Chang Tang, Tibetan Plateau

Have you heard of the Chang Tang?

A part of the world half the size of the continental USA?

Me neither.

George Schaller made 11 trips between 1985 and 2001. I read a couple of his books so perhaps I did hear of the region.


The photographer is Galen Rowell, who’s work was admired by Ansel Adams. This was Rowell’s last adventure. He and his wife were killed in a plane crash in California.

National Geographic sponsored expedition to Chang Tang

Bruce Kirby pitched the idea to National Geographic and worked a year on the Chang Tang project. But NG went ahead without him.

book – The Dolphin’s Tooth, Bruce Kirkby

A Decade In Search of AdventureInspired by Chris Bonnington’s Quest for Adventure, a regular Canadian kid became an Adventurer.

  • cycling the Karakoram Highway
  • hiking the CANOL trail
  • paddling the Blue Nile
  • guiding paddling tours in the Arctic
  • kayaking in Belize
  • Kirkby hooked up with Jamie Clarke, Calgary’s most famous adventurer for:

  • Mt. Everest 1997 (Kirkby was communications man)
  • Empty Quarter of Arabia
  • His greatest claim to fame (or greatest sufferfest) was what he called The Grande Cirque — the first circumnavigation of British Columbia’s southern Coast Range.

    His best destination so far — the Mergui Archipelago of Burma, off-limits to everyone for the past 50 years.


    top 10 travellers

    10. APHRA BEHN

    There is no doubt Cook is the greatest of them all. His 3 voyages of discovery are unmatched.

    The rest of the top 10 can be argued.

    Certainly Michael had it a little easier than the rest.

    The 10 greatest travellers of all time

    weird world maps

    In 2003, 665 million international tourist trips were made. … Western Europe is the most popular destination for international tourists: 46% of world tourist trips. At the other extreme 0.1% of world tourist trips are made to Central African territories.

    Size shows proportion of world international tourist trips to that territory.

    world map

    Worldmapper: maps you have never seen before

    I am a big fan of wikipedia. There is no better example of what can happen if you simply get out of the way. Let people do what they want.

    The much publicized problems with the site? I’ve never had a glitch. The few minor mistakes that irked me, I corrected.

    Wikipedia is the encyclopedia that anyone can edit.

    Now I stumbled on to
    wikitravel logo

    Interesting. But why not simply include all this travel content in wikipedia?

    TV – Globe Trekker, Pilot Guides

    LP logoGlobe Trekker (also called Pilot Guides outside the United States and originally broadcast as Lonely Planet) is adventure tourism TV. This British series was inspired by Australian Lonely Planet travelbooks and has been in production for over 10-years. It is broadcast in over 40 countries across 6 continents.

    Globe Trekker – wikipedia

    Commercial TV generally depresses me. If I had a gun I’d shoot the TV, or myself.

    A great exception to the rule is this program which I love. A huge success, it is phenomenally accurate at showing what it is like to travel the backpacker circuit. No need to go yourself, actually.

    Now when will we have decent hiking television?

    want to hike South America?

    Next week I will announce the South America page. A resource for any hiker wanting to get started organizing a trek. I focused on South America first as it is the best neglected continent by hikers. Information on hikes in the Andes is more critical than in the Alps, by comparison.

    Best hikes & treks in South America.

    My favourite photo on South American hikes was professionally published by Radek Tezaur. This is the Dientes Circuit in Patagonia, perhaps the world’s most southern major hike.


    Goliath Expedition

    KarlThe longest hike ever?

    Karl Bushby is walking around the world. 12 years. 36,000 miles.

    He started in Patagonia, Nov. 1st, 1998 with about $800 in his pocket. And started walking north.

    HEY, he crossed from Alaska into Siberia over an ice “bridge” on the Chukchi Sea (north of the Bering Straits).

    But his expedition is in trouble. The Russians are threatening to throw him out due to problems with his paperwork. (BBC newstory April 6, 2006)

    I expect after putting in 7 years on this project, Karl will find a way to finish it. Good luck.

    Goliath Expedition – Karl Bushby

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