Short trip at Far North Russia

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by skandero, Oct 24, 2012.

  1. skandero

    skandero Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2012
    Oddometer:
    128
    Location:
    Saint-Petersburg, Russia
    Hi there. That's my first ride report here (and in English), so, excuse me for grammar and so on...
    The idea of the trip was to visit the SAM site, where I was on duty in Russian army (2003-2004). But just before the ride my grandfather told me, that his brother was fighting nazi troops at the Rybachiy semi-island. He was Soviet marine))
    So, I could not miss the chance to visit the WW2 historic place, and see the conditions at the theatre of war.

    The way was:
    Saint-Petersburg -> Petrozavodsk -> Belomorsk -> Monchegorsk -> Murmansk -> Zapolyarniy -> Rybachiy (the farest northern point in the west russia).
    The one-way ride is about 1700 km, and almost 800 of them is off-road / hard off-road. So, the complete trip is about 3800 km.

    I was riding 5 days. Alone.
    I've started from Saint-Petersburg and ride for Belomorsk. Spent some time to see the legendary Belomor channel.
    The weather was quite windy, and the road was quite good - asphalt. I was riding at about 120-140 km/h.

    A gateway for the ships on the channel.
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    Just a piece of nature
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    After Belomorsk I've crossed the Polar Circle. It's a tradition to put a stripe, ribbon or a short part of a rope on the Polar sign - a gift to the spirits of the North.
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    The road became shitty... And it is really the only way for the cars and trucks to reach Murmansk. Federal track M-18 "Kola". But I have Katoom - so, it's not necessary to slow down)) 90-100 km/h.
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    At the end of the day I placed a tent in the forest, and fell asleep.
    The next day I've visited Murmansk and Kola. The weather was fine, but the temperature was about 5-6 C.
    Kola is not a big city, it is the satellite of Murmansk.
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    Northern nature:
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    And now I approach the place of duty.
    Pechenga city, and WW2 memorials.

    The memorial of Far North Defenders:
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    The memorial of Polar Division (and also the mark of the battle front line, the nazi were stopped here):
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    The memorial of Northern Tank Troops (it is called "Komsomoletz"). This T-34 was built in Leningrad an the Kirovsky mechanical plant, and was fighting nazi during all battle for the North (3 years). It was hit 13 times, but the crew survived all these years!
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    I'm almost at "my" SAM site...
    No roads, abandoned towns...
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    The memorial of Yuri Gagarin (the first cosmonaut) in Korzunovo. As You know, he was a pilot and he was on duty at the interceptor squad based at Korzunovo airfield.
    No more airbase here.
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    And no more SAM sites. My military unit doesn't exist anymore... It was on duty up to 2005...
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    I stopped my bike at the place, where I swore to Serve and Protect my Fatherland.
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    Then I started for Rybachiy. The weather become very bad.
    Fog, rain, hills, rivers, moors and muddy roads...
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    And, finally, the place of great 3-years fight. Not directly, of course, but the mark.
    A memorial...
    You can see the shells and other metal objects in front of it. There are some places on Rybachiy, where the ground is completely covered by shells, splinters, bent parts of firearms, pierced helmets (both Russian and nazi)...
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    The nature:
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    And the marks of bombs and shells on the rocks... It's about 3-4 meters between the marks. It was Hell during the war, I think.
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    It took me two days to ride over Rybachiy. There are many interresting places there.
    The next two days I spent riding home...

    Hope, the report is not looking boring. Feel free to aks any questions.
    #1
  2. Katoom119

    Katoom119 Mmmm....Orange Kool-aid

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,839
    Location:
    Knoxville, TN
    Wow! Love the pictures and the personal story.
    #2
  3. canadianshark74

    canadianshark74 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2011
    Oddometer:
    41
    Location:
    Brampton.ON.CA
    Very interesting, cool pictures.

    Sent from my GT-S5830D using Tapatalk 2
    #3
  4. KMC1

    KMC1 There is no spoon.

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2008
    Oddometer:
    2,987
    Location:
    Greater SLC
    Dude! This is AWESOME!

    There's something about Russia that just calls to me...I've never been there but I want to go SOOOO bad!

    I love seeing the pictures and hearing about the history of the area....just incredible. Someday I hope to get to Russia and spend hopefully many months just exploring it and meeting the people / learning the history.

    :freaky
    #4
  5. curveball21

    curveball21 Easy Rider

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Oddometer:
    10
    Location:
    Cleveland, Ohio
    This was great! I love seeing the far and frozen bits of Russia!
    #5
  6. CRASHDADDY

    CRASHDADDY Adventurer

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2008
    Oddometer:
    22
    Location:
    South of the Mason-Dixon
    NICE! Beautiful wilderness, thanks for sharing
    #6
  7. Suqsuda

    Suqsuda Secret Sharer

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Oddometer:
    168
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Very cool, well done.
    #7
  8. Pickup man

    Pickup man Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2011
    Oddometer:
    334
    Location:
    People's Socialist Republic of Ontario, Toronto
    Not boring at all, in fact your report was very interesting.
    Never been to Russia, but I want to go and visit very bad.
    The history, nature and photogenic churches are second to none.
    Thanks you for sharing.
    #8
  9. yamalama

    yamalama wet coaster

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,608
    Location:
    vancouver bc
    thanks for sharing.
    #9
  10. max384

    max384 Bandaided

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    Oddometer:
    3,809
    Location:
    Hazleton, PA
    Great pictures. Your English is better than many native speakers that post on the internet! Russia is pretty high on my list of places I want to eventually ride.
    #10
  11. MikJogg

    MikJogg Weekend Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    672
    Location:
    Oberkirch/Blackforest/Germany
    Hi skandero

    Great first report and pics with interesting informations :thumb

    MJ
    #11
  12. SenorFeliz

    SenorFeliz hangin' out

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2006
    Oddometer:
    408
    Location:
    lake Simple, Ontario
    short but sweet report. thank you for sharing. awesome pictures.
    #12
  13. Rodsbike

    Rodsbike Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Oddometer:
    74
    Location:
    South Africa
    Thanks for the report. Lovely photos. Murmansk brings back memories of that great WW 2 novel "the Cruel Sea".
    #13
  14. bigboyxl

    bigboyxl Been here awhile

    Joined:
    May 24, 2011
    Oddometer:
    394
    Location:
    Czech republic
    hi skandero
    great report, pictures and story are top quality! :clap
    Since my grandpa was on duty in the northern marine fleet for 3 years back in the Soviet Union times I wanted to get there someday also :evil
    #14
  15. kneeslider

    kneeslider Long timer

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    Jul 28, 2004
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    1,348
    Location:
    Southeastern Xenophobia
    Spasiba!:clap
    #15
  16. Kristof Granit

    Kristof Granit Long timer

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,560
    Location:
    Russia
    Subscribed, thank you for the report, one day I should go there from tthe south.
    #16
  17. Klay

    Klay dreaming adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2005
    Oddometer:
    105,780
    Location:
    right here on my thermarest
    Very interesting ride, and amazing landscape.



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    #17
  18. Tassie Devil

    Tassie Devil Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 20, 2007
    Oddometer:
    16
    Location:
    Glen Huon, Tasmania, Oz
    Beautiful colours and an eye for a great picture.

    You done real good.

    Cheers JQ.
    #18
  19. Sroz

    Sroz Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2012
    Oddometer:
    64
    Location:
    South Oztralia
    Great report. A very interesting part of the world and the scenery is amazing! Thanks for taking the time to put it together
    #19
  20. achesley

    achesley Old Motorcyclist

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2003
    Oddometer:
    3,534
    Location:
    Jennings, Louisiana
    Amazing history and beautiful photos. Thanks for sharing. :clap:clap:clap
    #20