Report 1 - 06/07/2003
We are in full preparations at the moment. Our praparations can be specified as: Equipmets, knowledge, contacts,
know-how and a rescue plan.
The two Yamaha XT600 offroad motorcycles which have been contributed by Yamaha Netherlands are ready to be taken to
Germany, where Helmut of Stern Gespannservice and Rob will build a sidecar onto one of them. They will also make the
construction to mount the solo motorcycle onto the sidecar, turning the whole into a spectacular combination. Rob
already mounted the luggage racks onto the bikes, to carry the Hepco & Becker Alu boxes of MDI Motor Cycle Equipment
and we are figuring out how to mount the extra windscreen, hand protectors and a top box.
What the combination will look like exactely will remain a secret a while longer. We are very happy with the great
technical as well as practical and even emotional support we are getting from so many people/companies. We hope to get
the equipment we are still missing soon and also are very busy raising the necessary funds to be able to finance it all.
Most of the information we are using comes from countries like Canada, Alaska, the Scandinavian countries and Russia.
Closer to home we are also supported by Lintelo (cooling technics) in Lichtenvoorde (Netherlands), where we will test
our equipment in a freezing cel and meet the Real Mister Cold for the first time.
We are building a network of points of support, to start in Irkutsk, Yakutsk, Magadan and Vladivostok.
These contacts are not only for the matter of support. We are also pre-organising visits to schools so that we can do
our project "The World on a Child's Drawing. Please read more about this elsewhere on
After having been on the road for five years I think we may call ourselves experienced travellers, on surfaced roads as
well as dirt tracks. This does not mean that we know it all though. We did drive around in freezing cold winter
conditions (did not have the right gear), but it's nothing compared to what we are facing now. So: What can we do to
prepare ourselves? Eat breakfast and cook dinner with winter gloves on? Yes, is possible! But maybe we are not preparing
our food and eating in heated places rather than outside.
Most important for us will be to know our equipment and be able to work with it. So offroad riding is good, as is
putting up our tent with winter gloves on and pulling is down again. Packing and unpacking our luggage and sidecar and
mounting the solo and sidecar together with winter gloves on will be good as well. It might also be good to know how to
handle a broken limb, might we get one. Fortunately there is still time to do all that, and also to learn to speak and
understand at least some Russian.
What we are going to do is not without risk, we are fully aware of that. This is the reason that we are setting up a
rescue plan just in case we need it. Our First aid and survival kit and camping equipment have to make it possible to
survive for a period of time, while the sattelite phone will enable us to reach help and GPS will enable help to reach