Michnus & Elsebie Piki-Piki Around the World.

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by michnus, Jun 11, 2011.

  1. SS in Vzla.

    SS in Vzla. Totally Normal? I'm not!

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,231
    Location:
    Sugar Land, TX
    :clap:clap Great posts Michnus. Looking forward to reading more of your adventures
  2. micko01

    micko01 another DR650 rider

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2010
    Oddometer:
    565
    Location:
    Back to reality.... WestOz
    How was the fork damping after the sewerage rebuild?
  3. michnus

    michnus Lucky bastard

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,086
    Location:
    South Africa
    What damping? :lol3

    Touch the brakes and my eyes hit 2 wet patches against the back of my windscreen. Water would have been better than the shit they gave me. :lol3
  4. michnus

    michnus Lucky bastard

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,086
    Location:
    South Africa
    This is what it looked like when I did them again in Holland. Proper sticky sludge shit. It did not even run down the springs :lol3

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  5. micko01

    micko01 another DR650 rider

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2010
    Oddometer:
    565
    Location:
    Back to reality.... WestOz
    Damping? Maybe dumping is better spelling.
  6. michnus

    michnus Lucky bastard

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,086
    Location:
    South Africa
    yip, dumping that's how turd suspension roll. :lol3
  7. pcasso87

    pcasso87 Life is an Adventure

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2014
    Oddometer:
    75
    Location:
    Merida, Yucatan, Mexico
    Great ride report man, im really enjoying it!! Keep it coming :freaky
  8. michnus

    michnus Lucky bastard

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,086
    Location:
    South Africa
    Thanks we really appreciated the feedback. :thumb:D
  9. tmotten

    tmotten Lefthand ride Dutchy

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,705
    Location:
    Calgary
  10. michnus

    michnus Lucky bastard

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,086
    Location:
    South Africa
    If we went a bit further the sewage water would have turned into proper Brylcreem stuff that Greasers used in the "50's :lol3
  11. micko01

    micko01 another DR650 rider

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2010
    Oddometer:
    565
    Location:
    Back to reality.... WestOz
    So it handled like a piece of shit hey??

    Haha ok I'll shut up now.
  12. michnus

    michnus Lucky bastard

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,086
    Location:
    South Africa
    Yes had the cornering abilities of a turd floating down a sewage pipe. :lol3
  13. longrides1

    longrides1 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2014
    Oddometer:
    179
    Location:
    Skagit Valley Washington USA
    I toured Alexandria to Cairo in the late 80's, wonderful sites but you couldn't pay me to go back there.:deal

    The heat, filth, dust gets into everything, I found the food down right dicusting.:topes

    But hey glad you enjoyed it.
  14. Northstar Beemer

    Northstar Beemer Face Plant

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Oddometer:
    456
    Location:
    Frozen Prairies USA
    An excellent ride report transports the senses and let's you feel the pain and joy of our kind of travel. You've accomplished this with flair and elan!

    Makes anything I've done looked tame by comparison.

    Keep it up, greatly enjoying your adventures....I am worried a bit about your riding in the politically and religiously turbulent regions ahead of you.

    Take care!
  15. michnus

    michnus Lucky bastard

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,086
    Location:
    South Africa
    Nothing changed much since the 80'' I suspect. :lol3
  16. michnus

    michnus Lucky bastard

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,086
    Location:
    South Africa
    Thank you Northstar Beemer. There are still places that's not as bad. We have nothing to prove so we rather skip them for now.
  17. michnus

    michnus Lucky bastard

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,086
    Location:
    South Africa
    The border post from Egypt to Israel is no more than 30 meters, but the difference is enormous. One moment you are in Africa and 30 meters later you walk into Europe. Well not really, but that is how big the differences are between these countries.

    The Israelis are seriously “paraat”* unlike the Egyptians and other African countries that looks “paraat”* but are more paranoid than “paraat”.

    (*Paraat: Afrikaans for*Ready/preparedness )

    For the first time in our travels we lost data on camera cards. We lost all the pictures from Israel, these were some we were able to recover using recovery software.

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    Taba border post between Egypt and Israel

    We got stopped behind stainless steel big pop up barriers with a soldier a few meters back clothed in Nike running shoes, cargo pants, golf T-shirt and a pair of Oakley sunglasses. To finish off his cool army look an assault rifle hanged from a strap around his neck. A real casual American-Desert-storm look. Well build, tall and with a short brush cut hair style, he never turned his back on the border entrance. He never stood still at one spot for more than 5 minutes, then walk backwards to his next spot, continuously having his gaze pegged on the border post.

    Another security guy approached us with a smile and apologized beforehand that we might need to wait a bit for the customs officials to escorts us to have our bags checked. And then proceeded to offered us some water, ice cold water … Now that was a first for us! Just coming from a country where if you are not careful, you’ll get charged to take a breath, we were speechless.

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    Three very friendly customs’ women clothed in white shirts and black pants approached us. Good looking with black hair and the top of their shirts unbutton (well that is how I remember it …). We looked at each other in amazement … Was this Israel or some harem we just rode into?

    Everything had to come off the bikes, but for us this Utopia we did not mind. A customs official/engineer rode our bikes through a big scanner to scan the entire bike. All other stuff and ourselves were scanned inside the air conditioned customs office.

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    Once inside, waiting for our passports to be stamped, one of the customs ladies asked me to wait as they had to do a check on my passport. That said, Elsebie’ and my passport are almost exactly the same, down to the visa stamps inside the book and the pages. Hers got stamped but not mine. I got asked to join one of the ladies in an interview room. “Where did you come from?” “Where are you going to?” “What were we doing in Sudan?” …………. aaaah!, it then hit me, and I realized what was up with the seriousness!

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    Camping next to the Red sea and main road to Taba. Jordan lights in the distance. Closest we were able to get to Jordan.

    I quickly explained we had to travel through Sudan to get to Israel. Not because I am Muslin, or Al Qaeda or on a mission to seek 70 virgins. Israel and Sudan do not have your average cosy relationship. The one is extreme Muslim and the other Jewish, well mostly.

    If you travel from Israel to Sudan, you will not be let into Sudan if there is an Israeli visa stamp in your passport. The Israelis are quite decent about this and will not stamp a passport if they know a traveller will be going to Sudan. Israel though allows people coming from Sudan to enter Israel.

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    Border in Sinai between Israel and Egypt.

    Elsebie also had a Sudan visa and stamp in her book but the Israelis customs officials must have though she does not look as dodgy as me. They stamped her book on entry. The customs officials were friendly and courteous at all times, serving us ice-cold water all the time. A completely different attitude and scene to the Egyptians and most of African customs officials.

    Two hours later and we were outside paying for full cover insurance on the bikes. A whopping, cool 200US for the bikes for the week we will be in Israel. They demanded full comprehensive insurance cover for us and the bikes. We were initially planning to go to Jordan and not spend time in Israel. But with Jordan being anal retentive for some reason about bombers or spies on bikes and motorcycles we had to stay in Israel until the ferry leave for Italy.

    It quickly dawned on us in the land of milk and honey, the milk and honey are super expensive. Petrol was around 2.2Us per liter and everything else even in Supermarkets was much more expensive than in South Africa. Hostels and backpackers with very basic rooms go for around 45Us per night for room only. One bit of luck was than we were able to wild camp about everywhere, and that in a country where there is war all around you.

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    The strange thing about Israel is that there is absolute freedom of movement. There is war all right, make no mistake, but people go about their business and lives as if in Europe. No road blocks or paranoid soldiers as we found in Africa and especially Egypt.

    Everything is from the US army, the Hummers, helicopters, most attack planes, rifles the works. Israelis if they could choose, I think, would be in America, their love for the American lifestyle is evident everywhere.

    We slept the first night just inside the border of Israel near Taba on the beach. There was a buzz of people who were camping on the beach for weeks on end. Diving establishments were strewn out next to the coast line. People left their belongings in the tents when they went to town or diving. It did not seem that theft was an issue in Israel. I am sure petty theft must happen though.

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    Wildcamp Arava desert

    We worked our way up north Sinai next to the Egypt and Israel border to get more into the desert. The idea was to get away from the normal tourist route and at the same time see what this beautiful desert has to offer. It did not disappoint. Mountains, dry valleys and different coloured sands greeted us.

    There’s nothing boring about it and with the many small paths leading off the main road into the desert we wish we had more map information to follow some of them. The road eventually leads us to Mitzpe Ramon a small town in the Negev desert of southern Israel. This was the first and last time we filled with petrol in Israel. The petrol is just too damn expensive and our speed dropped to 80kmh.

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    On our last night in the desert we ended up late the evening on a mountain top with the road snaking down the side of the mountain towards the Dead sea. It was a stunning view over the desert with mountains and the setting sun over the Dead Sea in the distance. We were uncomfortably close to an army base.

    Helicopters were passing over head every two hours as they circle the army base. We figured if they really did not want us there they would come and chase us, until then we camp. The amount of money wasted on fuel with helicopters circling an army base 24/7 must be exorbitant.

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    At about sea level with the Dead sea 400m below
  18. michnus

    michnus Lucky bastard

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,086
    Location:
    South Africa
    The Dead Sea is 400 meters below sea level and made for a great view as we descend the mountain road. At first there were a constant white haze hanging over the place, but at some point it cleared and we were rewarded with a view of Jordan on the other side of the Dead Sea.

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    Our camp for the next few days was at Ein Gedi. It is a wonderful small camping and swim spot halfway up the Dead Sea. There are ablution facilities that are not too shabby, trees and a small shop managed by a South African dude with long hair.

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    Shrines for bikers who ran out of talent while superbiking down the curvy road to the Dead sea.

    Motorcyclist memorial statues. They build some elaborate memorials for the fallen nest to the road. We got told Israel has a very high motorcycle accident rate. That’s why we had to take out such expensive insurance.

    [​IMG]

    Some weathered ‘Jesus’ look-a-like souls were wondering around the place living in tents that’s most probably been there since the 1960’s. We were convinced they tried to live the life of Jesus. Living of the land and the goodness and handouts (which obviously did not include razors) from strangers.

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    This was not a typical sea beach and people were draped around and over the rocks like seals bathing in the sun. There were a mix of locals and tourist drifting around in the Dead Sea. Swimming, or for a better word drifting around in the Dead Sea is a wonderfully weird experience.

    The salt water burns the hell out of your eyes and taste is of over saturated salt water. It leaves a soft oily feeling on the skin well until it dries! Clean water is a must for dousing the eyes and mouth every now and then. It is impossible to sink or even try and go under water no matter what you weigh. It is the same as a wine cork in water just bobbing around.

    [​IMG]

    The funniest scenes are when people turn on their stomachs and their asses pop up into the air. Nothing sexy looking about it and not much one can do about it.

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    Jerusalem waiting. We still had a week to spend before we had to board the ship to Italy.
  19. flyingdutchman177

    flyingdutchman177 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2012
    Oddometer:
    8,291
    Location:
    back in Asia
    Silly name but a very cool RR
    I am glad I finally clicked on it
    I will be following along

    Ed
  20. michnus

    michnus Lucky bastard

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,086
    Location:
    South Africa
    Had to get your attention somehow :lol3
    But we are going around the world and maybe we can share a beer someday :thumb