Category Archive: Travel Safety

Feb 06

Quiet Villages, Loud Machine Guns

Arriving in Jaque

Jaque After pulling away from the good ship Victoria our lancha whipped us towards land.  We bounced across the surf and over a sandbar before entering a small natural breakwater.  We had arrive in Jaque. Now that we were here, the next stage of our journey to Buenaventura, Colombia would be to hire a lancha …

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Aug 21

Traveling to Cuba as a US citizen


As a US citizen traveling on a US passport, I was very aware of the fact that it has been illegal for US citizens to travel to Cuba for the last 50 years.  This travel ban is just one small part of a severe economic embargo the US has imposed on Cuba for the last …

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Jul 09

The Journey of an Illegal Migrant

The migrants climb aboard the train heading north.

The Green Hell Tenosique, located deep in southern Mexico in the state of Tabasco, 60 km from the border of Guatemala, is not a very hospitable place.  Its primary claim to fame is that it is the most humid place in all of Mexico – thanks to the largest river in Centro America that winds …

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Jun 27


The sign reads: This land recovered in 1995 for bases of support of EZLN and independent farmers.  The land belongs to those who work it.  Zapata lives on.  The fight continues.

“GRINGO!!!” I sighed and looked up to my left to see the excited and angry face of the nine year old boy.  He pointed an accusing finger at me at arm’s length and repeated his deranged mantra like only a child possessed can. “GRINGO! GRINGO! GRINGO!” I turned back to the road just as the …

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Apr 25

The Colonial Road to Mexico CIty

Don Quixote and I found we have one or two things in common

Guanajuato I don’t like tunnels.  Unfortunately, to get in/out/around Guanajuato the long, dark, narrow, winding – often unlit – tunnels are unavoidable.  On a bicycle in such a tunnel, climbing up a steep hill at 8kph, you feel extremely exposed and vulnerable.  As a result, entering Guanajuato on bicycle was a pretty stressful experience. The …

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Feb 17

Stage 3: Western Mexico (AKA Operation TEQUILA! TEQUILA!)

Stage 3 Route from La Paz to Mexico City

For those interested, I have compiled all posts and photos from Stage 2: Baja California (AKA Operation: Fish Tacos!) here. Also, there is a new ZackTracker update available here. Operation: TEQUILA! TEQUILA! The third stage of the Tour De Zack, also known as Operation: Tequila! Tequila!, will take me from La Paz, Baja California Sur, …

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Jan 23

Across the great nothing.

It's difficult to get photos of yourself on the bike when touring alone...  Tony and I head across the desert.

The five day trip to Guerrero Negro is the emptiest longest stretch of relative nothing that I was going to encounter in Baja, and most likely, on the whole Tour de Zack.  The 450 km went very well as I was met constantly along the way with beautiful desert vistas as well as acts of …

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Jan 14

Star Status in San Felipe

Typical tourist fare in San Felipe.  They have a whole street of this... but no tourists

Ghost Town When I rode into San Felipe, my first impression was that it was tourist town, just without the tourists.  It’s a little bit surreal as all the artisan, souvenir, and knick-knack shops are still open and there are still the guys wandering around trying to sell you “Aztec” silver jewelry or cheap sunglasses, …

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Dec 31

Stage 2: Baja California (AKA Operation Fish Tacos)

Tour de Zack Progress bar

Don’t under estimate Mexico.  It’s huge. A lot of people I have talked to seem to have a skewed sense of the girth of this unassuming country, the next one on the itinerary for the Tour de Zack.  People seem to think Mexico is a dainty little stiletto heel precariously balanced under the big fat …

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Nov 11

Is Mexico Safe Enough to Bicycle Across?


To cycle of not to cycle, that is the question! First the proposed trip: Cycling from San Francisco to Colombia, a distance of approximately 7500 km.  From there? Maybe further, we’ll see.  If anybody wants to come with, they are more than welcome. Just reading that title of the blog makes the traveler in me …

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