In 1952, 24-year-old Ernesto Guevara left his native Argentina to motorcycle the back roads of South America. Eight months later, Ernesto returned transformed into "Che" the revolutionary. His account of that journey, "Motorcycle Diaries", has become a classic. Nearly half a century later Patrick Symmes set off on his BMW R80/GS along the same route in search of the people and the places encountered by Che. Symme's own adventures - he runs out of petrol in an Argentine desert, breaks down in the Andes, and drinks himself blind in Cuba with Che's travel partner, Alberto Granado - counterpoint those of the great revolutionary. The book gives an insight into the moulding of the great Latin American hero and paints a portrait of a continent whose dreams of utopia give birth not only to freedom fighters but also tyrants. But above all it is the story of a journey on the open road, where man and machine traverse the unknown in search of the spirit's keenest desires.