“The Transit”, day 10-14. 277 km.
After 5 h drive from Barnaul I arrived at http://altai-moto.ru in Manzherok. The owner Vladimir organises enduro tours in the Altai, enduro courses and has a really nice guesthouse including a workshop for repairs and servicing the bikes. In winter he organises snow rider and snow scooter tours in the mountains. I have found his place in some ride reports on advrider.com and comments in http://www.horizonsunlimited.com. It is a great place! Warmly recommend it!
Vladimir was guiding an enduro tour in the mountains at the moment and I was welcomed by Anton and Sanya – two friends of Vladimir who took care of the facility during his absence. My new tyres I ordered in Novosibirsk were also already in place :o). I spent a great evening with Anton and Sanya and with some “google-translate” we had really funny conversations. The following day I walked around the village, relaxed and decided to change the tyres with help of Vladimir one day later.
Sanya – a former Russian champion in martial arts and military trainer of special units including survival training – invited me to a little hiking tour in the hills (I learned about his background during the trip… :o) ). It was really fun, no paths and partly “on all fours” uphill… He is a great guy and we had a good time together. Thank you Sanya!
The following day was time to change the tyres. The Heidenau’s are great and still fresh, but for Mongolia I wanted something more off-road orientated and got some Mitas E09 Dakar. They are quite “beefy” and difficult to get on my narrow A60 rims. They are so stiff that I guess I can drive to Ulan Bator without air… Luckily I got help of Vladimir and Dylan (an Irish guest who arrived with his wife on a classic African Twin from Mongolia).
In the evening we had “plov” – a traditional dish with rice – and a party into my birthday on the next day… Two rangers joined the party and it became quite crazy with a lot of “Russian water”. One of the rangers “Dima” turned out be a “treasure hunter” (kladaltay on Instagram, check out is youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1cbjV40HMMhfXJaLu4vIjA). His work is astonishing and he gave me a coin he found from the time of the last tzar in Russia as a birthday present. Thank you Dima!!!!
My birthday was quite calm – the hangover from the “Russian water” took it’s time… Christian has some problems with the engine of his KTM 690 and we are waiting for a mechanic. Hope the problem is not too serious – otherwise I need to continue alone to Mongolia. We took some walks around the village and along the river Katun’.
In the evening we had a “double” birthday dinner. Dylan the Irish guest also had his birthday! :o)
Today I cleaned the chain of my bike and will probably make a day trip in the area. The mechanic arrived and is currently looking at Christian’s bike.
Hoping Christian’s bike can be fixed and we can ride to Mongolia soon…