Siberia Winter Bike Tour

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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby iviehoff » Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:21 pm

takeonafrica wrote:
22camels wrote:Good luck! How good is your Russian?

Seriously, I know enough to get me by.
I'm trying to learn a bit more - got my 'teach yourself Russian' book for reading in the evening (in case I have trouble falling asleep)...

Have you tested it? I thought I had enough Russian to get by very minimally from time spent with a book and a recorded course, including additional time spent out there. But even though I could even decipher brief printed documents, such as tables of stats and legal regs I was working with, I had real problems making myself understood if it was much more than a transaction in a shop. I certainly couldn't find any way to ask the question "will I be able to get out of this building after 5.30pm" so anyone could understand it, despite spending time with a dictionary and grammar to try and construct the question. I didn't take any risk and always left by 5.30. And I have some facility with language - I speak Spanish fairly fluently, French I have done meetings in it, Portuguese and Italian I survive, I've succeeded in communicating in Norwegian and Malay in an emergency. But Russian I just found too difficult. Also Burmese - I couldn't even read the phrases in the phrase book so they could be understood.
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby Slowroad » Sun Jan 19, 2014 9:59 pm

I've just read Shane's blog about his trip in Canada, now here's another chilly one! Not for me but glad others are pushing the boundaries.
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby Mattie » Mon Jan 20, 2014 7:45 pm

I was watching this docu about the Russians in Antartica, and this guy said that the only food that kept him warm was butter, he would eat pure butter and he said he could feel the warmth radiate out.

It is pure energy, if you think about it, and should be easy to transport in the cold, and it is probably a lot of calories for its size.

(I know I was wrong about the coyotes, but ..... :D )

Good luck.
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby shane » Tue Jan 21, 2014 2:39 pm

Yup I was adding a piece of butter to more oats in the morning and to my pasta in the evening :) great calories per gram ratio. Don't forget to pre cut it though, its a pain when frozen :)
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby james-o » Thu Jan 23, 2014 9:02 am

Bookmarked.. Look forward to reading about this, good luck! (read a few books on trips in Siberia, strangely fascinated by the idea of travel there)
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby takeonafrica » Thu Jan 23, 2014 7:53 pm

shane wrote:Yup I was adding a piece of butter to more oats in the morning and to my pasta in the evening :) great calories per gram ratio. Don't forget to pre cut it though, its a pain when frozen :)


Yep - butter and cheese are on the shopping list.

james-o wrote:Bookmarked.. Look forward to reading about this, good luck! (read a few books on trips in Siberia, strangely fascinated by the idea of travel there)


Books can be dangerous things... they're exactly why I've ended up here :)
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby Bike-Rich » Thu Jan 23, 2014 8:08 pm

Sounds great, best of luck and enjoy it.

If you get chance can you let me know what kind of bike you have and the equipment you are taking,

Thanks you,
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby AMC » Thu Jan 23, 2014 11:50 pm

No better way to learn a language!
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » Sat Jan 25, 2014 8:12 pm

Hi,
Mattie wrote:I was watching this docu about the Russians in Antartica, and this guy said that the only food that kept him warm was butter, he would eat pure butter and he said he could feel the warmth radiate out.

It is pure energy, if you think about it, and should be easy to transport in the cold, and it is probably a lot of calories for its size.

(I know I was wrong about the coyotes, but ..... :D )

Good luck.

I think that Artic/ Antartic travellers soaked their food in butter to gain more calories.
Twice that of cheeze gram per gram. Fiennes diet up to 62 % fat.
Scott was under nourished by about 50 % I believe.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison ... xpeditions
"Apsley Cherry-Garrard in his analysis of the expedition estimated that even under optimistic assumptions the summit rations contained only a little more than half the calories actually required for the man-hauling of sledges.[5] A carefully planned 2006 re-enactment of both Amundsen's and Scott's travels, sponsored by the BBC, confirmed Cherry-Garrard's theory; the British team had eventually to abort their tour due to the severe weight loss of all members.[25] The experts hinted that Scott's reports of unusually bad surfaces and weather conditions might in part have been due to their exhausted state which made them feel the sledge weights and the chill more severely."
01-01-14..81 KGS..26-04 -14- 76 KGS ...(:<)
Breakfast...one toast and jam.......rumble...
............
Roadies are fair game.......especially when I am on my MTB. 18 Notches - 7 ? +/- a Hybrid (:<(
Punch It Bishop !
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby james-o » Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:35 pm

Books can be dangerous things... they're exactly why I've ended up here :)

Re-reading As Far As My Feet Will Carry Me at the moment - don't know if it's off-putting or inspiring!

On the energy / butter thing, I rode with a South African adventurer in the US last summer. He was one of the first two South Africans to reach the South Pole. They adapted their diet to be able to eat/drink olive oil for calories. He told me something about the weight-calorie scale, where peanuts are about a 3-4 and oil was a 6, top of the scale or something like that. We were talking about riding in snowy places then, in 40 degrees of dry Colorado heat. John Stamstad (the pioneering endurance mountain bike racer) was said to have drunk cooking oil during his first Great Divide ride I think, but there's a lot of legends about what he may have done.
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby takeonafrica » Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:23 pm

When it gets to the stage of drinking cooking oil, that's when I book a flight for a beach holiday in warmer climes... there are some things I'll do, and some I won't. Cooking oil instead of coffee, I think, is my line... thin as it is!
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby james-o » Wed Jan 29, 2014 9:08 pm

Yes.. posted more as an anecdote than advice! )
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby takeonafrica » Sun Feb 02, 2014 12:09 pm

It has now been a couple of weeks in Russia. Things aren't going quite to plan. Namely, that lake Baikal is late freezing over... so when there are stretches of water - cycling across it becomes even more of a challenge! Still, in some ways, this makes life simpler - it gives me realistic time now to cycle the distance to Cherskiy... so tomorrow I take the train to Neriyungri where it'll be 830km to cycle to Yakutsk, my next main stop.

So, I have biked up to Olkhon Island, about halfway up the lake and so have had my first week of winter biking here. Mostly it has been good. The only problem I have had is suffering with cold hands - so in the next town I will buy some different gloves/mittens and see how I get on.

So, if you fancy seeing some pics, they're up on my blog now...

Into the White
Biking to Lake Baikal and Olkhon Island - if you only check out one link, these are the cooler photos!
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby takeonafrica » Fri Feb 21, 2014 3:48 am

I can confirm - cycling/camping when it's -30C is a bit cold, when it's -40C it's not fun, and when it's -50C all you can think about is keeping your finger and toes and nose!

Some photos from biking in Yakutia
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Re: Siberia Winter Bike Tour

Postby takeonafrica » Fri Apr 04, 2014 12:32 am

Well, I am now in Magadan!
After Yakutsk, the cycling was great, what a difference 20C makes. It was still cold at night though and my toes were definitely suffering with the prolonged cold.
I made decision to ride to Magadan, not Chersky... primarily because of the slower than expected pace meant I would be short of time on my visa and to be honest, I needed to rest up if I was going to take on that challenge. So I took the shorter, easier road to Magadan and enjoyed the whole way. It was the right choice, although I am pretty gutted I didn't go north.
But, I now have a good excuse to return... perhaps then I will start in Ust-Nera and continue into Chukotka. Very tempting... (now I'm cosy, snug and warm indoors).

Anyway, here are some photos from Yakutsk to Magadan if you're interested (mostly of snow, trees, bike and me in various combinations!):

http://helenstakeon.com/blog/kolyma-highway-photos-winter-biking-2000km-yakutsk-to-magadan/
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