Karakoram Son - 400 days around the world

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by Karakoram Son, Aug 29, 2018.

  1. Karakoram Son

    Karakoram Son Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2017
    Oddometer:
    12
    Location:
    Berlin
    Chapter 0: Quick Introduction and preparation


    I started traveling on 29 April from Berlin with a long detour around mountain ranges in the Alps, Dolomites, and others. Then to Balkan and later entered in Turkey then to Georgia, Armenia, Iran then Turkmenistan I love and prefer small and offroad rather than speedways or Motorways. the total count of km sofar 20000 km so far with almost 4-months travel.

    I have already written a brief article on my website
    https://karakoramson.com/story/chapter1/
    (Better view on Desktop or Desktop-View menu option in Mobile browsers)
    I will give some snapshot of the journey

    Preparation
    It took some time and effort to prepare the bike for around the world. Other than mandatory 40000km service by BMW Motorrad, I worked almost all the work on including enduro tire change, protection item installation, mounts and etc.

    [​IMG]1
    [​IMG]1
    [​IMG]2

    Offroad Practice
    2 weeks before the trip, I went with a loaded bike with friends to Poland for 2 days offroading and covered hardcore around 500 km of offroad.
    [​IMG]2

    The Machine
    I chose what I had and that was my BMW F800gsa almost all stock with 39220 km at the start of Trip. after many modifications and replace for enduro and long distance travel bike weight without luggage 270KG with luggage full tank 355 kg. Average mileage is 5.3 Liter per 100km.

    [​IMG]2
    On Road
    After Leaving Berlin I wonder a bit in Czech Republic, Austria, Swiss, France, Germany, Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Albania, Greece, Montenegro, Bosnia, Turkey, Georgia, And Armenia.
    Later in Iran, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Pamir region, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan.
    Next planned countries are China, Pakistan, India and so on.

    [​IMG]
    route.png
    Above route has changed now and I would prefer to travel to Far East Asia rather than Vladivostok.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]1
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]



    For complete story with interactive map
    www.KarakoramSon.com/story/chapter1

    Wish you blessed days forward.

    Karakoram Son
    #1
  2. Karakoram Son

    Karakoram Son Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2017
    Oddometer:
    12
    Location:
    Berlin
    Chapter 1 - AUF WIEDERSEHEN BERLIN
    A start of the story to unknown and unseen.

    “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.”
    Mark Twain

    Berlin, 29 April 2018The Adventure Begins


    "Wake up, Wake up Willi. Today is the day for which you have been waiting for a long time. Adventure of your life awaits. Wake up!".

    After a short but deep sleep, this strange dream woke me up with rather “unusual” weather in Berlin, sunny and warm. While looking out from the windows of my 8th-floor apartment at Berlin's landscape -
    “This could be a good sign for starting an Around The World Trip on a motorcycle,” I thought in my head.

    It took nearly five years for this moment to arrive. After all the preparations and struggles, I was not sure if I was excited or anxious more. It was difficult to describe all these mix feeling. The phone started to ring, it was my friend Wlad on the other side who was equally excited and happy for me to leave on a trip.

    [​IMG]
    An unusual Sunny and warm April day in Berlin
    “How do you feel my friend? Today is the big day,” He asked in an exciting tone.
    “Fear but excitement,” I replied while looking out of the window.
    “Why?” He asked promptly.
    “Excitement to see the unknown and fear of unpreparedness to the unknown”.
    “You will be fine. It is going to be great!” He said in a supporting tone.

    Brandenburg Gate - Bon Voyage
    It was almost midday and I was late to meet friends outside Berlin near Schönefeld airport. I planned to take a photo in front of Berlin’s famous Brandenburg Gate, but everything seemed to be in a rush. After packing all the luggage, checking the tire and suspension settings, It was time to become homeless and jobless for a long time.

    After many hugs, handshakes, and goodbyes, I started to move and unexpectedly I turned my bike towards Brandenburg Gate, five extra minute drive from home. Maybe that was the reason I wanted to travel solo so I can decide my turns and direction.

    [​IMG]
    The photo that was planned many years ago to be taken.
    “I have to take that at least one photo, it does not matter the quality is good or not,” This thought somehow stuck in my mind.

    The Berliners were busy with their daily life. The Messages tones were beeping, and blood slowly pumping faster than usual. “It might be the sign of excitement or fear?” Well, we would figure it out soon. Today’s ride to Dresden was rather short, around 200km. I planned to stay with an old friend of mine. It was nice to see Ruben and Akos with their motorcycles and excitements.

    Spreewald - The plan is that there is no plan.
    “I brought my tent and will join for today,” Akos announced. “What, really? Good.Ahh.Great. Ok..” I felt more excited and relieved.
    Maybe it was because I was still scared to travel alone and having someone’s company on my first day would be great. Initially, we took the famous German autobahn for 30 odd kilometers. Then we hit the curvy mode on and just followed the beautiful southeast Berlin green forests to reached Spreewald.

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    An unexpected turn in our journey led us to many impressive places.
    Spreewald is a German biosphere, reserving the southeast of Berlin. Its forested areas and wetlands are crossed by canals fed by the Spree River. As Akos suggested to camp for tonight, I was flexible and also wanted to test the gear. So we decided to visit Rakotzbrücke (Devil’s Bridge), trying to find a camping place.

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    Rakotzbrücke
    This bridge was constructed of local varied town stones in an early 19th century in Park Kromlau. It was so thin and dangerous that only devil can build this. Even there is a legend that says the devil helped to build this bridge in exchange for the soul of the first human who crosses it.



    the devil helped to build this bridge in exchange for the soul of the first human who crosses it.— Legend


    It was getting dark and now what we need was a place to sleep and some food. “Let us drive back to the small road we came from. There I saw a sign of camping,” Akos recommended. I nodded to that with my helmet on and we started to drive. It was a nice surprise that it ran by the local administration of this town, In presence of full moon and warm breeze, we picked the place to pitch our tent near the lake and started to unpack.

    “I did not bring my tent,” Akos said.
    “What, are you joking?”
    “But I did not forget to bring the coffee pot”. He then gave witty smile and said in a lighter note.


    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    A man never forgets his Coffee Pot
    After a long discussion, either to leave to a hotel or to stay and try to fit in my tent, he actually slept outside. All praise to mighty Akos. “Nice to see you alive”. Next Morning, I was delighted to see him alive and not so much disturbed by the mosquitos. The morning was sunny and warm, again very unusual but nice. It took way longer to pack all the camping gears back and ready to get some breakfast. In such a small town that there was not much to choose, so the local supermarket was an easy option for breakfast.


    Dresden - Inevitable Farewell
    Soon it came the goodbye time. Akos planned to drive back to Berlin, and me towards Dresden. I really felt a little sad while seeing him leave because that means: “it is inevitably to leave people behind because of the traveling and I might need to do it more often”. “Maybe I am still not ready to leave my comfort zone, my friends, my town”, I wondered in my head. “But We will see”.

    [​IMG]
    See you soon My friend.
    But now it was time to hit the roads and cover around 200 km to Dresden while avoiding speedy German highway. Therefore, again twisty and curvy roads until Dresden. The first sign of rain was in the evening, but fortunately, it was not during the driving. Next morning, I promised myself to cover at least 400 Km curvy roads was planned through Saxon Switzerland - National Park and crossed the first border into the Czech Republic Prague.

    [​IMG]
    At once the music of the steam-whistle was resumed, and our ears were again tortured by its shrill blasts.
    It was my surprise that the trip went through a town name Heidenau, where actually the famous Heidenau Tyre comes from. Well, I unsuccessfully requested them for sponsoring the tires. Now Continental TKC 80 on my motorcycle are in the Heidenau kingdom.

    Saxon SCHWEIZ NATIONAL PARK - 1000 climbing peaks
    Roads were getting much more curved, so did the thoughts in my mind. Leaving comfort zone was never an easy thing to do, but this is what I wanted and now there is no going back. “Everything will be fine”. I said to myself and give little throttle on coming out of the corner. In Pirna, a small city with really curvy roads on the mountain started. Surprisingly, Bummelliese (Lisa, F800gsa) doing great on corners and was handling the weight very well.

    Bastei is the most famous rock formation in Saxon Switzerland, Germany. Bastei and the Bastei Bridge are the highlights of the German Saxon Switzerland National Park area. You shouldn't miss visiting this attraction! It can be reached in less than 1 hour from the capital of Saxony: Dresden. From the Bastei rocks and the Bastei Bridge, you have a wonderful panoramic view over the mountains. You will see the river Elbe, the Lilienstein mountain, and Koenigstein fortress just to name a few. Bastei Bridge is a 76,5 m man-made bridge which connects the rock formations.

    [​IMG][​IMG]
    Saxon Switzerland alone has some 1,000 climbing peaks, as well as several hollows.
    Czech Republic - Deer & Forest roads
    It was already dark and there was still 250 km. The curvy road mode of Garmin picked up the route which went through very small villages and dark forests, yet I felt like to choose the fast route to get out of the forest earlier. But later I realized that I need to brake and slow down because there were herds of deers in the forest. “Sprechen Sie Deutsch?” He just shook his head.
    “Do you speak English?” no answer again.
    “Benzin? Petrol?”. He just shrugged his shoulder like he never heard these words.


    [​IMG]
    Few hundreds of kilometers and already in an unknown, unfamiliar world.
    Then reality hit me. I was not anymore in German or English speaking countries. It was happening and no way going back. no home, no job, no plan B. I was not ready o3the rd day of my trip. Well, was I excited for the trip? No sure. Was I scared? Hell Yes. These thoughts were making clouds on heads while I was trying to reach athe ustrian border. “Willi! You have only one day camping experience in your life. You have never stayed overnight with a maotorcycle. You never drove a motorcycle with luggage. And Now you have started 400+ days around the world. Why?”
    #2
  3. Suncoaster

    Suncoaster Been here awhile Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2015
    Oddometer:
    946
    Location:
    Where the girls are green and the grass is pretty.
    In !
    #3
  4. TropicalDale

    TropicalDale The Adventures of Peter Pan

    Joined:
    May 29, 2013
    Oddometer:
    288
    Location:
    Cleveland,Ohio
    :lurk
    #4
  5. Karakoram Son

    Karakoram Son Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2017
    Oddometer:
    12
    Location:
    Berlin


    "Karakoram Son" is my ongoing Travel Project name for my Solo journey around the world on Motorcycle. Current Stats : 27 Countries - 28000 km - 9 Months

    Episode 1: In This part of my travel web series we see the preparation of trip, motorcycle BMW F800GSA and departure from Berlin with a little hint what actually was going on inside my head. The excitement and fears to quit everything behind and go on a solo around the world. It has some clips which include Bridge of Devil, Dresden, Saxon Swiss National Park, Heidnau, and Prague. Thanks to Everyone for help and support.
    www.KarakoramSon.com
    www.kakoso.com
    Support on Patreon https://www.patreon.com/KarakoramSon
    Social Media
    ------------------------------
    facebook.com/KarakoramSon
    twitter.com/KarakoramSon
    Youtube.com/KarakoramSon
    Instagram.com/Karakoram_Son
    #5
    Saso, Cro59, yokesman and 2 others like this.
  6. Karakoram Son

    Karakoram Son Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2017
    Oddometer:
    12
    Location:
    Berlin


    Episode 2: In This part 2 of my travel web series, I drove through some of magnificent beautiful part of Switzerland, Austria and Germany. First stop was to visit Hallstatt, A beautiful small town with blue lakes and tall mountains. Later a must visit RossefeldStreet (Panorama Street) right between Austria and Germany. You reach almost near to summit with a well made curvy road. After visiting Munich, I drove down to Garmisch then to Plannsee. Such a beautiful long lake. This episode ends in Freiburg where I stayed a week to explore surrounding areas in France and Black forest. Next plan is to move towards Swiss, Italy and then to Balkans and further on to Turkey.
    Thanks to Everyone for support. Karakoram Son" is name of my ongoing travel project for my Solo journey around the world on Motorcycle .
    Current Stats : 29 Countries - 29000 km - 14 Months
    www.KarakoramSon.com
    www.kakoso.com
    #6
    Saso and thwak like this.
  7. Karakoram Son

    Karakoram Son Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2017
    Oddometer:
    12
    Location:
    Berlin


    In this Episode 3 of my travel web series, I drove through some of magnificent beautiful part of Switzerland from Zurich to Locarno. After spending some time in Zurich I drove across Switzerland but unfortunately, because of excess snow in this season most of mountain passes were closed. I had to go extra 160 km detour to reach Locarno. Locarno is a beautiful Lake town surrounded with beautiful mountains. There are many deadened roads which amazing scenery and curvy roads. This region is filled with waterfalls and kayaking streams. This week was completely filled with rain, so I had to leave the region as I planned to reach in Greece and Turkey for visa process for Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
    #7
    Saso and thwak like this.
  8. Karakoram Son

    Karakoram Son Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2017
    Oddometer:
    12
    Location:
    Berlin


    In this Episode 4 of my travel web series, I was fighting with rain and weather. after driving over a week in rain I accept might Nature as winner and decide to go south coast of Italy towards Greece. There was a great surprise of coast line road with amazing road in Croatia. beautiful country with landscape and food. Next surprise was Mostar city with again great history, landscape and good. I went to do some TET Trans Europe train. Went for a day of offroading on mountains. Crossing via Montenegro, Albania and Slovenia my road leads to border of Greece. My Continental TKC 80 was gone flat and very dangerous to ride on wet roads so Soon I am planning to change my tire in Athens. Thanks to Everyone for support.

    Karakoram Son" is name of my ongoing travel project for my Solo journey around the world on Motorcycle .

    Current Stats : 29 Countries - 29000 km - 14 Months

    www.KarakoramSon.com
    www.kakoso.com
    Support on Patreon https://www.patreon.com/KarakoramSon
    #8
    Saso and shaqattack like this.
  9. Karakoram Son

    Karakoram Son Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2017
    Oddometer:
    12
    Location:
    Berlin

    What a great time riding around in Greece. First few days I spend mostly camping and off roading in Ioannina. The Vikos Gorge (Greek: Φαράγγι του Βίκου) is a gorge in the Pindus Mountains of northern Greece. It lies on the southern slopes of Mount Tymfi, with a length of about 20 km, depth ranging from 120 to 490 m, and a width ranging from 400 m to only a few meters at its narrowest part. Vikos is listed as the deepest gorge in the world by the Guinness Book of Records among others. In Patras, The Rio–Antirrio Bridge, officially the Charilaos Trikoupis Bridge, is one of the world's longest multi-span cable-stayed bridges and longest of the fully suspended type. It crosses the Gulf of Corinth near Patras, linking the town of Rio on the Peloponnese peninsula to Antirrio on mainland Greece by road I camped and flew drone around and had the most amazing sunset until now in my trip. Athens is the capital of Greece. It was also at the heart of Ancient Greece, a powerful civilization and empire. The city is still dominated by 5th-century BC landmarks, including the Acropolis, a hilltop citadel topped with ancient buildings like the colonnaded Parthenon temple. The Acropolis Museum, along with the National Archaeological Museum, preserves. he Acropolis of Athens is an ancient citadel located on a rocky outcrop above the city of Athens and contains the remains of several ancient buildings of great architectural and historic significance, the most famous being the Parthenon. The word acropolis is from the Greek words ἄκρον and πόλις
    #9
    Saso, plumer1kt and shaqattack like this.
  10. Karakoram Son

    Karakoram Son Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2017
    Oddometer:
    12
    Location:
    Berlin


    This part of my journy took me from Istanbul to wards Busra then to Konya and landed in Cappadoccia. From there I left towards Trabzon. via Uzungol. I have no words to describe how amazing Istanbul and Uskudar are. Including kadikoy, very much alive and great atmosphere. After spending a week in Istanbul, I left towards Konya with new heidnau K60 tire and making new friends.
    My problem is that I get board very fast on flat and straight roads. so I keep looking around on the map small connecting roads to avoid highways. This habit has an advantage that I sometime takes me to amazing surprise roads and some time disadvantage to ended up in middle of no where with no gas in tank.

    Well, this time a kind farmer with this tractor helped me and later that day I camped behind a petrol station after meeting some local kind people. My plan was to visit Tuz Golu a Salt water lake of 105 Km near Konya. On my way, a motorcyclist stop with his small but loud sound speaker on this bike. he had so many modification on his bike. I drove with him a bit but later Had to say good bye to him. It is already 10 thousands kilometers, It felt great that my spirits are still high even I am far far away from home. So I celebrated with song :)

    Cappadocia is a wonderland in itself. All those thousands year old cave houses were so unique and show sophistication of civilization at that time.
    #10
    Saso and Golden955 like this.