My name is Paul Griffiths and I’m currently cycling my way down the Americas. Fresh faced I left Prudhoe Bay at the top of Alaska in August 2013 and put in the first tentative pedal strokes towards Ushuaia at the tip of South America, some 30,000 or so km away…
I wrote the following just before I left and whilst obviously outdated I think it still sums up the ‘why’ quite well:
“It’s been a dream for almost three years and I still can’t quite believe it’s actually going to happen. Writing this I’m currently in the process of curtailing my comfortable 21st century life in Bath, England, leaving a good job and an amazing group of friends & family, and wrestling with the nagging question of ‘What the hell am I doing…?!’ These cheeky doubts rarely take long to silence though; I want to make the most the most of my time on earth and generally have an adventure of a lifetime (while I still have the chance!).”
Now, after an incredible year on the road, I’m in South America where the focus of the trip has gravitated towards travelling light and exploring remote dirt routes along the length of the Andes.
This blog serves as a record of my thoughts, ramblings and photography during the trip. As eluded to above, leaving to start this trip was possibly the hardest part of the whole thing and I’d like to think this blog may inspire others, if only a tiny bit, to get off the couch and follow their own dreams, much as so many have done for me.
How much better to know that we have dared to live our dreams than to live our lives in a lethargy of regret.
– Gilbert E. Kaplan
Hi Paul.my name is Sheila Marshall, I am a cousin of your grandpa Dennis, he emailed me. This is a very courageous thing that you are doing and I hope that things go well for you. I am interested in learning of your adventire. Good luick amd take care. Sheila.
Hi Sheila. Sorry I didn’t find out about Paul’s passing through until this week; had I known earlier I’d have been happy to cover your cost to fly down here, plus Hotel, etc., so you could have met him. I am having lunch with him tomorrow (Friday) Hope you a \re well.
Spent a lovely two hours with Paul today – such a lovely man. Hope he will come back to Vancouver soon.
Good to see your Explosif is still going strong. My Kilauea has probably seen it’s last ride having become too well acquainted with a low bridge whilst on the roof of my car last week! 😦
When you’ve finished laughing at that enjoy Vancouver and have a safe trip onwards.
Hey Mike, Sorry to hear about the Kilauea – disaster! You’re actually not the first person I know who’s introduced their bike to a low bridge. At least you’ve got a a pretty strong case for finishing off the Cotic build now though, surely Mrs S will grant approval..?!
Hi Paul, I am the English man who spoke to you last week when you and I were aboard the ferry going from Mill Bay to Brentwood BC.
I hope all is going well for you are making good progress in your travels? I will drop a line to you again in a couple of weeks before my wife and I leave for our South American Cruise Take care. Kind regards Ken Cadby
Cheers Ken, All good thanks, made it safely to San Francisco, where I’m enjoying some time way from the bike!
Hi Paul, I am so glad to have heard from you in San Francisco.
My wife Jean and I had been there many years ago on our way home from Australia. Stay safe and look forward to your next e mail. Ken and Jean.
Hi Paul, Ken here to find out where you are now and that all is well with you. Jean and I will be off on our trip to Brazil on the 6th Dec and back on the 29th. Would like to hear from before we leave.
Take care and ride safely. Ken and Jean
Hey Paul, Was nice to meet you just north of Guerrero Negro, hope you had a nice time in San Ignacio and hope you stop into Playa BuenaVentura and have some rest and fun on the ocean, I made it up to CA so my trip of 3 weeks was nothing like your ride. Keep pedaling and rocking on !!! Rene Bruce
Hey Rene, thanks for the message! Good luck with the paddle boarding trip, it sounds absolutely epic…
I am doing this starting next year! how are you enjoying the trip so far?
Cool, go for it. It’s been a hell of a trip so far, bloody tough at times but that what makes it rewarding in the long run. The hardest bit for me was leaving, so good luck with that bit!
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Chilly in Vancouver (Winter) Paul, and Chiie down there too, eh? 😉
Like it. Although having now plummeted down to a mere 2300m it’s anything but chilly!
Hola Paul, let me know if I can be of any assistance in Argentina 🙂
PS: Next week I’ll be bikepacking Jujuy!
Thanks Frederico, your project is a brilliant idea, nice work! Good luck in the Puna, I loved it and, like almost everywhere, wish I’d had more time to explore other routes…
I’m updating the Project’s coverage from South America to in developing countries… so maybe we meet on the road somewhere 🙂
Hey Frederico, that would be great. I’m actually in Peru’s cordillera blanca/huaraz until late august, then finally returning to the UK… Take care, Paul
I highly recommend Peru’s Cordilleras Blanca & Huayhuash (hiking & biking guide) by Neil & Harriet Pike 🙂
Another option would be to visit their websites:
You’re right, although I’m pretty familiar with the area myself…I must have spent around 6 months in total here!