind, as I’d rather stock up in mom-and-pop stores along the way, and maybe get to talking as I do so.

An hour after I set off, I reach Dolo­res – and my heart leaps. The semi-desert land­s­cape drops away preci­pi­tously, and I cycle through a tran­quil valley that’s only just shaking off the Alpine-like winter. The poplars and aspens along the Dolo­res River are begin­ning to bud, but a few last vesti­ges of snow still linger in shaded corners.
 
 
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The sun is alre­ady quite warm in an almost cloud­less sky. Only a cool tail­wind reminds me that the usual hot, dry summer is still some way off. In the Food Market there is freshly brewed orga­nic coffee, home-baked bread and a small but well-organised selec­tion on the shel­ves, which leaves almost nothing to be desi­red. ‘You find ever­y­thing you’re looking for?’ asks the cashier. Unlike at many bran­ches of the giant super­mar­ket chains, it doesn’t sound like the usual mecha­ni­cal spiel. I buy two bana­nas, a baked ‘Cajun-style’ catfish fillet, home­made potato salad, a raspberry-shortbread bar, a brow­nie and a small loaf of banana-nut bread for break­fast.

Coun­try music from the local radio station in my ears, I cycle on. Drivers greet me by lifting a hand briefly from the wheel. Round these parts people own Subarus with four-wheel-drive and bike racks on the roof. I’m over­ta­ken later by two motor­cy­c­lists; the man in front raises his fist to the sky in a gesture of respect. The friend­li­ness and cons­i­de­ra­tion of the other road users is striking. I’m enjoy­ing the jour­ney.

Cycling might well be the best way to travel.

 
 
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Moving at a rela­xed pace under your own steam allows you to expe­ri­ence the land­s­cape much more inten­sely. You have suffi­ci­ent time and oppor­tu­nity to appre­ciate roadside details. Again and again I pass camp­grounds and restau­rants whose season only begins towards the end of May or even early June. In Rico, a small town of two hund­red with a row of histo­ri­cal buil­dings dating from the previous century’s Silver Rush, I stock up on drinks: water and coke. A few miles furt­her on I find my first place to camp – five metres down from the road, directly by the stream. 

There’s a reason­ably flat surface, enough at least to pitch my tent. The sun has long since disap­peared behind the moun­ta­ins, and an icy cold­ness descends across the valley. I bolt my evening meal and hunker down in my slee­ping bag.

 

* * *

 

Day Two

The Kitzbühel of the wild west

Frost on the tent, thin ice on the pudd­les by the stream and cold feet in the night: and no wonder, at 2,700-metre alti­tu­des at this time of year. From Rico to Tell­ur­ide: 70 kilo­metres and a 650-metre eleva­tion gain.

I’ve slept badly – my feet are free­zing, despite nume­rous layers and thick socks. The sun is alre­ady warming the moun­tain slopes, but my shaded camp remains frosty. My hands numb, I nibble unenthu­si­asti­cally at the banana bread. 

I could really do with a hot coffee right now. But I left the camping stove at home – I wanted to stock up on fresh things regu­larly, espe­ci­ally since there are suppo­sed to be plenty of shops along the way. I set off around nine. By now the sun has floo­ded the whole valley, inclu­ding the high­ways, which lead me steadily uphill. Unlike in the Appa­la­chi­ans in the eastern USA or the Alps back home with their brutal incli­nes and hair­pin bends, in the Rocky Moun­ta­ins you climb steadily, follo­wing the road for hours before hurt­ling down into a ravine on the other side. 

Some­ti­mes you can be moving upwards at no more than six or seven kilo­metres per hour, pedal­ling out of the saddle.

Only to fly down the other side at sixty or seventy. 

Luck­ily, the thin air doesn’t seem to affect me much – at least, I’m not gasping for breath. Kilo­metre after kilo­metre I cycle uphill, again under perfect condi­ti­ons, even if by now it’s markedly cooler than yester­day. Protec­ted by lycra arm- and leg-warmers and a yellow reflec­tive jacket, I finally reach the Lizard Head Pass, which is easily 10,000 feet high – more than 3,100 metres. 

In my enthu­si­asm I comple­tely forget to take a photo­graph of Lizard Head, a promi­nent nearby peak whose shape, said to look like the head of a lizard, gives the pass its name.

After a brief pause to catch my breath, I begin my first descent. The weather here seems less friendly than on the other side of the pass. Clouds gather, blocking the sun and looking as if they might pour with rain. So I bike onwards in full cycling gear, even grab­bing two jackets. 

It’s only when I reach Tell­ur­ide, at the low end of a long dead-end road, that the tempe­ra­ture rises again and the sun re-emerges. Here, too, many shops on the usually bust­ling main street have closed for the off-season.

Origi­nally a mining sett­le­ment, Telluride’s name has posses­sed a certain glamour since the nine­teenth century. The legen­dary gangs­ter Butch Cassidy robbed the local bank as early as 1889. Two years later, the rail­way came to town, leading to the first boom. The mines in the surroun­ding moun­ta­ins brought jobs and prospe­rity to the small town and its inha­bi­tants well into the 1970s. As the resour­ces dwind­led, enter­pri­sing inves­tors built the first ski-lifts. At the same time, hippies began moving into the area, displa­cing the miners, who took their fami­lies and sought work else­where in the region. 

The new occup­ants were attrac­ted above all by outdoor activi­ties – clim­bing, hang-gliding, cano­eing – as well as the promise of a more rela­xed life­style in a valley far away from the hustle and bustle. The now legen­dary film and music festi­val was esta­blished, along­side one of the best ski resorts in North America. So was its repu­ta­tion as a trading post for drug smugg­lers and a haven for their moneyed bosses. Glenn Frey even immor­ta­li­sed it in a line from his 1980s hit ‘Smuggler’s Blues’. Evidently this Wild West image in no way detrac­ted from Telluride’s renown; rather, it augmen­ted its attrac­tiveness. The first cele­bri­ties began to arrive: actors, direc­tors, TV stars. Today the town is still a mecca for outdoors activi­ties in summer, and in winter a play­ground for ski fans from across the land.

Then, a Kitz­bü­hel breeze sweeps down the histo­ric main street. 

 
 
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I buy a coffee from the only shop curr­ently open – one for the locals – and am comple­tely over­whel­med. It’s high-noon rush hour: ever­y­where there are mothers in yoga outfits having noisy luncht­ime chats as their small child­ren, barely out of their prams, run wild across the floor­boards.

I phone Joanna, at whose house I’ve arran­ged to stay over­night via Warm­show­ers.

Warm­show­ers connects cyclists across the globe, deve­lo­ping into a thri­ving commu­nity in a few short years. It costs nothing to set up a profile on their website, warmshowers.org, where you can find like-minded people to stay with, most of whom offer room and board as well as a warm shower. All free of charge, as today’s host could be tomorrow’s cyclist, seeking friendship and hospi­ta­lity on his or her trip. 

Joanna lives with her husband Daniel and two daugh­ters a few miles outside of Tell­ur­ide. I’m simply suppo­sed to follow the high­way down­hill.

Before I go I purchase a few extra supplies for the next leg of the jour­ney in the tiny super­mar­ket, perusing the brochu­res in the visitor’s centre over a pain au choco­lat. I learn about the redis­co­ve­red Ski-Eldorado of Colo­rado – the trendy areas in the coas­tal moun­ta­ins to the west and in Alaska have been repeatedly lacking in snow, while the Rockies have had record snow­falls. I read about John Denver, hims­elf a passio­nate skier, who despite being born in New Mexico felt such a connec­tion to Colo­rado that he borro­wed his stage name from its capi­tal city and moved to Aspen.
 
 

 
 
In ‘Rocky Moun­tain High’, which the state of Colo­rado later decla­red an offi­cial state song, he sang about someone who leaves his old life behind him and moves to the moun­ta­ins to find hims­elf. The title long ago became a buzzword for oppon­ents and advo­ca­tes of the lega­li­sa­tion of canna­bis for recrea­tio­nal use – in other words, for the consump­tion of mari­juana for non-medical reasons. In 2012, Colo­rado voted for lega­li­sa­tion with a slim majo­rity of 55%. It was a world first.

Over­all, I get the impres­sion that people here enjoy taking on the role of pioneer. Colo­rado seems to attract more than its fair share of progres­sive lateral- and forward-thinkers. The houses here are not sterile, mass-produced boxes, but crea­tive, self-built construc­tions of adobe, wood and stone. Even out here in the coun­try­side there are orga­nic shops, where locally grown fruit and vege­ta­bles are for sale.
 
 
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And nowhere else are the people so active. Moun­tain biking, rafting, hiking – there are cycle paths ever­y­where. This is the life, I think, as I bike towards the valley in the by now twenty-degree heat, the trees and bushes around me a lush and vibrant green.

 

* * *

Day Three

Siesta in the Sierra

On drea­m­ily peace­ful nights, libe­ral free spirits and Ameri­can hospi­ta­lity. From Tell­ur­ide to Ouray: 50 kilo­metres and a 650-metre eleva­tion gain.

I slept soundly on Daniel’s ‚Siesta Rest‘. Better than on any luxury mattress with feathers or latex. 

The idea for the comfor­ta­ble slee­ping mat came to Daniel some time ago, after many nights spent on extre­mely thin, spar­tan ground mats. ‚Why should someone at the advan­ced age of forty be depri­ved of a good night’s sleep when going camping?‘ he thought, and deve­lo­ped an enti­rely new concept. Instead of air, Daniel incorpo­ra­ted a substan­tial layer of memory foam, a premium-quality subs­tance that adapts to the indi­vi­dual contours of the sleeper’s body. Addi­tio­nal layers of firmer foam ensure stabi­lity.

Furnis­hed with a top layer of fleece and packed in a robust, washa­ble shell made of a synthetic woven fabric, the Siesta Rest is neit­her light­weight nor a space-saver, but there’s nothing more comfor­ta­ble for long trips via canoe, car or motor­bike. So when will Daniel start mass-producing his mat? ‚At the moment I’m looking for the best offer for supply and produc­tion. Origi­nally my idea was to have ever­y­thing produ­ced in the US,‘ he tells me one morning over break­fast. But the prices weren’t compe­ti­tive, so he’ll probably have to fall back on mate­ri­als from Asia, and have at least part of the produc­tion process done in Mexico. 

If it all works out, by the summer we’ll be able to deli­ver the first models!‘ he says, soun­ding plea­sed.

But it’s not all about busi­ness for him. The forty-four year old is origi­nally from Cali­for­nia, where he led guided back­packing tours and met his future wife Joanna. He studied art in Taos, New Mexico, even­tually ending up in Tell­ur­ide. ‚I get claus­tro­pho­bic pretty quickly whene­ver I’m anywhere with more people than trees,‘ he jokes. ‚Here there’s plenty of space, fantastic ways to spend your free time and lots of cultu­ral stuff on offer.‘ 

As well as deve­lo­ping the ground-breaking slee­ping mat, Daniel is curr­ently working on a degree in pain­ting. He sees deep paral­lels between the two. ‚It’s about helping some­body to enjoy a wonder­ful expe­ri­ence at that parti­cu­lar moment, whether it’s through a good night’s sleep or through art.‘ I want to know why he and Joanna signed up as hosts on Warm­show­ers, even though they them­sel­ves have never used the service. ‚It’s great when travel­lers show up with their stories. It brings a bit of exci­te­ment to our ever­y­day lives!‘ 

I doubt those lives are dull, I think to myself. With their two daugh­ters, Ayla (eleven) and Shay Ann (seven), and their dog Breezy, they’re about to set off on their first trip – in the recently reno­va­ted camper van that has been my cosy refuge for the night. Before we say good­bye, we swap addres­ses. I defi­ni­tely want to be on the pre-order list for the first Siesta Rest mats. 

The sun cares­ses me as I jour­ney on, and a gentle tail­wind.

The twenty-kilometre climb up to the Dallas Divide, my next pass, are quite beara­ble. At the top I bump into Teddy, who emer­ges on her racing bike from the other side almost at the same time as me. We chat briefly. She asks about my route, and where I’m stay­ing tonight, spon­ta­neously invi­ting me to stay with her. Ameri­can hospi­ta­lity, alre­ady over­powering, is yet more so among cyclists. I think it over during the rapid descent towards Ridgway. 

Teddy’s house is just outside Ouray, and I actually wanted to get a bit furt­her today – at least over the Red Moun­tain Pass to Silver­ton. But the weather report fore­casts storms and rain, and the first clouds are alre­ady loom­ing over the snow-capped peaks. So I end this leg of the jour­ney after just fifty kilo­metres, and accept Teddy’s invi­ta­tion.
 
 
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Her name is actually Mary Edna, but no-one has called her that since child­hood. Four deca­des ago Teddy came to Tell­ur­ide, got married, and after her divorce she rede­co­ra­ted her spacious home accord­ing to her own taste. I’m impres­sed by the uncon­ven­tio­nal combi­na­tion of styles. Euro­pean, Asian and Ameri­can elements blend to create a unique fusion that very evidently reflects Teddy’s multi-layered perso­na­lity. Over baked chicken fillets, vege­ta­bles and quinoa we chat anima­tedly about Ameri­can igno­rance, the divi­si­ons in the coun­try and about Europe – in the end, perhaps a freer place. 

This is also typi­cal of Colo­rado. Foreig­ners who rage about conser­va­tive funda­men­ta­lists and the supe­rio­rity complex of Ameri­can poli­tics will find plenty of libe­ral allies here in the moun­ta­ins, people who have analy­sed key issues like immi­gra­tion, gun legis­la­tion and the war on terror in much more detail, and who form America’s ratio­nal consci­ence. It’s balsam for the stri­cken Euro­pean soul – for those who lost faith in the Ameri­can Dream in the face of mili­ta­rism, evan­ge­li­cal values and bigo­ted prudery, and yet who, deep down, want to live the dream them­sel­ves.

 

* * *

Day Four

The Queen Stage

Three passes, an eleva­tion gain of more than 2,000 metres and almost 100 kilo­metres stretch before me. There’s a touch of the Tour de France’s Alpe d’Huez about it. In my case, I’m taking it at a snail’s pace.

The Million Dollar High­way winds upwards into the sky in a nearly endless series of hair­pin bends. The origin of the road’s nick­name – offi­ci­ally it’s called Federal High­way 550 – is much deba­ted. Some people claim it’s down to the enor­mous cost of buil­ding it. Others say the rubble used during construc­tion, taken from the surroun­ding gold and silver mines, was full of valu­able mine­rals.
 
 
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Teddy, who after break­fast was going to accom­pany me as far as the Red Moun­tain Pass, stops after a few kilo­metres when brutal down drau­ghts nearly sweep her off the two-lane road and into the abyss. 

There are signs ever­y­where warning of falling rocks, and it’s no route for people with vertigo. 

There are guard­rails only at a very few, espe­ci­ally hazar­dous places. The weather has turned, the sun veiled by heavy clouds. 

Furt­her up the moun­tain I’m surpri­sed by a shower of snow and sleet, the tempe­ra­ture falling almost to zero. After twenty extre­mely tough kilo­metres, howe­ver, I reach the Red Moun­tain Pass – at well above 3,000 metres it’s the highest pass of my trip.

I pull on extra layers of clot­hing, even fetching a down vest from my back­pack. But the sixteen-kilometre down­ward jour­ney, which I thought would be the easy bit, turns out to be the most physi­cally deman­ding part of the trip. It’s so cold that soon I’m unable to feel my hands; I stop and wind a T-shirt and scarf around them. It helps a bit, but the wind lowers my body tempe­ra­ture so much that after a while my teeth are chat­te­ring uncon­troll­ably, like a skele­ton in a ghost train. Is this the first sign of hypo­ther­mia? I keep stop­ping to warm myself up, without much success. In the end I just go as fast as I can, trying to reach Silver­ton as soon as possi­ble.

In the village store I try to warm myself up with thin coffee. I’m still shivering an hour later, but the rain clouds have retrea­ted and the sun tries to make it up to me for the rest of the day. After a brief detour to the end of the main street I feel the urge to travel onwards – though I now realise I won’t make it to Durango today. There are two more passes waiting for me on my route, both of them well over 3,000 metres. There’s just enough time for a few snapshots of histo­ri­cal Silver­ton, which like Tell­ur­ide morphed from a mining town into a tourist spot and posses­ses a rather rough charm that is down to more than just its cons­i­derable alti­tude: 2,800 metres above sea level.

Day Five

The Home Stretch

It’s a glorious morning. I’m surroun­ded by red cliffs, and in the distance re-emerge the fami­liar mesas. From Hermosa to Cortez: 110 kilo­metres and an eleva­tion gain of 1,000 metres.

Last night I found a place to pitch my tent in the dark. At the largely deser­ted Durango Moun­tain Ski Resort one of the remai­ning occup­ants had refil­led my empty water bottle and told me about a gas station a few miles down the road where I’d be able to pick up a few snacks. It was long closed by the time I arri­ved. Instead, I crossed the road to a conver­ted school­house – now a bar – and orde­red a meat­ball sub with gril­led cheese and fries. 

After swea­ting through all those passes, I was craving salt. The dim room was domi­na­ted by an enor­mous pool table in the middle, where last season’s guides and ski inst­ruc­tors passed the time. At least, that’s how I inter­pre­ted the group of bear­ded young men in canvas trou­sers and ball caps. The bar was very busy, with TVs all over the place, announ­cing the boxing match of the century. When I clim­bed back on my bike forty-five minu­tes later, darkness had fallen. A few miles down towards the valley, I follo­wed a sign and soon disco­ve­red a small hill between two riding paths, just big enough for my tent. Good night…

After a few choco­late chip cookies for break­fast, which I bought in Silver­ton yester­day, I cycle onwards into the valley. To the left of the road I soon see a bright, oddly colou­red rocky pyra­mid, water appar­ently flowing out of the point. A sign explains that it’s the Pinker­ton Hot Springs, named after James Harvey Pinker­ton, who moved here in the nine­teenth century and built a hotel with a pool and holi­day resort around the hot springs. Appar­ently Mari­lyn Monroe took the waters here, many years later. The stone pyra­mid was construc­ted by the local autho­ri­ties about fifteen years ago, a pipe leading the thirty-eight-degree water through it to the surface. 

As I take a photo­graph, I can hear the whist­ling of the histo­ric narrow-gauge rail­way, which has shut­tled between Durango and Silver­ton without inter­rup­tion since 1882. It was origi­nally built to trans­port silver and gold.

Today it’s one of the biggest tourist attrac­tions in the region. Sadly, all I can make out is the steam engine’s dark grey plume of smoke between the close-packed pine trees on the oppo­site hill.

I was hoping to meet up with Daniel in Durango. Not the one with the slee­ping mat, although that’s his name too. Daniel and his wife Diana were my first Warm­shower hosts on my long cycling trip two years ago. Daniel is curr­ently mountain-biking, he explains to me on his mobile. So I just grab a few snacks in town and head west­wards, uphill. The land­s­cape seems wider and more desert-like once more: the vege­ta­tion is sparse; rocks and cliffs domi­nate the edge of High­way 160. Somehow I don’t feel like I’m making progress. 

Then, just outside of Mancos, I get my first flat in my ‚flat-less‘ tyres. I can’t see a hole, and change the tube as fast as I can, as there are stormclouds brewing above me. A final ascent follows the swift descent into Mancos, and as the first heavy rain­drops begin to fall I escape into the Zuma Market, an orga­nic store with a small cafe. Dustin, from Connec­ti­cut, bought it just six months ago. He was drawn to Colo­rado by the moun­ta­ins, he tells me, but in a few years he wants to go on a cycling tour of Pata­go­nia. The gear is alre­ady in the garage. We talk shop. After three ameri­ca­nos with milk I move on, as do the clouds, which are no longer threa­ten­ing. I can see farm­land; I must be nearing Cortez. I pass the turning for the Mesa Verde Natio­nal Park, and pedal with rene­wed energy.

I’m on the home stretch.

 
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Two hours later I’m sitting at the Dairy Queen in Cortez, trea­ting myself to a Bliz­zard – a calo­rie bomb made of ice-cream, cookie dough, pecan nuts, choco­late sauce and butters­cotch – to round off my trip. After all, I don’t want to get hypo­gly­cae­mia.

Five days, 400 kilo­metres, a 5,300 eleva­tion gain. I would be ready and willing to travel on, but I’m looking forward to a hot shower at Judy and Gay’s. And to the next trip.

 
 
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Read more

Road to Mandalay

Burma

Road to Mandalay

A ship from the British Empire. A captain singing karaoke. Spirits at dawn. Martin Schacht and Ken Schlucht­mann travel down the Ayey­ar­waddy from north to south towards Manda­lay.

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100 miles on the tracks of the Calusa

The Great Calusa Blueway, Fort Myers, Florida

100 miles on the tracks of the Calusa

The Great Calusa Blue­way is an almost 200-mile-long paddling trail off the Gulf coast near Fort Myers. Here Dirk Rohr­bach follows the tracks of the Calusa Indi­ans who were once sett­ling in this region in Florida’s Southwest. 

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An Episode by

Highway Junkie

Dirk Rohrbach

Dirk Rohr­bach is a travel­ler, photo­gra­pher, jour­na­list and doctor. His live travel repor­tage is award-winning, and he also blogs stories of his expe­ri­en­ces around the world, writes books and campai­gns to preserve the languages of indi­ge­nous Ameri­can peop­les. Over the last 25 years he has travel­led inten­si­vely in North America, and is curr­ently navi­ga­ting the Yukon in a canoe. Dirk shut­tles between America and Europe, without resi­ding perman­ently in either.

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  • Ina on 2. Juli 2015

    Eine wirk­lich coole Geschichte! Ich träume auch davon, einmal mit dem Rad so eine Tour zu unter­neh­men … (Viel­leicht eines Tages mal ;-)

    Reply
    • Dirk on 17. Juli 2015

      …nicht träu­men, Ina, machen ;-) Viel Spass ! Dirk.

  • Lydia on 2. Juli 2015

    Wahn­sinn! Da will man am liebs­ten selbst losra­deln. :) Zwar wäre ich dann nach den ersten 30 km (ohne Stei­gung wohl­ge­merkt) schon k.o., aber trotz­dem! Sind solche Radtou­ren für dich eigent­lich immer noch etwas beson­de­res?

    Reply
    • Dirk on 17. Juli 2015

      Liebe Lydia,

      sorry fuer die spaete Antwort, komme gerade erst zurück vom Bering­meer, wieder mit dem Birken­d­rin­den­kanu. Und ja, jede Reise bleibt beson­ders für mich, und ich freue mich schon darauf, im Herbst die neuen ‚Freunde‘ in Colo­rado wieder zu besu­chen. Dann aller­dings viel­leicht mit dem Truck ;-) Dirk.

  • Sabrina on 22. August 2019

    Einfach genial, die Rockies!! Schö­ner Weg, die Land­schaft und Orte zu erkun­den. Es bewegt sich — schnel­ler als zu Fuss, aber lang­sa­mer als mit dem Auto. War in der Schweiz mal paar Tage am Stück mit dem Fahr­rad unter­wegs, aller­dings ohne Zelt und Schlaf­sack. Da sieht man echt viel und wird echt immer wieder über­rascht von Neuem. Schön, diese Art der Fort­be­we­gung. Das Fahr­rad wird zum Part­ner. Frei­heit auf 2 Rädern :-).

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