Adventure Motorcycling Handbook
Author: Chris Scott
Publisher: Trailblazer guides
Available from: https://adventure-motorcycling.com
There is absolutely no doubt every rider even remotely interested in adventure motorcycling should have on their bookcase, or about their person(!), a copy of Chris Scott’s brilliant Adventure Motorcycling Handbook.
It’s not the last word on adventure motorcycling but it is so utterly comprehensive, useful and pragmatic that it’s hard to imagine there’s any aspect of adventure motorcycling that’s been overlooked. ‘AMH’ is simply filled to bursting with hard-won knowledge and advice, not just from Scott but also from a long list of contributors, most of them reporting from the trails of the world right now (Scott even manages to enter the corona virus pandemic in this issue as he was temporarily stranded in Morocco when the European lockdown rolled out).
This being the eighth edition of this wonderful book, its strength is then – as you might have gathered – in its regular updates. The seventh edition was published as recently as 2016, but even four years is some heck of a time in world events, so regular updates keep it super-relevant.
Scott never slackens in his task of keeping AMH fit for purpose. The seventh edition counted 330 pages before reaching the index. This new edition has extended to a whopping 420 plus index. As well, for this edition it’s in full-colour, front to back – and that is a really nice upgrade, making the maps and other illustrations that much easier on the eye.
Scott – see our related articles (links below) – has himself adventure ridden extensively around the globe, although his superpower is that of being a North African desert rat – and few moto-arenas come much tougher than the Sahara. So the man understands risk, knows the value of good planning and preparation, as much by trial and error as anything. Equally he’s a fine author and every so often there’s a wee Scott witticism that reassures you this book is written and edited by a moto-loving human, not some rivet-counting automaton. And as a former contributor to the Rough Guides series (back in the early 1990s), you can see Scott has brought the sheer utility of those books to this tome. When you find details such as latitude and longitude on key locations then you can understand the exhaustive detail that can be found in this book.
We also love this book on account Scott is so pragmatic. He’s up to date with the latest machinery, the latest in kit – whether for the bike or rider – yet he’s also imaginative and daring enough to either modify or make his own. So, for instance, you’ll find him rating quite highly a Klim Traverse jacket, but not above sewing into its liner some mesh pockets to take important documents etc. Likewise there’s section on ‘MYO’ luggage racks – MYO being Make Your Own.
And after all the guidance on planning, prep, bike choices, modifications and equipment, not to mention ‘life on the road’, you get to the route guides section which give you invaluable detailed information on the go-to adventure destinations of South America, Asia and Africa.
We could go on, but so vast and detailed is this book that no amount of words will do it justice. Just buy it and absorb the wisdom.
Price is £19.99 in the UK – easily the best twenty quid you’ll ever spend on anything ‘adventure’.