I’m planning to visit Norway this summer

And a few other of the top 5 happiest nations on earth.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

(via Adventure Blog)


my travel medical insurance

I travel a lot.

Currently I’m buying coverage from my bankTD Canada Trust.

I can take multiple trips / year up to 30 days at a time. Cost is about CAD $200. It jumps over $400 for maximum 60 day trips.

For my policy you must be under age-65 and have no serious pre-conditions.

Cancellation / trip interruption is NO LONGER covered. Everything else looks good.

cycling the Carretera Austral, Chile do NOT post

During my two months in Patagonia 2018 I did a fair bit of research on a future cycle hiking trip.

  • what bike? (Surly Long Haul Trucker with 40mm tires is popular)
  • buy, rent or bring a bike with me from Canada?
  • exact route? (north to south via Chiloe sounds best to me)

I’d camp and hike en route.

The Carretera is far more popular now than when I did it in 2004 by bus / hitchhiking.

The Carretera Austral runs about 1,240 kilometers (770 mi) from Puerto Montt to Villa O’Higgins through (sparsely populated) rural Patagonia. …

This area is characterized by thick forestsfjordsglaciers, canals and steep mountains. …

Among the world’s finest road trips, the Carretera Austral – or “Southern Highway” – is a 1240km route through Chile that’s mostly unpaved. Winding through millennia-old forests, it visits dusty Andean hamlets and turquoise rivers spawned from landlocked glaciers. …

Cyclists should have the skills and materials to repair their own gear, and should plan on taking a solid month for the entire endeavor. According to Italian cyclist Tomas Balzk, the hardest part was not pedaling the terrain, but ingesting enough calories. …

Lonely Planet


Samsonite MVS Spinner Backpack

In 2014 I bought a laptop backpack. I’d been looking for one that both wheels AND has backpack shoulder straps.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

$103.99 on Amazon. I got it on sale for CAD $103 at an Airport shop.

Within a year the wheels were already getting bad. I finally junked it March 2018.

On the road I had to replace it. Best I could find in Miami was exactly the SAME Spinner Backpack. This time it cost me US $126 + tax.

Though it’s not very durable, there are many features I really do like about the Spinner. It’s lightweight. The elevated laptop cannot hit the ground. And four wheels truly are better than two.


South Beach Miami

Miami was my connection from Santiago, Chile to Bermuda so I decided to stay over 2 nights.

I’d stayed in South Beach in 2006. Really enjoyed it then. Quite enjoyed it this time too.

After 2 months backpacking South America I needed to do some shopping. Get a hair cut.

I stayed at HI-Hostel Miami. US $45 / night.