A ride to Pamir - August 2017

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by macias1989, Sep 23, 2017.

  1. macias1989

    macias1989 Adventurer

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    Day 18 22.08.2017

    We rode only 80km that day. We reached to the base camp at the Lenin Pik. The last 20-30km where a gravel road, which was extremely great. There was absolutely no traffic. We passed some yurttas, herds of horses, cows and sheep. The gravel was smooth. We had some small water crossings (but I reckon it can be hard to get there after the rain). The best part was the landscape. All the time we were going towards big, white mountains! Beautiful day and it was the best ride and landscapes of the trip. Absolutely. Oh, I had to admit ( and I am really ashamed of it) that we managed to bottom a cognac on last 15km and it made everything better.

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    Maciek had a small crash (before cognac) there, but he was fine and we continued. We also met some locals and they were nice and was inviting us to their houses.
    We get to the base camp after 1,5h (20km, but the road was good and it was possible to do in in less than an hour, we simply had a loooot of stops there), rented a yurt and had a small trekking in the mountains.

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    In the base camp we met 2 guys, who led a restaurant there. We talked with there a bit about alpinism and their lives. In the evening they invited us for a dinner, which was big and tasty! After some talks we went sleeping in our yurt. We were pretty scared, because they informed us that it’d been -5’C the night before and we expected some cold in our pretty hotel…
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    Track 87km
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    #41
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  2. Wildebeest90210

    Wildebeest90210 Long timer

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    Great adventure from my armchair, superb reporting thank you :clap:clap:clap:clap:clap
    #42
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  3. macias1989

    macias1989 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2009
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    Day 19 23.08.2017

    The night was cold, as we’d expected. In the morning it was 1’C outside and not much warmer inside our yurt.
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    The day started on 30km gravel, which again was great. When we were going to enter asphalt road, we stopped to check the motorbikes and change our clothing. Maciek noticed that his pannier rack was broken. It was probably a result of the crash the day before. Fortunately we managed to find a workshop with welder in the first village. After the repair, we paid the guy $5. He was so happy that he closed the workshop immediately, took a friend and they went to celebrate :)
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    Then we continued towards Osh. The whole road was asphalt in good quality and it was damn twisty, which was fun after several days on gravel.

    After Osh the traffic got really serious. Locals very often were overtaking like crazy. We stopped in a small guest house and the next day we would start riding home.
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    Track 456km
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    #43
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  4. aleckan

    aleckan Adventurer

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    This was one of the best adventures so far. Wish to you many more safe kilometers. Tnx. one more time!
    #44
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  5. Parcero

    Parcero Mundial

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    Reading this ride report, and then going back again and again, is taking a serious bite of out of my day’s productivity. But I don’t care!
    #45
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  6. macias1989

    macias1989 Adventurer

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    So, here is some short description of the last days. We had some aventures again, but I didn't managed to take a lot of photos there. The landscapes were getting boring and we were focused on fast an long ride every day.


    Day 20 24.08.2017

    In the morning we checked the motorbikes. I readjusted carbs, checked tyre pressure and we set off to reach border crossing with Kazakhstan. We road 400km on asphalt road. We had few mountain passes over 3000m on our way and I found out that adjusting carbs wasn’t good idea. Transalp was going bad again. Max speed was around 70km/h and fuel consumption went high.
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    The road led around lake Toktogul. Which was big, artificial reservoir, surrounded by hills. It was nice, but it wasn’t impressive after all the landscapes we had seen before.

    The last pass was on border with Kazakhstan. There was a magnificent dam with sculptures of Lenin’s head on it.
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    The border crossing was unbelievably quick and we got to the first Kazakh city. The city was nothing like we’d seen in previous countries. We could pay with credit cards, traffic, cars and everything was more European than Asian. We bought food and camped several kms after the city.


    Day 21 25.08.2017

    We woke up before sunrise, because we planned to cover a serious distance that day. In the morning it was very cold, but when the sun went up the temperature rose over 30’C. The road to Kyzylorda was a two lane, straight one and very boring. After Kyzylorda we road a one lane road. I was leading the group. I slowed down before one of the villages. Tomek didn’t noticed the sign and overtook me. I followed him then and it happened again. A police car was hidden somewhere and we started chasing us. We rode 85km/h on 60km/h limit. They wanted to charge us $100 each, but we spend almost 3 weeks in Asia and we knew the tricks. We explained them we didn’t have money, because we were going home and we would call embassy for help. When they heard word ‘embassy’ they changed their mind for $100/3 motorbikes. We gave them $60 and told we didn’t have more and it worked. They accepted the bribe and left us with smiles on their faces. I think $10/person would work us well.
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    On the horizon we passed Baikonur Cosmodrome.

    We met a very friendly local at one of the fuel station. He bought a chocolate for each of us. There was a Kazakh flag on it and he said it was a souvenir from him to us. Very friendly!

    When it was getting dark we turned on the steppe. We found nice place which was over a small hill. Tomek and Maciek decided the place wasn’t good for camping and tried to rode over another sandy hill to find another place. I was tired and I knew it would generate problems. Especially in the morning when we would have to pass the dunes again. I stayed in the first place and waited what would happen. Maciek dropped the bike on the hill and decided to turned back and camp at the first place. We informed Tomek that we weren’t going to his place, so he decided to come back as well. He got stuck 3 times on the hill and needed push every time. After struggling we camped not far from the road, with easy access to it in the morning :)
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    Day 22 26.08.2017

    The night was warm and comfy. We woke up again before sunrise and rode towards the Russian border near Oral. The road was again in good condition. We rode across extremely boring steppe and trying not to fall asleep. We met again a nice Kazakh, who gave us some tomatoes, cucumbers and nuts. We rode for almost 12hours and when we were going near the place, where we wanted to camp, I wanted to straighten my legs during the ride. I did it a lot of times before and it was always fine. That time it was a part of lorry tyre lying on the road. I noticed it when I hit it with my left foot. It was painful and I felt how it was getting swollen in the boot. I was pretty nervous it was a serious injury. Fortunately, when I took the boot off, everything looked fine, except the pain.
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    It was the last night it Kazakhstan. In the morning we were going to enter Russia.


    Day 23 27.08.2017

    The pain of my leg was bigger in the morning, but I could walk, so it wasn’t so bad. We set off pretty early. Changing gears was tricky, because I wanted to avoid the pain. When we road my leg was getting better and better, so I was sure that everything should be ok now.

    The last 50km to the border crossing was horrible. The surface condition was similar to the road from border to Atyrau. The holes was enormous.

    When we got to the border, there was pretty long line of cars. We passed them as always, but that time the first guard ordered us to go and wait in the queue, but everybody was waiting and he didn’t allow anybody to pass the queue so it was fair. The Kazakh side went fast, Russian was even quicker. We filled up migration cards and asked for temporary import documents, but they informed us that we should have gotten it when we entered Kazakhstan… We showed some documents from Kyrgyzstan, because a custom officer informed us that we would need it in Russia, but they said it wasn’t righ document. We got pretty nervous. Tomek’d heard stories that leaving Russia without the paper generate a lot of problems and one Polish motorcycle waited in the bored 1,5day until they let him go… We were not happy with it, but had no other choice than trying to leave Russia without it.


    First kilometers in Russia led on bad road again. It got better near Saratov, where we slept in a fancy hotel. My leg after the day changed color a bit :)
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    Day 24 28.08.2017

    That day we were riding across Russia. Russian infrastructure was better than Kazakh, but there were still problems to buy for example a coffee at the fuel station and pay for it with credit card. We could only pay with cards for fuel.The ride was easy and quick. We didn’t have to strictly obey speed limits, as we’d done in Kazakhstan.

    We planned to get to Russian border in the evening, so if we would have to wait for solving our problem with papers, we would sleep there for free in a warm building :) I bought a lot of snickers to have food for supper and breakfast and we attacked the border.

    We went to the first window and lady asked us for temporary import papers and we gave her documents form Kyrgyzstan. ‘Wrong documents’ - she said. ‘No, it is a right document’ - we said. She closed the window, took out documents with her and went somewhere. She came back after few minutes, gave us stamps and that was it! Probably the fastest border crossing of the trip. No problem at all.

    It was already dark, so we got to the first hotel we found and slept there.


    Day 25 and 26 29/30.08.2017

    In the morning Tomek left us, because he had to be earlier at hometown. We were not in hurry at all. After slow breakfast we set off towards Kiev. The weather wasn’t good, so the pace was low. We got to Kiev in rush hours and splitting lanes with panniers wasn’t always possible, so it took us some time. We felt in Ukraine like in Europe. The fuel stations were even better than Polish ones. It was truly comfortable ride with no stress at all.

    We slept in Sarny.

    The next day we got to the Ukrainian/Polish border. Control there, especially on Polish side, was very serious. They were tearing cars into parts to check if there were some illegal products hidden. I was ordered to go to personal and motorbike revision to the other building. They stopped my passport and I went there, while Maciek was free to go. When I got there the officers didn’t know why I was even there. They only checked my luggage. Fortunately, I didn't have to disassemble anything. It only took some time, because they had to report everything. Maciek waited for my near the border.
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    Then we rode together to Chelm, where we had met for the first time, and we goodby there. I rode 500km more to my home city. I was surprised how big traffic in Poland was. I managed to get used to empty rods :)
    I saw 3 accidents during the trip and all of them were in Poland!


    Return trip tracks:
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    #46
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  7. macias1989

    macias1989 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2009
    Oddometer:
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    Poland
    I want to thank you for following my report and for all your comments and likes, which made me to continue reporting with some sort of satisfaction :photog
    I am planning to make a short movie from the trip. I recorded over 140GB of clips, so there is a lot of to show you :-) I try to do it as fast as possible, but it will take some time for sure.

    I think our adventure was a great one. We managed to saw almost everything we wanted. I only regret a fast ride through Kyrgystan. We could stay there longer and see more places. Now we have a reason to go there again and see what we left there :D

    Cheers!
    #47
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  8. MrKiwi

    MrKiwi Love my Tranny

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    I thoroughly enjoyed your trip report, thank you for making the effort to write it.
    #48
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  9. Parcero

    Parcero Mundial

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    No. The thanks go to you for the wonderful ride report.

    I am currently finishing up a trip in South America, and have been exploring what part of the world I can ride next. Based on your report, when I complete Latin America, I am going to ship my bike to Poland or somewhere in Europe to do a trip very similar to yours—maybe even a very close copy.
    #49
    macias1989 likes this.
  10. OldManJoris

    OldManJoris Rider

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    Thanks for the report. Enjoyed it a lot!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #50
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  11. Deuce

    Deuce Crazy Canuck

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    Vancouver Island, Bitchin' Columbia, Canada
    Thanks Macias for a great ride report and great photos of your adventures. :clap :photog


    :1drink
    #51
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  12. Plebz

    Plebz Long time lurking

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    Awesome report, thanks for taking the time to share it!
    #52
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  13. allroadtoine

    allroadtoine Adventurer

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    Thnx for the report, liked it very much.

    Greetings

    Toine
    #53
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  14. DuSauvage

    DuSauvage n00b

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    Very cool Maciek, thanks for taking us with you. I see you can still normally cross the Russian-Ukranian border in the north, so you don't have to go through Belarus?
    #54
  15. macias1989

    macias1989 Adventurer

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    Thanks again:D
    Let me know if you visit Poland :photog

    The north border crossings worked normally. We rode through Ukraine, because we don't need visa to go there. I crossed Belarus a year ago. I think it was nicer, roads were better, but a visa is demanded from Polish there.
    Regards
    #55
  16. Saso

    Saso Happily sporting the DRD4 gene

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    Hi Maciek - What a fantastic trip you had! Fun to see you and your Transalp in action in those wonderfully remote places! I finally got my bike back to the US last April. I will always remember our visit in '14 in your beautiful country. Let me know when you begin planning your South America ride - I want to be included! :freaky
    #56
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  17. BLucare

    BLucare Ambitious, but rubbish

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    Awesome journey :thumb thanks for showing me, yet again, how amazing that part of the world is. I owe you a beer when I get to Poland! Oh, and I cannot wait for that movie :clap
    #57
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  18. varago

    varago Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    ORFORD and Rawdon, Qc, cold almost all time
    Thx for sharing your journey. Excellent ride report.
    #58
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  19. macias1989

    macias1989 Adventurer

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    Hello Ron! I let you know for sure, but it won't be soon... However, Darien gap seems to be quite a challange for us :D
    Regards!
    #59
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  20. Parcero

    Parcero Mundial

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    Darien Gap will only be a challenge if you guys want to actually ride through it. If you’re good with a boat (the Stahlratte) or air cargo (Girag) you will be fine.
    #60
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