24 Jan 2013 | Gregor McKelvie
Tracks hasn't been going that long, but we're slowly building a community of users. One of the very first users was Ross Methven, a consultancy director. Ross helped with some early concepts and gave us some great feedback along the way, so we were sad to hear that he was moving on - not to a new CRM, but to a new life altogether.
As he's been such a great advocate of what we're doing, I decided to dive a bit further into what and where is new life is. Here goes:
For the last couple of years I have felt like I needed to take on a really big personal challenge - something that pushed me to my limits both physically and mentally. I did some research into a range of expedition-type adventures, and the options I gave myself were climbing Everest, walking to one of the poles, or a long distance cycle tour. After much deliberation, I decided on the bike.
After I made my decision I went into research overdrive. I read books, followed dozens of bloggers, attended events at the Royal Geographical Society in London, and met with people that had taken on similar challenges and pumped them for information and advice. The advice I have had from people has been great - and very revealing about people's characters! They range from exactly what to pack in which bike pannier, through to guys like Tom Allen who gave me some great advice - "don't get bogged down in all the planning - just get on your bike and ride".
My trip will see me travel down the east coast of England to Dover before crossing the Channel to France. From there I continue through Belgium, Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic. Then it's south through the Balkans and into Greece before completing the first leg in Istanbul.
After a short rest I fly to Nairobi in Kenya where the second leg commences. From here I will be picking a route down through Africa that takes me to Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Botswana, Namibia and finally, South Africa.
How long is a tricky question to answer, as I don't know yet how many miles I will be covering each day. I reckon less than 12 months to get to Cape Town. What happens after Cape Town really depends on how my legs are feeling! I would love to keep going around the world, but it's a bit dangerous to commit to that at this early stage as I have never done anything like this before.
At the end of January 2013, once all final prep has been completed. My phone will most certainly be off most of the time, but I certainly won't be leaving the internet behind - my bike for the trip even has a built-in USB port so I can charge devices whilst on the move! As I am doing this solo it is going to be really important to be able to keep in touch with family and friends, so I will be seeking out wifi signals. I will be blogging along the way and I'll certainly keep in touch with you guys and let you know how things are going.
It certainly sounds amazing and we wish Ross all the best on his journeys. We've promised to keep in touch with on him, so you can expect some updates on where he is and what he's doing over the coming months. There is of course a charitable aspect to the trip, so feel free to donate to his chosen charity.
Thanks for reading
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