Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan by Ural

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Suqsuda, Jan 25, 2010.

  1. CraigUK

    CraigUK n00b

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2012
    Oddometer:
    1
    I am the Craig mentioned in here and I am so glad to have stumbled on this. So many thanks for posting, and your pics are better than the crap ones I took (though that might have been due to the Raki and Vodka, etc...)!

    We did alternate between staying in nice hotels and sleeping literally in sheep droppings freezing in the mountains (nibbling on sheep nuts cooked over a burning tire) as the pics show. This was incredibly hard work, dirty, but the most fun ever. I remember actually riding into Ceyhan on your bike with the whole drive train slipping, soaked in leaking oil, but got there anyhow. Unbelievable trip!

    I'm still involved working out in the Caucasus, having just returned from a week out there (my 13th time to Armenia, 14th to Georgia, and 23rd to Azerbaijan I think). Even have a flat in Baku now. Never get tired of that region. Met Thomas out there in Baku in summer 2010 (at an Irish pub of course) when he was planning a 10th anniv trip. That fell thru, but still hoping for another shot at this if he plans something again (as you know, "plan" is a relative thing with Tommy). And my lovely wife (nicked from BP in Azerbaijan!) will be riding along this time.
    #61
  2. Comrade Art

    Comrade Art Working stiff

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2006
    Oddometer:
    769
    Location:
    Oregon
    Another great story Suqsuda:clap
    #62
  3. Suqsuda

    Suqsuda Secret Sharer

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Oddometer:
    171
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Hi Craig, great to hear from you! I too have been hoping for a reunion ride and have bugged Tom about it over the years. I thought it would be cool to do a circum-Caspian ride, or part of one, south and then east along the shore in Iran, then up through Turkmenistan and take the ferry back to Baku. But I have no Idea whether this is possible. Hope to see you on a ride in the future.

    p.s. -- Please feel free to post some of your photos of the ride to this thread, I'd love to see them.
    #63
  4. bokad

    bokad Difficult Child

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2011
    Oddometer:
    398
    Location:
    Polska
    Just found this RR. Glad I did. Read it beginning to end in one sit. A real unique adventure!
    #64
  5. Elfiniya

    Elfiniya n00b

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2018
    Oddometer:
    1
    Location:
    Great Britain
    Oh i'm so happy to find this ))) I'm the Natasha mentioned here) me and Karl are delighted to see so many photographs and re-live the adventure again)) it was great))
    #65
  6. Suqsuda

    Suqsuda Secret Sharer

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2009
    Oddometer:
    171
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Hi Natasha, nice to connect with you again after all these years, I hope you and Karl are doing well.

    I came back to this thread to post a link to a Youtube video that just came up in my Facebook feed of an Azeri documentary that was made of this trip:



    I had no idea this film even existed until a couple days ago. Of course, I remember the film crew coming along on the trip, but I had long given up hope of seeing a film. Looks like someone originally posted it to Youtube in 2016. One of the Azeri riders on the trip, Sasha, who is a Facebook friend of mine, posted it to his feed. The trip was in August-September 2001, so the film was like 15 years in the making. Or maybe it was made long before 2016 but I missed it because I don't watch Azeri TV.

    That's me with with mirror sunglasses and an old Roof Boxer helmet I used to wear.

    You might find yourself fast forwarding through p[arts of it because the motorcycles and riders are just one subject of the film.

    You will see:

    1. a "Borat" like opening sequence with
    2. some clips of the bikes on the move;
    2. long drawn out sequences of broken down motorcycles;
    3. a busload of Azeri dancing girls in costumes;
    4. occasional singing by Bilal, the Azeri version of Wayne Newton;
    5. motorcycle trying to outrun a Georgian shepherd on horseback (the horse winning);
    6. 45 minutes of Azeri narration with no English sub-titles;
    7. numerous small-town big-wigs and press events, Turkish parades with tanks and marching bands, much drinking of tea and did I mention broken down motorcycles.

    Very nice clip of Natasha and Karl starting at 29:56
    #66