For many travelers, it all starts with a road trip. It probably started in high school, piling into whatever beat-up piece of crap you and your friends managed to buy, pooling funds from your various customer service jobs. Those first experiences inspired the traveler in you and now you’re exploring the farthest reaches of the world with your Ultimatesafe. Now it’s to get back to the fundamentals. It’s epic road trip time.
Kerouac’s On the Road
Kerouac’s “On the Road” is every disenchanted youth’s dream. In the book, he crosses the U.S. several times, but no journey is more epic than the one that leaves him in Mexico. For a ride, Kerouac uses a ’37 Ford. Now consider that he made this journey in 1950. Relatively speaking, that means you should drive a 1988 Taurus if you’re going for historical accuracy. Start in New York and and hit Washington, Ashland, Cincinnati, St. Louis, Denver and then into Texas. Cross the border through Laredo and head for Mexico City to complete the trip.
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
Robert Pirsig’s father-son motorcycle journey from Minnesota to California is one of the most revered works of modern American literature. Straddling a 1964 Honda CB77, Pirsig sticks to the small town highways along the U.S. northern border. To recreate such a journey, follow the same basic route and read the book as you go.
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Granted, Huck Finn’s journey down the Mississippi is not exactly a road trip, because they didn’t use a road and they didn’t have a car. But that shouldn’t prevent you from sliding down America’s Nile river in style. Keep to the banks of the muddy Mississippi, grab a corncob pipe, steal aboard a ferry when possible and don’t look back. Your free and the river is your road.
Che Guevara’s journey around South America was one of the defining moments of his life and such, has received an absurd amount of attention. The resulting book—and eventually movie—document a young idealist on the open road, with nothing but a 1939 Norton motorcycle and a best friend. While the trip has several legs, the basic route starts in Buenos Aires and heads south into Patagonia, crossing the Andes near Bariloche Argentina and into Puerto Montt. Heading north, they hit Chile, Peru and Ecuador before entering the southern border of Colombia. Such a journey explores some of the most dramatic scenery in the world, weaving through jungles, icy mountains, deserts, beaches and wide open plains.
Long Way Round
As if being in Star Wars isn’t enough, Ewan McGregor had to go on one of the most amazing motorcycle trips ever embarked on. Starting in Scotland, MacGregor rode with his good friend Charlie Boorman across Europe, Asia, Russia, Canada and North America before arriving back in Scotland. (Planes, trains and automobiles used when absolutely necessary, like when an ocean was in the way).