Russia, how I pick my new “Ural Gear Up” and went back home…

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by Kristof Granit, Jul 15, 2011.

  1. cherrywaves

    cherrywaves Adventurer

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    absolutely LOVE this thread... great pictures... i have always wanted to visit Russia. beautiful scenery and gorgeous women!!! :evil
    #61
  2. nomadicbear

    nomadicbear Vagabond

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    The photo of the road above looks like fun in the night or on a foggy day. Nice Ride Report keep it coming...:clap
    #62
  3. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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    05.29 Kirov / Nizhny Novgorod 585km

    The roads conditions were better than yesterday but there was still some bad sections. Nothing special to report.
    Nizhny Novgorod is a nice city.

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    05.30 Nizhny Novgorod, before we left to Moscow I took some pictures near the hotel:
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    #63
  4. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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    05.30 Nizhny Novgorod / Moscow 400km

    There is a 2x2 road most of the time, a "sort of highway" in good condition. Not good as the M4 (Moscow/Krasnodar) but good enough.
    The previous days we didn't see any police car on the roads, but today there was almost a patrol car in each villages and time to time on the road all for speed limit.
    We just been stopped once at the exit of Nizhny Novogorod at the main check point, like before Perm we went inside the building and they took just a copy of the bike documents. Never ask for my passport, just the driving licence.

    Just before Moscow we stop for wash the Ural, of course a few kilometers after the rain start but not heavy and we reach the Bike Center by 9pm

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    There was some work going on the bridge at only one lane open, so a big queue:
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    Arrival at Moscow (Bike Center):
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    #64
  5. madeouttaglass

    madeouttaglass The AntiHarley

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    Very nice, thank you for posting this ride. I enjoyed your trip with the Gear Up.
    #65
  6. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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    06.03 - End of this ride 3621km today. Report later but some pictures.

    05.31 - Moscow
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    06.01 - Moscow / Voronezh
    Noting special to report, 2x2 "highway" all along, so a little bit "boring" for us with the Ural.

    06.02 - Voronezh / Rostov

    Mechanical failure on the V-Rod (...) we didn't wait the truck with Nicolai and we meet them in the evening at the hotel.
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    At the arrival at the hotel there was an "event" for Cosmopolitan review:
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    06.03 - Rostov / Novorossiysk
    Excepted a bad section just after Azov, the road is in good condition.
    On the beach just at the arrival after 3621km from Irbit:
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    #66
  7. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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    05.31 - Moscow
    Why did we plan to join Moscow by the 31st? Because it was the 23rd birthday of the Night Wolves.
    We didn’t know the exact program for this day, just that we were supposed to start a “parade” to reach the military Theater by the end of the afternoon for a concert.
    But in fact as soon we arrive at the Bike Center, they ask us to go to the Red Square with a few others bikes, it’s was an “interesting” ride due to the usual Moscow’s go-slow… The bikes in front were “opening” the way between the cars for the two sidecars…
    At the Red Square we met with the participants of the 2012 EuroTour then we accompanied them to their hotel and we went to the Theater.
    After the concert we all went back to the Bike Center for a long night. This time we were escorted by the police and no need to “find a way” between the cars.
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    #67
  8. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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    06.01 - Moscow – Voronezh
    After a short night we start our journey to Voronezh, there is a 2x2 highway all along, in a very good condition. For us it was even a little bit boring but at least we and the sidecars have some rest after all those bad roads. At the arrival to Voronezh there was some go slow due to work going on the road, as usual the emergency lane was full of car but the “Ural lane” (nice embankment) was free so we didn’t lost too much time and we met our friend at the hotel.
    06.02 – Voronezh – Rostov
    Nothing special to report, two of the HD (Dyna+V-Rod) left first, we one hour after and the others HD + the Suzuki latter.
    They catch us, almost 200km after we had left the hotel, few kilometers after they overtaken us there was a gas station, I have look but due to a lot of trucks I didn’t see anybody, Nikolai saw the Dyna and V-Rod checking their hands and he think there was just greeting him so he didn’t stop…
    Less than 5 minutes after that we were catched and stopped by the Suzuki guy, he informed us that one of the HD as a problem and we should go back to the gas station. Of course on this part of the highway there is no way to cross to the opposite lane so once again we used the “Ural lane” to join our friends.
    There was a mechanical failure on the V-Rod and the initial plan was to let the bike at the gas station and taking with us the owner but they managed to call a truck so we left them and continue our ride to Rostov.
    Little “surprise” at our arrival at the hotel, the journal Cosmopolitan was doing a photo session with some recently married girls and some of them request to be taken in pictures on the Harleys and also on the white Ural.
    To come back at the gas station, half the way I used this track:
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    Voronezh at the hotel:
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    Rostov:
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    06.03 – Rostov – Novorossiysk
    I left the hotel by 7am and was at the central beach by 1pm, Nikolai left by 9am and arrive only by 9pm. Not only I didn’t take the shortest way but he decided to “test” the 2WD in the forest before he stops his ride…
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    #68
  9. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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    Conclusion:
    Nikolai 6700km -- Kristof: 3600km
    Problems:
    Gear Up 6700km:
    - crack on the side due to the vibration of the search lamp on the bad roads.
    - support of the jerrican get broken and the jerrican went away.
    - support of the seat to be re-welded.
    - one puncture on the hack rear tire.
    - one turn signal bulb replaced.
    - The bottom bolt of the cylinder protection get broken due to Nikolai “figure”, but hopefully he has done his job and no damage on the cylinder.
    Retro 3600km:
    - few bolts have to be tied up after the Perm/Kirov section.
    - the head lamp went broken in the same section and I use the hight lamp all along, we didn’t drove by night and I even bend the lamp to avoid “disturbing” the oncoming traffic.
    Gear Up / Retro
    After a few kilometers, especially in the legendary Moscow’s go-slow, the Retro get warmer than the Gear Up. But for both, it can be considered as extreme conditions to be avoided, as it is really not the best place for the Ural.
    To have a rough idea of the handling of the Gear up / Retro, from my point of view it’s like a Jeep / Volvo estate. For long distance I am a little too tall for the Retro and after 300km I get my knees tired, never happened on the Gear Up.
    On the bad roads, of course I prefer the handling of the Gear Up and for the highways and good secondary roads the Retro is sweet. But in any situations they have both done it well.
    #69
  10. k12lts

    k12lts Been here awhile

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    Great report.

    Love the pictures.
    #70
  11. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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    Today I start my "new ride" to join the Bike Show at Sevastopol in Ukraine.

    07.16 - Novorossiysk / Sudak
    Not many kilometers today, around 300 but more than 12 hours...

    Port Kavkaz in the line for the ferry at 10.30
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    2 hours latter
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    4 hours latter - After the first gate
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    6.30 since the arrival, I am inside the ferry
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    7.30 On the Ukraine side
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    The crossing himself it's only 30 minutes...

    On the way to Sudak, some pictures:
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    Tomorrow I go in direction of Yalta.
    #71
  12. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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    07.17 - Sudak / Sevastopol
    After a night at an hotel in the next bay after Sudak, I started my day in direction of Sevastopol.
    The road is a succession of up&down curves in the montaigns with a "short pause" when it's close to the beachs.
    At the entrance of Yalta there was some go slow so I didn't went to the center and continue in direction of Sevastopol. This section of the road is "new" , still some up&down curves but you can drive at 80/90 km/h easily
    Just before Sevastopol I reach the BikeShow, they are still working on the preparation, found some friends and I went to the nearest town, Balaklava, to take some pictures then I join my friend Andrei, (Ural Patrol from Moscow), at his Hotel.

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    #72
  13. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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    07.18 - Yalta by the forest road

    Today we went to the entrance of Yalta, not by the coastal road but by the montaigns. First on a forestery track, difficulty level? For the Ural: zero but for our friend with the FZR not so easy to stay on the track due to all the stones...
    After this tracks, paved roads until Yalta but full "up&down curves in the montaigns".
    Our first stop was at a restaurant owned by a native of Tatarstan, bought some "home made" vine, cognac and honey.
    Close to Yalta we found a quadracycle based on a Dnepr.

    After the first part of the track, no pictures too much dust...
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    At the restaurant:
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    Paved road in the forest:
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    Andrei:
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    Quadracycle:
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    Yalta:
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    Our Hotel:
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    Part of our "shopping":
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    The "shops":
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    (The yellow road sign is to inform the drivers about the "dangerous curves in the mountain road")
    #73
  14. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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    Ural with a Daihatsu diesel engine.
    This english guy met Mr Cob during in tour in Europe.
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    Doug & Polly on their Black Sea Tour.
    During the parade Polly left her bike at the camp and came with me on the Ural to take some pictures. Doug & Polly received an "award" from the Night Wolfes.
    His ride report on ADV: http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=805263
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    #74
  15. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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  16. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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    07.22 Sevastopol / Novorossiysk - The longest day: 8.30 am to 6 am

    The hotel was there just at the outside of a small village:
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    I left the hotel alone around 8.30. A few kilometers after Sevastopol, this guy was on the side of the road, so I stopped and help him with some tools:
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    By 4pm I was at Kerch for the ferry. This time I didn't took the coastal road by went by Simferopol. Few time after my arrival my friends from Novorossiysk arrive also at the fery gate but we have to wait until 1am before boarding with the others bike.

    Only one Ural in the ferry:
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    With 5 bikes from Novorossiysk we ride together home, by 6am the Ural was in the garage.

    The distance is about 500km but it was for all of us a very very long day. We all left Sevastopol in the morning and reach home the next day. For me 8.30 the 22nd and 6am the 23rd so almost a 24h ride...

    On the russian side the custom officer told me that I have the "best bike" tonight.
    When crossing Novo, there was an "early morning" mobile check point in the center and one of the policeman wave us :D

    Conclusion:
    Not the longest ride, especially for a full week, but I met some very nice people like Doug&Polly and was able to shake the hand of a man who shaked the hand of Mr. Cob :lol:
    Of course I will have liked to show up the Retro but due to the condition, very hot weather and a lot of dust at the Show territory I didn't regret one minute to have done this ride with the Gear Up.
    #76
  17. BK

    BK Electron herder

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    Nice job! I enjoy these Russian reports a lot.
    #77
  18. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Been here awhile

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    09.05 - On the Road again... - First day 480km
    I have been stop once by the police just after Novorossiysk, nothing special with the "Cross", kick look on the documents and the policeman wish me a safe journey.

    Krimsk, they are building "kickly" some new buildings to relocated the peoples after the floods:
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    After Rostov, I stop in a small Motel, "discover" last year, secure parking, quiet and low price 1200 rouble for the night in a room with shower and toilet.
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    09.06 - Moscow - 941km (584miles)
    Weather was ok on most part, but before Moscow heavy rain... any way I make my "longest journey" on a Ural at today's day, in Russia, even if it's on the M4.
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    Can be seen at the Bike Center:
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    Friday I didn't used the Ural and Saturday just 20 minutes...

    09.09 Moscow Voronezh - 511km

    Almost 300km under the rain, I have seen 3 accidents due to over speeding and aquaplaning... The picture showing the hotel was done the 10th in the morning (blue sky).

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    The hotel:
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    View from the hotel's window, rain and also heavy wind...
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    09.10 Voronezh / Rostov - 552km
    No rain today but 2 accidents, if yesterday the cars were damaged but no ambulance, this time both accidents were more serious.
    On the side of the highway, 15okm before Rostov,there is this monument and a nice view on the river Don:
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    Exact location: 50° 5'33.04"N 40°25'38.24"E
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    09.11 - Rostov/Novorossiysk - 377km

    Today I have been stopped twice by the police, the first time at the entrance of a gas station, the policeman told me that there was a special "day" for the bikes... it;s ended as usual: me showing the pictures of the Ural and him wishing a safe journey :).
    Less than 5 km the police car was on the other side of the road, on policeman ask me to stop, then I told him that his colleagues just controlled me, so I didn't show him my documents and he wish me a safe journey...

    Weather was ok with +25C from midday and not too much traffic.
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    Total mileage for this ride: 2875KM
    #78
  19. zadaleko

    zadaleko Adventurer

    Joined:
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    , Bieszczady PL. Dublin Irl.
    I love to see all this places, and I love to ride one of this grat URALS!!! :evil

    Thanks Kristof!!!
    #79
  20. KMC1

    KMC1 There is no spoon.

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    Yeah, me too man! I love Russia - all the history, the culture, the people.... I really want to go live there someday! Seeing all the pictures is awesome! :clap
    #80