“And don’t let the feeble excuse of work keep you back. Remember the Haitian proverb: if work is such a good thing, how come the rich haven’t grabbed it all for themselves?”
Did you know that Argentina has a parallel black market for their peso, a market you really must take advantage of unless you want everything to be astronomically expensive? Nope? Well neither did we until we arrived. We pulled out money from the ATM once we arrived in Argentina only to discover that after a hefty fee it would only allow us to take out 120$ at a time, a dilemma which turned out to be a blessing in disguise since, as it turns out, we lost fifty percent of that transaction (that’s 60$!) as it was. This is because there are two exchange rates in Argentina, the “official one” – which our ATM withdrawal gave us – and the “unofficial one,” the one you need to bring in U.S. dollars to take advantage of.
“On the loose to climb a mountain, on the loose where I am free. On the loose to live my life, the way I think my life should be. For I’ve only got a moment, and a whole world yet to see, And I’ll be searching for tomorrow, from sea to shining in sea.”
The town of Ushuaia.
Ushuaia is known to be the southernmost city in the world with only 1,000km separating it from Antarctica. It’s a place I’ve always dreamed about visiting, well not Ushuaia in particular, but Patagonia in general which is what this amazing mountainous expanse of land at the very bottom of Chile and Argentina is referred to. I couldn’t imagine a place more suited to Kevin and I as we have been told that we will find vast spaces of nothingness, some of the best rivers for fly fishing, and of course, mountains upon mountains to cycle through! Needless to say we are extremely excited and honored to begin our year long expedition throughout the Andes here at the bottom of the world.
“The journey itself is my home.”
Cycling Through Kashmir in the northern Indian Himalayas.
Cycle tourists, you know, the people who cycle around their neighborhood or even around the world fully self-supported with bags attached to their bikes must be crazy athletes. They must have trained for years before embarking on such an adventure, an adventure reserved for a very select (slightly crazy) few. They must be hardcore cyclists who eat, breath, and think about cycling 24/7. And because I’m not like that, it must not be for me. That’s what you are thinking, right? Don’t worry, that’s what I thought too before I actually began, so now I’m here to debunk a few myths surrounding cycle touring in order to prepare you for your very own two-wheeled adventure.
“There are dreamers and there are doers, but what the world needs are dreamers that do.”
Kevin and I have had a stressful week, though as you will see, everything did end up working out as we are currently in Ushuaia – at the very bottom of South America – more than ready to explore the Andes.