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ADV RidesRiding South America Solo, With No GPS, Hoping to Get Lost

Riding South America Solo, With No GPS, Hoping to Get Lost

Spencer Conway is at it again, crossing continents on his trusty Ténéré 660.

Published on 09.06.2016

You may have heard of Spencer Conway before. Six years ago he circumnavigated Africa riding through 34 countries, covering 34,000 miles (55,000 km) solo and unsupported, on a Yamaha XT660Z Ténéré. The Travel Channel made a six-part series about his journey called the Africa Motorcycle Diaries and it also became a DVD.

Spencer Conway just began another big adventure of equal magnitude a few days ago. This time, he is in talks for a deal with the Travel Channel for a 12-part series following his counter-clockwise circumnavigation of South America. He’ll be traveling through 11 countries total, some of which are among the more unstable in the world.


Riding South America Spencer ConwayThe journey is expected to take roughly a year covering an estimated 31,000 miles and he’ll be traveling on a tight budget. Spencer will be riding the same Yamaha XT660Z Ténéré from his African journey, despite being offered two sponsorship deals from bike manufacturers. He turned the offers down simply because he thought it would be “cool” to ride the same bike around two continents. He’ll also be riding solo once again, with no support trucks or film crew following him.

And to make things even more interesting, he plans to navigate the entire time with only paper maps and a compass. That’s right, no GPS! “I just want to get lost,” Spencer explains.

Sounds like Spencer’s trip has all the components for a true adventure. But if he finds himself in a situation he can’t handle, he’s also carrying a SPOT 3 GPS Messenger/Tracker that will bring help with the push of a button. The journey will also be tracked continuously with the SPOT, so people can follow his movements live on his website.

Riding South America Spencer Conway

But it looks like Spencer had to get on his way before his website was completed. Its expected to be up soon though. You can follow Spencer’s journey on his website at or on his Facebook or Instagram pages.

Author: Rob Dabney

Rob Dabney started a lifelong obsession with motorcycles at the age of 15 when he purchased his first bike – a 1982 Honda MB5. Through his 20’s and 30’s he competed in off-road desert races, including the Baja 250, 500 and 1000. Eventually, his proclivity for exploration led him to dual sport and adventure riding. Rob’s never-ending quest to discover what’s around the next bend has taken him on Adventures in Latin America, Africa, Europe, Asia, and throughout the American West. As a moto journalist, he enjoys inspiring others to seek adventure across horizons both near and far.

Author: Rob Dabney

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