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View Poll Results: Would you be intersed in driving the Pan-American Highway?
Hell yea, sounds like fun!!! 21 67.74%
Na, got better things to do with my money! 3 9.68%
Maybe, if I knew more... 7 22.58%
Are you f@#$!ng nuts?????????? 0 0%
Voters: 31. You may not vote on this poll

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Unread 08-28-2009, 02:14 AM   #1
Bandit1
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Pan-American Highway Expedition

I have been thinking about starting to prepare to drive the Pan-American Highway starting at the American-Mexican border. If there is enough interest, I will continue the planning. I have already began to draw up a rough copy of the expedition list. I will post that later once it is a little more complete.

I would be planning on actually making the trip in apx 10 years with an estimated cost of about $30-50K per Jeep. I would be interested in seeing if anyone else would be interested in possibly making the trip with me, IF I GO. This is the 1st step, step 2 would be to start the actual planning and making the packing list.

I would like to keep the vehicles to only Jeeps if possible, but would not turn anyone interested down. Keep in mind, that you will have to have a trailer to carry most of your spare stuff that wont fit in your Jeep. I will not consider this trip with less than 5 Jeeps. In addition, your Jeep must have at least 2 people, but you may bring as many as you have seat belts for.

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Unread 08-31-2009, 11:00 PM   #2
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The basic idea is to drive from here in NY, meeting up with who ever along the way. I am thinking at this point that one of the border crossings in TX will be where we start and pick up the Pan-American Highway. I forget right off hand where exactly one of the original starting points is, but that would be where we start and head south to Mexico City.
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Unread 09-01-2009, 09:19 AM   #3
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Sounds like it would be one heck of a road trip. I'll join you if I win the lottery.
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Unread 09-01-2009, 02:38 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Polecat View Post
Sounds like it would be one heck of a road trip. I'll join you if I win the lottery.
Yea, i hear ya on that...the idea started out as one of those "if i hit the lotto" things. but the more i thought about it, the more i wanted to plan and do it. the cost per Jeep is estimated and includes everything from fuel to mods to equipment. and because of the cost of it, that is why i am planning so far in advance, i know that i have a better chance of getting hit by lightning for the 3rd time than i do hitting the lotto, LOL, yes, i have been struck twice b4.

and even though i want to drive all the way down right now, when it does happen, we may end up only driving as far as we can in panama then back again, wont know till we leave...
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Unread 02-13-2012, 08:00 PM   #5
hndswthtshdws
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Sorry, but I'm going to rain on your parade here.


You know the Pan-American highway is a highway right? You could drive 99% of it in a Honda Civic if you wanted to. Its not exactly an expedition journey.

San Antonio to Panama is only 2600 miles. I've driven 2100 miles stopping only for energy drinks and gas. 40 hours and a lot of that was worse than the pan-am. Lost a little sleep but made good time. Obviously you want to take your time and see the sights, but its not that big of a drive.

$30-50k is a little excessive for gas money and camping equipment. Give me $3500 for gas money and some wal-mart camping equip and I'll drive my Jeep to Panama and back. What spares are you going to carry? I'd carry a tire and a jerry can. Wouldn't bother with axle shafts, brakes, fuel pumps, etc. What have you replaced in the last 5000 miles of highway driving? Before you leave change your fluids, brakes, and maybe tires and do a few oil changes along the way.

If you want to go right down to the top of South America, Its going to cost you a grand to get your rig across the Darien Gap on a boat. Thats it. Maybe some more for a trailer. South America is a little rougher but the pan-am is still a mostly paved highway down there. Not exactly crossing NW Queensland.

Wont do it without a group of 5 Jeeps? People have done USA to the tip of South America on a moped.

I've looked into it extensively. Might do Alaska to Ushuaia on an enduro someday.



My recommendation: stay off the pan-am as much as possible. Get to South America and tour around. The Pan-am is boring. Put some gravel in your travel. Take the road less traveled. Take the Scenic Route. Etc. If you do this then you will need spares and more than wal-mart camping equipment.
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Unread 02-14-2012, 11:00 AM   #6
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you are not going to rain on my parade, but as part of the trip, I want to tackle some of the tougher roads like the "Death Road" and such. Yes, I have watched TV and saw the IRT show were they drive some of the roads around the world and I realize that yea, you may be able to do most of it in a civic, but I have also read up on in myself and in South America the research has said that parts of the Highway can be impassible certain times of the year. This to me translates, if you have the right vehicle (locked Jeep with mud tires) you can pass... not knowing when that time of year would be, better to prepare for it rather than hope you make it. In addition, I have found some rough maps of the highway and there are several off shoots from the main part. I dont want to stick to just paved road... there would be some time to hit some of the off road spots along the way.
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Unread 02-15-2012, 11:36 AM   #7
19OlllllllO41
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The idea is very cool, but how the heck could it possibly cost 30-50k per Jeep? What is calculated into that cost?
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Unread 02-15-2012, 02:00 PM   #8
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IRT is pretty staged. One of the "deadliest roads" seasons was only filmed on like 30 miles of road.

Still - sounds fun to get out and see the world!
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Unread 02-22-2012, 10:52 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Millermagic View Post
IRT is pretty staged. One of the "deadliest roads" seasons was only filmed on like 30 miles of road.

Still - sounds fun to get out and see the world!
Understood, but the core Idea is to get out with the jeep and maybe the family and friends and see places I might only get the chance to see once in my life. I would love for it to work out but this is one of those IF I HIT THE LOTTO things, that could be reality when I am about 70. I just dont want to wait that long to do it.
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Unread 02-22-2012, 01:38 PM   #10
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id say look into the Trans America Trail. It a trail that was mapped out by a dual sport biker of jeep roads and fire roads from tenn to Oregon i believe. Most of it can be done in a Jeep, there may be a few passes that are single track and will need some creative work to get around.
Ive been looking into this for a while and it seems like a great trail to start expeditioning: its all in the US, which saves a lot of hassles and problems, and its pretty well documented and explored previously, but still gets you damn far away from normal civilization.
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Unread 02-22-2012, 02:17 PM   #11
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I agree with hnds; you don't need that much cash.

The PA Highway TODAY should be boring. But in 1972...

A little story...

On January 31, 1972, my dad drove us (family of 5, I was 10 years old) from Chicago to Brazil in a 1970 4-door Chevy Impala 350 V8 pulling a converted uhaul trailer. It took us 30 days. Mexico and Central America, for the most part, was smooth. Costa Rica had boulders the size of TJs on the side of the road. Peru and Bolivia had road washes due to rain. Due to Political turmoil in Colombia and Ecuador, it was suggested we skip those countries...so we waited a week in Panama for a ship (the "Donizetti") to take us to Lisboa, Peru. From there, the Impala had issues with the fuel-air mixtures due to high altitudes in Peru/Bolivia. Not sure if EFI would encounter the same issues. A few flat tires along the way...an overnight stop in a prison in Peru...payola to border patrols...etc. We finally hit Santa Cruz, Bolivia, where the car and trailer were placed on a flat rail car and taken the rest of the destination (overnight).

My buddy and I have dreamed of making this trip again, but this time driving all the way to Tierra Del Fuego.

Some items to consider:
Although us Americans complain about gas prices, prices in Mexico, C.A., and S.A., are 40% more (unless you're in Venezuela, where it's actually cheaper than US).
Crossing borders - plan ahead to get Visas/permissions to drive through
Border agents - have plenty of payola if necessary
Flaunting USA - DON'T - no US flags or stickers
Camping - You can't camp just about anywhere; look for approved camp sites
Language - Gosh darnit, learn some Spanish so the first words coming from your mouth aren't "Habla Ingles?"

Good luck.
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Unread 02-22-2012, 02:24 PM   #12
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Here's a pic of us in Arequipa, Peru some time in late Feb, 1972. El Misti in the background.
mount1.jpg  
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Unread 02-24-2012, 10:04 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubes View Post
I agree with hnds; you don't need that much cash.

Some items to consider:
Although us Americans complain about gas prices, prices in Mexico, C.A., and S.A., are 40% more (unless you're in Venezuela, where it's actually cheaper than US).
Crossing borders - plan ahead to get Visas/permissions to drive through
Border agents - have plenty of payola if necessary
Flaunting USA - DON'T - no US flags or stickers
Camping - You can't camp just about anywhere; look for approved camp sites
Language - Gosh darnit, learn some Spanish so the first words coming from your mouth aren't "Habla Ingles?"

Good luck.
Your things to consider are part of the reason for the higher estimate on money... also, to take 6-12 months off, have to have an income for those that have families that stay behind. so with that in consideration, my high amount of cash may be a little bit more on than most would think. also, keep in mind, I also estimated fuel costs at $5/gal average back when they were half that here in New York. Plus I would be driving from here to Prudo Bay, Alaska all the way down, then back up to Texas and then across back to New York where I started. I also estimated cost to ship the vehicles around the Darien Gap in that amount as well. I figure its better to over estimate and not need it rather than under estimate and be left stranded and the cushion can be used for souvenirs and site seeing along the way on the return trip home.
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Unread 02-24-2012, 12:08 PM   #14
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It sounds like a cool idea, I'd be interested. I'm actually planning one currently to leave around March 2013. I'm still gathering all the info and doing research on border crossings, etc..I'm in the process of outfitting my jeep with AEV front/rear bumpers and put aside about 10K for the trip not including vehicle / supply preperation.
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Unread 04-06-2012, 06:56 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by jaxs1984 View Post
It sounds like a cool idea, I'd be interested. I'm actually planning one currently to leave around March 2013. I'm still gathering all the info and doing research on border crossings, etc..I'm in the process of outfitting my jeep with AEV front/rear bumpers and put aside about 10K for the trip not including vehicle / supply preperation.
Just an idea if you have not done so already, but check out WWW.EXPEDITIONPORTAL.COM. Great site to get info on for hat kinda trip

Also check out the Overland Wiki site as well. Dont have the web address with me, but you can google it.

Correction, found it... http://wikioverland.org/
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