My bike ride is over – for now!

So many times during my journey I would be lying in my tent at night looking at a map of the world on my phone and dreamily tracing the route I was hoping to take the next day, the next week…month…year. In the early days of the adventure, the idea of actually riding the route I traced was unimaginable. But then, day by day, the length of the line I had ridden would grow and the length of the line I had left to go would get smaller. The dream came true. Now I have a pretty nice map to look at 🙂

Check it out on my Route page!

My bike ride

Contact

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Hi,

Thank you for checking out my adventure. Feel free to write to me using the contact form below.

Kind regards,
Mark


Route

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Here is a map showing where I spent each night during my 29,600 km bicycle ride between Australia and France. Most points are precise; however, some locations (particularly those in towns) are indicative only (i.e. the points show the town I stayed in as opposed to exactly where I found accommodation).

Making travel videos…

Video intro (pic)

I am not exactly sure from where my idea to record the adventure through video originally grew. It might have been from watching other peoples’ cycling videos and thinking I could do that. Whatever the case, I had absolutely no previous filming experience on which to build, so it seemed quite out-of-the-blue that I found myself looking up reviews of video cameras. Having settled on a Panasonic V700 with a Rode Videomic, I first used the camera on a work trip in the Great Victoria Desert, where I recorded a story about what it is like to conduct a biological survey in a remote location. I absolutely loved the process of capturing my work activities on film and immediately knew that filming would become an integral part of the way I recorded my cycle journey.

After shooting the work video mentioned above, I didn’t have any further practice at filming prior to commencing my adventure. I simply pulled it on Day 1 and started recording. The hardest thing I found about filming the journey is getting out the camera when I am physically exhausted or when I don’t want to interrupt a really smooth riding day. There will always be much room for improvement in my filming; however, I think I am getting incrementally better with each new video I make and, no matter what comes of my efforts, I am having a lot of fun along the way.

I hope that you enjoy watching my videos as much as I enjoy making them. You can watch them on my Video Series page or by visiting my YouTube channel.

About

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I was first inspired to go cycle touring in 2010 when I was hiking in Macedonia and seemingly out of nowhere a bike laden with a guy and his luggage casually rolled past. I never knew travelling on a bicycle to be an option before then and I was instantly enthralled.

How free must it feel to get around under your own steam and schedule?

As I continued backpacking through the Balkans on my two-year, post-university journey, my own plans for a cycle trip slowly evolved. I decided I would ride across USA and into Canada where I would find work to replenish my travel funds. After running out of money backpacking in Europe and working in Wales for five months, I eventually found myself setting off from a friend’s house in Charleston on a hastily set up bike. I gave up after two weeks.

In these two weeks I rode across South Carolina and Georgia and learned three important lessons: (1) a bit of training might have come in handy, (2) riding in southern USA in the middle of summer (and during a heat wave at that) is dangerously unhealthy, and (3) if I was ever to again feel like the hardy, adventurous spirit I thought I was, I would one day have to give it another go.

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Not quite up to the challenge

Following my failure, I spent what little remained of my money on an adventure in Central America before returning to Australia to subject myself to a career. Despite landing a dream job, I couldn’t help cast my memory back to my failed bike trip. Maybe I should think about trying again? As I began to think about it seriously, I wondered: Should I return to America to conquer my unfinished business? Should I ride around Australia to get to know my own country? Or should I try it in a place I hadn’t yet been? It wasn’t long before a little idea sneaked into my head that would set me on a path of no return.

Why not just ride around the whole world?

From the moment I’d thought it, no way could I consider a lesser endeavour than cycling around the planet. My future was set. I would keep working for a couple of years to save some money, then ride out of my driveway and chase the horizon until one day it would lead me home.

What’s this about making videos? Read more