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Old 08-27-2010, 09:30 AM   #31
franki OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frgich
Another one of Frankies great RR coupled up with amazing pics as always , thanks for sharing it with us

You are most welcomed, Frgich.
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Old 08-27-2010, 09:38 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by Bhasmasur
Hey , Does the road lead all the way to the Everest Base camp? I always thought a bit of trekking was involved to get there.
And Franki mentioned the high cost to get there.How much is it?

Ace,you put the Enfield to good use it seems.

There are three sections to pass and you need to pay each time. There is the entrance fee for bike and rider, environmental fee, entrance fee to the temple and a basecamp bus (blowing black smoke) fee. It all adds up to about +RMB300 per bike per rider. There are 70km of washboard roads to travel. Considering what they charged and did nothing to improve the road. I refused to let them pocket my money. I can always look at the mountain from Nepal side.
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Old 08-27-2010, 12:37 PM   #33
DanKearney
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Franki,

I've enjoyed reading previous RR's from you here and on MCM. This looks like it's going to be another good one! Great photos and a good story. Thanks for sharing.

Cheers,

Dan K.
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Old 08-28-2010, 04:23 AM   #34
franki OP
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Originally Posted by DanKearney
Franki,

I've enjoyed reading previous RR's from you here and on MCM. This looks like it's going to be another good one! Great photos and a good story. Thanks for sharing.

Cheers,

Dan K.

Hi Dan,

Thank you. To me, this is the best trip in China ever. Sorry can't update today as I have a birthday party to attend

Ride on,

Franki
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Old 08-28-2010, 06:57 PM   #35
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Old 08-28-2010, 10:50 PM   #36
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China and Tibet

Wow, what a difficult and intense adventure you are on! Thanks for sharing it with us, such a rare view of China. Excellent! Hang in strong and looking forward to more.
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Old 08-29-2010, 01:46 AM   #37
franki OP
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This Tibetan village is very small with only 8 families. The reason for building the wire suspension bridge here is because this is the point of entry for Tibetans to do there pilgrimage to one of the scared mountain on this side of the river.

We spent these free time really get to know how the locals lived. We also have plenty of time to wash out all the mud on our gear, cleaned off at least 5kgs of mud from our 2 bikes and did whatever we could to keep our bike in good working order. There is water collected from rainfall and electricity for lighting & satellite TV. Other than that, life is quite primitive. Shower & toilet is out of the question. Due to the road blockage, there are no fresh vegetable or any farm produce available. We eat noodles with fried eggs for lunch, for dinner, it is a bit better; we get steamed rice, pickled vegetable with luncheon meat and stir fried mountain potato. The same repeated itself during the period of our stay. Everyday, we take turns to ride out to the avalanche area to scout out the situation. We need to be ready to make the dash out once the road is cleared. No one can guarantee when the road will be blocked again. The villager did raise some pigs which spent most of their time sleeping underneath our bikes. They were too cute for us to consider them for dinner.

Night entertainment is limited to watching uninteresting satellite TV or chatting with folks which speaks only little bit of Mandarin or sorting out the photos we took during the day. Gazing at the starry night is what I like to do. Jonathan usually reads a book or does his writing or answers many phone calls from his girl friend, when there is mobile signal, that is.

By the third day we were trapped in this tiny village, I have had enough of the same food over and over. So I rode my bike up into the mountain to look around. The dirt road was very winding with steep climb. I can only use first and second gear to push ahead. The road came to and end after 15km, blocked by another avalanche. I saw a donkey trail near by but I did not risk going on it as I am by myself without proper riding gear. I saw a Tibetan farm house not far away and I turn back to have a better look. At the front door, I was met by the lady of the house, Zema was her name. I told her the story of me being here and explained how much we missed fresh vegetable. Zema said they also don’t have farm grown vegetables and are eating greens collected from the wild. Being a city boy myself, I said I don’t know how to collect the right kind to eat. Zema was very kind to offer me some farm grown greens which are not ready to harvest. Overwhelmed by joy, I asked to pay for these precious items but she was firm not to take any money from me. So I offered to take a few photos of her and her young son, I then asked for her address so I can mail these photos to her when they get printed. As I was about to get back on the bike to leave, I remembered Tibetan people makes great yogurt. Then I turned around to ask Zema where I can buy some yogurt. She said these yogurt were made for own consumption and there is no shop selling yogurt. Then she said she can ask her father-in-law if he wish to sell some to me. As expected, Tibetan hospitality prevailed; I was granted a liter of home made yogurt for 7 Yuan (one US dollar). I stuff all the goodies in the saddle bag and started downhill. The trip back was rock & roll. When I returned to our tiny village, I was greeted like a hero when I shared my finding with the folks I stayed with. That lasted until that night when I decided to break open this bottle of yogurt to share it with our lady landlord. There was a popping sound like opening a bottle of Champaign and the yogurt started bubble up and overflowed. Our lady landlord stopped me from pouring into the bow. She pointed at the overflowed yogurt on the table and said this yogurt is only good for pigs. Upon closer inspection, I found this yogurt contains high protein substance – there were a couple of big fat meggats that came out with the overflowed yogurt. God knows how many of them are still inside the bottle. Well, her pigs got lucky that night.

I believed in making contribution to the local community. So I donated about 50cc of my young blood to the fleet of flees; young means new to the human eating bugs. Sleepless in Lanchangjiang Gorge……







The dirt track was rough and poorly maintained. I climb up slowly being careful not to drop my bike as I was all by myself. I didn't realize how steep it was until I stop and look down on a piece of farm land below.





This is what the mountain looks like. No wonder there were no traffic on this track.





Finally I saw a farm house next to the track.




A little boy peek out the window to investigate.




I ask the boy where his mom was so I can buy some vegetables from her.




The lady of the house came out and I was soon given a bunch of greens. She refused to take any money from me.




The kid helped his mom to pick out the part of vegetable that is eatable apart for the part that is poisonous.




While she was sorting the vegetable, with her permition, I poke around the house to see how they live.




Corn stored inside the house.









She also offerred me a bowl of yak yogart. I accpeted it gladly but felt the yogart tasted a bit different. May be it was a different way of making the yogart in this part of the world. I offerred to buy a liter from her so I can share my good fortune with my biker friends later on.




A room with a view




Returning to the village and met the prettiest lady in this village feeding her pigs.




High protein yogart bursting with life.

franki screwed with this post 08-29-2010 at 02:11 AM
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Old 08-29-2010, 02:45 AM   #38
franki OP
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On the 6th day, we could finally break out from the blockade. In return of our suffering, we were rewarded by very fine weather. We were able to see all 13 peaks of the Meili Mountain range near Deqen. Capt. Kool, a young man from Chengdu met us in Deqin and we travelled together as a trio from then on.




Yes, she was the prettiest lady in town, after 6 days in the middle of nowhere.......




There is no toilet in this village. The only place we found was about half a km up the hill where there is a dried out small waterfall which we can find some privatcy. I called it million dollar view toilet.









The ever roaring Lanchangjiang (Mekong)




Good news arrived and Jon was really happy to be able to get out of here.




Still we had to wait another 3 hours for the workers to dynamite some loose boulder on the cliff and clearing them by excavators.




After all these hardship, we were given very fine weather as we head towards Deqin.




The big bend of Lanchangjiang




Signs of civilization




Jon at work




Village in the gorge




Mt. Meili




A rare sight of the 6740m peak which usually hides in the cloud.




Reunion with Capt. Kool (right) in Deqin
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Old 08-29-2010, 02:51 AM   #39
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Franki - you are a genuine poet + chronicler of Chinese + Tibetan life.

Love the pictures of the farmers house - and the farmers wife at work. We can really enter their world through your narration, great pics, and their generosity. We can really taste the greens and yoghurt - healthy living for a city kid!!.
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Old 08-29-2010, 07:23 PM   #40
franki OP
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Originally Posted by chinditone
Franki - you are a genuine poet + chronicler of Chinese + Tibetan life.

Love the pictures of the farmers house - and the farmers wife at work. We can really enter their world through your narration, great pics, and their generosity. We can really taste the greens and yoghurt - healthy living for a city kid!!.

You put me to shame
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Old 08-29-2010, 08:01 PM   #41
franki OP
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Next stop Mangkam was smooth and uneventful. There was a police check point at Yanjing where Beemer Boy were stopped and detained for one night and turned back in 2009. When we passed that same check point that day, there was no one there so we just drove through. We arrived in the afternoon and decided to take an early break so we can start early the next day.

We knew before hand that the road to Baxoi will be a difficult one as the whole road is under construction and we had to climb over 3 tall mountains, the tallest one will be Dongda Mountain Pass standing at 5008 meters. Riding off at 8am, the road was rough, dusty and our bikes suffered from lack of oxygen due to high altitude. Yes , we did change to smaller main jets but the steep climb and bumpy road was really a handful for our 223cc engine. Adding salt to injury, we met hundreds of military convoy travelling the opposite direction. We had to give way to this long convoy as the road is too narrow for us to pass. The dirt kicked up buy these heavy trucks buried us in the cloud of dust we can’t see over 2 meters. Capt. Kool being a rookie biker suffered the most. He first dropped his KTM 640 ADV in a muddy pool and then almost had a head on collision with a tractor and dropped it again. This time, his Canon G11 fell out of his tank bag and was never found. Then the 2 bolts holding the sub-frame fell off while riding in the dark resulted in the collapse of the rear section. I had to ride off to find a truck to haul it to Baxoi. We arrived Baxoi 2am to have our dinner and a bit of shut eye.





We were rewarded by a clear day, all 13 peaks of Mt. Meili appeared in front of us. I was told this happens only a few days in a year.








The Guangxi group also re-united with the rest of their group and we celebrate by having lunch together before we went out own way.




Admired Mt. Meili one last time before moving ahead




Everyone jumped in to help us cross over another landslide




The air is so clean and crisp




Sight seeing




Capt. Kool being a rookie finds it difficult to keep up with us even on a bigger bike. But we always wait for him ahead,




On one of the mountain pass




View from the top









Colours of the hills




Jon: Come on lets get out of here before the snow storm hit us.




The famous 72 hairpins




Going down




Capt. Kool dropped his bike and broke the bolts on the subframe. It took us 2 hours to find a truck to bring the bike down to Baxoi.



KTM's latest model - HD convertable





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Old 08-29-2010, 08:45 PM   #42
jape
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Great pictures and story Franki, I am pleased to see bolts don't just fall off my Kinlon but sorry about the circumstances for your friend, up on the top of the world would be a worry! Keep 'em coming.
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Old 08-29-2010, 09:18 PM   #43
franki OP
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Morning came and I helped Capt. Kool to fix his bike so we can move on. It is only 89 km ride to Lake Ranwu. The road condition is good asphalt. Lake Ranwu is very beautiful and surrounded by snowy mountain. We trip around the lake and took lots of pictures.









Lake Ranwu is a beautiful glacier lake which reminds me of Lake Louise, Canada








We were spoted by some bikers and stopped us for a chit chat.




Capt. Kool leaving his mark in a restaurant


























Capt. Kool makes good tripod















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Old 08-29-2010, 09:33 PM   #44
Lornce
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This is outstanding.

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Old 08-29-2010, 09:56 PM   #45
Marco98
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Great stuff & question

Hello Franki,

It's been a little while i've been wandering around on the ADV - and red through several of your trips. Really nice work and really showing how life and things are in more rural places than where we are used to spend most of our time in (unfortunately?).

I used to be in Guangzhou - now just moved to Beijing. Would like to have a chat - if you've got time later - about the Galaxy and all the preparation u've done on the bike. I would love to steal some of your secret recipes if you don't mind sharing

Meanwhile - beware landslides and other particular road conditions in lovely Mainland - i'll follow-up your trip !

Go go go & Jia You !
marc
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