A Day In The Peruvian Andes

A Day In The Peruvian Andes

By Terry Borden:
Pre Trip Ramblings: My License to Call Others Out


Terry GT80Fearless me at the age of 11 (Before sneaking off to explore)

“Those are things other people do” is what I used to think when I’d read about families or individuals making huge changes in life direction. I would even take cheap shots at how they must be rich or have special circumstances that allowed it all to happen so easily. I had no idea how much sacrifice and planning went in to such a life change. This would be just the beginning of many life lessons.

I was 35, happily married for 12 years with a 4-year-old son, and had followed the path that everyone said you should.  You know, get married, buy a house, buy a car, buy a bigger house, have a child…you get the picture. Still, with all of that, there was something missing. Everything was so calculated and predictable that I had forgotten a sense of adventure that had been long squelched by responsibility.  I would often sit and think back to the days of being a preteen, disappearing for hours on my little Yamaha GT80 motorcycle without a care or concern with “What if’s”.  These “What if’s” were now all I thought about, and it was quietly smothering me.

Trio CanadaReady to ride after a camp stay in British Columbia

During my son’s 4th birthday party, my wife overheard me discussing motorcycles with some old high school friends who also once rode and were considering getting back into riding.  Like my friends, I too would often spot a touring motorbike on the road and try to catch up to it to see what they were carrying or where they were from. I wanted to be that kid again, mesmerized by the thought of grabbing a slice of freedom from my youth. My wife exclaimed from the other room, “Do it”. And when I dismissed her comment, she again said, “You need this. Just buy the damn bike”.  No more mental excuses. I soon found myself on Craigslist looking for my perfect machine – a BMW 1150 GS adventure touring motorcycle. I had read about the trips other guys had taken on these bikes, on and off road, camping and sightseeing along the way. Perfect!  I located this perfect machine in my price range, and off I went.

Terry 1st tour solo1st Solo Trip to Washington

After some commuting and a few short trips with friends, I was hooked. A trip with my wife to an adventure rally in the desert sealed the deal when I realized how many great people there were out there with the same passion for travel and, ultimately, life. This machine took me from being often leery of strangers to going out of my way to engage in conversation with others, hoping to share this awakening with the masses.

It wasn’t long after my purchase that my wife confessed that while riding pillion was nice, she wanted her own bike. She’s always been the adventurous one with me pushing back.  I was very excited she wanted to join in on the ride. Off again find her perfect machine and proper training.  Most of our free time was spent finding new directions to explore.

Jack & TerryIn the middle of “somewhere” USA

Our son, now almost 5, was intrigued with these 2-wheeled machines that were now the focus of much attention in our suburban neighborhood. With our son in motocross riding gear sitting between me and the tank bag, we spent many hours roaming the forests in Northern California, enjoyment every moment of our time together. We soon found a proper street riding suit for him, and he found every excuse in the book to ask to go for a ride. Short rides in town became journeys to neighboring counties.  Rides to neighboring states became international border crossings to Canada and Mexico. This is not what I had planned when I was originally told “You need this”. I had no idea this much excitement still lived inside of me. How fortunate to not only have a supportive spouse pushing me outside of my adopted comfort zone, but she wanted to come along for the ride.  And, with our son.

IMG_5172An 8 year old Jack departs for Canada on the last day of school 2009

As we’ve traveled as a family, meeting people from all over the globe, the three of us realized that for us there is more to be had in this life.  We had outgrown the suburban norm and were now those weird people who were always traveling or had a garage full of visiting motorbikes and laughter coming from the back yard.  We enjoyed hearing stories from other travelers, but the time had come for us to go see for ourselves. In May 2013, family “Trio” had decided to downsize the way we lived, save, and start making plans to leave our typical suburban life.  In just over a year, we were to leave on a journey south through Mexico, Central and South America, landing at the tip of Argentina, turn around, and ride back. It would be an 18-month trip, spending quality uninterrupted time with our preteen son to show him the world beyond the media.

For me, this is no longer what “other” people do.

Our Latin American Journey, the First of Many

As I sit here at home for the first time in 15 months I thought what better time to answer all of the questions and give trip stats from our journey.

Trip duration: 449 days
Countries visited: 15
Total trip miles: 28,716
Bribes paid: 0
Robberies: 0
Breakdowns: 1
Flat Tires: 1
Times we thought of turning back: 1
Illnesses: Let’s put it this way, there is no longer shame in shatting roadside.
On road crashes: Terry & Jack in Peru, Sandy in Ecuador. Everyone was OK in both cases.
Off road crashes: Too many to list but most happened in sand or very low speed.
Broken bones: 1, Jack fell out of a bunk bed while in the Costa Rican rain forrest.
Motorcycles: Terry & Jack 2014 R1200 GS Adventure, Sandy 2014 BMW F800 GS Adventure.
Favorite country: Very difficult to narrow it down to one. Each one had something we loved and made it memorable.
Thefts: 2 Terry’s helmet was stolen at a border of which was our own fault. Sandy’s machete was stolen at a lunch stop.
How many miles are on the bikes: 33,480
Was it hard to get parts: No, basic bits like oil, filters, chains, etc. were easy to source. Our network of travelers made it easy to get most anything else we needed.
What parts & tools did you carry: Spare tubes for the F800 and one tube for the R1200 that would fit either wheel in case the tire was too badly damaged to plug. Tire Plugs. Tire levers. GS-911 diagnostic tool for BMW Motorcycles  as well as our Adventure Designs Toolkit that was assembled to handle everything for both motorcycles.
Mechanical issues/breakdowns: Rear suspension ESA preload failure on the R1200 GS, blown fork seal R1200, but given the rough roads, unpredictable terrain, and heavy 2 up loads we were carrying both motorcycles performed beyond our expectations.

The most asked question as we have made our way home has been, “what’s next?” All we can say is Stay Tuned.


Shown below is a map of our route. We did fly the motorcycles from Buenos Aires, Argentina to Miami, Florida to explore some of the U.S. on our way home.

Total route map no terrainClick here for an interactive map

Ambushing Nick Calderone from Right This Minute

The Adventure Trio Family Wants You To Follow Them Home


“The motorcycle family of 3 that left the California suburban norm in 2014 makes their way home after over a year on the road through Mexico, Central and South America”

 Adventure Trio 2


By Sandy Borden

November 2, 2015




Dallas, Texas – In May of 2013, Terry and Sandy Borden shook hands on what would be the biggest decision in their over 25 years together. That decision? To downsize their lives, leave what was considered a “normal” life, and take to the road with their 13-year-old son, Jack, for a year and a half on 2 motorcycles. Destination? South America. What may sound like an impossibility to most became a life-altering challenge for this typical suburban family. No strangers to family motorcycle travel, it was time for the Borden’s to make a drastic change to their 90-hour-work week life before yet another year had passed.


Since Jack was 5 years old, the Borden’s have taken many family vacations on their 2 BMW motorcycles. Traveling through Canada, Baja, and across the U.S., they knew that in order to teach Jack, and themselves, about the world beyond the media, they needed to get serious and take a few risks. And, they did. Within a year before their departure, they sold the house in the burbs, relocated to the small town of McCloud, California, sold most of their belongings, and took a leave of absence from the business that Terry had been a part of for most of his life. On September 13th, 2013, they watched the garage door go down on the life they knew, setting off onto a journey of self-discovery not just as individuals, but also as a family. While many are content with weekends on the soccer fields and trips to theme parks, the Borden’s knew they were different. They soon dubbed themselves the “Suburban Weirdo’s”.

Adventure Trio 3

Now known as they Adventure Trio, this family of 3 has spent the last 14 months exploring mainland Mexico, Central and South America. They have danced in the streets of Zacatecas, Mexico, released wild turtles into the Pacific in El Salvador, and camped above 13,000 feet in the Andes of Peru. They’ve stayed in the homes of indigenous families in Guatemala and Peru. Some days, torrential rains have brought them to a halt while other days they can’t seem to get enough of the open skies of the Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia. With Jack being fluent in Spanish, the transition into a Spanish-speaking world has been smoother than most. Jack always insisted on being the “point man” at border crossings and lodging negotiations.


While a traditional schooling environment was not possible for this teenager, the family decided to take the world schooling approach, Jack self-directing his schedule with topics of interest that included local history, photography, music, and museums (though his parents did insist on maintaining a stringent on-line math program while on the road). Everyday life skills also played a major role in Jack’s learning portfolio. From everything to money exchange, daily budget and route planning through unknown territories, he now has skills he would not of gained if sitting in a classroom.

Adventure Trio 4

Their biggest lesson learned? We’re really not all that different from those in other countries. We all need food and shelter. We all want is best for our children. But, most of all, the world and all her people are extremely beautiful and kind, with arms open to welcome these strangers on motorcycles into their homes for a meal and a room for the night. What we are told we should fear is actually the opposite if only we would let ourselves experience life beyond our usual.


Now back on U.S. soil, the Borden’s are taking these last couple of months and exploring the southern states, presenting to local motorcycle and family groups, sharing their photos and stories from their time in Latin America. Currently at the home of a friend outside of Dallas, they want to invite other riders and non-riders, families and groups to share in their journey back to California. Visit their website at to see where they are in REAL TIME to find out if they are in your area. You can jump in on the ride at any point whenever you want, for as long as you want. They also invite followers to pitch a tent and sit around the campfire as they share tales from Mexico to Colombia to Brazil, sharing stories of how life on the road has changed not only how they view themselves, but the rest of the world.


You can read more about this motorcycle traveling family on their website at, as well as check out some of their favorite photos on Instagram and Twitter, @AdventureTrio. LIKE them on their Facebook page for clues as to where they are headed next. They want to inspire as many families as possible to take a look at their lives and find ways to slow down, spend less, and enjoy more. The family motto? Don’t ask why, as why not. If you don’t take this time together as a family now, then when?


About Adventure Trio


Terry, Sandy and Jack Borden, are a California family that started traveling by motorcycle when son, Jack, was just 5 years old. Feeling that travel was better explored by motorcycle, they have ventured through Canada, Baja, and across the U.S. In 2013, they made the decision to change their lives by downsizing, selling most of their goods, and taking to the road via 2-wheels for a year and a half through Latin America.


Adventure Trio 5





To learn more about the Adventure Trio or to schedule a presentation, please contact:

Sandy Borden

PO Box 654

McCloud, California 96057

Cell 530-380-2244



Twitter @AdventureTrio

Instagram AdventureTrio

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