Happy New Year 2012!

We wish you a Happy New Year and all the best for 2012!

The Love Bug in front of the so-called Salvation or Love Mountain in Niland, California.

The House of the Setting Sun

There is a house in Ridgecrest, they call the setting sun…
It was again just an unbelievable gorgeous sunset we had here in Kern County today. Domi immediately grabbed a camera and ran outside. What he saw remembered him of the traditional folk song “The House of the Rising Sun” – even though it was a sunset.

Sunsets in the Desert

Herbie is enjoying the sunsets out here in the desert. In fact our camp is located in the Mojave Desert of California. A big sky and these huge landscapes are creating an incredible atmosphere – and the best thing is, there is no humidity at all!

When we got back to the United States there was no single rust spot on one of the chrome parts on Herbie, even though our beloved VW Beetle was waiting for us just outside. We think that he’s feeling very comfortable in such dry area.

Booking confirmed

If everything works out Herbie will go on a cruise across the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea. His ship leaves on January 30 in Veracruz, Mexico, and reaches Cartagena, Colombia, on February 6.

Anyway we’ll have to drive down there first. Our route will lead us through three time zones within California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas before crossing the border to Mexico.

Just the Best for Herbie

Many people ask us what kind of motor oil we use while traveling around the world with a camper in tow. We are probably pretty different to others but there is one thing for sure, Herbie just gets the very best – especially regarding his engine.

Therefore we are just using fully synthetic oil with a very high high-temperature viscosity rate like a 15W-50 or a 5W-50. And we think it doesn’t really matter what kind a car you have – a fully synthetic with a number 50 or even 60 in the end is always the better bet.

Herbie Goes Bananas

From Ridgecrest, California, where we are now, via Brownsville, Texas, to Veracruz, Mexico, Herbie will have to drive 2,350 miles (or 3,780 kilometers) to get on a vessel in order to be shipped to Columbia. This is actually our plan for January!

“That’s one small step for a man, one giant leap for Herbie”. This is not a mission to the moon but it is still quite a trip, although our Volkswagen brought us already so far. But we are pretty sure that he’ll manage this too.

Our plan is to travel across South America following our “Yellow Brick Road” – this time the Pan-American Highway. So we’d travel through countries like Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile and Argentina.

Merry Christmas!

We wish you a “Merry Christmas”!
You’ll find today’s issue of the Austrian newspaper “Heute” in which we are sending our Christmas wishes to our Austrian fellows, friends and family members. If you don’t have the chance to get the printed version here’s a copy or you read the article online.

The OZ House

This week’s issues of “The Daily Independent” and “The News Review” in Ridgecrest include stories about “The OZ House” and our friend and camp’s host Lyle Gregory and his brother Noli Laqui from the Philippines.

A very nice Shot

Our dear friend Michael Lee Phillips took a very nice shot of Herbie in front of the Trona train tracks in Searles Valley, California.

The Darién Gap

We’re planning to go to South America next, in order to continue Herbie’s World Tour. We’ve already driven across all 48 lower United States, we went to Canada and traveled through Mexico and all Central American countries. There is just South America left. But why haven’t we been there yet?

We actually wanted to go there last time but we couldn’t because first of all our passports were completely marked and full with visas and secondly we didn’t want to ship our car and camper at that time. Many people forget that there is a “huge” gap between Panama and Colombia – at least for travelers who depend on roads.

The so-called Darién Gap is a 54 miles (87 kilometers) stretch of rainforest in the very south of Panama where they tried to build a road in order to complete the Pan-American Highway system but they failed. So there is still this gap and the only way to do it is going by plane or either by boat around it.

The Pan-American Highway is with 29,800 miles (47,958 kilometers) the world’s longest driveable road and goes all the way from Alaska down to Tierra del Fuego (Chile).