from Argentina to Alaska
September 21, 2008 6:06 AM   Subscribe

Candelaria and Herman Zapp drove from Argentina to Alaska in a 1928 Graham-Paige. They wrote and self-published a book about their trip and are now planning a similar trip across Asia.

An older version of their site with more English language text is here.
posted by maurice (12 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
What does it mean when you you click someones "who we are" link nd there is nothing there?
posted by Xurando at 6:22 AM on September 21, 2008

Nitpick, but they didn't actually drive the entire way (almost nobody does)- if you check the map here you'll see that they took a boat from Panama to Cartagena, Colombia. You have to do this because of the Darien Gap, which has no roads and is very dangerous. The first person to do an all-land automobile crossing of it took 714 days (!!!) in 1985, he came back in '95 and did it in only 49 days on a motorcycle. Don't think the Graham-Paige would make it through that, from what I hear it's doubtful the Zapps would have either.
posted by Challahtronix at 6:56 AM on September 21, 2008

Tim Cahill did something similar a few decades back.
posted by jonmc at 7:01 AM on September 21, 2008

These days the Darian Gap will probably kill you.
posted by DreamerFi at 8:26 AM on September 21, 2008 [2 favorites]

Thanks for that Darien Gap link, Challahtronix
posted by notreally at 8:45 AM on September 21, 2008

The late Ian Hibell, coincidentally the subject of a FPP just a couple days ago, was the first man to cross the Darien Gap on a bicycle, and probably the first to cross it on wheels since the British colonial era.
posted by ardgedee at 8:54 AM on September 21, 2008

I met two argentinos riding along a section of the Inca Trail in the Ecuadorean Andes, who said they were riding from Buenos Aires to New York. Years later, I found them in Long Riders Guild's Equestrian Timeline. One of them made it. (1993 Hugo Gasseolis).
posted by signal at 9:51 AM on September 21, 2008

Bypassing the Darien Gap really goes without saying in a north-south America's journey. If you do go through the Darien Gap (and survive), it is almost always mentioned right up front and highlighted in flashing lights since that alone makes the rest of the trip seem like nothing by comparison. One is traveling, the other is extreme adventure/exploration.
posted by stbalbach at 9:56 AM on September 21, 2008

That's a cool link, signal. I'm sure your familiar with Aime Tschiffely's 10,000 mile ride which sort of mirrors the path followed by Candelaria and Herman Zapp, great book called Tschiffely's Ride
posted by stbalbach at 10:02 AM on September 21, 2008

This is an awesome accomplishment. Congratulations to the two of them.
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 3:12 PM on September 21, 2008

Brett Marty, a 25-year-old documentarian for, did a similar feat a few years back, driving his car from California to Tierra del Fuego. He's now co-piloting the site's pre-election trek across the nation's swing states, and providing some excellent photography along the way.
posted by Rhaomi at 3:35 PM on September 21, 2008

I know someone doing the TransAm trip right now.
posted by Dick Paris at 5:29 PM on September 21, 2008

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