THANK YOU LETTER

26 05 2010

A thank you to everyone who helped me from all of these countries, and to those of you helping from beyond.

Paraguay-Brazil-Argentina-Bolivia-Peru-Ecuador-Colombia-Panama-Costa Rica-Nicaragua-Honduras-El Salvador-Guatemala-Mexico-USA

Home 🙂

Please know how deeply thankful I am to you. A huge number of special people have come into my life to help make this project a reality, from gear sponsors to host families along the way, from fellow cyclists to volunteers in Paraguay, from those who have sent me emails of encouragement to all of you donors out there. It has been truly inspiring to watch this collective effort take form and succeed.

Personally, this tour has deeply affected me. My interactions with people and nature were perfectly beautiful at times, horribly sad at others, and eye-opening in so many ways. I cannot count the number of times I found myself camping alone in the wilderness, overcome with emotion and exceedingly grateful for everybody’s generosity that has allowed me to have this experience.

As it comes to an end, I am happy to announce that our collective effort has raised approximately $23,000, enough to allow Paraguay’s Conservation Alliance to purchase and protect forever about 20 acres of lush jungle within the San Rafael Reserve, home to several Mbya Guarani communities and a wide variety of endangered species.

Sincere Appreciation,

Samuel Hagler

(environmental activism, news, and fundraising continue on http://www.RideForTheTrees.com)

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Coming Soon: Crossing the Border on Saturday, May 15th

10 05 2010

Sonoran Desert

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Friends and family, feel free to meet me at the border. Bicycle owners, this is your invitation to air up those tires and join me Forrest Gump style for a mile or two (or 400?).

Forrest Gump

DETAILS

I’ll be at the Nogales, Mex/Arizona, USA border Saturday May 15th at exactly 4pm. The general route will be Nogales, Tucson, Phoenix, Sedona, Flagstaff, Grand Canyon.

The rest is up in the air for now…





“It’s even starting to smell like Arizona”

10 05 2010

— That’s what my dad said upon catching the scent of Mesquite here in Sonora, Mexico.

Yessir, I’m so close to home that my father bussed down to join the ride for a few days! New photos posted in the Mexico album. Good to have some company in the 105 degree desert… thanks for coming down Dad!





RoadSide Update from Navojoa, Mexico

3 05 2010

Here’s tonight’s camp! Thanks to the firefighters of Navajoa for the amazing hospitality. They signed my bike, taught me that bikes are called “ranflas” and “baikas” in Mexican, and even dressed me up as a bombero for the classic jump photo. Fijense…





A few o’ the latest photos

28 04 2010




Update from Mazatlán, Mexico

26 04 2010

Que onda guey!

I have new photos to share with you but I’m afraid I got some sand in my camera and it is not working at the moment. Here, let me steal one from somebody so I can at least show you  this delicious beach town, Mazatlán.

Mazatlán, Mexico. Photo courtesy of Travelpod.

If any of you are considering opening a hostel somewhere, this is the place to do it! Not a single hostel in town, just hotels with private rooms. There are plenty of backpackers, and we’re all looking for a cheap hostel with a shared dorm room. Pero no hay. I found a $10/night room at Hotel Lerma. For anybody coming to Mazatlán, that’s the cheapest room in town, and the closest you’ll find to a hostel.

I went to the largest aquarium in Latin America yesterday, then saw Fury of Titans in Spanish. City life has been nice for a couple of days but I can’t stay long in places like this; I find myself yearning for a campsite next to a river, or a relaxing night singing La Bamba with a family that is letting me camp on their farm for the night.

Sinaloa, Mexico. Sinaloa is a state. The actual name of Mexico is "The United States of Mexico." The landscape here looks like this. (photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

My camera should be fixed by tomorrow and then I’ll be back on the road! I’m not sure how many farms I’ll be passing though, because the landscape has changed from the lush jungle of southern Mexico to the desert beauty of Arizona. Looks like home! But I still have a few weeks left…

The plan is to cross the Mexico/Arizona border at Nogales on Saturday, May 15th. Hope to see you there! Bring your bike and we can go for a little ride…

Click here to support forest conservation in Paraguay or click the Firstgiving logo to the right. A big thanks to the anonymous donor for our most recent donation and thanks as always to everybody who has donated over the last 16 months!





Update from Puerto Escondido, Mexico

18 04 2010

photo courtesy of ca2pr.com

For those of you wondering where Waldo is, I send you saludos from “Hidden Port,” Mexico in the Department of Oaxaca.

After riding across the Guatemala/Mexico border with slight knee pain I decided to cheat a bit by bus hopping through the mountains and down to the coast in order to make it to Northern Mexico in time to ride a couple of weeks with my father and then make it to my sister’s wedding on time (congratulations Chelsea!) (…and I promise I’ll make up skipped mileage in Arizona everybody!)

It is ridiculously hot here but I’m cruising steadily up the coast. As I mentioned during my days in Argentina’s scalding Chaco, 110 degree days are managable due to the slight breeze you get while cycling. The difficulty lies in the 90 degree nights, stuck inside a tent with no breeze, sweating puddles and then riding another day on a few hours of fidgety sleep. I can’t complain too much though; as the other volunteers and I discussed in Paraguay, we know this is temporary and we will soon be going back to air-conditioned homes.

I feel like I’m racing the sun. I’m moving northward as quickly as possible and I know it’s moving that way too, bringing summer from the southern hemisphere to the northern.

A huge part of me feels like the tour is already ending, but I still have a lot of work ahead of me. I’ll keep racing the sun and I hope you all will continue to support me, spreading the word on your blogs and facebook, and considering donating by clicking that FirstGiving link over there to your right.

Thanks so much everybody!