Lonely Planet Writer

US couple plan to motorcycle through 86 countries over four years

A couple from Alaska are planning to travel on motorbikes across 86 countries, in a humanitarian journey that will take them an estimated three to four years. Homeopathic doctor Randy McKinney and his care co-ordinator wife Lana will leave their home near Ninilchik on 15 July to embark on this epic journey, and will volunteer at orphanages and refugee camps in each country.

Randy and Lana McKinney will travel across 86 countries on motorbikes. Image: Randy and Lana McKinney
Randy and Lana McKinney will travel across 86 countries on motorbikes. Image: Randy and Lana McKinney

After they leave Alaska, Randy and Lana will drive through South America, and their trip will see them crossing Russia, Africa, Europe and India, among many other countries and continents. They plan to live in a small tent, sleep on the ground with a thin pad and sleeping bags, bathe in rivers, and eat what they can purchase at local markets and some freeze dried food, cooking on a single burner stove. As they will be away for such a long time, they will position some items at several points on their route, including new motorcycle tyres and spare parts, fresh clothes, a spare tent, sleeping bags and additional medical supplies.

The route Randy and Lana McKinney will take on their expedition. Image: TravessillaExpedition.org

They plan to help children in third world and developing countries who have the bacterial disease dysentery, the second biggest killer of children worldwide, with a compound that Randy has developed. Earlier this year he carried out an eleven-week-long “test run” from Seattle to Arizona, to find out what they need and don’t need to take on their expedition.

Randy and Lana McKinney's tent and motorcycle. Image: Travessilla Expedition
Randy and Lana McKinney’s tent and motorcycle. Image: Travessilla Expedition

Randy is originally from Washington state and Lana from Colorado, and they are parents to four adult daughters. They plan to video the experience for a documentary, and are open to having other people accompany them for all or even part of the journey. They have sold nearly everything they own, which will finance only part of the expedition, and donations to their mission can be made through their website. Follow them through their journey via the blog on their website.