(CNN)- It isn’t every day that you spot a motorcyclist riding along the road with a German shepherd dog on the back of their bike. So it’s not surprising that the sight of content creator Jess Stone and her beloved dog Moxie cruising along together usually has onlookers doing double takes.
“Every car that rides up beside us, they take out their phones, almost causing accidents because they’re trying to get the shot.”
Stone and Moxie, who weighs around 34 kilograms, are currently 10 months into an epic bike trip that will see them travel across around 90 countries throughout Central America, North and South America, Africa, Europe and Asia. The pair have been on the road since last March, when they set off, along with Stone’s husband Greg, who rides behind them.
While both Stone and her husband were determined to include Moxie in their travels, she explains that she “didn’t want to have a sidecar or a trailer or something that was going to really change the dynamic of riding,” now that she was finally comfortable on a motorcycle. They quickly began designing what would later become the K9 Moto Cockpit, a motorcycle dog carrier they manufacture in Guatemala, along with a range of outdoor dog gear, through their company Ruffly.
After deciding that she was ready for another big adventure, this time with Moxie along for the ride, Stone reached out to global nonprofit Girl Up – a girl-centered leadership development initiative – and the GoRUFFLY Around the World adventure was born. “Obviously I wanted to travel the world,” says Stone, who aims to raise $100,000 for Girl Up’s global empowerment projects. “But I also wanted to show people that you can do it with a big dog.”
Of course, traveling with a dog has its disadvantages. They are largely limited to dog friendly places and rely on wild camping, and occasional Airbnbs, while on the road so that Moxie can roam free.
While they’d originally planned to ride from Guatemala up to the Arctic Ocean, and across to Canada, before flying to Spain and heading to Africa, the significant cost increase due to a number of issues, including rising oil prices and supply shortages, forced them to change their route. Moxie needs to be shipped in a giant sized crate as unaccompanied cargo due to her size. This meant that the total cost for her alone would have been around $6,500, including vet fees, cargo shipment and international pet exporter fees from Toronto to Spain, if they’d stuck to their original plan. The price of shipping their motorcycles had also risen significantly by the time they began the trip.
They ultimately chose to travel “tip to tip and top to bottom,” making their way from Guatemala to Mexico, the US, Canada and on to the Arctic Ocean. From here, they began riding to the top of North America, before turning around and heading back towards South America. Currently in Los Angeles, Stone is preparing for the next stage of the trip, which will involve taking a ferry over to Baja, Mexico, and then riding down to Guatemala, and on to Honduras, El Salvador, Costa Rica and Panama. From Panama, they plan to fly to Colombia, where they’ll ride to the “tip” of Argentina, and then fly over to South Africa. Once they reach South Africa, they’ll travel up the east coast of Africa to Egypt and then Greece, before “looping around Europe” and riding through Turkey and Central Asia. The next leg will see them ride from India to Malaysia, where they’ll ship their bikes, and Moxie, to North America and then head back to their first and final destination Guatemala.
Stone estimates that they’ll be on the road for at least another two and a half years. But for the time being, she’s focused on making it to the next stage of the journey, and constantly building on her riding skills.
Her four-legged companion continues to be a source of inspiration, and Stone never gets tired of seeing the way others react to Moxie, joking that every gas station visit is like “a selfie palooza.”
“It brings a smile to everyone’s face. And that’s what I love. She just makes everybody have a good day.”