Adventurism /// solo & women Amsterdam to Bali

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Nora and Zuki, Nov 28, 2017.

  1. Nora and Zuki

    Nora and Zuki Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2016
    Oddometer:
    12
    Hello all you crazy people out there,

    I've completed this Netherlands to Indonesia ride from April 2016 to July 2017, took a huge detour through Central Asia but it was worth it.

    I'm not a big writer, although it would be great to get some practice in, so I decided to start a YouTube channel. There are over 300 videos of the trip over there, but to give you an idea what it was like without having to watch all 300 (although feel free to do so, here is the link to that playlist) I'll share my favorite video from each country (21 countries stamped) with a little background story about the video.

    Are you ready?

    [​IMG]
    The route



    [​IMG]
    Me and Zuki (2005 Suzuki VStrom DL650)​

    Attached Files:

    #1
    skyguy, smoltz, KLRalph and 6 others like this.
  2. Throttlemeister

    Throttlemeister Long timer

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    Location:
    Okie near Muskogee
    What a trip! Looking forward to the rest of the story.
    #2
  3. Nora and Zuki

    Nora and Zuki Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2016
    Oddometer:
    12
    So here we go....

    Let me introduce myself, I'm Nora. I was 29 at the time of this video recording. I had gotten my motorcycle licence 1 year before same as the bike. My trustworthy Suzuki VStrom DL650 from 2005. I chose this bike because it was comfortable and I thought it looked nice. That's all, I had no clue about any of this. I did not even know that what I was about to do was called adv riding.

    The only thing I did know, was that I wanted to do this. And even if I would read all the available blogs/forums/magazines in the world, it would not prepare me enough for a trip like this. So instead, I read as little as possible. I knew that I could read about other peoples preferences on motorcycles, tyres and gear, but I did not know what my preferences were and I was only going to find out by doing it.

    So I decided not to go on any test trips, no time, no money. So by the time I left the Netherlands, I had never ridden offroad & never ridden my motorcycle outside of the Netherlands. Who would call this a recipe for disaster?

    #3
  4. ArgenRider

    ArgenRider Just riding

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2017
    Oddometer:
    12
    Location:
    Buenos Aires - Argentina
    Yeeeeeeeeeees, now on AdvRider!

    Instagram follower and YouTube suscriber here. Really love your videos.


    Saludos desde Buenos Aires
    #4
  5. luckychucky

    luckychucky Long timer

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    Mar 6, 2011
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    1,597
    Location:
    SE Missouri
    Ride as close to the yellow middle of the road, everyone sees you when you are in the middle of the road. Goodness and mercy!


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    #5
  6. tlub

    tlub Long timer

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    Oct 23, 2012
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    Location:
    Madison, WI
    Just spent the time I should have spent getting ready for work watching some of your YouTube videos instead. Now I'm late.
    Fantastic.
    #6
    ArgenRider likes this.
  7. damasovi

    damasovi Long timer

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    Nov 8, 2006
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    Location:
    Ensenada, Baja California
    I sooo cool!! i want to see your videos, but for now I have to sedle for just reading. Glad your are back!
    #7
  8. Nanuq

    Nanuq Aventurer by Trade

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2007
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    1,179
    Location:
    Point Hope, Sitka & Biorka Island- all in Alaska
    I’m so in! This will be a great Adventure!
    #8
  9. mrbreeze

    mrbreeze I keep blowing down the road

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2007
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    Location:
    Tennessee
    First video surprisingly good! Great choice of bike as well!
    #9
  10. Nora and Zuki

    Nora and Zuki Adventurer

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    Sep 9, 2016
    Oddometer:
    12
    Thanks for the interest guys and girls? I guess there are not that many girls up here. Sorry that some of you were late at work because of me :type
    #10
  11. Nora and Zuki

    Nora and Zuki Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2016
    Oddometer:
    12
    Moving on to the first stop of my trip, Hamburg in Germany where I was staying with a friend that I don't get to see very often.
    I think it was a very clever move to make this the first stop, a very comfortable one. To set off on an adventure like this. I can really recommend it to anybody.
    Since I was only in Germany for a few days, we are not yet at the super awesome ADV riding videos, but I wanted to talk about friendship and why I decided to ride alone.

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    Christin (my friend) and I met in Cape Town in 2012, I was actually her kitesurf instructor, and we hit it off and stayed friends over the years even though we lived more the 6 hours away from each other. Which, in Dutch terms, is reaaaaaaaaaaly far away. Remember, I measure distance in how far it is with my bicycle ;)

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    We connected over kitesurfing, boys and traveling. So we understood that even though we didn't spend that much time together, we were still really good friends whenever we meet up. I hope we all have some of these friends, that you just have this connection with, even though the physical distance is quite big, the friendship is real. Over the entire trip, I think I had more contact with her that with my friends from my hometown because we were already so used to communicating over the internet that it didn't really change much. The change is harder for people who you see ever day and now all of a sudden you are gone. And then there are always these friendships, that when you move, it kind of just dies a slow death. And that is also fine in my opinion.

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    Now why I decided to ride alone, is very simple. because nobody wanted to come with me. Maybe that sounds very sad, but I was actually quite pleased with it. I'd rather travel alone, then with someone that has very different ideas about how to travel. The connection and the travel philosophy has to be so in sync for it to work for such a long time. I've seen many couples on the road, but it was hard on all relationships. I didn't want to put strain on any relationship with any friends nor did I wanted to give in on my travel style.

    I did a little test drive in Vietnam in 2014 and a friend asked if she could tag along. I could not find any argument why not, so we booked flights and off we went. Even though she had many tattoos and was a fanatic downhill longboarder, she had very little experience in traveling an heavily relied on my initiative and skills. I guess I had misread her personality and just assumed she was more of a go getter then she actually was because of her looks and choice of hobbies. Or I just put the bar to high for her, since had never been to Asia before.

    It just showed me that I was ready to travel the world alone, I had been to Canada, Nepal and South Africa before. Backpacking was not challenging enough anymore. That's when I decided to travel by motorcycle, I chose the mode of transportation because of all the advantages like cheaper and open to the environment. Not because I liked riding so much, heck, I didn't even have my licence yet.

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    Wasn't that scary you ask? Somehow, it didn't scare me at all. The steps were very clear. Get licence, plan, leave. I am a problem solver by nature. I guess we all are. So I just wanted to challenge myself to get in to as much trouble I could possibly get and just see if I could get myself out of it again. Not relying on anything or anybody else. Oh boy, did I found what I was looking for.

    But not in Germany.. I'll save some of those stories, for a next episode.



    #11
    davesupreme and chudzikb like this.
  12. Nora and Zuki

    Nora and Zuki Adventurer

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    Hi! :happay
    #12
  13. Critic

    Critic More or less!

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,564
    Location:
    West of the Illinois, heart of the state!
    Ah yes, just in time; I was looking for another adventure! I love your new fresh presentation style.

    V-strom's Rock, so let's get on with it!
    #13
  14. Joezeph

    Joezeph Been here awhile

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    Jun 18, 2017
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    AR
    Cool chick, respect!!! :super
    #14
  15. Flying D

    Flying D n00b

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    Mar 7, 2017
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    3
    Way to go !! Hope you have an awesome time :clap
    #15
  16. LaurensT

    LaurensT n00b

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2014
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    9
    I'm following this thread. It was great meeting you a couple of weeks ago!
    #16
  17. ShimrMoon

    ShimrMoon Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2007
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    481
    Location:
    Winston-Salem NC
    I love the way you start your adventure. Learn as you go... Patiently waiting for more like everybody else. Good luck and enjoy!
    #17
  18. Nora and Zuki

    Nora and Zuki Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2016
    Oddometer:
    12
    They do! Greatly underestimated adventure bikes! While I was zooming around I passed a lot of BMWs and KTM's :p
    #18
  19. Nora and Zuki

    Nora and Zuki Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2016
    Oddometer:
    12
    So here we are, I mean, me and Zuki, cruising through Poland. Not the most exciting country for an ADV rider to be honest. Also, it's basically on my doorstep so I wasn't planning to stay there for longer then 3 days. But I did decide to avoid the major highways in the south so I stuck to medium sized country roads. Riding through endless yellow fields and blue skies. I was lucky with the weather in early may, it was one of those good weather streaks and it was a very hot spring but I wasn't complaining.

    So it was time to get out of my comfort zone.

    Wildcamping, bushcamping illegally camping everywhere. Whatever you want to call it, I had never done it before. Especially, not alone.

    I did read some tips about finding a great spot, like riding up deserted looking dirt tracks while nobody is watching. Don't go looking to late so you set up camping when it is still light and wait a while before you set up camp to see if it is a good spot. I've broken all of these rules at least once on my trip and learned some valuable lessons.

    But the first time is extra scary.

    I had scouted an empty looking spot on the map with a lake, which sounded like a great location for the night. Found myself my first offroad track, must have been a logging trail and rode for about 5 minutes into the woods to find this lake. The ride was easy, even with my heavy fully loaded motorcycle and easy to navigate. I was greatly enjoying this mini offroad trail riding. I could not wait to do some more but it was getting darker so I needed to find a spot.

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    At the end of the trail I hit the lake and decided to go left and trace around it, but I didn't need to go far to see a nice spot for my motorcycle and tent. I park and admire the view panning from left to right over the lake.

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    And what do I see when I look to my right?! A fisherman! I was flabbergasted that I tried so hard to find an empty spot and still ran into people. But I was stubborn and decided to pitch my tent anyways. I guess the first night is never a very comfortable one and you only get used to it after a few tries. I slept light. But I slept. I slept for free. I slept in nature, with fresh air. This was exactly why I left. To be outside more. And it was amazing! I was so happy to wake up there that I almost didn't want to leave. Luckily it took me forever to pack, which is normal in the first few weeks when everything needs to find it's place, so I could enjoy the view just a little longer.

    [​IMG]

    Who else enjoys wildcamping just as much as me?



    #19
  20. ShimrMoon

    ShimrMoon Been here awhile

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    Winston-Salem NC
    Awesome bug shot! Looks like it was trying to shake your hand. Keep the report and pictures coming.
    #20