I feel i should introduce myself before i fully start my ride report and also the real reason for my trip and why i decided to do such a trip on a motorbike with out any real experience and only passing my test a few weeks before i set off as i hope i will encourage other to do the same and to show others a total novice can do such a trip. This is also the reason for deciding to do a ride report
So my name is Wesley i'm 30 however i use nivea face moisturizer so i look a lot younger
I work in the oil/gas sector and have been doing so for around 9 years.
I am also British
This is my day job
although i said my trip started in England it really started before that in Western Australia in a city called Perth, i was working and living there. i was looking at my facebook and at the time i saw someone put a post about the opening of the Olympic games saying "Tajikistan is that a real name of a country" and for some reason after reading this guys facebook post i started searching about Tajikistan and decided i must visit this place, im not sure why maybe i felt a little boredom in my life.
At the age of 30 i have done many things in my life and lived a full life and had traveled alot, on my travels i would always try stay and live with local people of the grid.
Here is a example of when i went to Ethiopia in 2006 and hitch hiked to a remote part of the country and lived with a nomad tribe for a couple of weeks and also street kids. i already knew people who have little give more
At the time me and my girlfriend had just broken up over the differences we had and i never felt at home in Australia, its a great country and great people but not for me so instead of being the whinging pom i decided i will head back home to the UK and then i would visit Tajikistan
So what option do i have to visit it? fly by plane but then what get around on local transport this was not for me, second option fly in with a push bike (bicycle for you German guys reading this) but my legs aint what they used to be so i did not like this option,by car? no that would be to boring and costly so maybe a motorbike is the option right?
So after searching youtube for many hours about motorbike videos and also videos of Tajikistan i came across a short video called "Dla Iziego" in which the pictures amazed me so much and then i knew the method i would travel and that would be on a motorbike.
I also came across the Mondo Enduro by Austin Vince which is also very amazing as he was pretty much pioneering the ADV scene on a small DR350 enduro bike as well as a load of other videos clips and all other stuff but the video i saw first made the biggest impression on me and I watched this short video many times as the pictures are amazing and this was a big deciding factor & influence for me to do such a trip "that's it i will go visit Tajikistan on a motorbike"
I then started searching various forums to plan my trip and that is when i found out (from this forum) the video that inspired me the most to travel was that of a Polish biker called Izi who lost his life in Tajikstan, this short video clip made a big impression on me and was a big deciding factor to do my bike trip from the amazing photos, reading this i felt sad like i had lost a friend even though i never knew this man.........
So motorbike it will be however i don't i have a bike licence and the only real experience on a motorbike was a 50cc honda MT5 when i was a kid at 16 for 1 month until it went bang and then riding a cheap Chinese bike when i went back packing in Ethiopia in 2006 for 1 day!!!
However i did my research from many hours of reading blogs and i read them all!
So a light single cylinder it will be then
On a Monday i handed my notice in at work in Oz on a Thursday i was back in the UK and after one day of landing i sat my motorbike theory test (i booked it before hand online) after passing this i phoned around for a 5 day training course which includes your test (mod 1 & 2, in the UK you have to sit 2 tests for your licence) and on the Monday i was in Blackburn attending my bike course.
Disaster! i failed my mod 2 practical for riding to close to a car door, i headed back to my home town and had to wait 2 weeks for another test and in the mean time a brought a DR250S which i thought would be the bike for my trip and i prepped this with parts i brought from ebay
Disaster! again i failed my Mod 2 for doing 65 miles a hour in a 70 zone, its called " failing to make progress" another 2 weeks passed and then bingo i passed my test!!!
I went straight home and out on the DR250S, this was the first time i really went more than 20 meters on it and got out of first gear and i soon found out this bike is very under-powered and is a nightmare to start once hot
Its now late March i am planing on leaving in about 3 weeks and im changing bike!
After searching various sites for information i decided it would be a DRZ400S, so i sold the DR250S quick and brought a DRZ400 and set about ADVing it with stuff i brought from ebay and gum-tree, i got my licence back just a few days before i set off however the log book (bike owner papers) never came on time so i got a temporary 6 month copy from the licence agency.
Quickly this trip soon started to become a "make it up as you go along trip"
After i was ready to leave i decided i would catch the ferry from the UK port of harwich to holland and start heading East however after calling the ticket office all tickets had sold out, guess you cant book the morning you decide to leave can you
My friend who was staying with me suggested i could take the euro train from dover to calais and book the same day, I looked how far Dover was from Norwich (my home town) and on google maps it said nearly 200 miles.
I turned to my friend and said its nearly 200 miles away! he said Tajikistan much further with a big smile. at this point i had only ever been on my DRZ for
around 100 miles at most with the longest ride being 30 miles
so at around 5pm i set off to catch the euro train from Dover to Calais.
When i set off with my family waving me off it soon become apparent my bike wont fit out the back garden gate due to the side bags so i had to take them off and re-fit them once though the gate
Riding nervously having never ridden a bike with side bags/weight on making it up as i go along I headed to Dover saying to myself thats it im on the road im off the trip starts now, it would be Tajikistan or Bust!!!!
British National Flag, The Union Jack
Bike on the Euro train as i leave Great Britain to set off on my adventure
This bike my first real on-the-road bike would soon become my best friend, my trusty DRZ which shortly got the nickname the "Sputnik Explorer"
As i sat on the floor of that train little did i know what a amazing life changing adventure i was about to have!!!
So thats the intro over time for the real ride report to start