bicycling bests:  the top 4's from 4 years on the road


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Best desert cycling

  1. Namibia.  Breathtakingly beautiful sunsets and that awesome feeling of being alone on the planet.
  2. Egypt“s White Desert.  The Amazing wind sculpted formations look just like ice sculptures.  
  3. Western Sahara.  Our first desert experience so naturally it holds a special spot in the memory bank.
  4. American Southwest.  The wacky trees of Joshua Tree in California's high desert make for some pretty special cycling.
Egypt's White DesertOur first taste of the desert.

Best mountain cycling

  1. Leshoto.  Rough and rugged riding alongside herd boys of the high mountains and kids on donkeys.  And the mother of all passes:  Sani Pass leading into South Africa.
  2. Atlas Mountains, Morocco.   Barren with a stark beauty, the Atlas make for great cycling.   But take our advice, August is not the ideal time for bicycle touring in Morocco.  
  3. Ethiopian Highlands.  Stunning views but watch out for the stone-throwing brats.
  4. The Rockies.  Alright, you don't expect someone who grew up in Montana to be entirely impartial.

    Atlas Moutains-Tizi-n-Test PassCamping in the Colorado Rockies

Biggest challenges

  1. Central Africa.  Hands down this was the toughest region for us-- places like the Congos, Gabon and Equatorial Guinea aren't for the faint hearted.  If you can deal with the cruddy roads, crappy food and corrupt officials, you can survive most anywhere.
  2. Ethiopia.  Killer hills and stone-throwing kids are a lethal combination.
  3. Guatemalan Highlands.  Killer hills minus the stone throwing kids.
  4. Namibia.  Unless you're used to exerting yourself under a scorching sun and enduring soaring temperatures well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, you'll find cycling Namibia a challenge.
Longest cycling days
  1. 215 kilometers > Noukachott to Rosso Mauritania > day 108--Just wanted to get out of the desert and on to greener pastures.  Rosso is not the nicest place to arrive in a state of exhaustion.  Got Eric to spring for the most expensive hotel room (equivalent of around $30) of the entire trip.
  2. 199 kilometers >  St. Louis to Thies, Senegal  > day 116--What can I say?  Motivation was high at the beginning of of the cycling expedition and we didn't mind churning out the kilometers.  
  3. 198 kilometers >  Laayoune to Boujdour, Western Sahara  >  day 93--Thanks to an incredible tailwind, this wasn't a particularly tough day.
  4. 190 kilometers>  Sheridan Lake to Boone Colorado, USA >  day 1150-- Just wanted to prove to ourselves that we still had it in us to put in an epic day in the saddle.


Crappy roads in Central Africa.

Some shade, please! The heats a killer in Namibia.

What are your bests and worsts ? 

Feel free to share in the comments section below.

If you enjoyed this post, give these posts and videos a try:

Bicycle Touring Video
Cycling South America: the worst road in Brazil

Bicycle Touring Resources
Top Myths about Cycling Africa

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