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Old 08-19-2009, 08:53 AM   #46
timolgra1 OP
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We're headed SW for the Gobi, to Dalandzadgad via Mandalgovi.


Dennis the Ozz is with us now





Mongolia is a vast, empty country....perfect.


Get on one of the more well used tracks and the corrugations will shake your fillings out, ride slowly and you'll destroy the bike, ride fast and it'll destroy the bike more slowly. It's a no win situation.


So ride where you want
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Old 08-19-2009, 09:16 AM   #47
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The feeling of riding in a landscape such as this, with sky to match is indescribable.

No tarmac anywhere, no kids holding their hands out begging for stuff, no police, no irate farmers.

Nothing, yet everything.

It's difficult to know whether to laugh, cry or just be.....whatever you do, it'll be ok.



Yeah, don't worry I know where we're going



Dennis and Baz join me


Baz pauses for a snack


Then discovers his Wilbers rear shock has blown
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Old 08-19-2009, 10:57 AM   #48
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Great man, we did it in 2007 anty clockwise.

We stayed in Oasis too and loved Mongolia just as much as you did. But I think Kyrgistan is even more beautiful. That is on my list for 2012 again.

Keep up the magnificent report, Ad
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Old 08-19-2009, 01:01 PM   #49
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Baz's rear shock was removed and some preload wound on manually, the bolt was tight going back in, perhaps it was bent it would be the cause of a big problem later.
Rick's Landy also needed a minor bit of attention. The bottom nt had pulled through the washer on his shock, this also happened earlier in Russia.
The kids were just great, so enthusiastic and friendly




This is a very remote town, one or two streets do have short stretches tarmac but that's it for perhaps 300 miles.

Throughout this trip I noticed the attitude of adults and in particular children changed the nearer to a road you were, on a main road it became worse and in towns children can be little gits the world over.
Access to American TV culture is spreading like wildfire and there seems to be no way of stopping it, let alone reversing the trend.


Mongolia was the exception where they were all great.




These children were intrigued with my 'Camelback' water pipe, getting them to look up and squirting them with it caused shrieks of laughter
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Old 08-19-2009, 02:09 PM   #50
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Check out these cool bikers


Way cooler than a BMW corporate twatsuit


All fixed up and we head south again.
Sand begins to become more common, I love it, some people hate it more of that soon




Two and a half days after leaving Ulaanbaatar we arrive in Dalandzadgad, on the outskirts we find scrap vehicles carefully placed....perhaps by an artist, proclaiming that motor vehicle may come and go but the desert always remains.....I wondered what the dinosaurs of that region would have thought.


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Old 08-19-2009, 02:36 PM   #51
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It seems' Jarvo hurt his ankle during a fall in the sand and the others are not keen on taking GS's to the big sand dunes, because it's not like there's a road to them where you can take photos of your bike half buried in sand then ride out again.

Our route now is NNW on 'minor routes'

Baz displays his Dorset flag


Pete enjoying this track which wound it's way through small hills.


Pick a spot anywhere, ride to it and contemplate.


Stop and soak it up.


The open flatland was a joy to ride on, no need to stay on the track just pick a direction and ride as fast as you dare.

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Old 08-19-2009, 02:44 PM   #52
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Laugh This is awesome

This is a well written and photo-documented RR - thanks for this. Your pictures are fantastic, and I am very much looking forward to the mountains in Central Asia
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Old 08-19-2009, 02:49 PM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timolgra1



Superb!

Love the matching riding gear, too.
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Old 08-19-2009, 02:51 PM   #54
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Sometimes there was so much traffic we just had to sit and wait.




These are Bactrian Camels with two humps as opposed to Dromedary Camels with only one, lovely looking animals....if you're that way inclined.
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Old 08-19-2009, 03:51 PM   #55
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Really enjoying this report. Always wanted to do the same ride, but the gay truckers kind of scare me.

I don't roll that way.
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Old 08-19-2009, 05:15 PM   #56
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Quote: "I won't ask the reader to excuse my enthusiasm at this point,"

Mate! indeed, excuse what??? If a man can't get excited about being somewhere like that on two wheels then he needs to rush to a hospital 'cause he's probably dead!

what a stunning place and a great RR :)

cheers
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Old 08-19-2009, 09:26 PM   #57
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Central Asia Tips

Hi, guys. I friend sent your posts to me because I did recently similar trip alone. From Madrid I reached Almaty crossing Ukrain, Russia and entering into Kazakhstan by Astrakhan, reaching Atyrau and sourronding Aral Sea. The way back was by Uzbekistan and Kaz again to arrive Aktau and then Baku by ferry. I see on your map that is the way you want to do, so I know good things for you.

Have a look at my blogsite for that trip and write to me if you need bikers help in Tashkent, Samarkand or Baku. From Istambul I went to Jerusalem and it was nice, so maybe you can change your mind and go to the Holy Land instead the cold UK.

Keep safe



http://www.miquel-silvestre.blogspot.com/


http://www.myholylandjourney.blogspot.com/
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Old 08-19-2009, 10:01 PM   #58
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Great report so far, looking forward to more!
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Old 08-20-2009, 02:33 AM   #59
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The Gobi region of Mongolia is a vast forbidding place to take heavy motorcycles but contrary to popular myth sand covers only 3%......so we'd better look carefully



Hmmm, can't seem to find any sand here lads, I say to myself.... the others follow unwittingly


Aha, here it is and 'unfortunately' our route goes right through it
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Old 08-20-2009, 03:38 AM   #60
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Chaos ensues.

Anyone who's ridden a fully laden GS in sand will fully appreciate the situation, mix that with being in the heat of the Gobi and you'll also appreciate how easy it is to get outside of your own personal 'comfort zone'.

I can't write all the expletives used....this is f*****ng stupid, too dangerous, the wrong bike to be here, what if one of us breaks a leg, bike's too heavy, legs too short, it'll burn the clutch out, why have we come here?

All perfectly understandable concerns and there's nothing like a good situation to raise stress levels and dummies to be spat.

Of course much of this outburst is aimed at me, like it's my fault there's sand in the Gobi desert, why did you bring us here etc.

Perhaps too sharply I reply, if I wanted comfort I'd ride to the Ace Cafe, and if I knew exactly what was ahead I'd go somewhere else.

I was loving it, why weren't they?


Possibly the fall that broke the camels back.

Jarvo was hating every moment in Mongolia and it was clearly not for him. Now this is not a criticism at all, anyone planning such trips should ask that deep question of themselves, is this really for you, do you have that passion to revel in all moments no matter how hard they are at the time.

I'm sure it's the question we did all ask ourselves at times over the three months, Jarvo's answer was different to ours and he left for home once out of Mongolia.
I just hope he does eventually have some great memories of his considerable achievment.


If looks could kill, I'd be a dead man


Pete who's a very good rider also hated the sand but soon came to grips with it


Looks like trouble back there


And eventually the sand caught me out


Pete has borrowed Rick's bike for this trip, I think it was at this point Pete who's generally the perfectly mannered Englishman exploded because the bike was too tall for his legs.

There's only one way to ride in sand and that's stood up, weight back and fairly fast, as time went on in the trip we again encountered sand in the west and most of us had mastered this teqhnique.... in fact I'd go as far as saying, Pete and Baz were really enjoying it


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