Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Fast Way Down?

I spent a few minutes on the Long Way Down site today. It's pretty awesome. Sam and I are asked constantly whether we've seen Ewan McGregor and Charlie Boorman's movies about their round-the-world journey and then their ride from the top of Scotland to Cape Town.

I think it was Long Way Round which first inspired me to buy a bike and make a journey through Africa. But I must say that I cannot imagine doing it as Charlie and Ewan did. They ride big bikes they got for free, they carry a tonne of gear, they are followed by two trucks, and they spend way too much time taking pictures. Most importantly, they seem slow. Farmer Bob slow.

It took Ewan and Charley some 58 days to ride from Cairo to Cape Town. They took the same general route as our planned track. And they stopped. A lot. We plan on taking 45 days to make the run. In the words of farmer Bob, we won't have to be fast. Just lucky.


Vanderherberg said...

My wife and I recently did a backpacking trip from Nairobi to Harare and loved it. You guys are in for some beautiful terrain. One place not to miss is the Mushroom Farm, on the way up the hill to Livingstonia in Northern Malawi. It's just a beautiful spot up in the hills ($20 a night) and it's got a fun waterfalls nearby (Manchewe). If you want any other awesome places to stay, just ask. Oh, another would be the Mzuzu Zoo in Mzuzu, Malawi. Another awesome place to stay for a night. And if you're taking tents, you can pitch them in the yard for real cheap.



Peter Loewen said...

Thanks, Michael. That's great advice. Please keep it coming.

Vanderherberg said...

Are you guys taking tents on your bikes or staying in hotels? That would give me some better places to suggest. You can see some stories from our trip at


wordnerd said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
wordnerd said...

The show was cool in terms of seeing some of the scenery that you might encounter....but totally different experience I suppose.

My husband and I did watch the Long Way Round before taking the Trans Sib a couple of years ago...not because we were taking the *same* trip but because we thought it might be cool to see the countryside ahead of time. We were doing it by rail (rather than bike) but I did find the show kinda useful in terms of what we might expect at various places...for example the Gobi parts were RIGHT on the money....we took a 4X4 out for a few days for a mini-trip and encountered MANY of the same problems they did.

I'm SO excited for you're totally going to LIVE a dream of mine (and many, MANY others).

Anonymous said...

Hey Guys,

I know someone who cn hook you up with a bunch of places to stay for free in Zimbabwe if you're interested...lemme know.


Jen Echols

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