Sunday, June 7, 2020

Driving around China

Stopover in Ulan-Ude

After saying goodbye to Tony and Andi we picked up the pace to catch up with the boys in the Land Cruiser. From our spot at lake Baikal it is around 3600km to Vladivostok, a bit more when venturing out to the Pacific Ocean. All this because it isn't possible to drive in China without an assigned driver/guide 🙄

In Ulan-Ude we splurged on a hotel room, hot showers are a bliss!

Venturing into the city we found the finish line of the 2019 Mongol Rally. As the laws in Mongolia are getting stricter and stricter it isn't possible to leave (dump?) the car there anymore so the event now ends in Russia.

Then it was time to take to the road. The distances between towns got larger and larger but the landscape made more than up for it.

Some places looked like a wildfire must have come through, but the forest bounced back and only the charred lower parts stand testimony.

All over Russia are these car pits to do maintenance, so we used it to check our diff oil 😁

One of our spots for the night, right next to the river was just magnificent. With the fog rolling down the hill it was super peaceful.

Ramen in the middle of nowhere

The next morning it was time to hit the road again

Passing the time


So we were making great progress when two guys flagged us down to help them. Somehow they had managed to set their car backwards! into the ditch along a straight and narrow road.
With the help of our winch in no time they were back on the street, unsure if this was a good deed or not as they were (still?) quite drunk.
But their car started on the first try and they were super happy and thankful 😆
Unbelievable 🙈
The "car" 🤣

Otherwise our days were getting up, having breakfast, driving, stopping for lunch somewhere beside the road, driving, turning off the road somewhere into the forest, having dinner and then going straight to bed 😴
Lots of long and straight roads in quite good condition made it relaxing and peaceful if somewhat boring. Not much more to be said, picture do the talking:

Weather changing all the time
We stopped at the Vostochny Cosmodrome

And then we made it, 5 days and 3000km later we reached Khabarovsk and met up with the boys! 
Memorial to victims of WWII from Khabarovsk, all these columns are names...

Only 750km to go until Vladivostok, but we had other plans and would venture deeper into the Far East.