For immediate release
When you say the word road trip in the presence of Tammy and Bernard Barbour of Clarksville, this couple’s ears perk up and their eyes gloss over with excitement. You see this road warrior couple are departing for a road trip of epic proportions in just a few days. Driving from Clarksville Tennessee to Ushuaia Argentina. “We’re leaving on my wife’s birthday, June 20th” Bernard says enthusiastically. They estimate this trip to the bottom of the world will take them anywhere from 18 months to two years. They plan to mark a bunch of things off their travel bucket list. The Panama Canal, Galapagos Islands, Machu Picchu and more they say. “I’ve always been fascinated with Bolivia” Tammy says, “ I can’t wait to explore Patagonia” Bernard chimes in.
The trip will take them through 13 countries. It will include shipping their vehicle around the Darien Gap from Panama to Columbia. México, Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panamá, Colombia, Ecuador, Perú, Bolivia, Chile and Argentina. While not new to overlanding travel, in 2014 the couple spent eight months driving all throughout Mexico and much of Central America. “ This time we want to explore more” the couple said with a chuckle. “Sometimes when we tell people what we are doing they think we are crazy, but if you research you’d find there’s a fairly substantial amount of people out there overlanding” Tammy said. “We keep up with a wide variety of people who are out there as we speak driving all around Mexico, Central and South America.” Is it dangerous many ask? Of course it is, no more dangerous than wandering in the wrong neighborhood in any big city USA” says Bernard. The people we’ve met on previous journeys have become like family. Inviting us to their homes, showing us great hospitality and learning a lot about their customs, culture and lifestyle.
As a retired Military couple they will easily admit they have the travel bug bad. Being stationed in Europe and Asia during much of his military career, Bernard says he really never got a opportunity to explore South America, so this trip will be a chance to see what he’s been missing. Tammy’s working on her third passport as well. We set a goal to see as much of the world as we could. In 2015 they traveled to Hawaii, England, and Canada all in the same month. Bernard says it all started with him when he got his first passport. “I’m on my 4th passport now and one I almost managed to completely fill with stamps” he says.
While the trip will include many fun touristy things to do, they will also be volunteering. Animal conservation projects in Belize, Costa Rica and Panama are already on the to do list as well as Habitat for Humanity in Guatemala. “If we happen upon a worthy project on our travels we’ll be flexible enough to adjust our schedule to participate.” they say.
The couple have their 2008 Toyota Tundra with a truck camper all decked out for the trip. They admit their truck and camper does attract some attention.”Many people ask us what’s that black thing sticking out the side of our truck?” he said. In addition to having a snorkel fitted, there’s a winch, front grill bar, auxiliary lights, the suspension is heavy duty and lifted, and they are carrying some critical spare parts. the truck camper has a bathroom, A/C, kitchen, which Tammy loves.
“Since the kids are grown and have started their own families, we decided to rent our house and hit the road full time” they say.
On the 20th of June their adventure begins leaving from Clarksville heading south. “Passport, camera, spanish lesson CD’s, check!” Tammy laughs! We are ready to go!