Q & A with the Public. Most asked questions about Around 7 Continents
Around 7 Continents started off 30 August 2013 when a friend and I started cycling out of the massive and beautiful city of Sydney, Australia. This was the beginning of a massive five-year adventure that will take me through all the continents of the world.
The main goal of Around 7 Continents is to cycle from coast to coast, through all the continents. No buses, trains, lifts will be taken. Every single kilometre will be done with the bicycle, whether I’m cycling, pushing or pulling it on a sledge to get through the harsh environments.
I’m on this adventure to explore the world and experience new cultures out there, but this is no holiday. It does not matter where I am or in what season, pushing the limits on a daily basis is a big part of this adventure.
Summary of Around 7 Continents:
• Five-Year Adventure
• 7 Continents (Australia, Europe, Asia, North America, South America, Antarctica & Africa)
• Around 70 Countries
• Between 85 000 km and 100 000 km
• Human Power Only
• It’s not a holiday, it’s an adventure!
I still get loads of questions, and most of them are very similar. I decided to go through them and hopefully be able to give some answers on some of these questions.
So here goes… Questions mostly asked from the public, locals or other travellers.
1. PEOPLE STILL ASK ME WHY??? WHY DO YOU DO THIS??
Well this is easy, I do what I love doing! Adventure, nature, explore, leaning new heights on personal & mental capabilities and experiencing new cultures
2. WHY DO YOU CYCLE THROUGH WINTER?
On this question it does not matter weather it is in the winter or through some desert in the summer. I’m here to learn new things about myself and to survive in different kind of scenarios / environments.
Being from South African, we don’t really know what cold is all about. Cycling through the winter is one of the big challenges to learn how to cope and handle things when it get to new extremes.
Learning new things on a daily basis is very important to me personally and there is not a better way to this in places / environments that I have not been in. The feeling when I survived the first few night in -30*C was awesome. Now I know what to do, how to things and what to expect when that happen again.
“I’m always striving to explore the boundaries of human capabilities”
3. WHAT COUNTRY DID YOU LOVE THE MOST TO THIS POINT?
This is a crappy question, because believe me, every single country I’ve been cycling through has something that was nice. There is many parts that forms a perspective about a country like the nature, people, history, architecture, food, weather….. There have been so many days when I was frustrated or just had a crappy day and when someone stops, talks or just give an apple, my day light up and all the shit feelings are gone. People probably have the biggest influence in making it extra special, does not matter where you are.
4. HOW DO YOU TRAVEL BETWEEN CONTINENTS?
There are not many big jumps between continents. Here is the list:
• Australia to Europe (Plane from Perth to Dublin)
• Asia to North America (Not sure yet)
• South America to Africa (Would love to Sail… Solo)
• To and from Antarctica
I have tons of ideas to cross some of the oceans. Taking a boat, sail (solo) or row is things I’ve been considering, but all of these take some planning, preparation and big sponsorships.
At one point I was deep into planning to cross the Pacific from Asia to North America rowing, but stopped that idea at the time to keep focussed on my main goal of crossing Asia. All my big ambitions require a lot of money… and getting money takes time. If a company approach me and say lets take on a crazy crossing, I’ll be game and plan from there. But until then I’ll keep my focus on my main goal and push the boundaries as far as possible.
5. HOW DO YOU COPE WITH LONELINESS?
I don’t get lonely… Loneliness is when you sit in the corner of a room feeling sorry for yourself. I have the nature, people on the road I meet and the challenges I’m faced with on a daily basis. My mind keeps working, making plans, figuring things out or coping with what’s at hand at that specific point.
Its incredible on how you can communicate with people on the road, even it you cant speak a word of the others language. This makes out a big part of the adventure.
YES I MISS FAMILY AND FRIENDS!!
One thing I do miss is having some in depth conversations! It’s been almost a year now adventuring through Eastern Europe and Asia. This basically means that when I’m on the road, I don’t have that “in depth conversations”. Maybe once a month I will get the chance to have a beer with someone and just be able to speak (have conversations), and this is awesome!
There are also times when I do have the chance to mingle, but then have to focus on the adventure and to planning, prepare blogs, photos, video, searching sponsorships, etc etc… and believe me… its take tons of time. Most of the time I catch up on sleep when I’m actually on the road. When I have the time to sit and work, I work 20-hour days.
But Loneliness no… I really try to be a little social with locals or other travellers when I have the opportunity. I do Skype with family and friends whenever I have Internet and send lots of messages to keep in touch.
There are times you just want to sit down and talk with someone, have a beer and watch sport.
One of the things I love the most on this adventure is all the amazing people I meet on the road and making new friendships. This keeps me sane and stops from getting LONELY ☺
6. NORTH AMERICA – DO YOU HAVE ANY OTHER PLANS THAN JUST CYCLING SOUTH THROUGH AMERICA? PLANNING TO DO SOMETHING EXTREME?
Lots of plans for the 4th continent, North America ☺ N-America is a very exiting project on Around 7 Continents, with loads to look forward to. All I can say is that it’s NOT going to be an easy cycle down South! There are MASSIVE challenges and exiting projects waiting for the next year!
7. DO YOU ACTUALLY GOING TO CYCLE ON ANTARCTICA? WHEN AND HOW?
• 1st question – Yes I am going to cycle on Antarctica!
• When is not confirmed yet. It depends on a few things, mainly sponsorships, as this is by far the most expensive part of the whole adventure
• How? I’ve done over half the research up to this point. Due to lots of reasons I cant go into detail at this point. It all will be revealed sometime in the future
8. IRAN??? WHY DID YOU GO THERE???
Iran will see me again a few times in the future! This is one of the countries I enjoyed the most out of all the countries I’ve ever been to!
The people, history, people, nature, people, historical sites… and did I say people??
Iran is one of the most misinterpreted countries out there! The people is something you cant explain in words. I can tell about all the great conversations, generosity, hospitality and how they care about you… but what I cant explain is the feeling you get when you talk to them. They truly mean everything they do towards you, without ANY motive.
The people from Iran really wants to show people that they are not the people everyone out there perceive them of being. They are not putting on a face… They are just being themselves!!! That’s the big difference than any other people from other countries I’ve been to!!
9. WHAT’S YOUR BUDGET? HOW MUCH DO I NEED TO TAKE ON SOMETHING SIMILAR?
I can’t give a straight answer here, as every person has different needs and things they find more important. But when working out a budget you need to take in consideration the following:
• Where you want to go to (flights)
• Visas & Letter of Invitations
• Hotels / Hostels / Guest Houses (Can be a few times a week, once a week or once a month… keep in mind where you are and if there is hostels or hotels. BUT AGAIN… it’s a personal thing on how much you want to spend to sleep on a bed)
• Transport (if you want to go some places)
• Food & Water… Most important
10. WHAT GEAR DO YOU USE?
I’ve updated my website, so take a look over there on what I’m using on this adventure… scroll up and browse through the Adventure menu.
11. MAPS OR GPS? HOW DO YOU NAVIGATE?
I use a combination of maps, GPS (have not used in in over year) and just asking around. I mainly load maps onto my iPad to give me guidance. What I started to do is just to memorise some maps and then ask as I go. Taking out the iPad and keep trying to figure out where to go frustrated me.
I have set points/cites/towns where I’m heading towards, and how I get there does not really matter. I keep changing routes, road etc as I go on a weekly basis!
12. WHAT DO YOU EAT?
I depend on where I am, but it basically stays the same…
• Chinese Noodles (Average about 14 per week)
• Fruit & Veggies
• Chicken (in winter, because I can store it in my bags)
• Spices – Salt, pepper and chilli spice
• And the occasional coke.. Especially in the summer!
• Coffee & Tea
I don’t have any meal replacements or anything like that. I buy local, so what I can get on the road.
13. AFTER SUCH A LONG TIME ON THE ROAD, DO YOU STILL GET PHYSICALLY TIRED?
No I don’t, I’m Superman! No, I’m joking, I’m not superman. Off coarse I’m getting tired… daily! If I’m not sweating, I’m not working hard enough!!!
14. WHAT CAMERA EQUIPMENT DO I USE?
Photo’s – I’m using a Canon EOS 70D camera and a also have a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM Zoom Lens
Video – Canon LEGRIA HF G25
15. HOW FAR DO YOU CYCLE IN A SINGLE DAY?
– Summer: Between 100km – 200km per day
– Winter: Between 50km – 150km per day
16. HOW CAN I DO SOMETHING SIMILAR?
Don’t overthink things… Plan it and do it!
*** If there is any other questions, please let me know. I always try to answer as quickly as possible. Once in a while I’ll put something like this together, to answer all the general questions.