Cow Racing in Sumatra (Pacu Jawi)

Cow Racing in Sumatra (Pacu Jawi)

Grip tightened, throttle open, lowered helmet cutting through black diesel. I was the last in the three-motorbike convoy that left the Harau Valley at high speed. I kept up for maybe an hour or so before the mad tentacles of Sumatran traffic separated us. It came in...
Climbing Gunung Marapi in West Sumatra

Climbing Gunung Marapi in West Sumatra

Charcoal clouds swirled across an onyx moonscape of mud. Hanging around didn’t seem like a good idea. Precious few things get me going at 04:30. Sunrises definitely aren’t one of them. I made that mistake once in Maui. Flip-flopped and freezing, I nearly broke my...

Finding Adventure This Summer

Yes, I know that the leaves are changing and summer is a hopeful dream on the other side of an impending winter. But British Airways recently asked me to recommend some favorite places to go in July. The recommendations for each month will be put into a Year-Round...
Climbing Gunung Sibayak in Sumatra

Climbing Gunung Sibayak in Sumatra

Two months ago I tackled Gunung Sibayak — an active volcano in North Sumatra, Indonesia, with three new friends. The visuals, eerie landscape, and risky down climb were part of an adventure that I’ll never forget. As an added bonus, I was kept awake all...

Trouble in Lake Toba, Sumatra

Amazing how sore a few days on a motorbike can make your bottom. There are two types of motorbike drivers in Southeast Asia: those that have already fed the concrete and those that are going to feed the concrete with skin and blood. Luckily, I’m still a part of...

My First Encounter with Headhunters

A quick twist of the throttle sent wind through my hair and vibrations from my buzzing motor through my body. Mile after mile of gorgeous volcanic scenery kept unfolding in front of me on what is perhaps the most enjoyable motorbike ride of my life. On my left,...