AD­VEN­TURE

Alaska to Ar­gentina aboard a Honda C90 via tur­bu­lent re­la­tion­ships, snow, trikes and bad backs. Rachel Lasham, 31, for­mer lo­gis­tics as­sis­tant from Chich­ester likes a chal­lenge…

BIKE (UK) - - CONTENTS - with Lois Pryce Fol­low Rachel’s ad­ven­tures at wan­deron­a­honda.co.uk or go to Wan­der On A Honda on Face­book.

Plan­ning your ride from Alaska to Ar­gentina is sim­ple if you work in lo­gis­tics. A Honda C90 adds dif­fi­culty...

Where are you right now? Couch-surf­ing in Guadala­jara, Mex­ico.

What’s the big plan? I’m rid­ing from Alaska to Ar­gentina. I was trav­el­ling with my boyfriend (the in­fa­mous Ed March of C90ad­ven­tures.co.uk) in North Amer­ica, but now I’m rid­ing solo from Mex­ico to Ar­gentina. I’m plan­ning to take around 3½years… I think.

De­spite not now trav­el­ling with Ed you have stayed to­gether as a cou­ple. How’s that work­ing out? Ed and I trav­elled to­gether for 18 months and although we love each other we dis­cov­ered we’re re­ally dif­fer­ent peo­ple. While this isn’t a prob­lem when it comes to be­ing in a re­la­tion­ship it doesn’t work when it comes to trav­el­ling to­gether. In the end we were both com­pro­mis­ing so much that nei­ther of us was happy and we didn’t see the point of con­tin­u­ing like that. It’s bet­ter to miss some­one than wish they weren’t with you. Solo trav­el­ling is so much more re­ward­ing, plus you have com­plete free­dom to do what you want, when you want. For me that’s a lib­er­at­ing feel­ing that can’t be beaten.

What are the pros and cons of trav­el­ling on a C90? De­spite hav­ing never seen one I planned to ride a Suzuki DR650. But af­ter go­ing to an ad­ven­ture bike rally I de­cided on some­thing more man­age­able. I went from a DR650, to a DR350, to a Yamaha XT250, and then I met Ed March. Three weeks later I in­vited him on my trip and for Christ­mas he got me a C90. Ev­ery­one loves my bike and I’m con­stantly stop­ping for a chat and pho­tos. It might be that it’s pur­ple, has fairy lights, a min­ion as a head­light and a shop­ping bas­ket full of as­sorted crap on the front. It’s light enough to pick up on my own, it’s easy for me to fix and it’s fun and stress free. The down­sides are rub­bish front sus­pen­sion and lack of power when climb­ing moun­tains.

What was your in­spi­ra­tion for this jour­ney? A few years ago, while trav­el­ling in Aus­tralia and New Zealand, I stayed with a woman who had rid­den from Alaska to Ar­gentina. Since meet­ing her the idea had been on the back burner. I re­turned home and got a job in an of­fice. Feel­ing a bit lost and with no idea what to do with my life I de­cided to com­bine my love of mo­tor­cy­cles and travel and tackle the jour­ney my­self. I had two jobs, worked and saved for three years and met Ed in the process.

Worst mo­ment of your trip? I in­jured my back quite badly while rid­ing through Utah, USA. Ed and I de­cided to wait and see if it would heal but, af­ter four weeks, it be­came ap­par­ent I wasn’t go­ing to be able to carry on as I was. Win­ter was ap­proach­ing and at this point Ed and I al­ready knew we were go­ing to go our sep­a­rate ways af­ter the Trans-amer­ica trail. To have things end like that, with­out be­ing able to fin­ish

what we had started to­gether was ut­terly dev­as­tat­ing. But then things took a turn for the bet­ter…

Best mo­ment? The thing is Ed doesn’t ad­mit de­feat eas­ily and de­cided to mod­ify my bike so I wouldn’t fall off. A week later I was sat on a home­made trike. I have to ad­mit my first day rid­ing it was pretty ter­ri­fy­ing, mainly be­cause we had to nav­i­gate a par­tic­u­larly tricky moun­tain­ous sec­tion in the dark. Ed rode out in front and via the in­ter­com he man­aged to guide me over ev­ery bump, hump and cam­ber for an hour. I re­ally couldn’t have done it with­out him. Work­ing as a team like that, while rid­ing a trike that Ed had made so we could con­tinue the jour­ney to­gether, was the best mo­ment for the both of us.

What does the fu­ture hold once the trip is fin­ished? Among other things Ed and I want to set up the C90 tour com­pany. Ed ran a tour from Mon­go­lia to Eng­land in 2013 and has an­other tour in Viet­nam lined up next April. We get a lot of mes­sages from peo­ple want­ing to do mo­tor­cy­cle trips, but they feel they don’t have the ex­pe­ri­ence and/or con­fi­dence to do it. We want to pro­vide a step­ping stone for those peo­ple to help them get out there in to the won­der­ful world of mo­tor­cy­cles and travel.

Honda C90: ‘the pros out­weigh the cons,’ says Rachel

I have just ac­quired a ‘well-loved’ Ural side­car out­fit, com­plete with cob­webs. This win­ter’s project is to get it up and run­ning for three­wheeled fun next sum­mer…

Ed and Rachel pre their tac­ti­cal break-up

Easy to x – tick

In the mid­dle of nowhere with a bad back? Get your­self a trike

Cacti make you happy

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