Jump to content
House Price Crash Forum

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

ken_ichikawa

Adventurous Biker Wanted

Recommended Posts

Although this is a long shot, I've asked on biker forums and have had some positive noises, but no more than noises.. Quite simply I want a wingman to accompany me down to South Africa in March 2011.

If certain things fall into place over the next few months I'm going out for another ride a big one. SA via the eastern Route before it closes in June 2011.

Bikes will be smaller cheaply modified 350cc machines. Though if you are brave enough to bring a sports bike you are welcome to bring it along it will be unsupported no jeeps no lorries following us. A moderate pace will be 3 months and £4K.

To save on costs self cooking camping etc and hostels will be the order of the day.

I won't kid you risk of injury is high, risk of death is somewhat higher than UK life..

Is anybody game?

The route is Venice->Alex->Aswan->Sudan->Addis then gets a tad sketchy from here on in as there is the DR Congo and Zambia or Tanzania Mozambique, Zimbabwe.

All the way to the Ethopian border it is a sand hell i.e. riding across 1600km of open desert where there is NO chance of rescue. Risk will be mitigated by hooking up with other overlanders if I can find any. If I can't a trailer will be found to carry extra water and fuel

Congo is cheaper but riskier and they have better tracks.

Kenya Tanzania has horrendous sand tracks and Mozambique has these things too.

Is anybody game?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am impressed, as ever, Ken so wanted to give this a bump. I never got beyond CBT stage so it's not for me but there must be another adventurer on here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I admire you and would love to do it but my health is not up to it.

Why is the Eastern route closing?

Isn't Zimbabwe a tad dangerous now - not that elsewhere is not dangerous but hey...

I watched the Long Way Down series, loved it but they needed some serious backup in terms of a support team with them in jeeps and also people back in the UK doing the logistics and making things happen. I note the injuries they got and how bad those injuries were even with all the afore-mentioned support.

Although I did remember them encountering two bikers coming up from South Africa and doing the same journey in reverse.

What happened to the chip shop Ken?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am impressed, as ever, Ken so wanted to give this a bump. I never got beyond CBT stage so it's not for me but there must be another adventurer on here.

Thanks for the UF bump ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I admire you and would love to do it but my health is not up to it.

Why is the Eastern route closing?

Sudan just had a nasty civil war. They are having a vote in 2011 to partition the country into North and South Sudan. Which will have unknown results. The only way around Sudan is via a barge (read expensive) down Suez or doing a Mondo Enduro and going to Saudi Arabia and crossing into Eritrea or Djibouti which are shockingly expensive and hard to get visas for.

Isn't Zimbabwe a tad dangerous now - not that elsewhere is not dangerous but hey...

Nope, 2 bikers made it through last year, they said it is business as usual the difference is everybody has merely switched to Rand or US$ as the currency instead. They stated the violence and intimidation is overegged. I trust them more than the news because they've been there. (April 2010)

I watched the Long Way Down series, loved it but they needed some serious backup in terms of a support team with them in jeeps and also people back in the UK doing the logistics and making things happen. I note the injuries they got and how bad those injuries were even with all the afore-mentioned support.

LWR and LWD were staged for TV, the danger they were in was exaggerated, Tiffany did this route in 2000ish and remarked on the locations they went to and often behind the camera was a big hotel or even a city.

Although I did remember them encountering two bikers coming up from South Africa and doing the same journey in reverse.

Bingo, taking a Wilheim RoRo ship to Port Elizabeth is entirely possible.

What happened to the chip shop Ken?

I was > < close to opening up having signed contracts and done some refurb work on the properly. They then decided to sell it for £120K + rent leasehold or £290K freehold.

I don't have this sort of money and don't want to borrow it either.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sudan just had a nasty civil war. They are having a vote in 2011 to partition the country into North and South Sudan. Which will have unknown results. The only way around Sudan is via a barge (read expensive) down Suez or doing a Mondo Enduro and going to Saudi Arabia and crossing into Eritrea or Djibouti which are shockingly expensive and hard to get visas for.

Nope, 2 bikers made it through last year, they said it is business as usual the difference is everybody has merely switched to Rand or US$ as the currency instead. They stated the violence and intimidation is overegged. I trust them more than the news because they've been there. (April 2010)

LWR and LWD were staged for TV, the danger they were in was exaggerated, Tiffany did this route in 2000ish and remarked on the locations they went to and often behind the camera was a big hotel or even a city.

Bingo, taking a Wilheim RoRo ship to Port Elizabeth is entirely possible.

I was > < close to opening up having signed contracts and done some refurb work on the properly. They then decided to sell it for £120K + rent leasehold or £290K freehold.

I don't have this sort of money and don't want to borrow it either.

Best of luck Ken but with your luck disablement or death is almost a certainty :ph34r:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I take it my gixer and the missus' CBR RR are probably somewhat "inappropriate"? You could tempt us, I'm sure, but 4K seems a bit low. Plus some of those countries are rather, err... well dodgy? How about Russia or somewhere safe? We'd join you for that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I take it my gixer and the missus' CBR RR are probably somewhat "inappropriate"? You could tempt us, I'm sure, but 4K seems a bit low. Plus some of those countries are rather, err... well dodgy? How about Russia or somewhere safe? We'd join you for that.

Any bike can do it, the North/South Africa route today depending onthe route you take is only 1500 miles of solid off roading and you can reduce it even more if you go through Zimbabwe. However the exciting bits are the DR congo and the sand hell of Sudan and Mozambique yes you read that right sand hell. There are nasty 400mile sections of open deserts.

Therefore bike appropriacy depends, the problem is the cost of the carnets. Egypt is the kicker as Eygpt demands a 800% replacement value carnet fee. Therefore a CBR600RR is what? £7000 OTR? This means you need a carnet worth £56000 , yes fifty six thousand pounds.

Taking a ratty old DR which has a replacement value of £500, I need a £4000 carnet, and can go via the insurance route which means £470.

£4K is plenty, I spent 3K traversing Russia and Mongolia, I could have spent less if I didn't drink so much and eat such an insane amount as well as party so much.

Russia is boring now it is completely sealed roads, all the way to Moscow and Vladivostok these days, you can sit on those roads at 140mph all day and be bored to death.

The alternative is the Pamir highway, which does not demand a carnet, however this involves a 27 mile section of Afghanistan, Iran and Turkmenistan and also requires you to do the tunnel of doom.

The problem is the countries keep putting barriers in front of me.... as said Egypt is the kicker which costs a shed load, but there is an escape via Jeddah and port sudan and running for Jordan/Syria, meaning maybe doing it backwards will be much better ie starting from port elizabeth.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Best of luck Ken but with your luck disablement or death is almost a certainty :ph34r:

Fraid not, on a bike I am completely unbreakable....

When I get OFF the bike thats a different ball game.... Ergo I can crash well over the ton and get up completely unhurt, while if I get off I suddenly become a mere man and can be hurt easily. Just outside Sochi I came off going over potato type rocks, I was unharmed. off the bike I was then hit by a car which gashed my leg open and made my jeans incredibly bloody. Had to go find a clinic to get that dealt with.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is anybody game?

I never got past a CBT years ago. I rode a scooter for about 6 months, and came off it about four times, once hitting a car head on. I'm a terrible team player, & won't pay for squat. I could ride pillion though.

Can I come too? :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm bumping this one as I've just finished reading about Ken's exploits on his trip across Eurasia.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Search-Life-Motorcycle-Odyssey/dp/0956476503

I would love to do a journey like this but a baby scheduled to arrive in October 2010 puts paid to any non-essential travel plans I might have for the next 6-12 months!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just want to say Good luck with these plans. Sounds incredible. I read all the bike travel books and if you havn't read Dan Walsh's latest, give it a burn. Its a really great book for boosting confidence as this guy had never ridden off road untill he takes the coastal route of the Sahara on his XT600 along with some other overlanders he'd met. The book talks you through various routes and is a good read.

I'll be honest, Im up to the camping, eating what I can find, and I can handle dangerous situations. But my riding isnt up to this kind of trip. Im doing northern spain in the picos de europa and over to Galicia. Hopefully that will prep up my skills a bit more. Ive ridden since i was a kid but have been off bikes for about 8 yrs and only got back into it last year. In a few years I'll (hopefully) be ready for something like this. Seriously, Good luck for you. You shall have a few stories to tell the grandkids.

Can i ask how old you are?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your secrets out Ken, you not a Chinese Mondo Adventurers at all but you are really a 62 year Granny from Doncaster , come on spill the beans

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/article-1311855/Harley-Davidson-gran-plans-round-world-trip.html

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But my riding isnt up to this kind of trip.

It would easily be good enough by the time you got to Italy. Ted Simon could hardly ride a bike at all when he first set off on his 100,000km, 45 country trip.

Ken, why a DR350? You're going to be changing chains and sprockets every other day.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your secrets out Ken, you not a Chinese Mondo Adventurers at all but you are really a 62 year Granny from Doncaster , come on spill the beans

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/article-1311855/Harley-Davidson-gran-plans-round-world-trip.html

Nope the difference is I have very little £ and a harley is a terrible choice of bike, they are unreliable, overheat and can only stay on the tarmac.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

..... a harley is a terrible choice of bike, they are unreliable, overheat and can only stay on the tarmac.

But they're great for moving rubble around on a building site.

Ooops - that's a dump truck - I got confused.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ken, why a DR350? You're going to be changing chains and sprockets every other day.

There are very few possible routes to get into Africa.

Algeria is closed

Libya -> Sudan closed

Libya->Chad Libya->Niger is open, but this needs a £100 a day guide special permits and the need to ride over open sand desert (rock desert is fine sand isn't as said reduces your MPG by 70% and you simply can't carry enough fuel & water unless you have 4 wheels)

West coast has Nigeria as a HUGE problem everywhere else is fine. Too many riders who have been there have reported check points every 500 metres with cops who rob you each and everytime the 'fines' often start @ $1000 as Nigerians like the Russians I met last year think Westerners are loaded and $1000 is nothing to us, this means haggling each and everytime.

You can't tell them to get lost as they are all armed and have radios, Nigeria is also home to the beast, first encountered in 1996 and was encountered in 2009 too by another group. quite simply he is a theif who managed to get to a high position. It is a case of give me everything you have or I will shoot you. Horror stories about this man where he will put fake stamps in your passport then fine you for them. Then he'll let you out of the country witout the proper stamp which means cameroon won't let you in, which means you have to buy your way back into Nigeria get to Lagos and get the correct stamp. By the time you return your bike/car whatever happens to be gone.

West coast also leads to the Congo and DR Congo which are ridable but have serious issues.

also look at the number of countries = more visas = bigger headache

The backup Saudi Arabia is closed, initially I thought Jordan and then a run to Jeddah to get across to Port Sudan, but Saudi is also closed.

This means Egypt is the big obstacle. Egypt uses Carnet de passage. Egypt is the worst country in the world for a carnet after India. You need 800% of the bike's replacement value. (India is worse they want 500% of the list price when new). If I take a bigger more expensive bike, say a BMW GS (which I can't afford anyway) I have to find £80,000 just for the paperwork. With a DR350 which is worthless. I can get it @ £300-£400 replacement value meaning I still get bummed but only for £3200, which I can do via a bank guarentee or insurance -> £270.

Egpyt is still a killer though. Regarding costs and paperwork.

Also a DR350 is cheap, capable, and light. It is aircooled and thus easy to fix, my XT had troubles in Mongolia and Korea, I opened up the engine and had a look, with little more than a handful of spanners you get in MFI self assemble furniture. MOre powerful modern bikes such as the DRZ400 are watercooled which means more parts to go wrong and they are impossible to fix without precision tools. BMW F650s Xchallenges, etc all of them complicated. Even LWR bough airhead BMWs along with them as they are incredibly simple to fix and have a low part count. I'd prefer an Xt350 myself since the Xt engine can run with a enormous amount of damage to it, byt the XT350 is rare for parts in the UK.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll be honest, Im up to the camping, eating what I can find, and I can handle dangerous situations. But my riding isnt up to this kind of trip. Im doing northern spain in the picos de europa and over to Galicia. Hopefully that will prep up my skills a bit more. Ive ridden since i was a kid but have been off bikes for about 8 yrs and only got back into it last year. In a few years I'll (hopefully) be ready for something like this. Seriously, Good luck for you. You shall have a few stories to tell the grandkids.

Can i ask how old you are?

Old enough to know better! Riding skills do not need to be top notch, I crossed Russia encountering mud hell north of Irkutsk, and 1500 miles of gravel travel on the amur as well as Mongolia with 0 experience off road. Nothing like a baptism of fire..

But the cost are starting to mount up already! As mentioned above Egypt is the kicker!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are very few possible routes to get into Africa.

Algeria is closed

Libya -> Sudan closed

Libya->Chad Libya->Niger is open, but this needs a £100 a day guide special permits and the need to ride over open sand desert (rock desert is fine sand isn't as said reduces your MPG by 70% and you simply can't carry enough fuel & water unless you have 4 wheels)

West coast has Nigeria as a HUGE problem everywhere else is fine. Too many riders who have been there have reported check points every 500 metres with cops who rob you each and everytime the 'fines' often start @ $1000 as Nigerians like the Russians I met last year think Westerners are loaded and $1000 is nothing to us, this means haggling each and everytime.

You can't tell them to get lost as they are all armed and have radios, Nigeria is also home to the beast, first encountered in 1996 and was encountered in 2009 too by another group. quite simply he is a theif who managed to get to a high position. It is a case of give me everything you have or I will shoot you. Horror stories about this man where he will put fake stamps in your passport then fine you for them. Then he'll let you out of the country witout the proper stamp which means cameroon won't let you in, which means you have to buy your way back into Nigeria get to Lagos and get the correct stamp. By the time you return your bike/car whatever happens to be gone.

West coast also leads to the Congo and DR Congo which are ridable but have serious issues.

also look at the number of countries = more visas = bigger headache

The backup Saudi Arabia is closed, initially I thought Jordan and then a run to Jeddah to get across to Port Sudan, but Saudi is also closed.

This means Egypt is the big obstacle. Egypt uses Carnet de passage. Egypt is the worst country in the world for a carnet after India. You need 800% of the bike's replacement value. (India is worse they want 500% of the list price when new). If I take a bigger more expensive bike, say a BMW GS (which I can't afford anyway) I have to find £80,000 just for the paperwork. With a DR350 which is worthless. I can get it @ £300-£400 replacement value meaning I still get bummed but only for £3200, which I can do via a bank guarentee or insurance -> £270.

Egpyt is still a killer though. Regarding costs and paperwork.

Also a DR350 is cheap, capable, and light. It is aircooled and thus easy to fix, my XT had troubles in Mongolia and Korea, I opened up the engine and had a look, with little more than a handful of spanners you get in MFI self assemble furniture. MOre powerful modern bikes such as the DRZ400 are watercooled which means more parts to go wrong and they are impossible to fix without precision tools. BMW F650s Xchallenges, etc all of them complicated. Even LWR bough airhead BMWs along with them as they are incredibly simple to fix and have a low part count. I'd prefer an Xt350 myself since the Xt engine can run with a enormous amount of damage to it, byt the XT350 is rare for parts in the UK.

Considering all the above - why not try somewhere else !!

Now South America is dodgy - but I doubt as dodgy as the above.

Although this would be giving in on your plan. Which is not a good thing. However sometimes the pros and cons have to be worked through. Is the trip through Africa going to be worth all the massive hassle ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Considering all the above - why not try somewhere else !!

Now South America is dodgy - but I doubt as dodgy as the above.

Although this would be giving in on your plan. Which is not a good thing. However sometimes the pros and cons have to be worked through. Is the trip through Africa going to be worth all the massive hassle ?

South America does have its plus points, no carnets, no insurance, no advance visas needed until you hit central America where it becomes Nigeria lite. There are big problems with South America though, generally related to cost, as there is a need to airlift your bike over there. Which as you may imagine since bikes are considered dangerous cargo as they are used engines and contain fuel have you over a barrel in terms of premium. Although I can dump the bike there after I am done with it.

The Olde buy a bike in the USA and ride it down is also a no no, namely because I don't want to go to the USA. For personal reasons Central America is Nigeria lite, where most countries will rinse you badly. There is also the problem of the Darien gap. Which is impassable, the only option is to airlift it (read very expensive) or find a banana boat, the Colombian ferry is no more it is currently rusting at the bottom of the ocean.

Two germans in 2007 did something amazing though, they built a raft connected the chains to some paddle wheels and spent 2 days paddle wheeling it around to Colombia, another dutch team IIRC tried it on the south coast and were never heard from again.

95 miles of impassable jungle an Irishman made it through 20 years ago, on his 6th attempt, as there are no roads he had to winch his bike up and down slopes. He kept getting captured by colombian FARC or indians in that area.

Then you get South America which demands a newish bike, i.e. fuel injected as you can climb 3000 metres in a matter of hours and your bike will simply suffocate. Also the 0 octane petrol which means your bike will explode.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is a new girlie film starring Julie Roberts out this week where she does a trek across India to Bali to find herself - so why don't you get that sex-change you often tell us about, reading between the lines anyhow, go and watch the film and then ride pillion like Julia in the film?

:unsure:

p.s.

I expect that film is going to result in loads of 40-somethings walking out on their hubbys to follow Julia. Stand by for stories in the Daily Wail.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

95 miles of impassable jungle an Irishman made it through 20 years ago, on his 6th attempt, as there are no roads he had to winch his bike up and down slopes. He kept getting captured by colombian FARC or indians in that area.

Then you get South America which demands a newish bike, i.e. fuel injected as you can climb 3000 metres in a matter of hours and your bike will simply suffocate. Also the 0 octane petrol which means your bike will explode.

I have been following stories about the FARC on Fivelive's Through The Night programme over the past few years - the stories of people held prisoner by them for DECADES is truly appalling and heart-breaking. They seem to keep prisoner anyone who comes into contact with them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Come on you pussies, there must be somebody out there who wants to do this.

Had it been 2000 or 2006 with beneficient circumstances I would have jumped at it and done one of those intensive biking courses in order to go. There must be somebody out there for whom the time is right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • 149 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.