I was kinda hoping one of the Norwegians would have some pics of the 5 of us jammed into two rooms in that old wooden shack in Taksimo ... maybe some video stills.? Guys?
Anyway ... while they search videos ... we had two rivers to cross today ... one was the legendary Vitim River ... and the other the much smaller but still inconvenient Kuanda River.
Having got to bed late, we woke late ... and it was 1:15 pm when we all left Taksimo, via the local convenience store.
Terry and Geir stormed ahead, aiming for the Vitim Bridge. After 30 km there is a fork in the road, a turnoff. The road straight ahead to a village on the banks of the Vitim about 30 km downstream form the bridge.
I got to the turnoff, and checked tracks in the dirt to make sure Terry and Geir had taken the turnoff ... tracks indicated they had. I thought I better wait there to make sure Steve and Erik make the turnoff. So I parked my bike poining in the direction of the turnoff and waited. Erik arrived, saw my bike pointed in the direction of the turnoff, and took it. Then I waited for Steve. A few minutes later Steve cam flying down the main road at high speed. Too fast to slow down abd take the corner it seemed, so I waved at him, and pointed in the direction of the turnoff. I saddled up and while I assumed Steve was slowing down and turning around to return to the turnoff, I set out to catch up with Erik.
I caught up with Erik and we rode slowly together for a while which would allow Steve to catch us up. By the time we got to a first tricky bridge, Steve still hadnt caught us up. We decided to go across the little bridge and wait for Steve on the other side.
Geir and Terry should be up ahead at the Vitim River bridge by now.
Even though this was just a short little bridge, just 20 yards across, it was really the first bridge we had come to on the BAM where you could not afford to make a mistake. A mistake here and the trip quite possibly ends.
I rode across ...
But perhaps conscious of the costs of a mistake, Erik decided to play it safe: