I remember the first time I rode on the back of my Dad's bike. There's something different about riding on a motorcycle. The freedom of being out on the road comes with a vulnerability and a connection to the ride that you can't feel any other way. I can understand how Avery feels. However, embarking on a journey like this takes real guts and real "drive".
After taking two 10,000 mile camping trips during 2010 and 2011, he decided he wanted to design a fully encompassing tour of the lower 48 states. He began sifting through scenic byways and stitched the most beautiful routes he could find together. Avery had known friend and fellow rider James Bellando for six years. James also expressed a desire for a cross-country bike trip, so Avery shared his idea and James was on board. Avery and Bradley worked together as movers and one rainy day in New York City, Avery invited Brad to join to this epic bike tour. The answer was a resounding "yes"! From here they recruited Tom Solymosi and "Los Quatros" was born in 2012.
My first thoughts upon hearing about this trip was "how on earth would you go about planning something like this?" Once Los Quatros banded together they revamped the route and decided to include Alaska on their trip as well. Once they had their route on a map it required careful plotting to divide up reasonable travel distances per day between campsites. They found themselves adding time to explore destinations. They will still have to "haul ass" to make their 25,000 mile trip in their 4 month time line. The next thing on my mind was "How do you pay for something like this?" "We knew it would be the ride of a lifetime, and have shifted our lives around in order to save money and prepare. In addition to our GoFundMe campaign, we also have a group savings account, and every dollar we can save goes into it. "
I asked Avery what he's most excited about visiting and also what he's most nervous about on this trip. His answer was simple. Alaska- the wild land- this has been the group's goal and crown jewel of the trip. "We are extra excited to check out Denali, Talkeetna, Fairbanks, Kenai Fjords, Deadhorse, and the Alaska Highway! Before we adopted the name 'The Full Ride', we referred to the trip as 'To Alaska'." There are dangerous parts of this trip as well- "the leg of the journey from Fairbanks to Prudhoe Bay called the Dalton Highway is one of the most difficult roads in the US to successfully navigate on a motorcycle." Describes Avery. They are concerned about possible weather complications and of course break-downs but Avery says he's not too nervous and they'll be packing tools that they (mostly) know how to use.
This is going to be one incredible ride. I can't wait to hear about what happens as they embark on this crazy journey! The road is full of stories and this trip is sure to be packed with characters and tales from across North America. This is living, this is exploration, and this is an adventure in a time where we need more adventures. I want my children to be inspired, to have dreams and to fulfill them. That is exactly what these four friends are doing. These are memories for a lifetime.
Interested in following this journey for yourself? Please check out their facebook page and coming website (fullrideadventure.com) as well as their GoFundMe page. They'll be posting updates, videos, and stories from their trip. I have links below. All images for this blog are from "The Full Ride" facebook page! "Like" The Full Ride on Facebook and please Go Fund "The Full Ride"
Special thank you to Avery Starkey for all the time and help put into this post. Thank you for all your help! Wishing you "Good Luck" on "The Full Ride".