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Korea, Russia, Stans To East Europe (page 54)

Bartang Valley Day 1

After a good nights kip and shower we stocked up on water and hit it to the Bartang Valley, a ride famous amoungst adventurers who are considered crazy, luckily our ressumé fitted this perfectly.

With 24 km on pavement we then turned off to the right making our assault to the first river crossing which was a point of discussion with many saying up to 800 mm deep. 

Wasn't even 80 mm deep
Bonus of -26 on the tops is all the water is stuck up there...easy as for us.

Knowing the rest would be comparatively easy I know Felix was settled in his mind as he had not done a huge amount of this type of riding which is why he was keen to ride it with me, not that am the best "pillar" either but he knew I have both our safety in mind too.

The valley was open and wide, the track slightly sandy in place but nothing compared to Mongolia.

The 2 ladies taking the 2 gents for a wee squeeze in the mountains.

As with even action there is a reaction, the heavy frosting causing frost heave.

I came across the dark patch and well versed with this from Wanaka on the Mountain bike I slowed right down and went to signal Felix to drop his pace.

Too late, (engine noise) vroumimmmmh ...... (ground noise) thump and he was on the deck, I had that little moment of not knowing as 2 months prior he had an accident breaking his left collarbone.

I stopped and hopped off 45 and he got up all thumbs up which was a big relief, we quickly got his bike back on its feet as it was pissing petrol out and we had 490km to do between fuel stops which didn't allow too many of these stops.


Felix inspecting the "gone wrong patch"
No excuses bro you are owned!!
You can see how it all went wrong, only new full knobblies on a dirt bike would buy you out of this and avoid onemotokiwitv

Gathering our thoughts and straightening the cases we continued with no issues other than my guts.

After having the food poisoning at Osh things settled down but I never quite felt good and lacked in energy, putting it down to elevation I brushed it off but my uneasy guts was still present and we were only 2800 metres so I started getting suspicious again.

Such was suspicion I had to make a comfort stop which confirmed things still were not good, while I dropped my daks Felix discovered his case was trying to go on its own trip so bonus it had not bailed and was an easy least for him. 

More of the stunning valleys
Even toilet stops are camera worthy

The day progressed well with many small creek crossings with a maximum depth of about 300 mm, the day had come out hot in the valley so the 2 kids were splashing through the crossings like 2 kids in a sandpit with Tonkas and a garden hose.

Riding between cliff edge and river in places and as well as boulder fields gave un a huge variety of terrain. 

Boulder fields, it would be very impressive watching these come down

Our options for accommodation were a homestay or camping out, both of us wanted to camp so we found a coul spot just off the road sheltered from the wind with flat spots for the tent and we could have a fire.

After Felix's off he needed to sort and fix a few things so I was head chef for the night which was a rolling dinner of home made chips, fried salami sausage and onions, all was well received helping Feix execute the necessary repairs without dying of hunger.



Gordon Ramsey can fuck off LOL
Chef Kiwi kitchen
The view from my kitchen, sorry for the exposure shit but I only have a point n shoot which struggles in this light

As the day drew to a close Felix got finished just in time before dark as did I with the cooking which meant we could clean up the dishes and get some firewood, unfortunately, there was very little to burn the was going to last, most of t was spindly small stuff but it was still enough.

Boiling the jug to make tea and adding a small bottle of whiskey to it we sat around chewing the fat and drunk our home brew.

This night we were only 2700 metres which felt like summer, we could have used this fire at Peak Lenin but the is NOTHING to burn up there.  

Yeah caveman country.
Author of this article: Twomotokiwis