In May/June we spent 25 days in the Wakhan Corridor of Afghanistan. We had an amazing time and put together all this information you need to be able to do your own trip. Hope it helps. Stories coming in future blogs soon.
We just wanted to be in the mountains. But with no idea about what was possible we felt trapped in Dushanbe. We were getting restless and just needed to make a decision. So we bit the bullet and decided to travel halfway across Tajikistan to Khorog, the heart of the Pamirs.
Try and picture Tajikistan in your head. Sounds simple, but I couldn’t have given you a good answer before coming here. Which is why we came, to discover and share what this lesser visited region of the world has to offer.
‘The best surfer is the one having the most fun…’ and thank f*** for that because that’s all I really got going for me.’ On that note, I wasn’t chasing hollow barrels in 1 foot reefy water, but I was on the hunt for long fat waves with slow take-offs. I found exactly that and more and spent months in the water.
Mylene and I approached the Philippines in much the same way that Lachie, Scott and myself approached South America. Completely unplanned, somewhat unprepared, and utterly ready to wing it. Turns out it works pretty well.
With a final eey-orr from the donkeys I left Asturias for the infamous Basque Country. At the Bilbao bus station I walked off the bus and straight towards the friendly face of a great friend, ready for 2 epic weeks.
In mid-March I made my way across to a little town in the North of Spain called Asturias. I spent a month there working with donkeys and helping out around the farm. What an epic place with some amazing people and animals.
Ana had all the gear to head on some crazy adventures out of town. So thats what we did. From Snowmobile trips, to sleeping in ice cave and swimming in the arctic, we definitely made the most of my time up there.
Playa Chica was a dream come true. But the dream also came with hundreds of mosquito bites, some sunburn and sand. Sand everywhere. So while we were sad to leave Fish and our beach paradise, there was certainly some excitement about the prospect of a shower. Oh and our next stop, Guadalajara, was the birthplace of tequila, so we had that going for us.
One month into the Mexico Surf Safari and there hadn't really been all that much surf. There was some safari, but it had resulted in one of our two stallions being sent to the wrecks after only a week. However, as New Years approached, it looked like the game of hide and seek with the surf gods was over.
We tied the knot on our loop of Southeast Mexico after making it back to Mexico city from Oaxaca. Christmas and New Years was looming and Mexico city was a perfect place to settle down for a few nights to plan out our next roadie. Well, it would be perfect place, but you’re talking about five Aussies here, who literally either want to just party or watch Netflix. We did exactly that.
With the new boards strapped on to the roof and the squad all in the one car we headed south in search of waves and sunny warm beaches. Oaxaca is a surf state and while the swell didn’t always play its part, the beaches were still amazing.
The dream of the Mex trip was to surf endlessly on beautiful waves, and what better place to start than the surfing capital of Mexico, Puerto Escondido. Turns out, apparently anywhere would’ve been a better place to start. There was no surf and instead with filled our time dealing with lots of accidents. Classic.
Refining our Tetris skills acquired in the early days of high school, we loaded everyone’s bags into the back our cars and filled them to the brim. Unsure whether we had too much weight, we crawled out of the carpark of our accommodation in Mexico City and prayed that the cars would make it out of the city for the start of our roadtrip.
‘Yeah yeah yeah mate just come to Mex and fang it around with us for a few months, she’ll be right’. This was pretty much our pitch to Harry, Paige, Mylene, Eleanor, Ben and Laura as we convinced them to come to Mexico to buy some cars and have a dope time.
Having heard about the ancient amazonian tradition of using Ayahuasca as a healing process we signed ourselves up to see what it was all about. What ensued was an incredibly unique experience we’ll never forget.
We were fortunate enough to meet a French legend Ben who for whatever reasons saw enough potential in us to agree to be our mountaineering guide for a few days. We climbed some peaks, learned some things and most importantly have become super stoked on mountaineering.
Being the only anticipated hike prior to leaving Australia, the 7-12 day Huayhuash circuit had a lot to live up too. We nervously got ready to go unguided for up to 12 days through and around 6000m giants, expecting snowstorms, running out of food and getting lost. Somewhat fortunately, the journey was smooth, and filled with unparralled moments of beauty.
With Scott set up for a comfy ride to Huaraz on the bus, Pat and I took the bikes on the shortest route we could find to meet him in time. The roads were epic but the adventure became one hell of a story.
With our first section of the trek completed, we were ready to leave the crowds behind. Not that we’d been swamped by them previously, but apparently on our next section from Yanama to Huancacalle and then on to Santa Teresa we shouldn’t expect to see a single gringo and no more than a few local farmers.
With a massive 200km hike planned and our bodies perfectly out of shape we decided we needed a warm up hike to prepare our bodies. Blindly we chose the Ausangate trek which turned out to be 5 days above 4500m, whoops.
With a barely functioning bike we succumbed to the allure of hot pools and waterfalls and headed off into the unknown. There were some testing times but discovered an incredible, isolated region of Peru rarely visited by anyone.
After almost three months in Bolivia, it was only right that we felt both happy and sad to be leaving. We’d explored more of the beautiful country than we could have imagined, met incredible people and had more than a few highs (and lows).