All I have is this old Land Rover Defender. The top speed is eighty miles per hour downhill. There is no automatic transmission, no automatic air lift suspension, no automatic anything. It doesn't have an engine computer. In fact, there are no electronics. There are no wheel lockers and no body lift.
Only a crazy person would drive a twenty-five year old vehicle around the world.
How will I ever suvive? If I am not back in ten years, call 911.
RTW LAND ROVER DEFENDERS - REST OF THE WORLD
Not all Land Rover Defenders are created equal.
Some Defenders carry the designation RTW which means Rest of The World. The RTW Defenders are engineered to survive the rigors of serious offroad travel in the developing world. No electronic bells and whistles on these vehicles.
Large portions of the world don't necessarily want or need all the bells and whistles found on vehicles rolling off assembly lines. A basic vehicle built like a tank is better by far because there are no expensive electronics that can fail and leave you stranded when you are five hundred miles from a technical center that can fix your electronics.
For me RTW also means Round The World, because I want to drive my Defenders around the world.
People who know Land Rover Defenders generally purchase older vehicles if they are going to undertake serious expeditionary travel. The reasons is simple. Electronics.
They don't want a vehicle with an engine control module that might fail in a remote location. Engine computers and expeditions don't go well together. They want a turbo diesel engine with no electronics that can fail. For most round the world travellers, that means a 300tdi engine in a Land Rover Defender. And that is exactly what I have in all three of my Defenders.
People engaging in expeditionary travel have different requirements than people who live in big cities.
Explorers need extremely tough vehicles that stand up to the rigors of expeditionary travel, and when something does break, you must be able to fix it yourself with simple tools from a small tool box.
Car manufacturers are experts at making vehicles that appear to be tough, but when they are put to the test of expeditonary travel, a demolition derby begins. It's all about engineering.
Car manufacturing is more about marketing than it is about engineering. Cars are engineered to survive excursions to the mall with an occasional trip on a gravel road, but the vehicle components are not built for expeditionary travel. If you are going to use the vehicle for challenging terrain, you need lots of upgrades in the suspension and powertrain if you want the vehicle to survive.
Land Rover Defenders are built tough right off the assembly line. You don't need any modifications or upgrades to the vehicle for it to survive an expedition.
A totally stock vehicle does the job just fine straight off the showroom floor. The vehicle is so basic that you can actually get the truck shipped to you in a bunch of boxes, and you assemble it yourself.
Sometimes people have contests to see who can assemble a vehicle most quickly right out of the box. A good set of wrenches, sockets, and rivets is all you need to get the job done.
I have taken unmodified Defenders straight into the Arabian desert, and they perform perfectly without any special vehicle preparation.
Land Rover Defenders are special for one other reason.
The can carry a mind boggling amount of gear without breaking down. I have loaded my Defenders with long range fuel tanks, thirteen jerry cans of fuel, a couple of hundred liters of water, enough food for a week, four passengers with all their gear, and the Land Rover carries the load without complaint. The fuel mileage decreases with the heavy loading, but the vehicle does not complain.
A Defender kitted out as an expeditionary vehicle is a wonder to behold. You have to see it to believe it.
And when you ride in a fully loaded Defender offroad, you witness engineering that matches the load to the terrain. No demolition derby happens. The Defender just keeps on keeping on.
A Defender is better because there are no bells and whistles.
It is simply great engineering that takes you anywhere you want to go.
When you drive around the world in a Defender, you know that you will survive, and that your truck will survive as well.
And best of all, you will not have to call 911.
Awesome music video that captures the essence of what it's like to sail offshore in a catamaran around the world when conditions are less than perfect. David Abbott from Too Many Drummers sings the vocals, and he also edited the footage from our Red Sea adventures. This is the theme song from the Red Sea Chronicles.
Sailing up the Red Sea is not for the faint of heart. From the Bab al Mandeb to the Suez Canal, adventures and adversity are in abundance. If you take things too seriously, you just might get the Red Sea Blues.
If you like drum beats, and you like adventure, then have a listen to the Red Sea Chronicles Trailer.
Flying fish assault Exit Only in the middle of the night as we sail through the Arabian Gulf from the Maldives to Oman. And so begins our Red Sea adventures.
Sailing through Pirate Alley between Yemen and Somalia involves calculated risk. It may not be Russian Roulette, but it is a bit of a worry. Follow Team Maxing Out as they navigate through Pirate Alley.
Stopping in Yemen was just what the doctor ordered. We refueled, repaired our alternator, and we made friends with our gracious Yemeni hosts. We also went to Baskins Robbins as a reward for surviving Pirate Alley.
After you survive Pirate Alley, you must sail through the Gate of Sorrows (Bab Al Mandab) at the southern entrance to the Red Sea. The Gate of Sorrows lived up to its name with fifty knots of wind and a sandstorm that pummeled Exit Only for two days. Life is good.
Join Team Maxingout as they sail through Pirate Alley and up the Red Sea
See what it's like to cruise on a catamaran before you spend a bazillion dollars purchasing one
After watching the Red Sea Chronicles you will be able to see yourself sailing on the ocean of your dreams
Although I like the feel of a paper book in my hand, I love trees even more. When people purchase an eBook, they actually save trees and save money as well. Ebooks are less expensive and have no negative impact on the environment. All of Dr. Dave's books are available at Save A Tree Bookstore. Visit the bookstore today and start putting good things into your mind. It's easy to fill your mind with positive things using eBooks. No matter where you are or what you are doing, you can pull out your smart phone or tablet and start reading. You can even use electronic highlighters and make annotations in your eBooks just like paper books.