So, the cat’s out of the bag. Or, at least partially! I’ve told family and friends – work will have to wait a little longer.
The plan has snowballed somewhat since inception. What was going to be a couple of weeks cycling in Peru, became a few months and now stands at 9-10 months along a continent!
The plan is to head out to Trujillo (via Lima) in June and then spend 2-3 months dirt-road touring through Peru, onto Bolivia and then Argentina and Chile, finishing in Ushuaia around February/March time. That way I get the best of the dry season in Peru and follow the warming weather South, arriving in Patagonia at the end of Summer.
I’ve settled on a Surly Ogre as my trusty steed as I think it makes perfect sense, given the terrain. It’s a 29er (29″ diameter wheels) with clearance for up to 2.5″ wide tyres, is made of steel (easily repairable) and designed for touring so has all the bottle/pannier/cage mounts that I could wish for. It also plays nicely with a Rohloff (hub gear) – more on that later. I’ve decided to build it up myself, as it should be fairly straightforward and will stand me in good stead, knowing exactly how everything fits together.
I’ve been reading up on it all during every spare waking moment! Cass Gilbert and the Pikes have been particular inspirations. I can thoroughly recommend the Pikes’ Adventure Cycle-Touring Handbook, which seems to cover just about every detail you can think of in preparation for this kind of trip.