Day 34-36. New stage: “Baikal”. 364, 310 & 460 km.
We left UB early in the morning. The ride to the Russian border was quite uneventful. Kai had some problems with the rear brake. Border crossing took less than 3 h and we stayed in a simple hotel in Kyaktha near the border. The town is not very appealing, but we found a nice hidden restaurant and I tried “Sprite with cucumber”… :o)
The following day we continued to Ulan-Ude. Christian had ordered a cam-chain tensioner and new rocker arms to a workshop. His tensioner is not working well and he got my spare rocker arms earlier. The owner of the workshop is a friend of Vladimir from Altaimoto.
After attaching the new cam-chain tensioner to Christian’s bike and fixing Kai’s rear brake, we drove some km and decided (due to rain) to stay in Illinka. The next day we caught the first glimpse of lake Baikal. The road were winding along the lake but the view was often blocked by forest. We found a nice takeaway near a fuel station with really loud ACDC music. Kai’s bike showed som electrical issues. The battery was not charging… We managed to get to Irkutsk and stayed in a nice hostel in the city centre. I bought a Russian SIM-card. 250 min, 5 GB and 250 SMS for just 50 SEK. The staff in the store was really helpful. With Google translate and even some trouble shooting we managed to get the card running on my iPhone. Never experienced this kind of service in a European mobile store. At the end the shop assistant was smiling and just said “Welcome to Russia!” :o) In the evening we visited a biker bar but were the only guests and left after a short while.
The next day Kai and Christian decided to stay in Irkutsk to fix their bikes. Christian’s rear brake needed some maintenance and Kai needed to solve the electrical issue of his Yamaha.
Hans and I continued to Olkhon.