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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Joe Motocross, Aug 17, 2012.
Seriously. Hard to beat the India trip!
Sorry, but once out in the sticks, fermented mares' milk is a lot more common than beer. No cans.
Also, if offered cheese in a ger, don't eat it if you can help it. It is the most bitter, awful tasting thing I have ever tasted :eek1
It's all about vodka over here and we're hoping not to have to work on the bikes everyday and especially, we're trying to avoid cracking the case on one of them! But, I brought my tools and I'm ready to tackle what ever comes along.
We are in Ulaanbaatar, the capital city of Mongolia staying with some friends. The trip has been a breeze so far compared to India. Comparatively, things are relatively clean, the people are not on you like flies on dead horses in Delhi, and the traffic is more or less orderly. I've been told that nothing will shock you after spending time in India. So far, I've found this to be true.
We are shopping for bikes to purchase as we haven't found any to rent with our budget. It sounds like *registering them *will be our biggest challenge. We have a couple of locals that are helping us which is huge since not many people speak english.*
Here's Minxter sizing up one of the bikes. It seems like we have a choice between Yingang, Dayun, and Jialing bikes which are all chinese. I can't say that I have much faith in any of these yet. However, I wonder if the Mongolian deep seated hatred for China is one reason for bad talking these bikes? Or are they just cheap Chinese junk? Or both?!!
Your friends in the mining biz?
Yes, one of our friends works for a mining company.
As I write, Buuuuurrrt is trying to get on a flight from Seattle to Beijing but is getting hassled by Delta for not having a Chinese visa. We ran into the same problem in Tokyo. The airlines get fined if they fly people into China with no visa. However, if you have a confirmed flight out of china on the same day, you don't need a visa. They will issue you a "Stay Permit" for one day. Seems like Delta is not aware of this.
Meanwhile, we are waiting for our Mongolian friend to show up who's going with us to look at what is supposed to be the best enduro China has to offer!!!!
I'm curious what "minimalist" really means to you and how far you take it.
(No worries, I'm no expert, just wondering how much baggage I'll really need when I try the TAT.)
Quick update but nothing too exciting: Delta let Buuuurrrt on his flight and even offered him first class. *Our mantra is working.*
We located the bikes we are going to purchase Monday morning. *They're Shineray "Mustangs" for $800 a piece. Sounds like our friends are going to buy them for half price after we're done. The crux is still to come with getting the bikes registered.
You know Flamedance, you may pick up some sarcasm in our talk about being minimalists and here comes a little more.*
The question you pose is a good one; how far do you take it? I say to each his own. I see some guys with oversized saddle bags and duffle bags stuffed 'til they're about to burst, and that's fine, it's just not for me. I used to have a couple of saddle bags that I'd throw on my dirt bike and I thought I was going light weight. But a guy one of us met on the road somewhere clued us in that we were by no means going light. He had basically nothing with him and when it was time to stop for the night he would pull over and sleep on the ground, no pad, no sleeping bag. Just blue jeans and he'd put his helmet on and use it as a pillow. Brilliant..........
This opened our eyes. For me and my crew, we went for the minimalist approach for two reasons. First, to have as little on our dirt bikes as possible so we can ride the bikes like we're in a desert race; catching air, pounding whoops, crossing rivers, and running the deepest sand you can imagine and loving it. The second reason is to leave it all behind and just BE. My recommendation is to be honest with yourself about what your goals are while on your journey.
Here's a quick list of the major items we bring.
20 degree down sleeping bag
Big Agnes mummy air sleeping pad-non insulated (this is SUPER small)
Adjust-A-Fork (for cooking meat - see Utah Desert ride report listed at the beginning of this report)
Roll paper towels - great for cleaning everything including your ass
Flip flops or water shoes (or insoles from boots held on with voile straps)
1/2 gallon H2O
Wind breaker/rain jacket
Light weight down jacket
Misc: lighter, spoon, jack knife, headlamp, etc
Riding cloths, no spares of anything
Cook over small fire
Rinse cloths in river or car wash when needed
I don't worry about bugs, snakes, or varmints so no tent is fine and I actually prefer it. You'll be amazed with how little stuff you really need.
Things really came together today and we'll take off in the morning. We've acquired 3 steeds. They don't fit into the enduro category but rather have defined a new category that I've dubbed "rough terrain mopeds". We paid $800 a piece for these machines. I have an extreme distaste for cheap Chinese junk so this will be the ultimate litmus test. The funny thing is we're getting offers left and right from people wanting to buy the bikes when we get back. What I get from this is that they're expecting these things to make it back!! *
We also have altered the plans today. Our friend who's been putting us up and helping us out is going to join us for the journey for a week or so and fly back from Moron. The plan is that Buuuuurt and I take all the gear, water and fuel and Craig hops on the back of Minxters bike. This should be good!
Bikes right out of the crate from China
Minxter and her brand new shiny ride
Shit's getting loose, I like it.
im in have fun
This is going to be great!! I see most of the crew that went to India is going to Mongolia: Joe, Minxter and Buuurrrt. But what about Maja??
Say hello to the Mongolian crew for me and have fun. We're in the airport right now headed to Croatia, so post more pics, I'm bored.
There are about 5 towns in Mongolia with internet cafe's. 160 miles of paved highway (mostly closed for construction), the rest dirt. Expect many time gaps in this RR.
Wow. What a trip! As LC4 stated, Internet is not plentiful here. We're back in Ulaanbaatar and done with the ride. The verdict is in on the Chinese all terrain mopeds. We're heading home and will sift through the amazing photos we have and will share the whole journey then. Here's a few ok shots from the iPhone.
Lots of sections of single track
Lots of river crossings. This one not going well for Minxter.
Lots of excellent camp sites
Looking forward to the actual RR.
Liar, that's Utah's west desert, not Mongolia.
Sub-F'n-scribed. I'll be living my life vicariously through you while my collar bone knits back together.
Trackhead, you may wonder why we would go half way around the world to ride what we have in our backyards. The answer: no barbed wire. I bet you can relate.
Hick, I don't know if we've met but I think we have some mutual friends. Did you bust up your collar bone riding?