Blog

By Ilpo Juvander on 7/23/2017 10:05 PM
Once I woke up started thinking about the route for today and tomorrow. I still have the option of going through Tallinn or via St. Petersburg and I decided that final decision is done based on how the driving feels today. St. Petersburg route would almost for sure mean one more night compared to Tallinn option.

Was downstairs bat 07:00 for breakfast, couple of other quests there as well.

Breakfast was just perfect, would make me drive all day long with this.

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By Ilpo Juvander on 7/22/2017 9:52 PM
Took a bit slower morning, breakfast only at 08:00.

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In Kiev weather was looking really nice with temperature already in the morning above...
By Ilpo Juvander on 5/18/2017 10:55 PM
For some reason could not really sleep well, probably because room was to hot so decided to get up and started day early with a coffee.

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By 7:30 I was already packing the bike again and started riding again.

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By Ilpo Juvander on 5/17/2017 8:38 PM
Finally day came that I got my GSA out from garage again! Long waited summer (?) is here again!

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By 09:00 I had everything packed and once I got out Tommi came as well to take picture from me leaving.

Was going to take it easy riding today, headed first to Vaalimaa border crossing and got actually quite fast through (less than an hour).

Next stop was Vyborg to get some Russian rubles and also fuel the bike.

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By Ilpo Juvander on 7/7/2016 9:28 PM
Distance to home: 1212 km, estimated day of arrival: 8.7.2016

Woke up really early little before 04:00. Had not changed my wristwatch to local time and thought that it was already time to wake up, alarm was about to go off at 06:00 as usual. Took a while until I realized what time really was and could not get to sleep anymore so decided to start doing my morning activities.

Little before 06:00 I was ready again and started moving towards bike. When getting out from the room I thought that some other guest was also about to leave, but no, it was the lady from the reception that had slept in a room next to mine and was looking really sleepy! Not probably her best time to wake up… Place was totally locked so without her I would not have got out from there.

But little after 06:00 I was ready to ride again, sun was shining and temperature was really nice 18 degrees.

I had set my goal to drive to either St. Petersburg or...
By Ilpo Juvander on 7/6/2016 11:30 PM
Distance to home: 2227 km, estimated day of arrival: 8.7.2016

Day started normally after a good night sleep. Packed my things and decided to take the morning coffee somewhere on the way.

Bike waiting nicely by the parking, some cars had already left. Weather did not look that promising, dark clouds everywhere.

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By 7:30 I was on the road again.

Road was in quite bad shape in the beginning, but eventually got better again.

After driving some 200 km it started raining quite heavily and I stopped to put rain suite on. Next stop was for fuel.

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By Ilpo Juvander on 7/5/2016 9:30 PM
Distance to home: 3231 km, estimated day of arrival: 9.7.2016

For the morning had nothing else to do but to pack. Was planning to have combined breakfast and lunch later on in some café.

Many trucks had also stopped for coffee as well, probably some of them also slept over there.

By 07:30 I was riding again.

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Weather was really nice, some 20 degrees in the morning and it warmed up to 24 degrees during the day.

Had stop for fuel again, this time got an full tank.

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By Ilpo Juvander on 7/4/2016 9:45 PM
Distance to home: 4225 km, estimated day of arrival: 9.7.2016.

Had an really good night sleep, first time on this trip I woke when my alarm went on. Or then I was just really tired…

This time I would even get an breakfast from the hotel! On the way there checked the bike and it was just fine.

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Very nice little breakfast room, I could easily think of being somewhere in western Europe and not far away in Russia.

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By Ilpo Juvander on 7/3/2016 9:21 PM
Distance to home: 5247 km, estimated day of arrival: 9.7.2016.

Started morning as usual by 06:00, packed everything and got outside to the bikes.

Polish bikers were also packing their bikes and during the night two Russian bikers were also joined us on this same place.

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By 07:30 I was ready to ride again and started moving towards Novosibirsk.

Again plan for today was just to drive as far as I could and no real route planned as there is only one big road going west from here.

After driving some 100km I started looking for...
By Ilpo Juvander on 7/2/2016 9:12 PM
Distance to home: 6234km, estimated day of arrival: 10.7.2016.

Woke up very early and was very tired. Music played at least until 04:00 very loudly from downstairs and I did not manage to sleep that well, not even with earplugs on as whole house was vibrating as they played it so loudly.

By 07:00 I was scheduled to leave anyhow as hotel was paid only until that.

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Weather felt little cold so I put inner jacket on again so that I would not freeze on the way.

Road around lake Baikal was really nice to drive, partially new road.

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By Ilpo Juvander on 7/1/2016 9:19 PM
Woke up early, nobody else was up yet when I started breakfast and trying if internet was any better when everybody was still sleeping.

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These guys from Germany had done similar tour I did back in 2010, so via Iran and then the Stans. Now they were flying back home and putting their bikes in cargo.

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By Ilpo Juvander on 6/27/2016 9:04 PM
Early morning again, almost everything was packed already yesterday and just needed to fill my water bags. For the first time I will now try how it feels to have 1.5L water in my back so that I can drink without getting off the bike.

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By 06:30 I was ready again and started driving towards border crossing. It was quite chilly, just 10 degrees.

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By Ilpo Juvander on 6/26/2016 9:34 PM
Alarm went of at 05:30 on my phone and I started cooking some coffee water to get make up and running.

Morning looked really nice outside.

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By Ilpo Juvander on 6/25/2016 9:54 PM
Needed to wait until 07:00 before I got breakfast, while waiting for that I already had a coffee in a room as I woke up quite early.

While waiting I was charging all of my GoPro batteries as scenery should start be much more enjoyable than in the past few thousand kilometers.

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Finally it was breakfast time again, this time it had changed a bit.

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By Ilpo Juvander on 6/24/2016 9:08 PM
Today I was not in a real hurry anywhere, had small breakfast at the hotel, did some planning for next day etc.

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After breakfast I went to local telephone operator store and purchased local prepaid SIM card with unlimited data service and some phone calls as well for a month. I paid some 450RUB for this and seems to work just fine. What a relief finally not being so disconnected all the time. And in many places the internet is not that great either so now I can have my own connection when those fail.

For getting SIM card in Russia all you need is to take your passport with you and they...
By Ilpo Juvander on 6/23/2016 9:37 PM
This time I really needed to wake up early as my checkout time was set to 07:00 due to me only paying for 12hrs at the hotel.

Not a big deal, managed to get two cups of coffee and I was ready to ride again.

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I’m still in growing mode for a beard, let’s see how long this will last…

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By Ilpo Juvander on 6/20/2016 9:39 PM
Started early as I got good night sleep and by 07:00 I was already driving again. Before leaving made two cups of coffee for breakfast, dinner was still good enough for stomach otherwise so no need for anything else to get me started.

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By Ilpo Juvander on 6/19/2016 9:38 PM
Day started a bit lazy in Petteri’s place, took a morning coffee and some break in good time and by 09:00 I was riding again.

Petteri came out as well to see when I was leaving, bike was there on the parking place just fine.

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This was now first day I was riding without a booked destination so end of the day I just need to find a place to stay.

Took a first break after riding quite a lot and of course out from nowhere there was some local coming to chat something and looking at the bike. Just managed to get something to drink and leaked extra out from me...
By Ilpo Juvander on 6/18/2016 9:14 PM
In the morning did not bother to make any breakfast nor coffee, just woke up, packed and started moving forward by 7:30. Last night’s dinner was still too much on its way…

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Road from Kiev to the border crossing was a known one as I have take this route already couple of times. Just one big boring road and in good condition as well.

Needed to get some fuel and also consume rest of my Ukrainian money and get full tank by paying rest by credit card. Of course this idea did not really work, they did not really understand what I was after and end result was that I...
By Ilpo Juvander on 3/20/2016 1:39 PM
This summer is going to be celebration summer, I have been doing 10 years these longer motorcycle trips.

So this time need to have something to remember and the plan is to visit Mongolia.

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Some >15 000 km of road waiting for me!

Will take my GSA for the trip and planning has now started. Need to plan the route in more detail and I’m trying to void the main roads I have driven before.

First gears already ordered – new set of tires. Will try Heidenau K60 Scout how they perform on my usage.

Next one to think of is cooking, will need to see if my old trangia will be on this trip or if...
By Ilpo Juvander on 7/24/2013 8:00 PM
As weather was looking horrible, we decided to take a shortcut via Tallinn to Helsinki.

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We took via smaller roads on Russian side towards Pechory border crossing, rain stopped finally once were approaching it. Pechory border crossing itself was nothing special, normal queuing with few cards.

Road on Estonia side was under construction for few kilometers after the border, but after that we got to the bigger roads and just drove to Tallinn.

And before boarding ferry we needed to do some mandatory...
By Ilpo Juvander on 7/23/2013 10:07 PM
Had again early morning, breakfast at 07:00 sharp. Had a bit issues to find the breakfast room, but eventually found it. It was just across the hallway and looked like an normal hotel room door like all the rest of them.

I was there first one to arrive, chose second alternative from the menu not knowing what it was as there were again these language issues. But I got some tea, two eggs, one slice of bread and some roll of something.

Couple of Russians arrived as well and they chose their own menu: some white stuff coupled with two beers! What a way to start a day…

But pretty soon after 08:00 I was on to road again and as it was raining a bit I put my rain suite on when leaving the hotel.

Plan for today was just to drive to Velikiye Luki to meet Harri who had been there already since yesterday and then continue rest of the trip back to Finland with him.

Did a fast transit, stopped only once to refuel...
By Ilpo Juvander on 7/22/2013 10:26 PM
For this day there was not going to be anything special planned, just driving ahead to get back home.

I had some miscalculations for distances due to poor planning and seeing what type of roads I was going to be driving so for today I was going to miss my hotel that I had already booked. Some euros lost due to that… But next night I planned to be either in Kursk or in Orel, depending how fast I would get through from Ukraine – Russia border crossing.

So on the road again at 07:00 with no other breakfast but a bottle of water.

Road from Melitopol was in excellent condition and after 400 km and 4½ hours later I started approaching border. And I also started to see some clouds and just some 50 kilometers before the border I needed to put on rain suite as it started raining.

Rain stopped quite fast, but there were still some drops coming every now and then so I kept the rain suite on for...
By Ilpo Juvander on 7/18/2013 10:22 PM
Had to wait a bit to get breakfast, it should have started 07:00 but in practice they got it ready by 07:20… Got also a strange question when I went to eat: “Are you from Israel?”. Go figure where they got that idea, maybe there was somebody else from Israel and they mixed me to this person.

I was the only person getting the breakfast:

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Funny when coming towards north, even the bread starts to get darker:

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By Ilpo Juvander on 6/21/2013 10:34 PM
I could barely sleep during the night as I was waiting already when to get On The Road again!

But morning came and I was carrying rest of the stuff into the bike while waiting Harri to arrive.

We took off 08:00 in the morning and headed towards Vaalimaa using almost direct route, except one detour at the end to see this last bits of Kuninkaantie between Hamina and Vaalimaa.

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At Vaalimaa border on Russian side we also witnessed a car crash: One Russian car jumped not once, twice but three times to another Russian car and then everything was totally...