My trip to Rome (on foot).

polycounter lvl 12
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Japhir polycounter lvl 12
Hey guys,

In less than a month I'm going to travel to Rome on foot from where I live! :D.
It's going to take about 4 months to get there, if i walk 25km a day, 6 days a week. I'm going by myself, with backpack and a tent, and see where it goes.
So any thoughts on good routes to take? I haven't figured it out entirely yet.
And if you happen to be on the route from the Netherlands to Rome (Italy ;)) and don't mind me shamelessly sleeping over(I'm a cheap bastard)/coming by for a beer or something give me a shout!

Anyways, I'm really looking forward to it, and I'll post a link to the blog i'll be keeping here when I have it set up.

Am I crazy or what? :)


  • Rens

    this is realy going to be an "into the wild" story, but then more like..
    and you'r going just by yourself!

    respect man, i hope you experience a great trip!

    (btw, what did the people around you say when you told them?:P )
  • seforin
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    seforin polycounter lvl 12
    make sure your dressed up like this and challenge any artist you meet along the way


    (haha but all kidding asside, your like what 19? Your folks letting you travel on foot for like 4 months to rome? Thats freakin nuts man! Make sure you seriously keep up on your art on your travels, sketch book in hand, and camera in the other)
  • pliang
    Show us many pics as you go.
  • Japhir
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    Japhir polycounter lvl 12
    yay! :D.

    Rens: There where 2 types of responses:
    about 80% 1: what?! your crazy dude! you sure? by yourself? for four months? why don't you just take the plane? haha.
    about 20% 2: Really? cool! i'd love to do that myself some day! good luck man!.
    my parents where ok with it, they just want me to be happy and do the things that make me happy :D. (my father used to hitchhike around the world when he was 25).

    seforin: great idea! that'll make it even easier to get acquainted with new people ;).
    Yeah, I'm turning 19 next friday :D. I guess i'm gonna bring a sketchbook, and when it's full, buy a new one and mail the old one home or something...

    Pliang: sure!

    I still need to buy me a good camera (reasonably cheap, sturdy (foolproof haha), and light. (i want to keep the weight down to about 15kg's) so any ideas on what camera to buy? or just an 8mp 100€ camera?
  • JO420
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    JO420 polycounter lvl 14
    Damn man you are brave but i respect your ballsyness. Kudos man. Well if you are willing to take a norther Detour you are welcome to crash at my place. Just if you can drop by my favorite coffeeshop in Amsterdam and pick something up for me.

    Good Luck
  • kwakkie
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    kwakkie polycounter lvl 11
    I don't now where you live in Holland, but if you pass Arnhem you are welcome for a few beers and a good night sleep(I live in a student flat though, you might experience some weird stuff at night ;)).

    [dutch]Mijn oude stagebegeleider heeft precies hetzelfde gedaan, je moet z'n blog van toen eens lezen: [/dutch]

  • warby
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    warby polycounter lvl 13
    DUDE you are awesome .... end of statement :)
  • nome_sane
    Yes you ARE crazy, have you not seen deliverance!!!!!??
    It does sound like a great adventure, just stay out the woods and watch your back!
  • Tumerboy
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    Tumerboy polycounter lvl 12
    That's fucking awesome Japhir! How far is that? 1000 Km?

    I don't think there's anywhere tremendously cool for me to walk to that far away. I guess I could walk to Phoenix AZ. . . blech.
  • rawkstar
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    rawkstar polycounter lvl 14
    well what you need to do is dress up as a gaul and pretend like you're invading
  • g0th
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    g0th triangle
    Good luck man. Sounds like a fun adventure.
  • Mark Dygert
    Pack extra socks... and when you think you have too many, pack some more. You'd be amazed at how useful they are when you're bumming around. Good luck, stay safe, and have fun!
  • bounchfx
    holy shit man. that's going to be a life changing experience.

    bring pencils, pen, and lots of paper for sure. an iphone is useful too if you have a place to charge it.
  • Psyk0
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    Psyk0 polycounter lvl 13
    Good luck dude, i'd prefer biking over walking tho!
  • osman
    I'm jealous :( .
    Good luck and have fun. I am really looking forward to the pictures.
  • Ruz
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    Ruz interpolator
    brave man. I am too lazy to to even walk to the corner shop to get more beer and crisps:)
  • StJoris
    Brave man indeed! But wicked idea mate, if Delft happens to be on your way, drink a beer with me!
  • osman
    Sorry for the offtopic but man, alot of guys from the Netherlands at polycount lately, couple more and we could do our own Dutch polycount meetup:P
  • Luxury
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    Luxury polycounter lvl 11
    Maybe this is a non-issue, but where do you plan on sleeping every night? Just setting up a tent somewhere off to the side of the road? Won't people who's property that is have issues and/or the authorities?
  • Asmuel
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    Asmuel polycounter lvl 12
    Cool stuff!

    I've been there before, though it was a group trip, I didn't do any of the planning lol.

    Be careful also, Italy is pretty damn ghetto in areas. Don't wander into dark alleys or dodgy bars. I remember there were strikes and we couldn't get a train, so try to have a backup plan or extra emergency cash. Stay near the entrance/exit on public transport if you ever want to get off lol. Maybe this is all obvious to a European.

    I look forward to seeing photos man :) I'm also moving to the Netherlands soon, see you there lol.
  • almighty_gir
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    almighty_gir sublime tool
    good luck and all the best with this dude. this will be an endurance trial for both your body and your mind, i hope neither of them give out!

    if you are open for advice on your travelpack:

    keep the tent simple, you have to carry that fucker, so having one with heavy tentpoles/beams is silly. in fact i'd probably say not to even worry about a tent, and just keep a rollmat, and a sleeping bag, as it's a lot lighter, and you can keep more room for other essentials.

    if you're walking that far each day, make sure you drink around 4-8 litres of water every day. try not to eat a lot in one sitting, but rather, eat often and little. munch things like peanuts, unsalted, for good slow release energy.

    shoes are important, and make sure you have money for a spare pare of both shoes, and socks. you'll want to change into a new pair of socks at least once each day, possibly twice. foot hygene is paramount. if your feet start to hurt because they're "unclean", you won't be walking far.

    unfortunately i'm in the opposite direction, or i'd offer you a sofa for the night.
  • bounchfx
    hell, if you're going to be walking all that way you might as well do some crunches and pushups now and then, you'll be in uber shape when you're done!
  • Rens
    Tumerboy wrote: »
    How far is that? 1000 Km?

    I think if you take the highway your more up to 1500km, but remember its on foot
    so every road isnt as straight as the highway, up hillz downhillz? that means that he would do alot more aditional km's to get there.

    man you will have feet of steel when you get back, walking hot coals wont be any problem after this trip...

    maybe..... you should do this running,
    give the press a headsup, and call yourself forrest gump!

  • Japhir
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    Japhir polycounter lvl 12
    Thanks so much for the cool replies! I'm feeling even more excited now :D.

    I still don't know my entire route yet, I live in Overijssel, just between Zwolle and Deventer. (Elshof 1, Wijhe).

    I'm going to bring a (lightweight) tent and knock on a door when I've reached my destination for that day. Then ask if they'll let me put up my tent in their garden and maybe use their toilet. As rent I'll pay with my crazy stories. haha.

    I've heard some nasty stories about the ghetto life of Rome, about some couple that where walking there for cherity being raped and robbed etc... but I'm so tought that the baddies will flee from me. I laugh in the face of danger hahaha. (lol).

    Gir: thanks, I've got some fine lightweight equipment, and I intend to keep the weight below 15 kg, probably 10. The shoes I have cost me about 200 € (or was it 300?), so they should hold out for a while. And I've got some spare money available.

    bounch: haha sure! I'm not doing it for the walking in itself, but mostly for the adventure, not knowing where you'll sleep that evening, and being forced to meet new people. Don't know why but it rhymes with me :D.

    On foot it'll probably be about 1600 - 2000 km. But that all depends on the route, so I still have to figure that out. I don't want to end up walking beside the highway all the time :).

    Thanks again for the kind words everyone!
  • katzeimsack
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    katzeimsack polycounter lvl 13
    you probably know it, but get your shoes into shape! Use them everyday as house shoes. The worst thing one can do is walking a lot with new shoes.. (i guess you have walking boots)

    Also look for walking socks, which have some additional layers of fabric where you need them!

    Good luck, it will be great!
  • almighty_gir
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    almighty_gir sublime tool
    can you read a map? if not, get a celphone that has satnav or something.
  • Asmuel
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    Asmuel polycounter lvl 12
    I remember the first day we went away from the main tourist sites in Rome and found a dead body on the sidewalk.

    He probably asked to camp in someones garden.
  • Rob Galanakis
    I was just telling someone how I'd like to walk across the US before my next job. I love walking, walk everywhere. Actually I'd like to find someone to walk across the US with, and talk about stuff.

    25km a day is nothing, I think you'll do this in much less than 4 months. 2.2 km per mile (sorry going to deal with miles):
    trip is 682 miles
    Figure average speed of 3.5 mph (how tall are you?). That's 195 hours.
    At 6 hours/day (an easy estimate- If you sleep for 8 and walk for 6, what else are you going to do for 10 hours?) that's 32.5 days. Double that, and you're still at 2 months (I always compare by saying, Roman armies usually moved about 20 miles/day, and they had to have time to pack/destroy/set up an entire camp. You should be able to do at least 20 miles/day).

    Obviously make sure you train beforehand, those first few days with even a 10km pack are going to be grueling on your back. And get a good walking stick! Factor the weight of the water you'll need into your gear as well.

    Maybe take a practice hike, for 10 days or something- if you start out and find acquiring food is much more difficult than you thought, and you didn't plan on buying it, you will be in for a struggle.

    Please be safe, there are some not-good people around.
  • Japhir
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    Japhir polycounter lvl 12
    katzeimsack: yeah i've been wearing them to work for a couple of weeks now. had to walk 10 minutes every day there ;).
    I didn't train a whole lot yet though... I walked 4 km (3/4 of an hour), then some time later 16 km (3 hrs) and then a while ago 5-7 km in 3/4 of an hour. and that's all the training i've had so far :P.

    gir: sure i can read a map :) i'm not stupid hehe. a navigator cellphone is a little too easy for me.. i want to do it oldschool with a compass and a map. (and at night by the stars :D).

    thanks for your tribute asmuel.. that really makes me feel better. was that for real or are you messin' with my head haha.

    Rob: walking is a relieving sport, gives you time to think while not thinking.. or something. i like it :).
    what kind of miles are you using? is that different from the regular miles (don't know if there are more types.. maybe US vs USA or something ...).
    I'm about 1,85 meters tall (more than 6 feet, don't know the inches).
    My estimates are a bit high yeah, but that's so that i can take it easy and not fall behind on schedule. and i'll always feel as if i'm superfast :). but yeah, valid point.

    here's a pic of my gear. (I'm showing my gear on the internet.)
    obviously i didn't pack my sleeping bag very well, if your not using it it should stay in a big shape, so that it retains it's volume.
  • Sa74n
    good luck :) this is gonna be a great experience for sure.. make sure to take lots of photos
  • Asmuel
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    Asmuel polycounter lvl 12
    Lol yea we really did see a dead body, though I was kidding about the garden thing.

    Sorry I don't mean to scare you, Just trying to emphasize that the dangers are real, so take every precaution. And best of luck!
  • Japhir
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    Japhir polycounter lvl 12
    i'm not that easily scared :). i'll be cautious, i heard some pretty bad stories already and i kinda like living, so i won't do stupid things.

    about that taking pictures thing:
    can anybody recommend me a good lightweight sturdy cheap camera? i know of all the light 8 mp 100 € stuff, but is that any good? (no good lens etc.) tips most welcome!
  • kwakkie
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    kwakkie polycounter lvl 11
    Hmmm, I have a throwing tent and I can definately recommend it!
    It takes about 1 minute to fold it back together again! Its very lightweight, but I don't know how durable it is(only used it about 10 times sofar). Also, pretty funny that you're from Wijhe: my girldfriend is from there as well, now I can totally understand why you'd want to see the world lol!

    My offer to stay in Arnhem is still open, would seem like a good second stop for you, and you'd have to walk trough the 'Veluwe', should be a nice walk!

    PS: Youll miss the dominance war! Oh noes!
  • charger
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    charger polycounter lvl 12
    Very cool Japhir!!

    I would offer you a room for the night at my place but I am up north (Friesland), so I geuss thats a big detour :P.

    Nice to see so many dutch people on Polycount :). Maybe a Dutch polycount meeting isnt a bad idea!

    I have an Olympus camera 8mp, its a nice camera but I am not sure if its strong enough, I do believe Olympus also has an 8mp camera which is bump and water proof, I will post a link if I find it.

    its a bit more expensive then I thought.
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    SHEPEIRO polycounter lvl 13
    fucking inspiring, been wanting to do something like this for ages, but maybe on me bike.

    get some quality boots
  • Wendy de Boer
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    Wendy de Boer interpolator
    Four months? Without a computer?! :poly115:

    You'll miss the Dominance War!
    And are you gonna walk back as well? Then you'll miss the next Unearthly Challenge too! :D!

    How are you gonna survive?! :poly128:
  • Emil Mujanovic
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    Emil Mujanovic polycounter lvl 13
    This sounds really cool, dude.
    I wish you the best of luck with the trip, because it definitely won't be that easy. I don't think I could ever do something like this alone, so you're a braver dude than me.
    Drink plenty of water, get proper rest, and have the time of your life!
    Keep in touch when you can so we all know you're safe and doing well.

  • killingpeople
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    killingpeople polycounter lvl 14
    This will be an epic last thread.
  • jaalto
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    jaalto polycounter lvl 10
    Awesome plan! Have a nice trip :D
  • Justin Meisse
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    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    Oh, I've heard good things about these soda can camping stoves

    never messed with one myself so I'd test it out first
  • Rory_M
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    Rory_M polycounter lvl 10
    Sounds like an opportunity that may only come up once in a lifetime. It's awesome to see you taking it. Keep us posted.
  • psychoticprankster
    Good luck :) the trip sounds awesome.
  • BradMyers82
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    BradMyers82 greentooth
    So basically you want to be a bum for 4 months?
    Just kidding man, I think its awesome that your doing this and I wish you the best of luck. Sometimes I wish I could just live on a beach or something like a person stranded on a island (just for a few months that is). When your fending for yourself all that way, roughing it out, I'm sure it won't be terribly far from this.
    That would be awesome if you could stop in a coffee shop or something every now and then, get on the internet and keep us posted.
    Yeah, most of all be safe.
  • bounchfx
    This will be an epic last thread.

    oh god rofl.
  • Japhir
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    Japhir polycounter lvl 12
    thanks guys/girls
    kwakkie: i've heard about those.. but they aren't very sturdy, they are heavy and most of all very big when folded up. I'll see if that's a good route :) I already know a couple of people in Arnhem, would make the first steps easier probably. thanks for the invite.

    shapeirdo: :) "follow your dream" haha.

    demonprincess: can't be that hard.. i think i might live. I never finished a dominance war entry before haha. I'm flying back. no use in walking it twice.

    casey: thanks! i'll keep up a blog somewhere, i'll post in it when i come to an internet caf
  • charger
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    charger polycounter lvl 12
    Whats the budget for a camera?? canon ixus is a cool camera, or else the olympus µ 840. I have the olympus. But if you want something bump and water proof, yeah as I said before, olympus has a nice camera (Olympus µ 850SW).

    Btw where is your EHBO kit, its not on the picture??? :P
  • rawkstar
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    rawkstar polycounter lvl 14
    make sure to find hannibal's trail through the alps, or i guess you could try going through multiple times :) most scholars agree its either the Clapier pass or the Traversette, the clapier is considerably easier and more feasable with elephants, but it does not offer a view of the poe river valley, while the traversette does, but it is impossible to scale without picks and ropes even in summer. have fun :)
  • Japhir
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    Japhir polycounter lvl 12
    charger: thanks! your advice definitely helped me buy a good one :).
    my EHBO kit (haha that's a dutch word ;) first aid kit) is in my bag in that picture ;).
    I got loads of new stuff for my 19th birthday (februari 13th) and I'm now almost ready to leave.
    rawkstar: thanks! i tried looking up hannibal's trail.. but i couldn't really find it... so if you have any specific place in mind (or maybe some keywords i can use with google maps or something) that'd be great.

    I got my new ID card today, then went out to buy my new camera. I chose the black Olympus µ 850SW. I quite like it so far but it has to recharge first :(.
    I also started my blog today: . there's nothing much in there yet, but that'll be the place i'll post my new updates once i'm gone.
  • rawkstar
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    rawkstar polycounter lvl 14
    well there isn't a specific place that people know for sure that thats where he went, there are quite a few books on the subject, but there isn't a 1 specific known path. I guess it depends how adventurous you want to get, hiking through the alps on ur own etc... i mean ... how do you plan on doing that? i'm sure there's a few roads that just go straight through there, but walking on the side of the road is pretty lame, there's a ton of passes that go through the alps and into italy, i guess what u'd have to do is look up and see which pass you could cross on your own at this time of year.

    the one pass i'd try is: Col de Clapier

    i guess just plan ahead and try to be safe, it would probably be a good idea to at least have a somewhat decent idea of how you plan to get across.

    other possible routes are:
    Col de la Traversette
    Col du Petit Saint Bernard

    but i think the Clapier is the easiest of the 3, and i'd probably go with that since you're going all by yourself and i'm not sure how experienced u are at hiking through mountains. the alps are no joke, in ancient times it was a near impassable barrier.
  • xysdf
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    xysdf polycounter lvl 11
    hah, very nice, Japhir!! - the best of luck and have some good experiences! :poly124:
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