From Switzerland to Kirghyzstan, a dream came true.

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by GuillaumeADV, Dec 14, 2019.

  1. GuillaumeADV

    GuillaumeADV Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2019
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
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    ( Hi everybody ! First things first i will do my best to write in English and share with you my last trip the best i can. Hope you enjoy! )

    Finally ! Yes, finally is the word. After 10 years of dreaming it's now an accomplished dream ! So many feelings are now floating in my head, good or bad, they are now part of me and mixed with all the great memories i have collected along the road. How does it start ? Grab a bear,relax, and let me tell you my friend. I don't have a lot of pics, i am not a great writer, nothing really impressive happened, just good feelings i would like to share with you.


    WHO ? WHY ? :

    Let's do it shortly. I am 30 years old, work hard in horticulture and landscaping, married, no kids but 3 bikes, love riding and meeting people. I started riding motorcycle around 15 years ago. My first bike was a Yamaha DT 125 ( such a powerful beast ! :D). After a few trip around my place i had the opportunity to get my hands on a ktm 640 ADV ( everybody know they are the bests bikes ever made, plus mine was orange, so waayyyy faster ). I did a lot of great trip around Europe, mostly off road and with my father ( thank's Dad) , and it's how i contract the virus for travelling on a motorcycle. So 10 years ago i made a promess to myself; i will take my bike and go from my doorstep to the Stan's before i turn 30 years old! So many things happen and it's finally in my 29th year that my dream came true. I bought ktm 950 Adv ( recommended by the bests throttle therapists around the globe ) and hit the road.


    THE PLAN (useless thing...:rofl):

    My initial plan was to go from my hometown in Switzerland and reach Ulaan Bator in Mongolia by the south silk road trough Turkey-Iran etc... But i didn't had enough time for being out of work, only 5 weeks. So i decided to do it the fast way trough Europe, Russia and then slow down a bit to enjoy the Stan's and maybe reach Mongolia.

    THE HORSE :

    A KTM 950 ADV/S from 2004 with 63'000 km/ 39146 miles on the clock before the start; heated grips, bar risers ( i am 1.90 m / around 6.2 tall i think ) , touratech seat, leovince pipe ( bad idea for such a long ride) , GPS, Motoz tyre ( reaaaalllllly great tyres :thumb) and we're good to go.

    PAPERS:

    One visa for Russia and one for Mongolia, passeport, copy of my insurance, registration, etc...

    HOPE, GOAL ? :

    Finding the holy grail ! No, just be human and enjoy life, share, discover, having fun and stop thinking too much.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Let's go with the ride report now ! Yes but it takes time, so i will do my best in the next days.

    SOME TEASING BEFORE STARTING THE RIDE REPORT

    281.JPG 1270.JPG 55.JPG 166.JPG 20190817_132812.jpg 1190.JPG


    #1
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  2. James59

    James59 Been here awhile

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    Beijing China
    Tres Manifique! I am just back from Beijing and Shanghai and spoke to a French lady who cycled all the way from France. Formidable! Take your time and I look forward to reading what you say.
    #2
  3. Bonnie & Clyde

    Bonnie & Clyde Wishing I was riding RTW

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    :lurk
    #3
  4. Johnnydarock

    Johnnydarock Been here awhile

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    Redondo Beach CA
    Looking forward to hear your story.
    #4
  5. GuillaumeADV

    GuillaumeADV Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2019
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Swiss Alps
    Switzerland - Germany - Czech Republic

    So let's start !
    On the 29 of July i left home with the goal to reach Mongolia 5 weeks later... well that was a bit ambitious :ricky.
    After saying bye bye to my family ( hard moments ) , my wife( really hard ) and my boss ( really easy ) i was officially ready to hit the road . The first days were quiet easy; known places and culture. To be honest to much easy. As the odometer slowly growing my budget was faster decreasing! If you like food, good beers and typical countryside hotels, Europe is a must. The feeling was really strange. I was living dream, after such a long wait,but wasn't really able to enjoy it. I was proud for sure, really exited but also afraid. I knew it was normal but still, a bit disapointed. I was riding like a bullet; starting early in the morning, riding constantly with occasional break until the end of the day. I was burning myself too fast and realized that i was in the wrong tempo.
    After a few days i reach Czech Republic and enter Praha, a great city i had already visit with my wife one year before. Last time i came by plane, this time on my motorcycle... yes i was proud. The trip started to be real now. I didn't had much time to visit the city but i managed to cross it and make a stop to the old town along the river to celebrate my national day! It was the first of August, so i found a good spot and lightened the fireworks i had bring with me in prevision and start to sing the national anthem.
    People around were looking at me with big smiles but with respect, the moment was important! :rofl
    After this epic celebration it was time to go back on the road and riding direction Poland

    Countryside of Germany and the vineyards: 007.JPG


    Some farmland:
    011.JPG

    The place where my bike and me celebrated the swiss national day :photog
    20190801_105731.jpg
    #5
  6. simondippenhall

    simondippenhall Simondippenhall

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    Looking forward to this ad it’s a place I would like to ride to (I think : ). )
    #6
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  7. Smidty

    Smidty Been here awhile

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    :lurk
    #7
  8. simondippenhall

    simondippenhall Simondippenhall

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    Location:
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    Will you be posting an outline of your route?
    #8
  9. GuillaumeADV

    GuillaumeADV Adventurer

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    Kind of route on the map you mean ? Yes i will. I am trying to make it on google map. Sadly my GPS was rebooted in kirghyztan so i don't have the trace anymore but maybe on the SPOTdevice i had with me during the trip, i'll do my best.
    #9
  10. simondippenhall

    simondippenhall Simondippenhall

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    Location:
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    Even an approximate route would add to the interest...even more
    #10
  11. GuillaumeADV

    GuillaumeADV Adventurer

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    POLAND ( short stage but intense...)

    After leaving Praha area i took the highway direction the Polish border and find a bed for the night in the charming city of Prostêjov. I decided at this moment to always sleep close to the border i want to cross the day after; and i am sure now that it's a good strategy because you never know how long it could be; of course in European Schengen space it's quiet easy but it was a way to set a tempo and some travel rules to me. The bonus is also to be fresh and ready to wait, wait and wait, make papers in foreign languages, be kind with the sometimes bad policemen , understand how it works...or stuff like that.

    20190801_184911.jpg

    The next morning i crossed the border between Czech Republic and Poland . Really easy as you don't need to leave the highway ! A good surprise and i was happy to ad a new country to the list. I pushed to reach Krakow; a city reach of history and culture. It was time to meet some locals. The weather was perfect and as i arrived in the city around 6 at night, i had plenty of time for exploring.

    Well, my final destination turn to be closer than i expected.

    The hotel was really close to river who board the city. I decided to have a walk along and find a place to eat. There were plenty of boats where you can eat on board. Fantastic !
    After a royal menu and a few beers later i leaved the restaurant-boat and started to walk again. Then i heard something familiar to me: guitar !! Whoooo hoooow that's sound good for tonight ! I reached the place and found some peoples on a really old traditional boat made of wood. I approached them and started the conversation. They explained me that the boat was a living place for some of their friends and tonight there's a party onboard ! What !? A boat, cool people, guitar ? I'm ready ! I managed to buy some beers and came back to the "woodstock boat ".

    The party started and many people arrived, don't know exactly but i think we were around 25 people around 11 o clock in the evening. Everybody was really cool and i talked to a lot of them. Open minded people for sure and from all horizons; young students, unknown people of the assembly like me, homeless musician, weed smoker, non-smoker, young manager of young start-up, old workers who miss the good old days and so on.... what a great mix! We played a lot of guitar and had together an excellent jam session! Time was passing and i started to be " a bit " drunk . I tried to escape but some folk's decided to challenge me with some strange alcools. Challenge accepted! There were only one winner possible...
    So after my brilliant victory i finally quit the boat and in a kind of stone-age-reptilian-walking-style i managed to reach my hotel room to fall in the bed. Tomorrow will be hard.
    #11
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  12. simondippenhall

    simondippenhall Simondippenhall

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    And there I was, thinking the Swiss were quiet reserved people
    #12
  13. GuillaumeADV

    GuillaumeADV Adventurer

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    Dec 14, 2019
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    upload_2019-12-16_21-24-31.png

    Attached Files:

    #13
  14. GuillaumeADV

    GuillaumeADV Adventurer

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    You mean on the boat ? :lol3 no way ?
    #14
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  15. GuillaumeADV

    GuillaumeADV Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2019
    Oddometer:
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    Location:
    Swiss Alps
    Ukraine :

    So the next morning i hardly waked up and packed my stuff to go back on the road. Next Stop Ukraine ! There were not so many kilometers to the Ukrainian border but i was a bit late due to my
    headache and the tempo was hard to set. :muutt:lol3

    My plan was to exit the highway before the border to have a bit of flexibility and maybe choose the best itinerary but once your on the highway you can't really exit the highway before the border and in fact i think there is not so many entry point in this area. It was a bit surprising because suddenly approx. 3 km before the border all the cars and trucks were stopped and people were waiting outside. As a motorcyclist i had the "privilege" to continue until the start of the queue. There was a soldier there checking the area. I tried to ask him some informations but he wasn't really open to talk and he just told me "Border close. Wait here". Some local bikers arrived and we waited together until the gate open again. All the procedure was really long but hey ! It's part of the game. So after something like 3 hours i was out and drove a few minutes to find a motel; soup, beer, shower. I was now in Ukraine exhausted but really happy. This border was a kind of mental step for me - the end of my "confort zone" in a way. Time for a good sleep.

    20190803_204500.jpg 024.JPG


    upload_2019-12-17_18-40-40.png


    I drove two more days to reach the capital, Kiev. On the road the landscape start to be a bit different to my eyes and i started to "feel" the travel. What a great feeling to be on your bike, away from home and on the way to somewhere, you don't care, just enjoying the moment. hmmmmmm.
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    #15
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  16. DavidM1

    DavidM1 Unicorn hunting

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    #16
  17. GuillaumeADV

    GuillaumeADV Adventurer

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    Hello, interesting . In fact i saw a lot of Ural's and Dniepr along the road, really common in this part of the world, great machines!
    #17
  18. GuillaumeADV

    GuillaumeADV Adventurer

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    CROSSING UKRAINE:

    The next day i reached the capital Kiev and stayed there for two nights. The city was a big surprise for me, in fact there are a lot more things to do or see than i expected and i wish i had more time.
    I didn't really visit the city, but i crossed it a few times with the motorcycle and trust me it's an adventure; from my perspective the traffic is crazy, fast and funky. The first hour was terrific but after that....whooooow what a great feeling. I never drove like this in a city before and i loved it, really fast and smooth :super....did i brake some traffic rules ? nooooo......:augie

    I had to fix some problems on the bike and went to the ktm dealer in Kiev;
    hard to find the place but they did a really good job and they are real motorcycle enthusiasts. 20190806_155141.jpg

    Two days after i was close to the Russian border and ready to enter the "motherland" :ricky. Here are some pics other pics of the crossing of Ukraine:

    Exiting Kiev

    060.JPG
    Time to work a bit... 20190805_083033.jpg
    Some soviet architecture
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    upload_2019-12-18_16-51-38.png
    #18
  19. GuillaumeADV

    GuillaumeADV Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2019
    Oddometer:
    23
    Location:
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    I know some of you will ask me about the tires i used. I used Motoz tractionator adv. Trust me THEY ARE BRILLIANT. They where brand knew when i left home and after approx 9000 km they are far away from dead. check it :

    from start : 20190730_152957.jpg




    Around 3500 km
    20190805_094959.jpg

    At the end round 9000 km :

    20190902_155505.jpg
    #19
  20. akaDigger

    akaDigger Amateur Adventurer

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    This is the only RR I'm watching.
    #20