Entering final planning phase

Discussion in 'Asia Pacific' started by Sanibel, May 1, 2018.

  1. Sanibel

    Sanibel Been here awhile

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    Sanibel FL
    Today is May 1st, big day for my planned 3 months trip, starting Aug 1st, 3 months from now. The new guy we hired at work to fill in for me in my absence showed up today. And my 3 year multi-entry Russian visa arrived. That was my final (I hope) potentially insurmountable hurdle.

    Plan is crate the bike, air cargo to Incheon Korea, I fly over a couple days later, pick up bike. Originally I had planned a quick dash to the Donghae/Vladivostok ferry. Wendy Choi recommended I make ferry reservations now as August is busy. Cannot do it online. Tried calling 3 times without making headway, language barrier and my international calling inexperience. Finally went to the local Korean American Baptist Church and asked for assistance. The welcome I received and the help was overwhelming. Invited for lunch, taught a bit about Korean culture and history. Invited to one guy's house next night and we talked for a bit. Once he was sure he understood my needs we phoned Korea. He got the correct person and initiated an email exchange. After sending the requested documents, I had a spot reserved on the ferry. The whole process changed my thinking about spending time in Korea, and I am now shooting for a week to see more of the country. I have reservations at a guesthouse the night before the ferry, and have picked a guesthouse near the airport for arrival. Between times, I have done minimal planning. On past trips I have over planned, trying to mend my ways.

    After the ferry, plans are more vague. West thru Russia to Lake Baikal, south to Mongolia, then west again. Probably Kazakhstan, maybe some other stans although most require visas. Volgograd. Thinking ferry Sochi to Turkey to avoid some areas of civil unrest. Big blank traveling thru Europe. Then roughly towards the U.K. as shipping bike home might be easier in my native tongue. Home and back to work Nov1st.

    I will post more later about preparations so far and keep updating as departure gets nearer. Ride report will be separate thread.
    #1
  2. Sanibel

    Sanibel Been here awhile

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    Location:
    Sanibel FL
    I have been gradually making a packing list. Hard part is taking things off the list and not adding more. Trying to limit myself to stuff I can't do without rather than "this might be useful". Started checking that everything will fit. It does. My luggage arrangements had to be modified due to crating. I ditched my top box that did not fit in the crate for a large waterproof soft bag. Aluminum side panniers are good. No personal items allowed to be shipped with bike, but they will allow riding gear. Therefore, helmet/riding suit/boots/gloves/heated vest will all fit in the top bag. Camping gear in one and tools/spares in the other side box, both with room to spare. All my clothes/personal items will fit in one soft carry-on, so no checked bag on flight. Clothes, etc then are able to fit in side boxes. Top bag will be largely empty while riding, but will hold my gear if I stop somewhere for a few days. In one of his books, Andrew Pain suggests packing naked, so everything I am bringing will fit somewhere.
    #2
  3. Sanibel

    Sanibel Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2016
    Oddometer:
    415
    Location:
    Sanibel FL
    Started doing the medical prep part. Got my hernia fixed 2 weeks ago, open not scope, so I am on restrictions for the next 2 weeks. Bending the rules of course. It needed fixing as I imagine I might be picking the pig up occasionally.
    With the help of an Infectious Disease doctor, have figured out what vaccines I need. Got my first of three rabies vaccinations today. When I was a kid, "rabies shots" were held in high regard for their reputed terror, always different with each telling, but it usually went something like "ten shots in the stomach, and they have to do it every day for a week." It wasn't bad. Also tried getting immunized against Japanese Encephalitis as I will be outdoors in rural southern Korea in rainy season. Low likelihood of catching it, but the illness is pretty bad, so worth getting. Despite calling ahead and having an appointment, the Health Dept did not have it in stock. Gotta go back, that's another 2 shots. Good news is that typhoid vaccination can be done oral. Both shots and oral have fairly low success rates (60-75%), but worth doing as it is a fairly common disease and can thoroughly interrupt a trip.

    The CDC has a good website that lists each country and recommended vaccines and health issues in each, maps with disease prevalent areas along with detailed info on specific diseases and symptoms/treatment.

    https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/list/
    #3
  4. Sanibel

    Sanibel Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2016
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    415
    Location:
    Sanibel FL
    And in a major committment, I coughed up just over $1000 for a plane ticket. Leave Florida Tues evening, 5 hr layover in Chicago. Leave Chicago just before midnight for 13 hr nonstop to Korea, arriving 4AM Thursday due to dateline. I am getting jetlag just trying to get my head around that.
    #4
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