Sunday, December 30, 2012

Micro Adventures // Brian Perich Expeditions by Mountain Bike

 Himalayan Blackcat MTB Expedition is back together for 2013.
 Custom rear wheel rim is a DH Jalco DD40. 
Using a 9-speed 36-spoke Shimano SLX rear hub laced with steel spokes to brass nipples.
 South Korean stone carving markers for this village.
 Custom $25 front rack, Thanks for your help AN DAE GI @ Gangneung Bike Mart
Massive Ortlieb Rollerback panniers

Winter is finally here in South Korea. Tomorrow it's time to head outdoors for an annual Snow Bike in the mountains around Pyeongchang-gun. Last year around this time, I camped at -20 and 1000 meters above sea level on drifts and a farm field covered in 5 feet of snow pack. I remember the night ride from Gangneung City, Gangwon Province on the northeast coast to the top using Daegwallyeong road (Highway 35 to Hwy 456). It's a nice course for cycle touring. Actually, that night I routed completely on the Hwy 35 past the Coffee Cupper Museum for a warm, toasty java and a free shot of expresso in my Camelback podium bottle on the refill. Adventure cycling is good in rough weather, cold or hot conditions, preferably dry heat or dry cold with snow as precipitation. Sub-24 Hour Overnight (S24O) Adventures are also known as Micro Adventures. If you are tied to work, family, other tasks at hand - the S24O is often the best solution for planning an intense, albeit short expedition of a day. I've experimented with this a few times in Korea, with a family and work - often I have no other option. These short Micro Adventures have been amazing, great positive experiences for sharing in social media, and just to be outdoors - it's a great reason to travel too. So, with little advanced planning involved, apart from reassembling a winter MTB, I'm using the old, aluminum Blackcat frame again, same components from MongoliaX2012 - to do a little more exploring up in the 1000 meter hills.

Looking back on past tours - These photos are highlights from Sichuan, China where I rode into the Himalayas from Chengdu. Exploring western China was the first and biggest expedition of my life. It was also an excellent change from the Korean peninsula. Sampling pictures, you get to taste the adventure of bicycle touring fully loaded, in a land as vast and empty as it is populated in the East.

So, there are many options for bicycle touring. You can either play if safe and adventure for 24 hours S24O - and still have great experiences in the elements - wind, rain, sun, snow accompanying you. Or you can plan bigger, longer and potentially more wild and vivid journeys through browsing the internet, reading blogs and buying Lonely Planet guidebooks like I did. Fortunately, time is on your side.

Adventure cycling is about going outdoors, experiencing nature first hand, carrying the right equipment to play safe and expedition more. The better planned, balanced and budgeted, the better the memories that will likely last the rest of your natural life on Earth. Our planet is beautiful and should be explored and protected. The natural landscapes, the empty spaces, no quarters, and friendly faces when you finally come across them on the road - are all positive and inspirational moments to keep for a lifetime.

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About the Korean-World Author

Brian Perich was an English as a Foreign Language (EFL) lecturer for a decade, father, and adventure cyclist based in South Korea.

Previously, Brian has led Canoe adventures in Quetico Provincial Park, Atikokan, Ontario, Canada (1993/1999); led Grand American camping adventures (2000); lived at Paramahansa Yogananda's SRF Ashram for 5 months (see the film "AWAKE"), formerly worked in titanium welding at Agilent Technologies, formerly worked in Winery industry in Marin County with Kendall Jackson in California; Surfing and Meditation continued for several years in California, British Columbia, South Korea, Yoga training in California 1999-2000.

Between 1994-1998 - Brian completed his own adventures with motorcycles. His motorcycling marathons took him across the United States and central/western Canada, while traveling solo over an astounding 24,000km in 60 days! Brian endured 900 mile/1300km average days in the motorcycle saddle and apparently loved every minute of those adventures.

Today, he has given up motorcycle adventures altogether, but finds an outlet for his enthusiasm in outdoor recreation while bicycle touring and micro-blogging about those experiences on his mountain bikes.

While employed as an English teacher in South Korea, Brian has became an advocate for bicycle touring on his mountain bikes. The Korean-World blog originated from those small adventures in Korea, now expanded to cover his recent trek down the TransMongolian highway to the Gobi Desert, cycling 900km east through the Khentii grasslands and in 2012 crossing Mongolia in 45 days, 2500 kilometers 1553 miles. HimalayasX expedition Brian previously cycled across western China, the Taklamakan Desert, the northern Himalayas of East Turkestan Xinjiang/Uyghur Autonomous Region, the corrugated back roads and mountains of Kham Tibet. Brian successfully completed his 2011 mountain bike expedition with 3200 kilometers / 1988 miles unsupported, on/off road MTB adventure cycling.
Brian has completed his second mountain bike journey, MongoliaX expedition - Crossing Mongolia 2012, an unsupported mountain bike MTB expedition across 2500km of Outer Mongolia from Ulanbaatar to Altai Taven-Bogd National Park bordering China, Russia and Mongolia.

In 2013, as a sequel to a trilogy of cycle tours, Brian enjoyed a more leisure bicycle tour onboard his Koga-Miyata World Traveller seeing the northern tier of the United States and western Canada covering 3400 kilometers / 2000 miles in 30 days. This North American cycle tour was called Totherocktour. Enjoying the adventure of bicycle travel and every great conversation started while traveling on the road - has refueled his inspirations to cycle around the Earth. In 2013, while he cycled solo from the Great Lake State of Michigan, United States to Banff National Park in the Canadian Rocky Mountains. He weaved through local communities and reconnected with friends, family and community after spending almost a decade in Asia.

Brian is now supporting several non-profit foundations through expeditions: IDEAS Foundation of Canada IDEAS is the acronym for Intestinal Disease Education and Awareness Society which supports the IBD community, those suffering from IBD-inflammatory bowel disease, also known as Crohn's and Ulcerative Colitis.

The second non-profit foundation is ETE.ORG - Education Through Expeditions, UK which supports educational outreach programs inside schools around the world. ETE connects explorers with students in the classroom, through an interactive online program in development (Beta).

Brian is researching support for a 18000 kilometer bicycle expedition across the Americas: North, Central and South America - ONE -Arctic to Argentina
Please contact him if you are interested in helping out.

Twitter: Cycleagain
Location: Gangneung, Gangwon-do, South Korea or southern Ontario, Canada.

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Brian's friends have also been...Cycling in Korea!

Brian's friends have also been...Cycling in Korea!

Cycling in Korea, Warning: always wear a helmet! (I gave mine to my friend)

Cycling in Korea, Warning: always wear a helmet! (I gave mine to my friend)

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