It’s nearly the end of the year 2015 and with a melancholic feeling we look back at an adventurous and amazing cycling year from Colombia to Canada. We left the Andes and the South American continent behind us, endured the hot and humid Central American conditions, cycled the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route and reunited with Paul & Jan in Canada. This is what our year looked like.
A year ago we celebrated New Year’s in Colombia and since then we crossed thirteen countries and cycled 13.668 more kilometers. It left an unforgettable impression on us, which we will remember for the rest of our lives.
As I think of Colombia, I think of great coffee! We visited a small coffee plantation and learned about the process from start to finish. We drank so much coffee that day, our eyes almost popped out of heads!
Our first Central American country, but one with many American influences. By crossing the canal we said farewell to South America…
The country where seeing wildlife while cycling is an every day experience. Sloths, monkeys, birds, frogs, snakes, crocodiles, etc.
In Nicaragua we visited active volcanoes, colonial towns and war museums. Things started to get dry and dusty again…
Yes! In Honduras we reach our 20.000 kilometers mark! Time for some mugshots. 😉
Cycling along the coast in El Salvador we can hear the beach calling us. And so we spend a couple of days in touristy Playa El Tunco enjoying sunsets and long swims. On the road we get to meet the only Ajax fan (Dutch football/soccer team) in the country!
We had high hopes for Guatemala. Some people compare it to Peru and Bolivia, the countries we loved so much. But in reality it is nothing like that! Guatemala may be one of the most authentic Central American countries, but the cycling was nothing compared to the high Andes. It may have been steep, but the ride was not as tough and beautiful as it was in Peru and Bolivia. We did have a nice time tough, visiting Tikal and Antigua.
A totally different vibe in this English speaking country. We swim in a turquiose see, encounter huge tarantulas and enjoy the flat roads for a change!
Mexico is a huge country with a lot of variation. We make long sweaty days in the Yucatan, cool down in the blue colored waters of the cenotes and are blown away by Chitzen Itza. Oaxaca is a very beautiful colonial town and we love the smell of pine trees as we climb through the mountains. Baja is busy and the roads are long.
For a while we have been looking forward to riding the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route (GDMBR) from the Mexican border all the way to Canada. Mostly unpaved, crossing passes and enjoying very wide landscapes. The GDMBR exceeded our expectations! We loved the lone unpaved tracks, camping anywhere and the lack of traffic. Smelling the pine trees, touching the snow, the helpful people and the small villages on the way. We fell in love with riding in the US! It’s hard to choose just one picture, so here’s a bonus!
We have reached the final country of our ride across the Americas. Many highlights here; Banff, Icefield Parkway, The Rockies, glaciers etc. etc. It is a beautiful and wild country and we could spend a lifetime exploring Canada. Maybe another canoe trip someday?
Back in Europe! We didn’t want to finish our cycling adventure flying directly to Amsterdam with our bikes boxed, we wanted to end the ride in style and cycled back to the Netherlands from London. Already chilly in December, but still opportunities to camp and the weather wasn’t so bad.
Getting closer to ‘home’ we recognize the countryside. We have cycled through Belgium many times before! The roads are straight, the trees perfectly in line and our destination is at the horizon. Meaning: we’ll never stop cycling!
We hope you enjoyed it and wish you all a cycletastic 2016!