A journey and adventure of grand proportions. Starting on the shores of the Arctic Ocean, the North American Epic will head across Canada, USA, Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica & Panama. We’ll experience Inuit culture in the far north, the hospitality of the indigenous people of Chiapas state in Mexico, the vast tundra of the Arctic and the endless beaches of El Salvador’s Pacific Coast. Finally, the cyclists will spin toward, and then across, the amazing Panama Canal before pulling into cosmopolitan Panama City and the end of this unbelievable two-wheeled journey.
Starting on the shores of the Arctic Ocean, the riders of the North American Epic will head across the expansive tundra, with a chance to spot moose, caribou, grizzly bears, peregrine falcons and golden eagles. They will ferry across the mighty MacKenzie, one of the world’s longest rivers, pedal across the Arctic Circle and visit the historic Gold Rush town of Dawson City. This section ends in Whitehorse alongside the Yukon River where thousands of fortune hunters trekked and sailed north during the 1890s.
The second section of this epic ride follows close to 1400 km of the Alaska Highway, which was constructed during World War II for the purpose of connecting the contiguous USA to Alaska. Legendary for being a rough, challenging drive, the highway is currently paved over its entire length, although cyclists can expect a few rougher stretches due to construction work and periodic flooding. Riders can also expect more opportunities to see large wildlife, such as buffalo and moose, as they head to a relaxing rest day near the Liard Hotsprings.
In Fort St. John the second section ends and third begins with riders pushing towards the resort towns of Jasper, and a little further down the road, Banff. Riding the world-famous Icefields Parkway past Mt Edith Cavell, the Columbia Icefields and serene Lake Louise it will be hard for cyclists not to stop every kilometer or so to stand in awe of their surroundings. After some rest the group heads out from Banff towards the Canada-USA border. It’s time to seek more open space, more wildlife and less human population. Montana, one of the least-densely populated states, is next on the trip as riders pedal on to Helena.
From Helena to Moab, from the forests of the north to the deserts of the south, riders will watch the landscape change as they begin their ride along the continental divide. The next 2 sections, The Great Divide & Canyonlands, will take riders down the middle of the United States and across the paths of multiple national parks and bucket-list monuments. The route takes you along fabled highways #128, #191 and #163 where the stunning vistas will inspire you. The tour is scheduled so that riders spend their well-deserved rest days near amazing national parks where they can wander among the fins, spires, pinnacles, arches, and balanced rocks that make the area so unique. Carved over the years by the wind and water, Arches National Park & Canyonland National Park inspire asense of wonder among all who visit. Additional rest days provide the opportunity for a guided tour of Yellowstone Park where riders will likely see herds of bison, fields of hot springs and the world’s most renowned geyser, Old Faithful.
The cyclists’ time in the USA is almost over by the time they reach Yuma, Arizona and suddenly it will be time for another border-crossing. Welcome to Mexico and welcome to the beach! Margaritas, sun and some beach camping will make a fine change for weary riders. A couple weeks down the Baja California peninsula ends in the bustling city of La Paz.
From there, riders will take a ferry across to Mazatlan to begin the last section of the tour, Conquistadores. Five days of riding following the coastline of the Pacific Ocean will leave plenty of time for the cyclists to enjoy seafood, beer and tequila in the touristy town of Puerto Vallarta.
Over the next two weeks riders will pedal deeper into the culture of Mexico. As they make their way towards the capital there are plenty of opportunities to explore the country’s history, such as the colonial towns of Guanajuato State, which include the heritage sites of old Guanajuato and San Miguel de Allende. The historic monument zone of Queretaro city is worth a visit, before we cycle triumphantly as a Convoy de los Conquistadores y Cyclistas into Mexico City.
A couple days later the riders will continue their Mexican cycling experience, passing through Oaxaca, one of the country’s most fascinating cities and on into the State of Chiapas, renown for the 1994 Zapatista uprising. The tourist mecca of San Cristobal de las Casaa will provide a last taste of Mexican culture before the cyclists cross the border into Guatemala and a rest day at the incomparably beautiful Lake Atitlan. The final stretch will see the riders pedal into El Salvador and the end of the section on the windswept beaches of the Pacific Coast.
The last section of this incredible cycling expedition sees the riders dragging themselves away from El Salvador’s world famous surf and pedalling their way through Honduras’s sun-baked plains. Next up is Nicaragua and a stop in Granada and its stunning colonial architecture. Before they know it, they will find themselves sunning themselves on the white sand beaches of Costa Rica. Refreshed they now head south along the coast before turning up into the Talamanca Mountain Range and a final rest day un the shadow of Panama’s highest peak, Volcan Baru.
Finally, the cyclists will spin toward, and then across, the amazing Panama Canal before pulling into cosmopolitan Panama City and the end of this unbelievable two-wheeled journey. at the end of our 10,000 km journey. After celebrating with some cervezas it is time to say goodbye to the friends we have made, pack up our bikes and head for the airport enriched with memories to last a lifetime.