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The road less travelled

On a roll: Part 3


Somehow Brazil became a target for the last week of the trip. All that stood in the way was Uruguay and +/- 1500kms of tarmac to hit Brazil and back before the plane out of Buenos Aires. Heat, hospitality and fast tarmac - the coast was pretty flat, but some impressive weather systems inland on the way.

Pulling into Montevideo, I’d just missed a 150kmh storm that ripped through 2 hours earlier. Smashed glass from office block windows covering a street, trees down blocking major roads, thunder and lightning still cracking but life went on with nonchalance in town and the beer kept flowing. This was good.

Infinity dirt road tree tunnels, the Uruguayan way. In the first 3000km, I had only done the most direct routes. So for the first time, I chose the backroads - and what a revelation. Rural idylls with no rush, and everyone waves and smiles. Flat farm/marshland used for stock grazing and palm trees as far as the eye can see. 

So, the final stats came to 3500km in 21 riding days; averaging about 160km/day over 4 countries and more terrain and experiences than I ever thought possible. To anyone with any doubt about riding in Argentina, Chile, Uruguay or Brazil then pack those hesitations away; they make for a cycling odyssey to remember. Book flights now, and the adventure will follow.



The Clothing Essentials

Huez packing essentials, Starman Bibs, Race Day Jersey and the Cosimo Cap

The Huez gear came through and didn’t give up once. Performed admirably - multiple consecutive days in the saddle of hard riding. Light enough to breathe well and dry out overnight with each wash, but hardy and bulletproof enough to weather gravel, dirt, heat, snow and everything else we could throw at it.  Still going strong 5 months later and not showing much sign of letting up.

When Lorenzo said, "try the climbing top" I first baulked at the white/red being outside my usual colour comfort zone, but along with the cap has become a staple fave in the bike gear wardrobe.

Shop the look

The Tech

Kit geek alert - without sounding too much like Julie Andrews, these are a few of my favourite things. Or at least the gadgets I don't like to pack up for trips, without.


  1. @lmlightlifeVis 360+ Helmet Lighting system. Has seen me through, a tonne of times. Bright with great battery life.

  2. Sitting on the Kask Protone by @attacuscc.

  3. USB cabled 3k lumen spots. Super bright and powered by:

  4. Zendure A5 twin USB smart power pack - will run everything here for yonks.

  5. Aerolight - sits on the roadside dropbar – and adds a bit more width on the road, f/r lights, and a great backup.

  6. Anker USB smart mains charger - charges stuff, done.

  7. @GarminEdge 1000 – a genius piece of kit.

  8. @FabriccyclingUSB30 rear light – a long battery life, and motion sensing.

  9. @GoProSession – the best GoPro by far.

  10. @ultimateearsRoll BT Speaker – I have tried many; this is an outright winner. 

The Bikepack Suite 

  De-box, pack up and carry everything. @Restrap bikepack suite now complete.  Yorkshire Teabag packed-in-the-box a deal clincher.

Click here to see Howard's Packing Video 


words by Howard @pedalpilots

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