Two Italians cross the United States by bicycle…it could easily sound like the beginning of a movie or a joke but in this case it is simply what they have planned. Pietro Franzese and Emiliano Fava with their project “2 Italians Across the US.
A coast-to-coast journey along 6000km and 25,000m of elevation gain that will see them engaged in riding their bikes to cross the United States, from San Francisco to Key West, also passing through truly challenging stretches such as El Camino Del Diablo, the Texas Plateau, the Louisiana Bayou and the Florida Everglades.
They will travel using two gravel bikes and in total self-sufficiency: they will receive no help nor technical support, they will mainly use the tent to sleep and the small gas stove for cooking.
A very challenging trip, and likely a long one. When do you plan to return?
Actually, we also already have a return ticket from Miami, March 20! We chose to do it this way given the high costs that this trip, which is self-funded, will have. To get there on time we will have to do a minimum of 100 km every day for two months…quite a challenge! Counting that every seven to eight days we will need a full day of relaxation to get a break, we will have to time it well to finish this adventure on time.
The goal of the sporting venture of the two cycle travelers and documentarians is twofold: to bring attention to the environmental impact of the use of single-use plastic and to raise funds to support the projects, in Italy and around the world, of the Plastic Free association.
Why the United States in particular?
“The choice of the United States as a destination was almost obligatory since, according to a report presented to the U.S. Congress, the U.S. produces 42 million tons of waste from plastic per year and that each person in the U.S. produces more than 130 pounds of it per year.”
And an important testimony will remain from this adventure: Pietro and Emiliano will document everything with pictures and videos, including America’s use of plastic.
What publishing project do you have in mind?
During the trip, Emiliano and I will update those who follow us in real time with photos and videos on our Instagram profiles, but our idea is to create a docufilm of this trip, telling about a route not usually used by bike travelers and recounting the most authentic and real U.S., the one far from the big cities or touristic places. We are looking for a different America, one that goes from the Pacific coast to the Sonora Desert, from the Everglades to the Texas plateau. We are ready to be amazed and we are ready to tell what we will experience and show what our eyes will see.
On Monday, January 16, Pietro and Emiliano left for the USA. Their expedition, however, was brought forward to Saturday 14 with a bike clean up event: a bike ride of about 50 km from Darsena, in downtown Milan, to Malpensa Airport along the Naviglio Grande bike path, during which participants had a chance to collect the trash they encountered along the way and officially launched the fundraiser in favor of Plastic Free.