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Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by CJ, Sep 28, 2015.
Awsome ,thanks one hard fast balls to the wall HAMMER down ride.two thumbs up.
Thank you CJ, always good to hear all is fine.
Say hi to John and after he has rested hopefully we will hear his last adventures :)
Happy to confirm John hasn't forgotten how to ride a motorcycle in the three days since leaving Mongolia...
Alright, my apologies for not posting up here but as I mentioned in my last post from Ulan Bataar after some long cold days in the rain and mud where I ruined yet another computer and didn't feel like dealing with it in UB I haven't had much of a chance to upload pics until now. I left my little haven in Aktash in the Altai on a nice sunny but very cold (4 degree) morning and headed toward kosh agach hoping to find a spare front tube. I searched every little auto/bike store and even a few of the department stores but had no luck so carried on through quickly changing scenery toward the border.
The cabins at the Aktash hotel where I spent a few days hiding from the rain.
Camels in Russia?!
Mongolia has been on my list of must see places for many years. This would be my third attempt to get inside so I was a little apprehensive as I approached the Russian side of the border, to my amazement just as I arrived at the first security gate a Uaz Van with Queensland plates came rolling through. Naturally I spun around and chased the guy down to find out more. He couldn't have been less interested in talking to me so I quickly returned to the security gate and started on the lengthy process of getting out of The Russia and into Mongolia. It wasn't too bad except for the various checkpoints along the way where you must stop, remove your helmet, gloves and show your passport for inspection. After you get through the Russian section there is a long no man's land before the beginning of the Mongol process.
They have a security man at the actual border that asked me for a sticker and gave me some sweets then a few km further there is another security man in a small booth that needs your passport again, his mate in the booth charges for disinfecting the vehicle but it was a bit windy and cold so he just charged me without actually doing anything! He did however exchange some money with me at a good rate after some bargaining and referring to XE on my phone. Then you roll up to the border and must park in a particular spot or you will be asked to move your bike for no apparent reason (trust me!) then go inside to the usual confusing windows at waist height. The customs officer asked why I didn't have a visa? I said Canadians don't need one (according to wikipedia) which seemed to satisfy her and I was through after a pretty basic search of my stuff and one more security gate! 21 years after my first attempt to get inside Mongolia I'd finally done it!
Instantly it looks like Mongolia.
Soon after the border the Sibex turns off the main route and heads south into the mountains near the Chinese border. I stopped to take a picture and let some air out of my tires, I accidentally let a little more out than I wanted but didn't think too much of it. I had the front at 15 and the rear at 17.
Not long after I got a pinch flat on one of the many rocks sticking out of the track surface! I had no spare, and after what happened to the last front I patched I was feeling a little apprehensive. It also turned out I was getting low on patches and glue, and, as I was pumping it up my compressor failed! Fuck sakes, I had repacked one of my panniers to perfection that morning and would have to unpack the whole bloody thing to get my hand pump out which I bought in Volgograd for doing the shock. I pumped both tires up to a more pinch flat resistant pressure and carried on.
Not much of a welcome into Mongolia but the scenery quickly made up for it.
With day light fading I started to look for a place to camp. I came up a little valley to get away from the main track and saw a grove of trees up the top of a steep hill.
It was much further and steeper than I thought and I have a terrible case of "I'll just see what's over the next rise" but the view from the top was well worth it! Literally no sign of man for as far as the eye can see.
I found a beauty spot for the tent just below the summit but still at well over 3000m and had a fire.
Not a bad view to wake up to!
The next day took me into some high alpine riding through boulder fields. There is no main track, just a web of impressions in the dirt.
An ancient monument way out in the middle of nowhere.
The high country near the Chinese border is stunning. Little creeks and rivers meander down from the mountains through green lightly wooded valleys. Lots of rickety bridges and little river crossings all day.
It pays to try and stick to a track through the rivers. Many times I got caught out by incredibly slippery rocks choosing a path that hadn't been driven through before.
Another fantastic camp spot in the late sun. I camped early in an attempt to dry my boots out. Also a good excuse to have a beer and watch the sunset!
WOW. So cool. Congratulations on making it to Mongolia.
Great. Looking forward for the post to come. I am tuned
great pics of Mongolia!
It's taken me weeks to read through the RR, squeezing in a page or two at a time, but I'm finally caught up.
You boys are so tenacious!
I really felt for CJ having to spend 4 weeks in a hospital far from home. I did the same back when I was 18 and I almost went nuts.
I admire the hell out of both of you.
I wish you all the very best for the rest of your recovery CJ and hope that you and John will be back at it again next year.
I have gathered that you are from the UK and Australia. Can you tell us how you ended up in Vancouver?
I'm from Ireland and now live in the US ... hence my curiosity. Oh, and I own a WR250R
All the very best to you both
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... Keep it coming ...
Since I've had the «pleasure» of being treated in a Kazakh hospital I'd say CJ made it ok! (I was told after, that seeing the surgeon that stitched me up-literally and figuratively-was like «going to the baker to buy a pair of shoes»!!!!!).
Great adventure, can't wait for the rest of the story...
hope you two are doing well!
Ya come on Johnno, I know you've got some more Mongolian stories.
This is definitely and adventure to be sure (with pirate accent)
Been some time since a RR got my interest but this has been great. Read the whole thing the last few days sat in sunny Suriname . Hope you heal well and the trip continues . Best of luck
I stumbled upon this thread while looking for reviews of the lynx fairing, what a find and what a read! I'm in Antarctica working and have been spending every spare moment reading this thread. It's a great story that's well written I just hate that you guys didn't get to finish. Thanks for the story and thanks for all the information on the bike build.
Is John now back in Vancouver along with his WR ?
No, John's visiting his family back in Australia. He left his bike in Ulaanbataar sometime at the end of September or maybe beging of October.
When he gets back to Vancouver we'll get together to figure out what happens next...
out of curiosity, if you had to do it again would you still use the WR250 ?
That's kind of a tricky question to answer. I think it was the right bike for us. We learned some of it's shortcomings as we put the miles on, but the bikes "almost" always performed. The only reason we wouldn't take it again is because we want to put a new bike through it's paces to learn about it's shortcomings. So if I had to go back and redo my first big trip like that, Yes, absolutely we would take them again... but, now I've done it on that bike, I'd like to try a new one.
I hope this makes sense.
In other news, Johnny and I spend this past weekend planning and plotting. Handshakes were made, highfives were smashed and our top secret campsite up in squamish was covered in many beer cans before the meeting was adjourned.
Here we go again!......