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  1. #1 It was the best of roads, it was the worst of roads 
    C-Moto Regular lobotomous's Avatar
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    It was the best of roads, it was the worst of roads; it was Filipu and Lobotomous’s Autumn adventure.


    The Bikes: Jialing JH-150GY-3, QianJiang 150-19A
    The dates: October 3rd to October 7th, 2011.
    The distance: According to the QianJiang: 1,650km
    The punctures: None
    The mechanical failures: One seized rear disc on the Jialing. Otherwise nothing to report.

    Herewith the ride report.
    Please forgive the vagueness and inaccuracies. Filipu was in charge of navigation, and I spent most of the time daydreaming. Attached are some of my photos. I put a fish-eye lens on my camera on the first day and for some reason decided not to take it off. Apologies for the abundance of fish-eye pics.
    Here is the overall route:

    Meeting at the intersection of at 8.00am on Monday 3rd October:


    Heading East it took us a while to find our way onto the G108, but once there we made some good progress and were soon in the hills. We followed this road for many good twisty miles before turning onto the X017 at BaoShuiCun. This road was excellent – taking us up and down mountain passes before following the river valley, when it became the X029. It is along here that we camped on the first night, next to a river and an enormous bridge construction (one of countless vast civil engineering projects we passed).










    Last edited by lobotomous; 10-14-2011 at 10:34 AM.
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  2. #2 Re: It was the best of roads, it was the worst of roads 
    C-Moto Regular lobotomous's Avatar
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    Unbeknownst to me, Filipu had in fact organised the route according to his own secret itinerary; taking us past sites of significance to his beloved Communist Party, as part of his National Day celebrations.
    Hence our visit to sites of National importance such as this big Party flag:

    And this big Mao head:

    The second day took us back onto the G108 and then onto the S241. It is here that we first encountered the infamous Coal Truck Convoy. This one started with a broken-down truck undergoing extensive surgery followed by around 10km of static trucks. Most of the drivers appeared relatively good-humoured given that they had been there for up to 8 hours (the time could be measured by the piles of instant noodles and cigarettes outside each cab). In places, though, some drivers had thought it would be a good idea to drive down the oncoming lane to get slightly ahead of the others. This meant that in several sections, traffic was blocked in both directions and going was fairly slow.


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  3. #3 Re: It was the best of roads, it was the worst of roads 
    C-Moto Regular lobotomous's Avatar
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    We escaped this by taking the S205 and up into the mountains. Some amazing roads led us up to WuTai and the mountain pass at around 2800m. Unfortunately this was in clouds and as it was getting rather dark and cold, we didn’t hang around to see the temples but continued to the resort town below. Here Filipu spotted Mo and Sean from Beijing Sideways. I was particularly impressed that these guys who pilot these crates for a living would want to stay on them for their vacation, but they appeared to be having a blast. They had already had a number of mechanical problems, and had already re-evaluated their route for this trip. We decided to spend the night in the same town and enjoyed a great hotpot with their group.
    Wednesday morning was decision time. Either we would press on and try to make one of our initial destinations, or we could stop for some temple viewing and local rides before heading back to Beijing. We decided to carry on, so we said goodbye to our new Sideways buddies and headed out towards Wutai and the S331. We had some good roads in the morning, but sadly met our nemesis on the S206 in the form of a monster Coal Trucking convention. Miles of static trucks and nasty fumes. This, coupled with the fact that were constantly reevaluating our destination made it a less enjoyable day, but still some nice views, and we found a good camp spot. The shepherd wasn’t sure what to make of us, but was friendly all the same.












    Thursday morning we decided to head up towards Mongolia, skirt DaTong and see some Great Wall before heading back to Beijing on Friday. Some great roads which were only intermittently coal trucky. Eventually we camped between some tiny villages in the mountains south of DaiHai lake. This was a little cold.








    Got going very early on Friday morning and iron butted back to Beijing. First on the S102, followed by S301, finally linking up with the G109 for the final stretch. Parts of this were epic, with lots of tamped earth Great Wall outposts to look at. This was also the most mileage we did in a day - around 700km – quite a feat on these little bikes.





    And when the road looks like this:



    And your sat nav looks like this:


    You know you have come to the right place.


    It was a great trip with, thankfully, no major incidents. Initially the aim had been to get down to Xi’An. That was fairly quickly adjusted to perhaps PingYao, and then to just make it to the Yellow River. In the end, we didn’t manage any of these, but it didn’t matter a bit. They will be there next time.
    I would like to thank Filipu for his excellent planning, navigation and company.
    Last edited by lobotomous; 06-26-2012 at 03:05 AM.
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  4. #4 Re: It was the best of roads, it was the worst of roads 
    light of lights lightend's Avatar
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    nice, looks like you guys had some fun :-) good little report, very informative, personally being me i would probably just say "followed a road going west ish, then went off on another road heading north ish, then managed to get to a load of roads heading back home ish"
    It always amazes me how much detail people go into :-) very impressive and allot more usfull than my vague descriptions of things.
    nice, well done
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  5. #5 Re: It was the best of roads, it was the worst of roads 
    Danger, Will Robinson! Lao Jia Hou's Avatar
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    Wow, great trip!

    The best ones are always the flexible ones with kind-of-a-destination, and kind-of-a-timeframe.

    Fantastic fall color picture!

    Thanks.
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  6. #6 Re: It was the best of roads, it was the worst of roads 
    Life Is Good! ChinaV's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing your ride, wish we had foliage like that down here in Guangdong. It's nice to see you guys were doing some camping along the way

    Cheers!
    ChinaV
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  7. #7 Re: It was the best of roads, it was the worst of roads 
    C-Moto Guru milton's Avatar
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    Nice trip, casual, and constantly reevaluating the destination, my kind of trip.
    The landscape of brown, dusty clay and yellow earth is quite different from our lush green Yangtze River Delta. I have always been curious about the areas you've visited.
    Thanks for sharing.
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  8. #8 Re: It was the best of roads, it was the worst of roads 
    C-Moto Guru MotoKai's Avatar
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    Thanks for the RR - good stuff!
    and extra points for the camping. That's something on my "MoTo-Do List"!
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  9. #9 Re: It was the best of roads, it was the worst of roads 
    Duct tape savant felix's Avatar
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    Thanks for the pictures and report mister! Been way too long since i camped...
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