Known for her itchy biker wheels and a willingness to burn rubber across a 20,000 mile trip from Alaska to South America, Lois has lived to tell the tale via several successful books about her adventures.

She's left tracks across Russia, the full length of the African continent and most recently Iran, but out of the saddle she's the co-founder of the Adventure Travel Film Festival and lives on a houseboat. Naturally!

Thanks for joining us Lois. You only started riding motorbikes in late 20s, so how did you get your adventures get started?

In 2003 I had a boring office job at the BBC and used to spend too much time staring out the window at passing motorcycles and aeroplanes, so I decided to do something about it.

I bought a 250cc trail bike, sent it to Alaska and then rode it to the tip of South America. I wrote a book about the journey - and never looked back!

That's the kind of kickstart we all dream of. Did you come back the same person?

All my adventures have changed me in some way, and always positively. On the whole they have made me more tolerant, less prone to worry and more likely to take on other challenges.

My travels in Iran were probably the most significant - they made me view the Islamic world in a new light and very differently to how it is portrayed in the media here in the West. The Iranian people were so welcoming, generous and fun. As usual, it's the government that's the problem, not the people of a country.

That sounds about right! How about closer to home, is there anywhere in the UK that captivates you?

I live on a Dutch barge and I love water of all kinds - rivers, lakes, the sea, and canals. You will always find me doing something on the Thames in the summer, whether that's kayaking, boating, swimming, or walking.

What else would you put on a UK bucketlist?

The South West Coast Path is pretty hard to beat. I'm from Bristol so have an affinity with the West Country - it's where all my early outdoor adventures happened.

Yes, we'd agree. How about your camping memories?

My 1970s childhood was full of terrible camping experiences - leaky canvas tents all over the West Country, shivering in a thin sleeping bag, and trying not to come into contact with the tent walls! It didn't put me off though...

The best would be the Sahara desert - no tent and sleeping on the ground. Bliss.

Fortunately camping has come a long way since then! If we wanted to follow in your adventurous tracks, what advice would you give us?

Try to avoid watching, listening to and reading the news - it only serves to instil fear. The real world is not half as scary as it appears on the media.

Also, you'll do best if you ignore the naysayers in your life and surround yourself with people who do the kind of thing you want to do - it's easy to find like-minded people, groups, and events online. There are always some doom-mongers who like to predict a grisly outcome but they must be ignored!

The evidence of thousands of people having successful adventures is all around us.

When all's said and done, you should go with the flow. Be flexible in your preparation and on the road - it's easy to get caught up in trying to make everything run smoothly and getting everything just perfect before you go.

You'll never be 100% ready - so at some point you just have to GO! Let the adventure happen to you...

Powerful stuff! How do you let things go?

I was more of a worrier than I am now . Nobody particular advised me to stop worrying - it's just something I've worked out over the years! The more risks/challenges you take on, the less you worry about anything. Everything works out in the end...

Who do you take on your adventures?

My husband, fellow motorcycle adventurer and film-maker, Austin Vince. He is fun, fearless, impulsive, sociable and up for anything!

And if we snuck a peak in your backpack, would anything surprise us?

Nail varnish. Even if I'm in the depth of the Congo, or battling through a sand dune, it makes me feel more human if I keep my toenails painted! It's like a little hint of feminine civilisation among the inevitable grime and grot!

Ha, we love that! What about things that have surprised you?

That you really can't get a decent cup of tea outside of Britain. The worst offender is the USA - that feels like microwaved warm water with a bag of grey dust floating in it!

Thanks Lois - you're an inspiration!

Follow Lois' adventures via Twitter or dig into her book Revolutionary Ride - On the Road in Search of the Real Iran.