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Old 07-15-2011, 08:49 AM   #1
Kristof Granit OP
Joined: Jul 2011
Location: Russia
Oddometer: 346
Russia, from Irbit to the South with an Ural Gear Up in 2011. Then a Retro in 2012

Here is the report of my little ride from the Ural factory to home, 2850 km, in June.
This year I decided to buy a “toy” in order to enjoy the various off roads tracks in my area. My first choice went on a Niva Lynx1 prepared by Bronto ( ) But in April after my second visit to the Moscow’s dealer “no tilt”
I mean: I like the Lynx1 but instead of signing an order I start to think about the Ural… Never try it before, just watch some videos on Youtube (Mr Cob) read some RR (Hubert, Lutz … the result: it take not long to sign for a Gear Up directly at the factory with Marina who is in charge of the marketing and sale.

Why at the factory?
In fact there is only one dealer in Moscow and I wasn’t interested to take the bike in the “big city” then coming back home on roads that I already know.
Even if it’s possible to have a bike ordered at the factory then a delivery at your place, I decided that it will be more interesting to see the factory then coming back by towns I have never been.
Road book?
Irbit,then 1st step: Yekaterinburg.
2 nd? 3 rd?…
No “real” road book were prepared, but itinerary should pass through Ufa, Samara, Saratov, Volgograd, Rostov… with an arrival at Novorossiysk.
No maps, no GPS, with me, just print out an itinerary from a Russian site and that’s it…


June 13 ― Anapa / Yekaterinburg

In Anapa airport, after passing all the control, there is point of sale of Kuban wines (my “region”), not wishing to arrive with empty hands, I purchase the bottle of champagne “Abrau-Durso” for Marina.
I have got direct fly in the evening with Kuban airline from Anapa to Yekaterinburg on a Yak42, we were only 15 on board, it’s “normal” at this time of the year all the planes goes empty from the south to bring back the “tourists” to the coast.

June 14 ― Yekaterinburg / Irbit

My colleague and friend who lives in Yekaterinburg, ordered taxi. SMS confirmation sent by the company, with price indication. Arriving at 3 o'clock in the morning, I was not going to ask friends to meet me. But I accept invitation to take advantage of their covered garage on the return trip.

Whether is it necessary to book taxi? It is not obligatory, in the airport always there is a taxi, but price will be other...

From airport to hotel “Turn” ( 240 km and three hours of quiet ride on good road. Not considering 30 km and 20 minutes, because the driver did not know well the direction and made a small hook.

Hotel is nice, and you turn out immediately in the topic “Urals” due to “souvenirs” which are offered in the show-window beside the reception.

I went to the factory after lunch to met with Marina and collect my documents, she propose me a guided visit of the factory, I accepted and it was possible to take free pictures. I didn’t saw my bike, she wasn’t ready yet…
But they told me to not worry she will ready as per plan the 15th afternoon.

June 15th - Irbit / Yekaterinburg – 214km
Leave the hotel just before lunch, went to the factory, make a second walk inside but this time alone, can see that they were working on the final assembly of my bike. The work was complete by 5pm.
Never drove a sidecar before so I have my first “run” in the access road within the factory territory and went to the nearest gas station then straight to Yekaterinburg to meet my friend and his family.

June 16th ― Yekaterinburg / Ufa ―547 km

After spending the night at my friend apartment. We went to the garage, I check of the level of oil, no variations to comparison that was at departure from the plant.
I left Yekaterinburg under rain…

Road between Yekaterinburg and Ufa is interesting, from “highway” to smalls roads in various conditions from good to hell with the “asphalt” destroy by the trucks and even some kilometers on a section in construction, I miss the last panel for the bypass and instead of going back I decided to follow a truck who enter the construction site…

On arrival to Ufa, I went to the center town, turn twice around a block in order to find an hotel with car park, It would have been “easier” to ask at taxi driver…
But I preferred to return on the M5 and it is good that I made it, because less than 10 km from city centre I found a very good hotel close to a small lake.

June 17th 2011 ― Ufa / Samara ― 419 kms

After a night outside (but in front of the guards house) the motorcycle is covered by the dew, the engine started at the first try.
I start this day under the sun and with 70 km of highway. But this section ends soon and the main part of this section Ufa/Samara is fact in a very bad condition...

Today for the first time from the beginning of travel I was stopped by the police for excess of speed... yes, yes, you read properly...
I exceeded permitted speed , as usual, all begins from display of documents to the policeman, and then you go to his[“chief” which sits in the car with radar on instrument panel.

In this moment there are two variants, particularly if you are asked to sit inside the patrol car:
1 – Policeman will fill the “protocol”(ticket), you should pay it at the bank.
2 – You will “ask” him if it’s “possible” “to pay in cash” immediately (…)
Today I remained at window what allowed to assume “happy” end, in fact we discussed about the Ural and my ride, they wish me a safe and good journey and I continue.

I remind you that there is no license plate on the bike and for the first time after 1.200 km I was stopped by the police but because of my “mistake”…

At the entrance of Samara, I pass close to the Yamaha dealer on the other side of the avenue, come back and purchase oil for replacement, their single mechanic was busy doing the last preparation on a small motor boat which should be delivered to the buyer, the boss told me he know a place and jump to his car to show me this place located at 3km…

At this workshop the mechanic ask me “Do you have a filter?”
Oups… not of course, so he indicated me a shop in town: “Tourist” (very good name for me…)
I left the bike and went to the main avenue to take a cab, but just before I reach it one young guy who was at the workshop propose to drop me because it’s on his way.
At “Tourist” I bought the filter.

Returning to shop, during the time mechanic changes oil, I show the pictures of the factory to some local bikers, this place is also a local club. They were amazed that I can walk alone inside the factory.
Then back to Yamaha, in order to thank the boss for his help. There was a nice hotel in the area ( , 2500 rub for the night breakfast included, nice buffet. No guarded parking but CCTV and the bike at the first parking place close to the door.

June 18th 2011 ― Samara / Saratov ― 437 km
Road in better condition. For once instead of the traditional question “How it cost?”, while I was having a coffee at the gas station, on guy ask me if I can take a picture of the bike with his son.

Arriving at Saratov, I wanted to go further to Volgograd, in order to be advanced a little on my route, but ultimately I drive to city, and I do not regret because the city centre is very pleasant. After finding a Hotel with parking, (week-end price 1100 rub for a double room with AC).
I went to the pedestrian’s street in the center and have dinner in open court of the complex “Boulevard” (

June 19th 2011 ― Saratov / Rostov ― 712 km
Departure at 7 AM and just at the exit of the city, police stop me, first question: did you drink last night? We were Sunday morning…
I show him all the empty bottles of water, lying in the basket, he laughs, we talk 5 minutes, as well as other, he wishes to me a good road, and I travel further.

The roads were relatively good, however in a section after Saratov, I start a “rodeo” session, I was too optimistic or, alternatively got tired, either both and I went on the side of the road…, I continue the rodeo, leaving behind me a beautiful cloud of dust, I was alone on the road nobody behind…
Then I decide to decrease speed and to return to the “asphalt”...

Few kilometers latter I stop when I saw on the side 2 bikers on Japanese customs, they were from Togliatti and on their way to Sevastopol, the clutch cable of one of the motorcycles was broken. Reparation was almost complete I stay few minutes then I continue my way.

Then I make a coffee break in one of those olds “trucks stops” with “wooden” shops and restaurants, along the road there is still such “typical” stops but more and more you can find recently built “moderns buildings”.

Arriving at Volgograd, I saw monument “Homeland-mother”

as it was close to the main road, I made a small stop to take pictures.

Second control by police at the end of the afternoon, just before crossing a bridge at a permanent check point. Most of those checks points are now empty and no more in use, but they still remain some.
Check? In fact, the policeman not even asked my documents, but he remembers to ask price, though it is evident that he knows this model (Gear Up), because he says to his colleague that, there should be a shovel on the side, then I open the boot to show him that yes, there is a shovel…

Discussion was interrupted by the arrival of their chief at the check point, here again they wish me a save road, and I leave.
Soon after I reach the M4 highway, and I decided to stop in a small hotel after more than 700km on the bike.
Pay 500 rub for a small room with two beds, toilets and shower on the corridor.
Remain only 70km to join Rostov.

June 20th 2011 ― Rostov / Novorossisk ― 488 kms

Departure at 5 AM, as usual highway is not the best place for the Ural but but I should admit that it is “quieter”, than “rodeo”, to start the day.

Nothing special on this section, the highway goes on the side of the city. It’s possible to stay on the M4 until Krasnodar then Novorossiysk but you can “cut” by joining Timashevsk, the road is in good condition and less traffic than the M4.
As I was waiting at the railways crossing, police crew arrive beside me on the road side and asking me, why motorcycle is not registered, I told them that I travel from the factory, they left but I presume that they will continue to ask some questions after the barrier, they are at this “spot” since many years , and effectively immediately after railway crossing they stopped and ask the documents, as all of his colleagues the policeman didn’t really read the documents, none of them check if the frame and motor numbers were matching the documents…

Arrival to Novorossisk by 2pm, end of the ride, 2850km.

Security: nothing special, yes I prefer to have the bike in a guarded car park than in the street, I sleep better…
Police: 4 “controls” in 2850km, one due to overspeeding.
Mechanic: not been very gentle with the engine, didn’t respect the indications of the owner manual… late (vey) to change the oil…
Day 5 in the evening, contactor for the rear “stop light” stay “on” permanently, next morning I bought some WD40 and it was solve…
Two sandows from the side-cover get broken, it will cost me less to ask a local sawyer to repair them than to send back the cover to the factory, I don’t even know if there is a guaranty on it (…)
Paint under the opening of the luggage bonnet get heavy scratch and even “disappear” in some places due to the vibrations metal/metal… I could have read more RR and prepare the bike before and also do some improvement as soon the problem appear but instead I continue to ride…

Kristof Granit screwed with this post 06-15-2012 at 06:44 PM
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