This project is to spend 5 weeks this summer riding some un-mapped routes in Kazakhstan, and maybe the Altai and Tuva Republics of Russia, to increase the track data for the area in the online Open Street Maps (OSM) Project.
The bike I am using for the trip, formerly an X-Country but looking more like a Challenge now, is currently in a container, along with 11 other bikes from the Dutch AllRoadManiacs Group. The container is somewhere in Russia on the back of a train on its way to Almaty.
We all fly to Almaty on weekend of 14th July to pickup the bikes as a group before splitting and going our separate ways. I will be traveling east initially, to Charyn Canyon before turning north along the Chinese border. I believe most of the others are turning south into the Stan's
Here's a few photos to start things off.
I bought this XC.....mostly as a result of Walter's travels and my own experience with the weight of the GSA!
And then over the following year did extensive modifications to end up with this.....
Which is now packed into one of these......
And loaded into one of these.....this is actually my crate being loaded by Peet at Mainport Forwarding in Rotterdam
Along with the AllRoadManiacs !
Proposed Route round Eastern Kazakhstan and across the top of Lake Balqash.
The green line is the proposed route, the other colors are optional routes if I get blocked due to terrain or permit issues. I haven't got border permits unfortunately so I am hoping ignorance will get me through.
in Cornwall, UK, have kindly loaned me a couple of bullit cameras to help record the trip and to supplement my handheld video camera. I have been doing business with this company for a number of years and have no reservations about recommending them to anyone looking for live action POV cameras. A big thank you to them for their support.
btw: As the trip doesn't officially start till 13th, be patient for the next update, which will be from Almaty itself, assuming I can find WIFI.
If there are any other riders planning to be in the Kazakhstan after 13th, feel free to get in touch, maybe our paths will cross!