Motorcycling: best way to see the world
EAGLE-VAIL – Justin Bradshaw and a few friends drove to Patagonia last year. They surfed their way down the Pan-American coast, built a house in Chile, and even managed to get the Austrian off-road vehicle they drove stuck in a tree.Some might consider that the trip of a lifetime. But Bradshaw, 25, an Eagle-Vail resident, was already thinking about his next big adventure.”Of course, I can’t get through with one trip without thinking of another,” he said.His new plan? To ride around the world on a motorcycle with his dad, Michael.”I really like the unknown and being able to compare other places to here,” Justin said. “We’ve got it really good here.”After a year of planning, the Bradshaws are ready to depart. Justin expects it to take about four months. They will go from Colorado to California to Japan to Russia to Mongolia to Kazakhstan to Turkey. They’ll meet Justin’s mother and girlfriend in Istanbul and then take a few weeks to ride through Europe.
They plan on getting to Ireland, then going to Scotland, Iceland, Nova Scotia and then back to Colorado. A boat or plane will ship the bikes across the oceans.”The idea is to cover as much of the world on land as possible,” Justin said.A long listThey’ve outfitted their KTM 950 Adventure motorcycles – “basically a big dirt bike,” Justin said – with bags, boxes and extra fuel containers.”We have a GPS, we have a map, we have a compass, and we’re pretty much headed west,” he said.While that sounds simple, a year of detailed planning has gone into the trip. Justin has a four-page-long list of things he needs, from spare parts to tools to camping gear to medicine; not to mention the visas, insurance and other travel documents they need to cross dozens of borders.They plan to camp some of the time and find places to stay at other times. They have friends at some of their destinations around the globe.
As for the language barrier, Justin is hoping a lot of people speak English, and he plans to rely on body language, he said”There might be some bribing here and there,” he said. “I don’t smoke, but I’m bringing a whole case of Camel cigarettes.”Ellis Hunter, an Eagle-Vail native, traveled around the world last year with the Semester at Sea program, visiting 12 countries in four months.”It really gives you a different perspective on your life,” she said.Her advice to world travelers like the Bradshaws?”Have an open mind,” she said. “And really try to step outside your comfort zone.”
‘In the elements’Riding a motorcycle is the best way to see the world, Justin said.”It’s exposure,” he said. “It’s being in the elements. I guess if you don’t ride motorcycles it’s hard to explain.”Michael Bradshaw is a doctor who worked at Vail Valley Medical Center for many years. He now works at a practice in Grand Junction. Justin, who owns a painting business, and his girlfriend are moving out of their apartment and putting their belongings in storage.”I’m sure I’ll be back to Vail,” he said. “I love it here. But I could do anything. See where the road takes me, I guess.”And is there any way to top this trip?”There’s got to be something,” he said. “I don’t know what it is. I’ll figure it out. I’ve already started thinking.”
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