Category: Leg 9 (page 1 of 2)

Day 151 Leg 9 Friday 14th August – 402km

Storage

I woke up this morning after only 6 hours of sleep, which might not sound so bad, but I was awake for 38 hours before I got into bed as yesterday was a tough day, our 5 hour stop in Hong Kong became 9 hours and when we eventually arrived in Ulan Bator we went straight to the storage which was inside a construction companies yard, (see the owner of the company in the photo above.) Some of the bikes fuel were stolen and then my best friend old Murphy  (known for his famous Law) arrived and Snowflake, my trusted KTM for almost 33 000km would not start and a new battery had to be fitted, (we now only have one spare battery left in the back-up vehicle.)

battery

We met Gregg, the back-up driver for this Leg, he is ex-army (Marine) and is now a police officer in Houston where he befriended Tex after locking him up for something (just a joke, they cycle together.)

 

IMG_4571

We were going to leave early but Pie believed one of us had hidden his new riding boots which he had placed next to his bike, the orange bike on the right of the photo above and poor Peens was the main suspect as he was still blaming us for “losing” his painting (the painting the Russian Insurance Lady gave him on the previous Leg) but after the hotel’s CCTV was viewed we discovered that the boots were stolen by a local who walked into our group and pretended to admire the bikes and then quickly picked up the boots and walked away.… Read More

Day 152 Leg 9 Saturday 15th of August 52km

Last night after Dinner we got on the bikes and rode to a nomad family which was about 10km from our camp, they were getting the goats and sheep into their over-night enclosure, then the family gave us some of their sour-milk and sour yoghurt to taste, then the lady served us some of their sour cheese. We were allowed to look inside the Ghur (round tent with a stove inside which burns with camel-dung) and they had a daughter of about 10 years old and during the 45 minutes we spent there her chores included helping with the goats, then taking the cheese that was drying on the roof inside, she had to look after the younger baby and went to fetch water, she proudly showed me her “corner” of the Ghur, she had a little shelf with a few  frames and religious symbols and an old out of tune blue Guitar which I tired to get to make an acceptable sound but I failed.… Read More

Day 153 Leg 9 Sunday 16th of August 299km

Last night we went for a camel ride.

IMG_4841 IMG_4850 IMG_4858 IMG_4870 IMG_4876 IMG_4877 IMG_4878 IMG_4884 IMG_4835

After Breakfast we left for another 50km journey back to civilization via another route that would see us further South on the main road heading South towards the Chinese Border. But not my day, I struggled in the soft sand, in spite of going all the way to Country Trax  to do the Off Road Course with the legend in South African Adventure Bike Training Jan “Staal” Du Toit I still suck in the soft sand and have no confidence in my abilities when hitting the stretches of soft sand.… Read More

Day 154 Leg 9 Monday 17th of August 295km

Today we woke up at 7h00 and as we were not going to eat, shower or use the toilet, we were ready to leave 20 minutes later. We were just glad that the sand-storm had subsided as we headed South towards the border. There was no traffic on the road at all, (see photo below,) yet when we got to the border there was a very long line of old Russian Jeeps (I guess there was over a 100 Jeeps,) waiting to cross over to China.… Read More

Day 155 Leg 9 Tuesday 18th of August 22km

This morning after “Breakfast” (Tony did warn us it was a Chinese Breakfast and it consisted out of several dumplings filled with green grass and specs of something I suspect could have been chicken, tea, deep-fried dough without sugar on it or anything inside it and luckily some fried rice and boiled eggs,) we went to the local bank to change money for only three of us (another hour and countless papers to be filled in, Passports copied and the obligatory inspection of the Dollars being exchanged and then for some reason about 30% get declined by a machine for some or other reason,) and then it was off to the Cell Phone Shop to buy data sim cards.… Read More

Day 156 Leg 9 Wednesday 20th of August 497 km Erenhot to Datong

I must say, it was a frustrating waste of time to get going yesterday, but I can not blame Tony (our Fixer) or Zhu who works in their office as from their side everything was very organized and if it was not for a new boss that took over customs it would have been done before noon.

I also have to just say that the Tour  Operator we used in Ulan Bator to arrange the two nights at the desert camp, Nomadic Journeys were also superb and I can recommend them for anyone wanting to experience Mongolia, we just did not have enough time, but maybe I can return oneday with my friend Karl who is a big fisherman to go and try to catch a “giant trout” they often reach 1500mm in length and weigh 30kg !!… Read More

Day 157 Leg 9 Thur. 21st of August 422km Datong to Pingyao

Today was hard, very hard, you had to fight every kilometer to get it behind you, and we were not expecting it after yesterdays easy and trouble free ride in from the North. The day started well with jokes about who should drink from the special corner on our breakfast buffet where all the other juices were displayed, it started with the normal juice on the one side, then there were “slush puppy” juice machine with frozen juices, (as you gathered we spoiled ourselves by booking into a “5 Star Hotel” as they are so cheap this far from anything,) and then the special juices, the first had a Cobra at the bottom of the jar, the next one of those flying squirrels, the other was full of lizards and last full of baby sea-horses and an Eal.… Read More

Day 158 Leg 9 – Fri. 22nd of August 372km Pingyao to Hancheng

We knew that China was not going to be easy, we knew we were not doing it for fun, we knew the Touring Tourist stopped at the border with Mongolia and will begin once again as we enter Laos, China is a country in between the fun countries and there is no other way but to bite the bullet and ride across it, moaning and groaning and fighting along each day.… Read More

Day 159 Leg 9 – Sat 22nd of August 351km Hancheng to Zhouzhi County

I have ridden Adventure Motorbikes for the past 15 years and today rates as one of the top 3 most extreme, but not from a beauty, or scenic, or exciting perspective, but from an Adrenaline or “Dig Deep” perspective. It was a day filled with a litany of errors, all timed to let the pressure cooker slowly build up steam and slowly the temperature rose, ( not just the temperature of the midday heat, but the temp.… Read More

Day 160 Leg 9 – Sun. 23rd of August 482km Zhouzhi County to Guang Yuan

After our meeting we had it all figured out, we had made some decisions on how to roll with the punches and one of the 1st things we decided to do was to try and catch-up the kilometers we lost the previous day just so that we can be back on our schedule. So we left at 7h00, Breakfast is included but we cant stomach rice and dumplings that early in the morning.… Read More

« Older posts