A derivative of this style of travel were the hippie trucks and buses, hand-crafted mobile houses built on a truck or bus chassis to facilitate a nomadic lifestyle.
The hippie trail came to an end in the late s with political changes in previously hospitable countries. In , both the Iranian Revolution  and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan closed the overland route to Western travelers.
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The Lebanese Civil War had already broken out in , and Chitral and Kashmir became less inviting due to tensions in the area. Locals also became increasingly weary of Western travelers — notably in the region between Kabul and Peshawar , where residents became increasingly frightened and repulsed by unkempt hippies who were drawn to the region for its famed opium and wild cannabis.
Topdeck continued its trips throughout the Iran—Iraq War and later conflicts, but took its last trip in From the mid s, the route has again become somewhat feasible, but continuing conflict and tensions in Iraq, Afghanistan and parts of Pakistan mean the route is much more difficult and risky to negotiate than in its heyday. In September , Ozbus embarked upon a short-lived service between London and Sydney over the route of the hippie trail,  and commercial trips are now offered between Europe and Asia, bypassing Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, by going through Nepal and Tibet to the old Silk Road.
The BIT Guide , recounting collective experiences and reproduced at a fairly low cost, produced the early duplicated stapled-together " foolscap bundle" with a pink cover providing information for travelers and updated by those on the road, warning of pitfalls and places to see and stay.
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They wrote this page pamphlet based upon travel experiences gained by crossing Western Europe, the Balkans, Turkey and Iran from London in a minivan. After having traveled through these regions, they sold the van in Afghanistan and continued on a succession of chicken buses , third-class trains and long-distance trucks.
They crossed Pakistan, India, Nepal, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia and arrived nine months later in Sydney with a combined 27 cents in their pockets. The song " Down Under " by Australian rock band Men at Work sets out with a scene on the hippie trail while under the influence of marijuana :. Personal account of a French girl on the Hippie Trail in French.
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The Penn Overland Story. Retracing on foot and by bus the wide-eyed Hippie Trail adventures along the route reopened for the first time in a generation. Crossing a region swept through extraordinary and turbulent changes since the Summer of Love. Lost Planet Journeys. Vintage Departures.
ISBN 13: 9788172233174
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