Since Tom Turcich and a dog named Savannah left Texas five years ago, the two have spent every day together, traversing 18,000 miles and 37 countries so far.
The World Walk: a 5-year trek over 7 continents with the ultimate walking companion
On April 2nd, 2015 Tom Turcich left his home in New Jersey to embark on a five-year trek across the seven continents. The dream of walking around the world formed at seventeen after the passing of two of his close friends. Since then Tom decided to make the most of each day. He says “I walk the world to become immersed in unknown places and be forced into adventure day after day.” In Texas, Tom adopted a dog, Savannah, and ever since they’ve crossed every border together, traversing 18,000 miles and 37 countries. “Savannah is my best friend and the ultimate walking companion.”
Who would be loyal enough to join him on this years-long epic odyssey? A dog!
Since graduating in 2011 from Moravian College, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, Tom Turcich has been on a five-year, seven-continent walk around the world with his dog, Savannah.
Turcich was inspired to take to the road after his close friend, AnneMarie, passed away in high school. The loss forced Turich to come to the realisation that life is “something fragile and fleeting” he said, and that he “needed to make the most of the short time I had.”
Turcich began planning the big walk when he was 17 years old. He planned, saved, and worked while attending Moravian College, where he studied philosophy and psychology. After college he went back home to Haddon Township, New Jersey, and entered the workforce, which allowed him to make enough money to pay off his student loans.
At the age of 26, Turcich embarked on the first leg of his epic odyssey, walking from his home in New Jersey to Austin, Texas, on the way to Mexico. Over the nearly 2,000 miles, Turcich began to think that maybe having a companion wouldn’t be such a bad idea. But who would be loyal enough to join him on his years-long journey? There was only one answer: a dog.
Turcich will be the seventh person to walk around the world – Savannah the first dog
Turcich visited an adoption center the day he reached Austin, where a volunteer brought out a 3-month-old puppy.
“I asked if I could hold her and once I did I knew she was the one for me,” Turcich told The Dodo. “I don’t know exactly what it was about Savannah, but she was the only dog I felt a connection with. I just had a feeling we’d get along.”
Tom receives support for his expedition from Philadelphia Sign, a New Jersey-based company that manufactures signs for corporations. Because the owner knew AnneMarie, the company also donates one dollar for every mile he walks to a scholarship in her name.
Turcich also drew inspiration for his journey from Karl Bushby, another adventurer who walked around the world. As he travels from country to country, he wheels around a buggy that carries all the necessities he would need for camping and survival.
Turcich started the journey five years ago, walking from the US to Uruguay, from Denmark to Spain, and across Algeria and Morocco. So far, he has walked 18,000 miles through 37 countries.
On his journey, Turcich has encountered tribulations, such as struggling to get Savannah across country borders and getting sick enough to have to pause his expedition. Turcich has had to persevere in order to make his vision come to fruition.
Tom, 31, and Savannah are currently holed up in Azerbaijan thanks to the lockdown on travel. They are safe and well and awaiting for lockdown measures to lift so they can resume travel towards Mongolia and eventually on to Australia before finally returning to the US.
To see hundreds of photos and stay up-to-date on Tom Turcich’s trek around the world with Savannah you can check out the website, follow them on Instagram or Facebook. To support the walk, you can make a donation to their Patreon.
DISCOVER HOW OWNING A DOG CAN HELP YOU LIVE LONGER
A recent study published by the American Heart Association says dog owners had a 24% risk reduction for death from any cause, and living with a dog had an even greater benefit for people with heart problems.