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Old 05-17-2014, 02:34 PM   #1
poppawheelie OP
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Round The World the Easy Way

I'm in London getting ready to ride round the world on my Suzuki DR650. The first leg, 17,500 miles to Magadan, will be with Compass Expeditions out of Australia. My first choice would have been to travel with one or two of five adventure riders I know and trust, having been on rides with them, but none wanted to go. I thought about doing it alone, but 1) I'm totally dyslexic about languages. I've tried, I've taken lessons, and I've studied on my own. It just doesn't work. I'm a retired engineer and accountant, not a linguist. 2) I get frustrated and impatient at border crossings. I'm OK if I'm with other riders in the same situation, even if it takes 4 to 8 hours. 3) I just don't want to do it alone. State-side I prefer to ride alone or with my favorite riding partner, my wife.

I wish my wife could go. We motorcycle, bicycle, X-country ski and hike together, but she cannot take the time right now, and I can't wait any longer. Better do this now. I'm 67 with age related health issues. Yeah, I know you know riders in their 70's and 80's who still ride very well. I know them too from the Dual Sport events I do in the Pennsylvania Mountains every year, but I know myself, and I don't think I'll be one of them in my
+70's.

So, not wanting to do it alone or hook up with a stranger on Horizons Unlimited, left me to choose a "tour company." That was quickly limited to two, since I want to do The Road of Bones and end up in Magadan, not China or elsewhere. Originally I just wanted to do the Road of Bones. The more I read, the more I thought why not go the whole way across as many adventure riders do, having shipped my bike and myself over there. Then I realized going east to west is better, taking Colebatch's advice to not ride into the sun. Then I realized when the bike ships back to California, instead of trucking it home, I can fly out and ride it across the U S and say, "I've ridden round the world!"

Getting back to the two choices, Kudu Expeditions is perhaps the better deal, since they provide the bike, a Tenere 660. They do a real adventure ride, including the BAM and Pamir roads. I'd like to, but . . . I was fortunate enough to have a personal conversation with Grant Johnson of Horizons Unlimited. He said look at the age group of the riders going with Kudu vs. Compass. He added that he would go with Kudu if he were in his 20's or 30's, but into his 60's, he'd do Compass. That meant a lot to my decision. I've had enough pins, plates, screws, and casts on my body to not want to add any more so far from home. Close to home, I don't mind taking some chances.
Jeremy McGrath, retired MX'r said, "At a certain age your brain switches and you just become a little more cautious and you think about things a little bit more."

OK, enough justifying taking the Easy Way Round. This is my trip.

self port 2 photo 2014TreDamgCertsSnowHD049.jpg

I'm not going North/ South. I've been to Prudhoe Bay and Ushuaia on separate trips. However, it's certainly not the Shortest Way Round. Google Maps tells me London to Magadan is 8,200 miles. We'll be doing about 17,500. It may become more of a cultural experience than I want, following part of the Silk Route and visiting more cities than I would if I picked the route, but I'll probably be in that part of the world only once. My well traveled non-motorcyclist friends claim there's a lot to see. We'll see.

It could be called the Expensive Way Round, going with an organized group. I'm draining my bank account, but I'm NOT spending my principle or my retirement savings. That's a rule I wouldn't brake in making my decisions.

This will not be a Lalo's Around the World in 800 Days http://advrider.com/forums/showthrea...01516&page=453
or RTW with Noah http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=781893
or the Godfather of All Things Off Road Russia, Walter Colebatch. See Sibirsky Extreme http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=834987
He's the best IMHO. He's somewhere here in England I think, maybe London.

Old man and his horse.

self port 4 photo selfportraitwDR008.jpg

Follow me on SPOT starting Tuesday May 20th: http://share.findmespot.com/shared/f...7tt5dyC33nesRr
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poppawheelie screwed with this post 05-18-2014 at 11:58 PM
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Old 05-17-2014, 02:54 PM   #2
The Dogger
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Looks good , have fun and keep us posted
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Old 05-17-2014, 04:04 PM   #3
jerrybiker
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Wish you the best. I'm sure there will be a RR we won't want to miss.
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Old 05-17-2014, 05:14 PM   #4
TrophyHunter
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Congrats on setting yourself up well enough to do this, getting out there and doing it & having a wife who understands!

Subscribed.
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Old 05-17-2014, 06:07 PM   #5
ER70S-2
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"BTW, I don't do style. It's a dirt bike, not some girlie dress-up thing." -
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Old 05-17-2014, 06:20 PM   #6
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SUBSCRIBED!!!

WOW ... This is one thread I'll be checking in on every night !

My dream ride ... My bike ... My vintage ... LOVE IT !!
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Old 05-17-2014, 06:46 PM   #7
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I

am in.
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Old 05-17-2014, 08:17 PM   #8
refokus
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V

Good luck and enjoy......
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Old 05-17-2014, 11:28 PM   #9
fasttortoise
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Thumb Wow!

I'm saving this space so I can rave about you later. That is exactly how I would start this RR!

Post more than Noah, spend less than Ed, be exactly like Walter.

Be as adventurous as Noah, as crazy as Ed, and take as many pictures of petty girls as Walter!

Tortoise
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Old 05-18-2014, 01:07 AM   #10
cold comfort
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Subscribed. As Clint Eastwood said "A mans gotta know his limitations" A realistic approach to the desire for continued adventure and route I may be traveling myself in the coming years. All the best.
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Old 05-18-2014, 06:37 AM   #11
NotAllWhoWanderRLost
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Thumb Sounds like fun!

It sounds like an amazing adventure, I'm looking forward to following along!



Quote:
Originally Posted by fasttortoise View Post
Post more than Noah, spend less than Ed, be exactly like Walter.

Be as adventurous as Noah, as crazy as Ed, and take as many pictures of petty girls as Walter!

Tortoise
^^^+1! I think that would make a great signature line.
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Old 05-18-2014, 06:44 AM   #12
poppawheelie OP
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Bikes are arriving. Riders are sorting kits. We leave Tuesday.
Weather is perfect today and is supposed to be the same tomorrow. Sunny and warm. Tuesday is supposed to be rain.

The 2102 group that did this ride had rain every day right up to Istanbul. In order to have nearly four months to complete the trip, we have to leave in the rainy (for Europe) Spring.

Not looking forward to riding on the left. I've been to London before but never drove or rode here. Just riding as passenger in a car here kind of made me nervous. Sitting in the back, I kept looking at the passenger in the left front seat, thinking, "I wish he'd pay more attention to the road!" While I did my exercise jog/ walks at home on the left side of the road, I pretended I was on the bike every time I came to an intersection. Turn left onto left side! I think the UK is the only left side drive country we'll be in.
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poppawheelie screwed with this post 06-07-2014 at 12:16 PM
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Old 05-18-2014, 06:50 AM   #13
WhicheverAnyWayCan
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Good luck on your trip and ride safe! Subscribed!
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Old 05-18-2014, 06:52 AM   #14
redwine65
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I drove on the left side of the road in barbados on a scooter, it didn't take too long to get used to. (fear of cars heading towards you will do that.)

your trip sounds like a blast.
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Old 05-18-2014, 05:09 PM   #15
cold comfort
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Originally Posted by redwine65 View Post
(fear of cars heading towards you will do that.)
.
That will definitely get your attention! Having worked and driven in Saudi Arabia, also through Italy and the US National Parks, I had to change the other way. Takes a bit of focus to begin with but no dramas. It seems to be a major issue here for Asian tourists though with the resulting fallout for local bikers.
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