That’s a good–and popular–question. If you don’t know who Karl Bushby is, check out our review of his book Giant Steps: The Remarkable Story of the Goliath Expedition: From Punta Arenas to Russia. It’s the fascinating story of the first part of the epic walk he is undertaking from southern Chile back to his home in England. The total distance will be approximately 36,000 miles (58,000 kilometers) or 1 1/2 trips around the world at the equator. He originally estimated it would take him about 12 years to accomplish the feat. Twenty years and numerous major detours and years-long delays later, he’s still at it.
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So where is Karl Bushby now?
September 4, 2019
Keith Bushby, Karl’s father, posted the following update on an adventure travel website on August 27:
The red line below shows the presumed route Bushby took through Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan in order to reach the Iranian border. We’ll update the map if we find out anything different.
July 17, 2019
We still haven’t figured out where exactly Bushby is at the moment, but one outstanding question has been answered. How is he planning to reach Turkey? There are two ways to get there from Kazakhstan. The first is to walk around the northern end of the Caspian Sea, which would require Bushby to re-enter Russia. Given his past difficulties getting permission to walk in Russia, that seemed an unlikely route. The alternative is to walk around the southern end of the Caspian through northern Iran. Based on a July 5 message he posted on Facebook, it looks like this is the route he’s planning to take. That means he’ll head south through Uzebekistan and Turkmenistan and then walk across the northern edge of Iran toward Turkey. We’ll update this site as soon as we get more information about his current whereabouts and/or the details of his proposed route.
July 12, 2019
On July 11, the Wikipedia page relating to Bushby was updated with a single line:
Bushby crossed into Uzbekistan early June 2019.
The change was made from a mobile phone using an IP address based in Tblisi, Georgia. Given the long distance between Uzbekistan and Georgia, it seems unlikely that Bushby, himself, made the update.
We’ll continue to follow all of Bushby’s social media accounts and continue running web searches in English, Uzbek, and the languages of each of the countries he might be heading to next. As soon as we find out which town he is/was in, we’ll update this post.
Bushby is currently somewhere in Uzbekistan, though we haven’t found out yet exactly where he is. In the map below, the red line is the section of the walk he completed between the events listed at the end of his book (2004) and November 2018.
The red line below shows the presumed route Bushby took after leaving Almaty, Kazakhstan in order to arrive in Uzbekistan. The blue dotted line shows the presumed route Bushby will follow as he crosses through Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan heading for the Iranian border.
Karl Bushby on social media
It’s now September 2019 and an extensive web search of Bushby’s name continues to turn up loads of broken and outdated links. The Goliath Expedition website was last updated in 2008 and the next iteration of the trek, called Odyssey XXI, has a web link that leads to an inactive page.
However, thanks to scouring social media, we’ve been able to piece together the following details.
Someone is updating Bushby’s Wikipedia profile, adding small lines updating his location. The latest appeared on July 11, 2019, explaining that Bushby has been in Uzbekistan since early June 2019.
A post on December 12, 2018 is the most recent one from him. In it, he recaps the year and links to a YouTube video about the camel expedition he went on in late 2017 and early 2018. Prior to that, at the end of November 2018, he was in California to resupply and fix some of his equipment. He also went to the California Institute of Technology to watch the NASA InSight probe land on Mars on November 26. Immediately prior to that, he mentions being in Almaty, which is in south-eastern Kazakhstan, near the Kyrgyzstan border.
His most recent post is from October 16, 2017. He’s shown having a meal with the Steppes To The West (STTW) team as they prepare for the first stage of their latest expedition. A team of 6 people and 10 camels planned to travel from Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia all the way to London. However, by January 2018, Bushby and most of the other members had gone their separate ways.
The account called Karl Bushby has no boards and no pins associated with it. A search of the name Karl Bushby brings up a dozen or so pins, but none with recent information.
The account for Karl Bushby contains very few tweets. The latest tweet is from December 2018, a simple reposting of the Facebook link relating to the camel trek. This link will take you to the latest tweets written about, but not by, Bushby. As with the Pinterest pins, there is currently no recent information available.
Bushby’s YouTube channel has only 3 videos on it and only 2 are about him. However, a search for the name “Karl Bushby” brings up a longer list of videos. These include the four-part series about the Goliath Expedition, the first part of the Camels series, and a number of interviews and short news items about his journey, dating back a decade or more. The most recent video, the recap of 2018, dates from January 2019.
Help us fill in the gaps
If you have current and reliable information about Bushby’s whereabouts, please let us know via the Comment section below. We’ll be happy to add it to this post so everyone can keep abreast of his monumental endeavor.