Customize your next travel adventure
We live in a world of commodified travel. The popular destinations have been staked out and overbooked by a global traveling army bent on bucket list conquest. That doesn’t mean you join the bragging rights race and follow the herd. If you have wanderlust dreams to venture into the unknown, keep them alive.
If you want to get off the grid, but don’t want unreasonable risk, we have a solution. A customized trip for you and your friends. You pick the place and Tusker’s founding guide Eddie Frank will handle logistics for you, and sometimes will lead the trip.
Friends with benefits
The benefits of a private expedition are many. You go where you want, you travel with your trusted friends, you save money and you get the benefits of Eddie’s 43 years of global contacts and leading trips in unchartered territories.
“I’m seeing a bigger demand for this kind of travel. People want to travel with their friends to unusual places and want to mitigate risks by leaning on my experience. And it’s even better if they want to go somewhere I’ve never been. Now that’s adventure! “Eddie said. “These types of ready-made groups hit the ground running. From a guide’s perspective, it’s fun, as you don’t have to spend time nitpicking the group dynamics, which sometimes aren’t so dynamic.”
Eddie has designed these custom departures for seven to 17 people and the trips usually last from 1-2 weeks. Land costs are $5,000 to $7,000 not dissimilar from most Tusker itineraries. A big part of the pre-trip logistics is the time Eddie spends researching current conditions and finding who on the ground can be of assistance to his group. Contacts Eddie built over five decades helps in this intel gathering, and mitigates a lot of risk for folks who are not in this game.
Eddie’s idea: not new, but timely
The idea of private expeditions is hardly new. London’s Cox & Kings has been putting together trips for travelers since the 1760s, starting by sending Brit army regiments to India. Today the company specializes in luxury trips for discriminating travelers to many countries.
Eddie’s idea is far different aimed squarely at adventure travelers who have some time & money, but as importantly the burning curiosity to see a part of the world that hasn’t been over traveled. And to travel with your friends and family. These places are for those prepared to rough it in true adventure style.
There are many such pristine places; you just have to have the imagination and fortitude to get there.
This is not bragging rights travel; it’s more about pursuing a special passion that you share with your inner circle of friends. Outside your tight circle, people might think you’re crazy for going to Nunavut in Arctic Canada to hang out with Inuits and Narwhal whales, but that’s a good thing. You’re not going to share that trip with anybody but your buds and the locals. This is a private expedition, call it designer travel and you’re the captain of your own destiny.
From icy Kulusuk to the Taklimakan Desert
How about seeing China’s Wild West, Xinxiang autonomous region home of the Uyghurs? Eddie will take a group of California buddies this October on a camel trek across the Taklimakan desert, one of the world’s harshest, yet most beautiful places. It contains the world’s second largest sand desert, but is ringed with some of the highest peaks in China whose outflows created Silk Road oasis bazaar towns. The trip will cover 100 kilometers along rivers and will be traveled on camels.
Some like it cold rather than hot, so Eddie is taking a group of international business execs to Greenland on a pristine rugged trek this August. The members of this ready made group are accustomed to five star dining/hotels but they will give up more than a few creature comforts to visit Kulusuk, a village of 270 on an island in Greenland’s Southeast archipelago. They will visit fjords on zodiac and see a wide variety of wildlife on a nine day adventure where they will have to be self-sufficient.
Hiking opportunities are endless and feature a 2,200 foot moraine strewn massif that sits above the airport. Don’t expect trail signs or cairns. This region is known for its rime ice, rain that freezes immediately on either horizontal or vertical surfaces. Even though it’s August, pack the waterproof woolies guys!
Few have been there and if the trip goes well, Eddie will incorporate Greenland into Tusker’s regular trip itineraries that include Kilimanjaro, Everest Base Camp, Machu Picchu, Patagonia and Mongolia. In the last 12 months, Eddie has put together customized trips to Madagascar and Mongolia and hopes to be doing a lot more custom trips in the near future.
Where to next? Way off the grid
You probably have your own bucket list of ideas. Perhaps you want to climb volcanoes and scuba dive WW II sunken ships in the Vanuatu (South Pacific) archipelago. Perhaps you want to drive the Pamir Highway through the Wakham Valley in Tajikistan. Or maybe you want more of Africa after your climb of Kilimanjaro and subsequent safari that only whet your appetite for the continent. There are big parts of Ethiopia, Uganda, Senegal and Gambia with wild life and historic sites that no tourists have yet to experience.
Come up with a few friends and a destination and Eddie is all ears. He has been game for the last 43 years to explore the earth’s most adventurous places and that hasn’t changed in our ever changing world. Those changes make it all the more reason to follow your own path and get way off the grid with a customized, private expedition.