Family on Bikes in Ecuador
John, Nancy, and twins Davy and Daryl Vogel
by Dawn Ballou, Pinedale Online!
November 9, 2009
On June 8, 2008, a family of four from Boise, Idaho embarked on a 2 1/2 year bicycle trip traversing the Pan-American Highway from Alaska to Argentina. Parents John and Nancy, and their 10-year-old twins Davy and Daryl, are traveling with two single bikes and a tandem, which allows the boys to switch back and forth between the single and tandem. Once they arrive in Argentina at the end of their journey, Davy and Daryl will become the new Guinness World Record holders as the youngest people to cycle the Pan-American Highway. Along the way, parents John and Nancy, both long-time teachers, are "home schooling" their sons along the way to keep them up on their schoolwork. They are incorporating the sights and history they encounter along the way as they travel the Pan American highway.
We first met this family a little over a year ago on October 9, 2008, when they arrived in Pinedale and heard reports of a strong winter storm threatening to drop from three to ten inches of snow in the Upper Green River Valley, and bringing blizzard conditions and wind chill values to 10 below zero further south near Rock Springs over the weekend. They decided to hold tight and not venture out in our remote country confronted by the full force of a Wyoming winter storm. They stayed at High Country Suites in Pinedale until the following Monday, when the weather returned to sunny conditions and "warm," all the way up to around 39 degrees. Click on this link for the story on the Vogel family in Pinedale: Family on 20,000-mile bike trek visits Pinedale Pinedale Online, October 10, 2008.
The family continued on their way and traveled from Texas into Mexico with the new year. It took seven months to travel through Central America. They crossed into Columbia, South America on August 1st, 2009. They made it into Ecuador in late October.
The family plans to stay in the little town of Pimampiro, Ecuador for a month or so, then slowly make their way through Ecuador. "We'll plan on a couple of months slowly snaking our way southward through the Ecuadorian Andes," Nancy wrote in her blog. "John has been working frantically to overcome a nasty virus that infected every technological gadget we have. And the kids are making pancakes, pancakes, and more pancakes."
The family has had many adventures on their trip and met many interesting people. They are chronicling the stories and uploading photos to their blog. They are using their trip as an educational experience not only for their own children, but by volunteering their time with Reach the World (RTW), an educational 501(3)(c) non-profit organization with the mission of linking students in under-funded schools to online, global expeditions. The family links to RTW’s classrooms via an interactive website and live Internet chats, www.reachtheworld.org.
Follow the family’s adventure on their website: www.familyonbikes.com