1. My Tours
I usually organize solo tours, i.e. I manage and look after myself and my equipment myself. Not all of my tours follow a fixed schedule, nature is not a train station, and certainly not wilderness. If the weather is unsuitable, for example, I would rather invest a few days more time on site than not being able to reach a target at all. It is not uncommon for the tour planning to be preceded by a relatively large amount of effort, and it is not always possible to return to the place a second time, or else the circumstances may be even more unfavorable. Usually I plan a certain amount of time into account, but sometimes this is not enough either. In addition, my tours not only require physical, but also, above all, mental stress. During an expedition, many people first think of the dangers in a foreign country, but in fact, people themselves are their biggest problem. Not everyone can cope with not meeting other people for several weeks, or even staying in contact with others by phone or the Internet. For some time now, it has not only been about the fear of being alone on site, but also about alienating supposed online friends by lack of smartphone contact. Such stress often weighs more heavily than the lack of an orderly daily rhythm or the long-awaited hot shower. Sometimes, however, for less challenging activities, or for people who are particularly adventurous, I also tour with company; either from the start of the tour, or you happened to find yourself somewhere along the way. In such cases I pay particular attention to the quietness of the manageable small group in order to avoid any unnecessary disturbance of our surroundings. With more than 8 people including myself, I have never been on the road in this context, and I do not plan to do so in the future. 4-5 are a good group size, but experience has shown that there are few problems with two people (not counting dogs). I don’t want to promote mass tourism, and as a tourist I don’t feel comfortable either (certainly not at all), more like a part of the region I visit, which I thank for their hospitality.
2. Tour charakter
In the event that fellow travelers can and would like to accompany me on my tours, I have provided these activities with corresponding icons, which illustrate the general character of the respective tour. The specified level of difficulty is always based on the tour average, of course there can be small deviations from it. Some of the tours described are even child and dog-friendly, i.e. sometimes also suitable for children who feel comfortable in outdoor activities, as well as suitable for sporty and socially well-tolerated dogs.
|qualification||suitable for beginners||for the ambitious||for the experienced|
|marking||o o o / green||o o o / yellow||o o o / orange|
|fitness level||No special skills are required, you will meet all everyday requirements without restriction. You may not be particularly fit, but you also don’t lie on the couch all the time.||In everyday life you prefer to use stairs / bike instead of elevator / car, and enjoy sufficient physical activity in the fresh air, you are relatively fit. In numbers:> 150W on the stress ECG.||Above all, your life includes exercising sporting hobbies and regular intensive physical training. In numbers:> 220W on the stress ECG.|
|Marked out hiking trails, field, forest and meadow paths, plains to low mountain ranges, light hiking shoes are sufficient, I recommend half-height boots||Unpaved paths, forest paths with roots, typical also longer low mountain slopes, moderate climbing, easy trekking, sturdy shoes and surefootedness are necessary||Unpaved to completely missing paths (cross-country) and narrow paths with obstacles (including streams / rivers) and dense vegetation, technically demanding via ferratas, medium to high mountains, longer trekking, sturdy boots of category B / C necessary, I recommend good trekking poles|
|paved as well as simple gravel and forest paths, slight inclines, moderate descents, low driving technique required||Unpaved roads, coarser gravel and forest roads with roots, medium inclines, fast descents, good driving skills necessary||Unpaved gravel, stone and forest paths with large roots and boulders, steep inclines and declines, rapid descents with sharp bends, narrow paths, special trails and slopes, a high level of driving safety required|
|calm inland waters or lakes and rivers up to WWI, simple paddles are usually sufficient||Large lakes, wide and fast-flowing rivers, WWII, sea coasts, I recommend robust touring / expedition paddles||Open sea without direct proximity to the shore, alpine white water rivers, WWIII, knowledge of rescue and survival techniques as well as appropriate equipment are necessary|
(driver’s license required)
|Unpaved roads with small stones, simple mountain passages, shallow water passages, vehicle contact with vegetation cannot be ruled out, AT tires are sufficient||Unpaved paths and slopes with stones or large obstacles, normal mountain passages with light scree, possible river channels, vehicle contact with branches and twigs, differential lock (s) recommended, depending on the tour and vehicle, good AT or MT tires and driving skills are required||Extreme terrain situations with difficult entanglement passages, deep holes, steep mountain passages, deep river channels with coarse stone and rock, extreme vegetation such as deep forests with swamp passages or wide deserts with dune drives, large ground clearance, differential locks and well-profiled MT tires are necessary, a winch is of Advantage and sometimes also necessary|
I mainly spend the nights far away from civilization, and depending on the tour and vehicle, in the open air, in the expedition tent, or sometimes directly in, under or on the vehicle. Depending on the country in question and any proximity to civilization, I also spend the night in typical accommodations; this can range from a simple guest house with a shared shower to a hotel with a private bathroom. Tour participants should therefore have an affinity for overnight stays in the wilderness, and generally be undemanding to accommodation; chic hotels are only used when a stay in large cities is necessary.
Due to my freedom of time and space, my tours are, with the exception of a few restaurant visits, purely “self-catering tours”. Groceries are bought as fresh as possible on site and prepared as freshly as possible according to the circumstances of the outdoor kitchen. Everyone can decide for themselves what he or she would like to eat, mutual agreements have proven successful. However, on longer expeditions without a supply I often have to resort to ready-made meals, and on trekking tours through the wilderness anyway. The following system has proven itself: whoever takes part in the meals, also participates unsolicited in their preparation, as well as the subsequent dishwashing. In addition to dinner, a balanced breakfast is the most important meal of the day. On the go, it rarely makes sense to take a lunch break, if only to take advantage of the valuable daylight. The little hunger in between is defeated with quick snacks, nobody has starved in my presence. You should say goodbye to regular meals at fixed times, i.e. the usual constraints of everyday life; an expedition is not a club hotel. Only possible food intolerances (as well as possible allergies or other restrictions) should be announced in good time; Medical assistance can sometimes be distant and very costly.
In my long-haul vehicle, I usually carry drinking and service water with me, but the amount of water available on a daily basis can vary depending on the tour and climatic region. While in some countries I have less to worry about the availability of drinking water and can clean it if necessary without great effort, there is a need for rationalization in other regions. Valuable drinking water is basically not used there for hygienic purposes or for cleaning objects. At least one stable and sufficiently large drinking bottle (at least 1 liter) is mandatory on every tour. If you want to sterilize precipitation, surface or groundwater, you should have your own means with you, which he or she can tolerate, i.e. has previously adequately tested.
Depending on the tour, there is a very different ratio of on- and off-road. The nature of side roads and especially off-road routes is subject to the influence of the forces of nature and is therefore subject to constant change. Heavy rainfall, storms and natural erosion can make otherwise easily navigable roads impassable. Dried out river beds can fill up quickly and unpredictably, while smaller rivers that are otherwise effortlessly waded through can become impassable for a short time after heavy rainfall. Since I can neither influence the weather nor take unnecessary risks, I change the actual plan of the tour at short notice if necessary; there are always several roads leading to Rome. Of course, this also applies to damage, injuries, illnesses, political crises, official arbitrariness and other imponderables, which in extreme cases can lead to the tour being canceled. My routes are always chosen in such a way that they can be mastered by any trained and ambitious driver. Basically, all stages should also be able to be reached safely and to the complete satisfaction of any fellow travelers. With regard to the peculiarities of my expedition trips and the associated risks as well as necessary precautionary measures, which are not always calculable despite all care, I expressly refer to my risk instruction.