Paul Salopek is planing to make a real hike — of 21,000 miles — from Ethiopia’s Rift Valley to the southern end of Chile, NPR News reports. A journalist, Salopek wants to recreate the migration patterns that took humanity from its birthplace in Ethiopia to Tierra del Fuego in the Western Hemispher. In all, he expect the journey to take seven years.
As he travels, Salopek plans to meet people and write stories about them. While his itinerary is about the past, Salopek told NPR the trek is “very much about the present day. It’s about how we’ve changed the world, and how the world is being radically altered in our view by such things as the Internet. I’m starting out this walk with about 35 percent of the world wired. By the time I reach Patagonia in 2020, about 80 to 90 percent will be wired.”
Salopek believes the biggest challenge he’ll face is getting his stories out. Armed with an ultra-lightweight laptop, a satellite phone and some digital recorders, he hopes to bring local stories to the world from anywhere.