Just had a reply from CFR Rinkens in the States. They will ship the bike from Savannah to Algeciras in Spain, just 6 miles from the border with Gibraltar. Unfortunately it will cost £1,500 plus my flights etc. to pick it up, so still not really viable… the return on the investment just wouldn’t cover the expense so no real saving by choosing this option. Never mind am going to go with H-C Travel.
What’s interesting about this stage of the process is how much one assumes about independent travelling. Of course I’m used to jumping on the bike and riding onto a ferry or train straight to France or Belgium and then the whole of Europe, Middle East, Asia and Africa awaits… it really is that simple in terms of actually touring from the UK, (notwithstanding customs and border issues that I have read about, especially in some of the more ‘exotic’ countries). Navigating over ‘seas’ is different and I am quite surprised at the time it has taken to research and discover what is available, or mostly not available. Maybe my reliance on Google is too narrow, although I have also checked out various fora and adventure biking websites.
Of course one is limited by the budget; even though I have been saving for 3 years it is still tight and any savings that can be made will have to be made. For example, accommodation; as anyone who has read my previous adventures will know, I like my comforts so camping is not really an option. However, on my google travels I came across bike trailer tents… I was really amazed at how ingenious these are; a mini trailer towed behind the bike that transforms into a small, off the ground tent or even a tiny caravan… wow! I was momentarily tempted I have to admit, but again not cheap. If I were to set a budget of say $60 a night for accommodation times roughly 60 nights of course that is a lot of money… $3,600 and a very fine trailer cara might be less than that, but what are the practicalities? I probably would still have to pay camping fees, buy other equipment, bedding etc. as it wouldn’t be possible to take it with me on the plane, so totally impractical.
After many attempts here is a possible itinerary.. as always open to changes but includes many of the places I want to visit. Some stops will be overnight and some a couple of days, e.g. Key West, Las Vegas, Niagara Falls and anywhere else that captures my interest.
Also hoping to ride Pacific Highway 1, and visit Lake Tahoe, if I have enough time.
Of course there are hundreds of other places and sights I would love to see, but they’ll have to wait for future trips.