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Old 11-06-12, 10:50 AM   #1
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Circumnavigation of South America


My brother is planning a circumnavigation of South American, starting in March sometime. I think he's a silly person, but, well, that's me. I only bike in the rain in Tacoma, so he thinks I'm silly.

As his birthday and Christmas are rapidly approaching, I'm thinking about what gadgets, clothing, gear I should get him. What will he need that he won't be able to get down there? What would make all the difference about it being successful.

Currently he has
Surly Long Haul Trucker
Panniers & Rack
Iphone 4

His existing clothing selection is pretty bad. He's very cheap so he won't buy this stuff for himself. I'm unsure what he has for bike tools, besides I know he has a pump attached to his frame. I think his plan is to mainly stay in hostels but maybe occasionally camp.

What would be really helpful for him?

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Old 11-06-12, 03:00 PM   #2
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You are working with too little information. Listen to him as he gears up for the trip. Engage him in conversation about his gear needs, What's on his wish list, and what he's planning on picking up for himself. He will tell you what he needs or wants.

If this doesn't give you any ideas, visit the website Crazyguyonabike. You can click onto South American tours and read about the folks who have blazed the trail for your brother. In their stories will be plenty of ideas on gear they used or gear they wish they'd used. The site is filled with blogs that start with with gear lists. Those lists should give you plenty of ideas.

If you want advice from us, well here goes: Sounds like he needs everything except the bike.
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Old 11-06-12, 03:10 PM   #3
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Find The ferry connection for crossing the mouth of the Amazon .. it is a long ways.

British Based CTC has been around for 100 years of adventuring.
maybe Buy him a Membership.
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Old 11-06-12, 06:56 PM   #4
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For what it's worth, I'd say he's a brilliant person, not silly at all.

For clothing, having something like a Merino wool top would be great - something that's going to be warm at cool temperatures, and moisture wicking in the heat. Plus, they don't smell after days and days of use because they're natural fibre. Icebreaker makes some great looser fitting casual tops, and bike jerseys as well if he's more into the traditional 'cyclist' look. When I was cycling in South America I was surprised how much time I ended up spending at high altitudes in the Andes and was really cold. I was expecting South America to be warm (and I realize it could have been had we changed our route), but the mountains are the best part to ride, so we ended up there way more than anywhere else. But to complete the loop, he's going to be spending a lot of time in pretty tropical parts as well. My two cents clothing wise - check out Icebreaker.
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Old 11-10-12, 01:17 PM   #5
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i would be interested un knowing what his route plan is... I have friends who have gone from Ecuador, through Colombia, Venezuela and into Brazil and down the Brazilian coast... someday i would like to do that as well (when I "grow up")

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Old 11-11-12, 09:54 PM   #6
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Some paper maps would be good. In some countries (Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay, Uruguay, the Guyanas and Venezuela) it's almost impossible to find a decent road map, since most people there ride buses and don't need to know how to get where they're going. I use a GPS myself but I still like having paper maps for longer-term planning. The best ones are probably Rough Guide, Nelles and ITMB. None of them are perfect of course, and they vary by country. Just go with whichever of those three you can find locally or online. I liked having the big ITMB South America one as well, 1:4,000,000 scale I think, with the northern half of SA on one side and southern on the other, for really long-term planning and for those long conversations with other cyclists. In Argentina, Chile, Brazil and Colombia you can get maps and road atlases locally that are better than what you can get up here.

Last edited by jkruys; 11-11-12 at 09:57 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 11-11-12, 09:59 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by okobojicat View Post
What would be really helpful for him?

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