For seemingly every Olympian, there’s a heartwarming backstory about the sacrifice of family members. But the effort put in by the father and stepmother of Swiss freestyle skier Mischa Gasser just may top them all.

Gasser’s 55-year-old father, Guido Huwiler, and his wife, Rita Ruttmann, headed for PyeongChang a year ago, hopping on bicycles to make the 10,000-plus mile journey from their home near Zurich.

“My dad is crazy,” Gasser, who finished out of the running for medal in aerials competition, said (via Yahoo) with a laugh after qualifying Saturday night. “He was a skydiver as well in his younger age. It’s just what they have to do.”

Well, they didn’t really have to do it, but the journey made for exceptional blog posts and stunning photos, as well as a stupendous beard. Technically, they didn’t bike the entire way and had to rely on flights because North Korea was closed and they could not get approval from Chinese authorities, but 10,000 miles is 10,000 miles and seeing Gasser was emotional.

“To arrive here and see my son waiting for us — we were really touched,” Huwiler told Reuters Television. “I had no words.”

View this post on Instagram

Enjoying Thailands humidity 100%wet

A post shared by Ausgebüxt (Guido Huwiler) (@guidohuwiler) on

They passed through 20 countries in their journey, according to Busbee: Italy, Croatia, Montenegro, Kosovo, Serbia, Bulgaria, Turkey, Georgia, Armenia, Iran, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and, of course Switzerland and South Korea.

For Huwiler and his wife, the ride was spiritual as well as physical, with the most taxing part coming on the Pamir Highway, which lies at more than 15,000 feet above sea level in central Asia.

“On the roadside we meet many adventurous motorists with their Land Cruiser or other oversized survival vehicles, on huge vollbepackte motorcycles, but also car travelers with small cars, or relatively small lightly packed motorcycles,” he wrote (via Google translation) on his blog.

“Everyone travels as they please and reflects their way of dealing with the world. We also meet a lot of cyclists, and here too every traveler is an individual, every bike is a unique one spiced up with lots of glue & gadgets, huge luggage and tags, or simply reduced to the essentials. Many travelers tell us first of their experiences on these lousy and difficult to drive roads.

He mused: “Is it really the case that the road condition, or even an expired date of a Snickers, seems to be more important than describing one’s own experience while traveling? Could it be that we have not sufficiently or insufficiently prepared for what awaits us? That we subconsciously assume that the world should be as it is in the West? That we think primarily of our little cyclist and world traveler problem on the way?”

And Huwiler added, “Of course, we also meet many travelers who, through their self-reflection and exchange with us, enrich our journey, indeed make it indispensable.”

Olympians might very well feel the same about him and his wife. They’ll fly from South Korea to Japan, then return to Switzerland to obtain visas for China, Russia and Mongolia.

“We are crazy,” Huwiler laughed.

By the way, Gasser’s mother flew to South Korea.