What’s next?

As I continue south, I have no plans of where I will go or what I will see. If you know of a place you think is worth a trip, please let me know about it!

I rely on local knowledge to find the really cool places – and I’d love to hear from you!

Maybe it’s a hiking trail, mountain pass, disc golf course, hot spring or anything else you think I might like.

If it’s somewhat south of where I am now, please submit a reply below with the details!

Thanks,

-Dan

66 Responses

  1. Mark Dudding says:

    Hi Dan

    Loving reading your travel log. Driving up to Alaska and back was one
    of the best things I have ever down. Make sure our get
    out to at lest one of the costal towns like Seward, Valdez, Whitler or
    Haines. These places and the people in them were alsome. One thing,
    try and avoided timing arriving with the cruise ships. I challenge
    you to have a swim in the sea in one of these places, I did. Getting
    out in a Kayak up the harbour form Valdez was grate as well. We went
    up at the very end of the season in November and one thing that came
    clear was that it would be a completely different experience with each
    season. We had equal time of daylight and darkness so I did not get
    to experience the midnight sun, but I did get to see the northern
    lights in all their glory give an amazing show.

    One place I would also recommend for your way back south is a very
    small town called Hyder. I think this town is just over the
    southernmost border crossing in to Alaska. This place has a road that
    winds its way up beside a glacier. At the top you look out over it
    heading in three directions. The road carries on and I would love to
    know what there is further along it (we ran out of time). I this area
    I sore more bears and other wildlife than any other time on the trip.
    There were bears wondering around the main street. The town consisted
    of a pub, and tourist shop and some old houses.

  2. brian12566 says:

    A suggestion for the map- Could your current position have a different color pin? Just a thought.

  3. Karen Berg says:

    Dan,

    A note for any Canadian women reading your site…When the customs agent at the Alaska-BC border asks if you are bringing any “personal protection” with you, apparently, he means guns or knives…Have you ever seen a border guard blush?

    I made it home to Smithers last night. It was a beautiful sunny drive along Hwy 37. Judy and Laura flew into Nanaimo the night before, but Judy’s backpack didn’t.

    I’m amazed at how quickly you’ve gotten information about the Chilkoot Trail onto the site. It’s been fun to read about the trip.
    I’m looking forward to hearing from you when you come through Smithers, and to following your continuing adventures.

    Karen

  4. Katie Bigras says:

    Smithers is amazing so many fun little hikes and everyone in that town is absolutely amazing.

  5. Mike says:

    Hey man,

    It looks sweet as! When are we meeting up for some adventures??

    Mike.

  6. ric ricsta says:

    clubgetaway

  7. Judy says:

    Well Dan, it looks like you have found your dream hot springs! Wonderful story. It was great meeting you on the Chilkoot Trail. If you make it to Vancouver Island be sure to give us a call. Judy

    • Dan says:

      Judy, I’m coming to the island for sure to hike the West Coast Trail – I’d love to catch up for a coffee so I’ll call for sure!

  8. Kevin Kraliz says:

    Hi Dan,
    Given your past efforts to get to springs check this one out.
    http://www.trippin.ca

    Try it from Squamish like we did, or pay a jet boat taxi to drop you off at the head of Pitt Lake with a bike.

    Enjoy!
    Loved the Deer River write up, thats one I will make sure we try.

    • Dan says:

      Kevin,
      Wow man, what an adventure. I would have liked to make an attempt at Pitt River Hot Springs like yours, but it’s not going to happen now. Maybe one day if I ever return to Canada…

  9. Ioana says:

    Dan, what about a trip to Romania?!

  10. Adrian Schmotolocha says:

    Hi,

    I get it 100%. When you find yourself coming down into California–let me know–I have been through the backcountry of the Mojave and Great Basin deserts in my own jeep on my own version of what you are doing. I would be more than happy to share cool locations, things to see and outstanding backcountry roads. Shaman’s caves, petroglyphs, hot springs and good beta.

    Cheers,
    Adrian

  11. DUKE! says:

    ps. there are some sweet disc golf courses in Jackson at the resort and on the other side of the pass

  12. Kevin says:

    Dan,

    Unbelievably jealous of your adventures. You are living my dream, which seems impossible at the moment because I have a wife and 3 months baby girl at home now. I am only 27 so there is still plenty of time for me to work towards a few of my adventure goals. Any way, an awesome place to see, especially if you like to climb, is Joshua Tree National Park in southern California. The landscape is spectacularly bizarre and almost moon-like. I have many great people there and I’m sure you would find it worthwhile. Take care and may the road rise to meet you!

    Cheers,

    Kevin L.

    • Dan says:

      Kevin – I’m glad you found my blog and are enjoying it.
      Of course a wife and 3 month old seems like a massive adventure to me!
      I’m thinking about Joshua Tree, not sure right now. I’ll take your advice under consideration :)

      • David says:

        Dan,

        Please do consider Joshua Tree NP, particularly this time of year – it’s an amazing place, kind of Dr. Seuss meets the Flintstones….. I went for the first time last November with my wife and kids and we all fell in love with it, so much so that we’ve been back twice since. Plenty of camping and kindred spirits as well.

        Stumbled upon your site yesterday and am glad I did, despite the pangs of envy. 😉 Keep living the dream and be safe in the journey.

        David

        • Dan says:

          Thanks for the advice David. I’m catching up with a friend in San Diego before I cross the border, so hopefully I can fit in Joshua Tree NP.

  13. Brian says:

    I do not know if you are going into Yellowstone or not, or if perhaps you have already been there, but I highly recommend taking a few days in there as well!

    My family and I went this year and it was amazing. Further, just outside the north gate you can find a hot spring that feeds into the river, and it is a wonderful wonderful soak! various pools have been created, and some are hotter than others… Never the less, I really enjoyed it there.

    Well… I also wanted to tell you that I am only 3 hours north of Moab and if I had known that you were going to be there I would have met up with you. My wife and I both have jeeps, and I am sure I could have shown you a few wonderful things, and it would have been nice to meet you.

    Take care, and safe trip!
    Brian

  14. Brian says:

    wwoooopppsss

    Sorry, I jsut saw that you did go through there. Glad you got to see Yellowstone, it is truely amazing!

    Also, I hope you will go to the Grand Canyon! Another place we went to this summer, and let me tell you… WOW what an amazing experience. I recommend going round to the south rim, and you can hike down to the bottom of the canyon in several places. Not to mention on the way in you can see several native American shops and restaurants, neat to try something from a culture that is scarcely still on earth.

    Also, if you did not do it already… You do know, I hope, that you can buy a season pass (good for one full year from purchase date) to the USA National Parks and lands for $80 bucks. In other words for $80 bucks you get into every national park, forest, and BLM land that charges for entrance. Like Bryce and Zions and so forth.

    Also, if you are at all into taking your jeep off road I would recommend that you try to go on part of the Rubicon Trail, beautiful place.

    Cheers
    Brian

    • Dan says:

      Brian – The Grand Canyon is an amazing place, and I did make it to the North RIm. I’m behind a little in writing articles, it will show up soon. I remember the South Rim being much more spectacular than the North.
      The season pass is absolutely the way to go – when I bought mine in Denali the guy and I got chatting and he ended up stamping it to expire in December 2010 – so I got 18 months of access for $80. It’s paid for itself many times over by now.
      Everyone is telling me I need to go North at see Yosemite, If I do, I’ll check out some of the Rubicon Trail too, thanks for the advice.

  15. Lisa Rey says:

    Hello Dan,
    My name is Lisa and I read about you, while doing research about Christopher McCandless. I just got back from Fairbanks and talking to people in Healy, Cantwell, etc……………I would like to know if you would be interested in having your travel stories written in a book. If you are interested, please email me
    Sincerely, Lisa Rey

  16. Jacob says:

    Dan,

    Found your website via Expedition Portal – looks like an awesome trip! I’m building an expedition camper and hope to follow a similar route.

    Not sure what your plan is for Mexico but you have to stop in Sayulita (near Puerto Vallarta) if you’re going nearby. I was just there and it was great!

    • Dan says:

      Hey Jacob, I’d love to see some progress photos of your camper – what vehicle are you using for a base?
      I just spend a couple of days in Puerto Vallarta and had a great time, thanks for the advice :)

  17. Ioana says:

    As far as I can see it’s really expensive travelling like you. How much are you spending with your trips? Soon I’ll leave on my own trough my country and Im really intersted in travelling outside.
    By the way, great blog!

    • Dan says:

      Hey Ioana – actually my monthly expenses on the road (inc. gas) are less than they were living in a city!
      Sleeping in a tent is very cheap!
      I’ll make a post about my budget soon.

  18. nicki says:

    check out Patagonia. Im sure uve heard about it. Its in the southern most part of South America, Chile and Argentina. Also in the northeast of Argentina in the rainforest are amazing waterfalls called Iguazu Falls. they are incredible. U can stand right infront of a thundering fall, merely four feet infront of it. It kicks the crap outta Niagra.

    dude live the dream for all us wanders who cant do our thing yet.

    • Dan says:

      Thanks for the suggestions. I’ll be checking out Patagonia for sure and have heard many many times about Iguazu Falls, a must-see in my opinion.

  19. Yacobus says:

    Hey Dan, just came across your trip on EP. Looks like a trip of a lifetime. I just came from Belize and might be able to help as I have alot of family there, (including a doctor if you need it) email me for anything you might need. Jake

    • Dan says:

      Hey thanks Yacobus, I really appreciate the offer. Things are going great on my end, and yes, it really is the trip of a lifetime.

  20. Gracie says:

    You should head to Venezuela into the Amazon and go to the Angel Falls their beautiful. I been dying to see them. I would like to join you and experience everything this world has to offer i feel like am blinded from it’s beauty… :/

    • Dan says:

      Hey Gracie, I certainly intend to spend some time in the Amazon. Not certain about Venezuela just yet, I’ll see what happens.

  21. charl says:

    Just come across your website somehow! I am glad I did you live such a adventurous life…
    I am hoping to go travelling for 6 weeks from April hopefully, through Helpx wondering what your reviews were on that site. In addition, are there any other sites similar to it?

  22. Nathan says:

    Dan,
    Howdy! Looks like your having a great time. A friend and I will be doing a similar journey starting at the end of May. We have the website listed above that we will be updating similar to you. Hopefully you can share some of your adventures and or things to do/see with us.
    Thanks
    Nate

    • Dan says:

      Awesome Nathan. You’re going to have an amazing time. What are you driving? It’s cool to see how everyone does it a little differently. From bicycles to motorbikes to fully decked out Land Drovers going around the world.

  23. Bridget Cascone says:

    Hello Dan, I hope this message finds you well.
    I happened to stumble upon your site when doing some research of my own, on what seems to be an almost identical expedition.

    I too am eager to drive from Anchorage to Ushuaia, however I plan on doing this trip ENTIRLY on the road. Meaning; I’ll be trying to pass through the Darien Gap on land. Yikes! I know! I’ve heard…and much to my chagrin, I am being slightly dissuaded due to the dangers of the guerrilla armies and other corrupted forces that reside in the Gap.

    Nonetheless the desire remains to go ahead with the plan. It is for this that I write you this note. Are there any tips you can on-pass to a fellow traveler and is there anything I should not leave home without?

    Warmest thoughts
    ~bridget~

    • Dan says:

      Hey Bridget – I am very very interested in what vehcile you will drive? will you have a support car for the Darien? I think the 4x4ing is more of a worry than the army guys. In terms of what to bring… many copies of all your paperwork, make copies of your licence to give to the cops… I can not think of anything else right now.
      Will you be blogging on the road? I am very interested to read it!

      • Bridget says:

        Hi Dan,
        Thanks for responding to my note. I hope this message finds you well.
        Thank you for the excellent advice. I had not thought about extra copies of documentation, that is a very useful information.

        I just saw how much it cost you to ship your Jeep. Wow…was that in Canadian or American funds? Truthfully either way that is a huge chunk of change.

        As for my mode of transportation, I am in negotiations with a few auto companies right now, as I am trying to procure a vehicle that can withstand the terrain as well as leave a very tiny ecological footprint. I am looking for some form of “green” machine.

        Road Blog: I will be blogging for sure and there will be other online posts and podcasts along the way.
        I also hope that there will be some time for web chats and video streaming not to mention a few other On-line interactive surprises.

        So Dan, thus far, what can you say has been the most memorable part of your trip and the hardest part of your journey?

        Hope to hear from you soon.
        Stay safe, stay dry and may you always find blue skies.
        Warmest thoughts from a fellow adventure seeker.
        ~bridget~

        • Dan says:

          Hey Bridget.
          Wow, I’m very interested to hear what vehicle to decide upon. I don’t expect there are many in the world that can pass the Darien (although I must confess I don’t know a heck of a lot about it)
          The $770 across the Darien is US dollars, and that’s one of the cheapest crossings in a container I’ve ever heard of. It’s not cheap.
          Just remember that will podcasts, webchats, anything live the internet in Central and South America is nothing at all like North America. I usually don’t have a problem uploading my photos, but anything video related is nigh on impossible.
          Skype with voice only is reasnoable, I’ve never had a good time with video.
          Most memorable part? for sure the friends I’ve made along the way and the way my ideas about the world and my place in it are changing so rapidly.
          Hardest part? I’m starting to get pretty lonely and am missing some creature comforms more and more. I think I’ll find somewhere to settle in Peru or Boliva for a couple of months to try and alleviate that.
          Good luck!
          -Dan

  24. Bridget says:

    Dear Dan,
    I promise to keep you posted on the make of vehicle. So far everyone is convinced the road trip is do-able but nobody is sure that their car can pass the gap.

    I will confess however, due to the mere fact that I’ve never been to, let alone through the Darien Gap, I am erring on the side of caution and perhaps over exaggerating on the level of difficulty. I have the vehicle moving through swamps and mud roads and rocky terrain and thickets of brush, bush and jungle. I think I may have even mentioned quicksand in the list of minor terrors (I still worry about the guerrillas in the midst…I have not mentioned that fact to any of the potential sponsors).

    I am in constant conflict as to whether I should be shipping the vehicle of choice across the waters via container or staying true to the voyage of being the only for wheeled vehicle to “ride the spine” in completion. Is the hassle of hostage negotiation and possible death, more expensive than the mere cost of floating a car and an idealistic dream? Ah the daily battle continues.

    So are you telling me that there are no Starbuck’s in Central and South America where I can link via Wi-Fi and video podcast my journey? That’s it. Deals off! LOL

    I kind of suspected that the video uplink and streaming would be an issue but I think as long as I could post something, a 30 to 60 second compressed video clip for example in a major city along the way that would be fine by me….ah the nativity of it all. I’ll give it a go, if it happens, it happens and if not…SLIDESHOW at my house. =)

    The most memorable part of your journey sounds spot on to me. New Friends and self-discovery; is that not what we humans should be aspiring to?

    As for creature comforts; a phone call is never the same as seeing the ones you love, or the feel and comfort of your own bed, a fully functioning shower with HOT and cold water, or even the taste of crispy bacon, lettuce and tomato on toast enjoyed on the back deck of the cottage on a summer morning.
    No traveler can escape the melancholic longings of home. Those tugs are the threads in mankind’s tapestry. From time to time there may be a snag or a run but if the bonds are strong we shouldn’t unravel. Hang in there; when you get back home those who love you will love you more and you will be a stronger thread for them.

    So Dan a question “off the beaten topic”: Along your journey have you witnessed things, people or places that make you take another look at the peculiar, unexplainable or bizarre? Have you heard any good ghost stories? I often wonder about other cultures belief systems and myth systems if find them wonderfully telling and truly entertaining.

    I enjoyed your last post. “Diving Taganga & Parque Nacional Tayrona”. I loved the photos. It really does look beautiful and I know you are having fun. Just remember to stay safe. I promise if I write back to keep the next note short.
    Warmest thoughts ~bridget~

    • Dan says:

      Hey Bridget,
      Thanks for the great words of encouragement, it really helps.
      As for crossing the Darien, I think you should do what you can now to be prepared for it, and make the decision when you are actually here and more informed. Who knows, all the planning in the world won’t account for 2 weeks of torrential rain when you arrive. On the flip side, maybe you’ll bump into someone by chance who drove through the week before and can give you the entire skinny.
      One thing I know for sure, anything is possible.
      As for ghost stories or other, no I have not heard anything along those lines.
      Please do keep me informed with your vehicle and trip and blog address :)

    • Robert Stephens says:

      Hi Bridget,

      Loved your long post. Darien is a very very rough run. I entered in VEX, my Jeep, which is set up for this sort of thing about 4 years ago, but had to double back to my home in Majahual, Quintana Roo, Yucatan, where I live when not on assignment, as there were hints that Hurricane Dean was going to get right at Tulum, a few kilometers from Majahual. Got there, and 2 days later it did–as a CAT5 Hurricane. Got photos of the damage. Bad deal.

      So, wanted to get back and try the Darien again since I have an assignment coming up there in the southern reach there, in far north Colombia.

      Great post,

      Robert

  25. Bridget says:

    Hi Dan,
    I hope this message finds you well.
    This has become a daily ritual it seems, not that I mind, I certainly hope you don’t.

    Again, thank you for the sage advice. I will plan this trip as best I can from home because it will satiate the control freak in me, not to mention the more I prepare for this journey the more it will appease my worrying mother. But have no fear, I will leave a lot of room for the alternate possibilities one can encounter along the way because anything and everything is possible.

    The promise has been made, you will be the second to know (as I will be the first) which tin can/car/truck/tank will be selected for this trip. I promise to keep you in the loop and I will not only send you the blog address but I will send you personal tweets along the way (I am already following you on Twitter).

    Dan, I am sorry I started following you late in your journey but did you ever intended to drive through the Darien? What prompted you to ship your Jeep?

    I did promise a short note, so I will leave you with this:

    No ghost stories but…what about new traditions? Have you witnessed or participated in any new cultural traditions or customs, something us Canadians would look at with wonder and awe, perhaps even shock and disbelief? Are there any Festivals I should not miss or plan to see?

    Warmest thoughts

    ~bridget~

    • Dan says:

      Hey Bridget,
      I never did intend to drive the Darien – mostly because I don’t have a support vehicle and my Jeep is 100% stock. No winch, no lift, etc, etc. Also very few spares. I knew from the very beginning it was over my head and I never really thought about it again.
      Tons and tons of festivals and customs all over the place. Semana Santa (Easter) in Colombia has been amazing and I’m told it’s huge all over these parts. You’ll find hundreds of customs and festivals you never knew existed.

    • Renato says:

      Hi Dan,

      If you are still in touch with Bridget, tell her that crossing the Darien Gap was my first choice. I gave up mainly because it is nor wise to do it alone, it does not matter what car you are driving.
      Since the three of us have almos the same route I think she will also is planning to be in Alaska by June, so maybe her and I can meet along the way.
      If by any chance she sees this, feel free to contact.

      Besta regards to you Dan,

      Renato

      • Dan says:

        Renato, I´ll dig up her email address for you and pass it along. All the best for the journey man, if you ever need any information, I´m happy to help out in any way I can.

  26. Oliver Miska says:

    Hey Dan,

    So pretty much had a great few days with you. I hope you follow up with some of the things I told you about. Keep with the travel, remember ¨dream inspiring¨ is what makes us do it. See you in Canada,

    Oliver

  27. Pilar says:

    It’s amazing what you are doing! Please try to go to Venezuela, you can’t miss the Salto Angel and Canaima!…or at least “La gran Sabana”.
    Good luck!

    • Dan says:

      Hey Pilar, I thought long and hard about Venezuela, but decided to give it a miss because it’s just too unstable right now and I don’t need to push my luck any more than I have.
      I’m sure I’ll get there one day :)

  28. Matt says:

    Hey Dan!
    Have been lurking for a while. Came across your site months ago searching on ‘Into the Wild’. Been enjoying following your adventures.
    One question that I cant remember if you ever mentioned anytime…
    What are you planning for your return trip to Canada? Are you doing a reverse trip with a different route, selling the Jeep and flying back, shipping the jeep and flying back, or…????
    Thanks for letting us follow along.

    • Dan says:

      Great to hear from you Matt, and I’m happy to have you along for the ride.
      Currently, my answer to that question is “or…???”
      :)

  29. Mark Dudding says:

    Hi Dan

    I am checking out your website every couple of weeks, keep it up! I hopping that you will check out the South Ameriaca snowboarding, becouse I would love to hear what the mountains are like. I am looking forward to the seasion here in New Zealand which starts in a couple of weeks.

    My Screen saver on my computer of photos form our road trips helps me get through the working day.

    I am in Mainland China for work this week. Its good to be able to travel and not have to pay for it, even if I have to sit in a doggy factor all day.

    Mark (Duds)

  30. Rob says:

    You are living one of my dreams. I’ve been quite a few places in the Army. Middle east, all around Europe, East coast, and West coast. I just want to know what kind of crazy things have happened along the way. One day I’ll take my Jeep on an adventure. Maybe in northern Canada or Alaska. Anyways, glad to see you’re doing well. Keep it up.

  31. Robert Stephens says:

    Hi Dan,

    Sorry for the delay. The new forum, just starting it and everyone here is welcome, whether you have a Jeep or not, is here:

    http://behold-jeep.lefora.com/2011/02/28/welcome-introduce-yourself/#post2

    Too bad we cannot post photos here. Did you, or are you gonna sell your TJ? VEX, my 1983 CJ7 has over a million miles on it now, on 5 engines, had it for 20 years this month, and is great here in southern NM and in the field when shipped. I cross into the Chihuahua and Sonora Deserts here in the southwest part of the state at Antelope Wells, and it is killer cool to enter from there right into the Sonora. It’s a 700 mile reach to Rio Toro, but what a ride. Rough, but wonderful. Almost as exotic as going across the West African Reach from Ivory Coast to Mali Empire, Timbuktu…….

    If you really want to settle down a while, why don’t you look at south eastern NM, along the border country here. Las Cruces rocks. Great jumping off point to the south, and hope to get this next assignment in the Darien Gap region, as mentioned. En hablar espanol comigo me hombre’!

    Life is within Jeepin’ distance….

    Robert
    ————————–
    Have Jeep, Have Heart, Will Travel

The Rigid Security Bolt Kit means the driving lights can not be stolen. From $29.67 on Amazon
Gorilla Tape is awesome - there's nothing it won't stick to. From $14.77 on Amazon