Roads, 2, 3, 4

Silent Darien: The Gap in the World’s Longest Road

Stretching from Alaska to the pencil tip of Argentina, the 48,000km-long Pan-American Highway holds the record for the world’s longest motorable road. But there is a gap—an expanse of wild tropical forest—that has defeated travellers for centuries.

The gap stretches from the north to the south coast of Panama—from the Atlantic to the Pacific. It’s between 100km and 160km (60-100 miles) long, and there is no way round, except by sea.

It was only in 1960 that anyone managed to cross the Darien Gap by car—in a Land Rover dubbed The Affectionate Cockroach and a Jeep. It took nearly five months, averaging just 200m per hour.

Carolyn McCarthy, BBC News, August 14, 2014