From Estonia with love (Round the World)

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by tsiklonaut, Jun 30, 2009.

  1. tsiklonaut

    tsiklonaut the (in)famous boxer perv

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    Our track finding a remote observatory high in the Pamirs.








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    V12 tank engine lost in the Pamirs - probably a Soviet Afghanistan invasion leftover from the 70s. Good quality iron.







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    Down the valleys you almost can't see the snowy peaks at the top.
    BillUA, TwilightZone, Shaggie and 7 others like this.
  2. tsiklonaut

    tsiklonaut the (in)famous boxer perv

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    Yamchun fortress.





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    River separating Afghanistan from the Tajikistan.







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    It's very narrow at some points.








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    Fine tracks to ride, most of them over 4000m of altitude makes them even better.










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    Mountain bliss.












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    Pamirs are mostly rocky and rugged. On the steep slopes rock avalanches are a norm (the white stripes on the mountain)
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  3. tsiklonaut

    tsiklonaut the (in)famous boxer perv

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    Taking non-existant tracks to pin our way out of the valley. Altitude around 4200 meters above sea level.









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    Each direction the Great Pamir landscape changes dramatically.











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    As the valley got wider it was harder to follow the non-existent tracks. Seasonal river crossing were particularly hard.
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  4. tsiklonaut

    tsiklonaut the (in)famous boxer perv

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    Soon a snowstorm was chasing us. Snowing in middle of summer is no news in the high Pamirs.










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    This valley is claimed to be the coldest inhabited place in Tajikistan, ferocious winters can hit down to -60C. Summers are nominally windy.











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    Refueling with dirty fuel. Toilet paper inside the funnel sorted out many iron particles from the rusty canisters they hold the fuel in.









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    Donkey power is a preferred transport in GBAO part of Tajikistan, he really wanted to follow us to see the bikes but the donkey couldn't keep up.
    He sat on the very back to get more speed out of his bone powered machine, but it still wasn't enough. So we just stopped so the boy could
    take a good look on us and the bikes. He was so happy and we got a pic in exchange.







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    Old mosque in Murghab, the place for a short supply before heading out again deep into the mountains.







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    A boy with his grandfather who was so keen to show his boy our bikes and have a chat how things go in the ex-Soviet bloc countries and how
    different paths they've gone. A man in search of wisdom that the young can learn from.
    Seba1, BillUA, EmmEff and 9 others like this.
  5. Uke

    Uke visualist Super Supporter

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    Marcus, excellent images! I appreciate your use of filters with B &W, did you get the dark skies with an O-56 or a R-90, regardless, the clouds separate quite well.
  6. tsiklonaut

    tsiklonaut the (in)famous boxer perv

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    Using R25 on regular (panorthocrhomatic) B&W films and 715 nanometer cut filter for infrared sensitized films. The dramatic deep black sky and glowing detail pictures are on specialized IR-film mostly.

    Cheers,
    Margus
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  7. tsiklonaut

    tsiklonaut the (in)famous boxer perv

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    Afghani side of the Panj river.










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    It gets so narrow at times you can almost jump over to Afghanistan if you want to.











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    Riding Pamirs.
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  8. tsiklonaut

    tsiklonaut the (in)famous boxer perv

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    Getting higher. Afghani village on the right below.










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    High altitude desert. It's surprising to find some people prefer to live here.










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    Desert at 4200 meters above sealevel.










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    At 4000 meters in a mountanous desert you really must plan your housing for permanent living. Winters can get down to -50C,
    add ferocious winds and snowfalls to super dry summers, and you get a house like this.
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  9. tsiklonaut

    tsiklonaut the (in)famous boxer perv

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    There are few toys to play with at 4000 meters above sealevel where only grass grows at best. But they get to play with the non-plastic real-fesh "barbies & kens" while
    taking care of their younger siblings.










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    Lake at 3743 meters where Bulunkul people get their fish.













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    High altitude desert has it's own beauty.









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    Great little known trails of Pamir. It was good to get off the trourist road and ride those proper Pamir pistes.
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  10. Shaggie

    Shaggie Unseen University Supporter

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    :clap:clap:clap:clap
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  11. Uke

    Uke visualist Super Supporter

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    Art, pure ART!
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  12. Pongo

    Pongo Been here awhile

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    Wow, but soviet tank engines are aluminium...(tank geek)
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  13. tsiklonaut

    tsiklonaut the (in)famous boxer perv

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    Thanks guys!

    Crankshafts and conrods? I seriously doubt it. Engine casing maybe yes, but the only shiny things were the crankshaft & conrods, the engine casing itself was pretty shot.

    I heard they got the original engine supplied from the USA then copied it as they usually do with most of the stuff so it's basically an USA-designed engine(?)
    Uke likes this.
  14. tsiklonaut

    tsiklonaut the (in)famous boxer perv

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    Lake Yashikul is at 3723 meters above sealevel.









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    Valleys are very rideable in the Great Pamirs.











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    Kariina's always heading for the mountains though...
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  15. tsiklonaut

    tsiklonaut the (in)famous boxer perv

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    Great scenery all around. It's hard to beat that Central-Asian mountain vibe.










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    Where the path takes us.
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  16. Hometoroost

    Hometoroost Adventurer

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    Thanks for the amazing photos.
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  17. ricochetrider

    ricochetrider MotoMojo

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    Again, stunning images! I forgot if I asked: Are you developing your photos in your own darkroom at home?
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  18. tsiklonaut

    tsiklonaut the (in)famous boxer perv

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    Yes sir, all home-brewed work. For C41 (color negative film) and E6 (color positive or slide film as some call it) processes I use temperature tampered bath in Jobo CPP-2 to keep within +/-0.2C precision @ +38C through stable development workflow. E6 I do with proper long 6-bath process that even the commercial film labs don't do anymore these days (they use the simplified 3-bath process for E6 to save time and money), that's one of my "secrets" getting those nice deep colours and tones out of my E6 slides (using Color Developer [CD] creatively and other tricks too that the long E6 process provides if you learn to know each step)

    For regular B&W film it's simple old-fashioned hand-inverted tank development (dev, stop, fix & wash) I keep within +/- 1 degrees around +20C to +24C that my room is depending on the season (and calculate the development time accordingly) which is sufficient for my purposes since B&W negative is much more forgiving than the colour work. From this material I do make alternative process prints in my garage darkroom occasionally which is like a soul-food for me (I really do like proper hand made art that is unfortunately a dying art in the automated digital age). This may sound funny but my Durst 138S enlarger sits just aside our bikes in the garage so it's quite inspiring to work in red-light darkroom, masking and dodging with my fingers, hands and other tools (it's called Photoshop version 0.0), then siting on the seat of my GS, shaking the tray with my hand and waiting for the Lithograpic print to appear in the wet solution. It's pure magic to my eyes.

    I wet-mount and scan with an 50 kilogram weighting drum scanner that sounds like a crying dinosaur when it runs, takes around painful 30 minutes to scan a single frame, but gives me an unmatched quality (up to 11 000 dpi). It uses Photo Multiplier Tubes (PMTs) to digitize images single pixel-by-pixel (no demosaicing, extrapolation, noise-shaping, etc like with most CCD/CMOS-sensor based cameras or scanners) which gives a somewhat unique rendering to the digitized images.

    Hope this gives some insight into my workflow with the film-based (analog) images.

    Margus
  19. edgeoftheworld

    edgeoftheworld Been here awhile

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    Really amazing pictures
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  20. ricochetrider

    ricochetrider MotoMojo

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    Margus,
    Thank you for the detailed account of your photo processing! I really love it that you take such care to make each image, from taking the photo, developing the film, creating the actual photos and drum scanning the negatives, and finally, posting for us to enjoy. Your photography is awe inspiring, and so is your artistic aesthetic. There are a handful of really great photographers sharing their work here at ADVrider, but overall, your work is unmatched simply because of the depth of your commitment to film, and the breadth of your knowledge and experience with it.
    Rich Rider, EmmEff, Shaggie and 4 others like this.