Jump to content


High Latutude Low Cost International Run

Harleych bigjames in russia

  • Please log in to reply
15 replies to this topic

#1 BigJames

BigJames

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 587 posts
  • Joined:12-October 11
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Macon, Ga
  • Interests:Motorcycles, sidecars

Posted 31 July 2015 - 06:46 AM

Already started on SS, will be here too. Sorry, it just sort of started over there.... Take a peek there or wait, everything will be here too since this is where it all got started....

Sitting in CDG ariport in Paris. Its wireless has already wipe out a few attempts at this post. No sleep in +36 hours, I am shot and this airport sucks... more to follow and of course there are pics and video, lots of them...  around 4 k on a Dneper (me), little Chinese moped (Harleych) and two other Russian friends on a Suzuki Big Boy 250 and a Yamaha 125.
2011 Ural Retro
1995/1979 Bural  Sportsman/R100
1988 HD FLHS/Watsonian Cambridge
1951 Servicar

1976 BMW R90/6 Motorvation Royale (Sold Aug 18, 2014)

#2 harleych

harleych

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 976 posts
  • Joined:14-October 04
  • Location:SPb,Rus

Posted 31 July 2015 - 07:36 AM

Posted Image

#3 harleych

harleych

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 976 posts
  • Joined:14-October 04
  • Location:SPb,Rus

Posted 31 July 2015 - 07:42 AM

Ybr 125, grasstracker bigboy,chinky cub 125
Posted Image

#4 yatesfly

yatesfly

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 164 posts
  • Joined:15-April 10
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:illinois
  • Interests:motorcycles and airplanes

Posted 31 July 2015 - 01:57 PM

Looking forward to the report.  James you never said anything bad about my dnepr. Did you.  Just kidding     Dennis
dnepr MT16,64 hd xlch,71hd xlh, 82 honda gl500

#5 SafetyBob

SafetyBob

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 743 posts
  • Joined:30-August 06
  • Gender:Male

Posted 31 July 2015 - 02:46 PM

can not wait for more!
SB#3
Dnepr- So Much Fun- It's addictive!
MT-11 Solo- "Nadia"
MT-11 "Yellow Bear"
MT-9 "Boo Bear"
K-750 Flathead
MT-11 "Gumbo"
Ural M 70 Solo
Ural Patrol
95 Ural Tourist

#6 harleych

harleych

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 976 posts
  • Joined:14-October 04
  • Location:SPb,Rus

Posted 05 August 2015 - 03:45 AM

. I hope

#7 BigJames

BigJames

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 587 posts
  • Joined:12-October 11
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Macon, Ga
  • Interests:Motorcycles, sidecars

Posted 14 October 2015 - 10:04 AM

Ok, I've waited way too long to do this. This all started at FART last year, so wanted to start this with something about FART this year. Ok, it rained... Now for the ride report from Russia. Harleych, gonna need your help with this! KNow I am going to get some stuff wrong and feel free to add and correct. This is eventually going to several other forums, in case it reads a little weird here.

This July I got a chance to ride an old Dnepr/Izh sidecar rig all over north western Russia. It all got started at the FART Ural rally in Asheville, NC. Glenn Hamilton, the founder of Russian Iron MC, one of the Ural forums hosted here in the US, got a copy of a movie called Normalno from a guy named Sergei Stepanenko, we know him as Harleych. (the movie was "smuggled" out of Russia by being stuck into a headight shell then Glenn purchased from Harleych a long time ago!) I later discovered that he is known as Harleych on the Russian Iron Forum, I emailed him saying, “Hey, saw you in a movie last week!” he asked which one and sent a link to it. Here it is if you want to take a look. http://www.youtube.c...h?v=nn-rrJPHUb8  Well the conversation carried on and finally Harleych said something about they had a run planned in July to go to a rally on the White Sea then ride up north of Murmansk. Great I thought, sounds like fun. Here is where the fun started. I ride very little off road, I am a street rider, even on a Ural. I was not aware of the phrases 'Forest Road' and 'Road not very good' were about to test my abilities and lack there of quite a bit. Harleych was not aware of this nor that I speak zero Russian and had never been out of North America. I was a bit pitiful. Then I tried to get a tourist visa. 1st place kept jerking me around, tried to get me to pay for an auto-tourist visa and so on, I gave up. Commented on this on Soviet Steeds and I get an email (sorry, I forgot who sent it) saying I should try gotorussia.com. Checked them out, gave them a call and discovered they had an office in Atlanta. So, I go find them, give them my passport, they make a few minor changes to my visa application and in 3 weeks I had a visa – about a week before I was supposed to be in Russia. Well, since I had already figured the trip was not gonna happen, I stopped trying to learn Russian – big mistake! So, with visa in hand, I tell Harleych I am coming, get my tickets and we are off. My cell carrier insisted that my phone would work in Russia. It is a Blackberry and they are made in Finland, right next door... so off I went. My last email I sent form the US was to Harleych asking how I cold identify him at the airport. He said by my motorcycle helmet... 18 hours and 2 flights later, I am standing in line waiting to go through customs in Russia. Nope, customs person did not speak English, I speak no Russian, piece of cake, was done in 5 minutes and heading out. Hoping Harleych was there. As I come out I see a guy about 6' 5: standing there with a white bike helmet on, that must be Harleych! He was easy to spot...  
Attached File  pic1_for_post.png   235.74K   1 downloads
We put my big bag in the body of the Izh sidecar, I use his spare helmet (mine is in my bag), climb on the back of his bike and we are off. This is the 1st time I have been on the back of a bike since 1971. Off we go to the other side of town where Harleych's mom's place (Mom is in the country in a village enjoying summer). Harleych's place is outside of town in another village that St Petersburg is growing towards quickly. I am pretty much shot then discover that my phone, regardless of what Verizon said, was dead. Only works when there is a wireless connection. (at the end of the trip, we discovered that a Russian sim card works in it that would have made it work, oh well, lesson learned for the next trip).
Day one was used to rest and recuperation from jet lag. We are heading north in just a few days, so we did not have a lot of time to prepare. Needed to change some US dollars in to Russian Rubles and get insurance so I can legally ride the Dnepr/Izh rig. If you go to Russia, make sure you bring fresh brand new $100 bills. They want nothing else. It seems our money is so counterfeited that this is all they will take. I saw 10 of my bills rejected, Fortunatly I brought too much money, so it was not a problem. Ended up changing $1000 and brought about a third of it home... Anyone need some rubles? Then off we go to get insurance. 1st place says no can do, have to go where the bike is primarily insured, basically adding me as a rider. No problem, we hop back on the bike, I am in the sidecar this time, and we go to the insurance agency. Little paperwork, about $50 and I am insured to 6 months. Have no idea what I am insured for, but I am legal in case anyone stops us or we have an accident. (no one ever stopped us and we had no accidents, of course). After that we go off to meet the other 2 guys who will be joining us on the adventure they named – Highlatitude Lowcost International Run 2015.
2011 Ural Retro
1995/1979 Bural  Sportsman/R100
1988 HD FLHS/Watsonian Cambridge
1951 Servicar

1976 BMW R90/6 Motorvation Royale (Sold Aug 18, 2014)

#8 BigJames

BigJames

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 587 posts
  • Joined:12-October 11
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Macon, Ga
  • Interests:Motorcycles, sidecars

Posted 14 October 2015 - 10:09 AM

Attached File  pic2_for_post.png   395.4K   2 downloads Attached File  pic3_for_post.png   479.5K   2 downloads

Logo is based on what are basically the cheapest cigarettes one can buy in Russia! Cober, one of the guys who rode with us and the owner of GAD13 custom bike and hot rod shop even gave me a tee-shirt! Harleych bought me a pack of the cigarettes as reference, they are in the picture above. Our puppy at that pack shortly after we got home... Here is a link to the video I shot of us riding around on day one. https://www.youtube....h?v=mtxVyihtUho You will note at the end of the video I talk about video problems... almost 80% of the video I shot got corrupted and is garbage. Bummer, some of it would have been most impressive. Oh well, will just have to go back... but I digress.. Back to the story. We rode over to Pavel's place where he showed me his Zis (or may be old enough to be a Zil) that he rescued from Finland. I think he has it running now. Not sure if this is Pavel's or not, but that is Pavel on the left and Cober to the right of a Zis, you can see car running in  Harleych's video here: http://www.youtube.c...h?v=cV3moBLHS3c
2011 Ural Retro
1995/1979 Bural  Sportsman/R100
1988 HD FLHS/Watsonian Cambridge
1951 Servicar

1976 BMW R90/6 Motorvation Royale (Sold Aug 18, 2014)

#9 BigJames

BigJames

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 587 posts
  • Joined:12-October 11
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Macon, Ga
  • Interests:Motorcycles, sidecars

Posted 14 October 2015 - 10:12 AM

Attached File  pic4_for_post.png   719.01K   4 downloads

Next day was sorting out gear and cameras and just trying to get my act together. For the next 3 weeks I pretty much knew not where I was, nor what time it was or what was being said. Harleych tried to eep me informed and folks tried their English out on me a lot, but I was pretty much clueless. Even going to the store was a little much for me at first, but with Harleych's prodding I started to interact more. (ok, he got really tired of baby-sitting me, I don't blame him. After he said something, I realized what a pain in the ass I was and tried to correct it a bit, Harleych is not one to NOT let you know what he is thinking. I like that about him.). Keep in mind that we never quite got around to prepping the bike so off we went. Me on a 1987 Dnepr with Izh (pronounced eesh) sidecar, Harleych on a “50cc” moped basically (slightly modified), Cober on a 110cc Yamaha and Pavel on a 10 year old Suzuki Bigboy 250 – the fastest bike in the group.

Attached File  pic5_for_post.png   243.13K   4 downloads
2011 Ural Retro
1995/1979 Bural  Sportsman/R100
1988 HD FLHS/Watsonian Cambridge
1951 Servicar

1976 BMW R90/6 Motorvation Royale (Sold Aug 18, 2014)

#10 BigJames

BigJames

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 587 posts
  • Joined:12-October 11
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Macon, Ga
  • Interests:Motorcycles, sidecars

Posted 14 October 2015 - 10:19 AM

1st day on the road was uneventful, this is a link to a very boring video of the 1st day ride. http://www.youtube.c...h?v=4ZLLpvxK9_0 That was the last video that the camera managed to save for this part of the trip. I made the cardinal sin of going on a trip, left the tried and true camera at home and brought a new one with new video cards. Lesson learned, glad others took pics! After riding for what seemed to be all day, because it was, I saw Pavel and Cober on the side of the road pointing down a hill, that is where we were camping that night, by a lake. Just ride down the hill and follow the trail to the site. That is where they discovered my total lack of off road skills. Got the Dnepr to the camp site (or may be someone else did, I don't remember) and then we got her stuck on the beach. After getting her out and in a safe place, the light dirt bikes got ridden over to our site and we had a good night with some Vodka, Sala and luke. (Vodka, yummy pork fat and onions. I liked that combo, so did my friends...).
Here is a link to another video: http://www.youtube.c...h?v=N1FBsux0P0g

Attached File  pic6_for_post.png   275.41K   1 downloads

The little fella holding that really big shot glass is Cober's traveling companion... That is Cober's bike.
Next morning we packed up, got the bikes off the sandy beach, got everything packed and we were off again. I found an alternative route out that was a bit more sidecar friendly – and that is my story and I am sticking to it and we started our normal pattern. The 2 guys on the right bikes took off and led the way, then me and way in the back generally Harleych on the tiny moped turned into tiny dual sport. I was carrying most of the stuff so they could enjoy the ride. We all carried gas with us since gas stations are plentiful but spread out and I used mine at least once a day. Buying gas was interesting. In some places you pay get gas then get change, others gas then pay. Never knew and generally they told you, in Russian of course, which way it went so I just assumed pay up front all the time and just let them know this nut on the ancient bike is a crazy American not an old school Russian biker. That was always fun. I also discovered that I am inept at kick starting a Dnepr. I can kick my Retro, no problem, Myrtle (the Beemer powered Ural) a little but the Dnepr confounded me. Down right embarrassing! Oh well, managed to get going every time, so it was a good way to meet people! Next night camping was right outside a village, again on the side of the road. Not many commercial campgrounds in Russia. We rough camped, stopping at markets every night to get stuff for dinner and breakfast. Not a bad way to travel. You know, I think I'll stop right here. Next installment will be the Rally and the ride back out and heading to Murmansk.

Ok, now will wait for Harleych's comments and corrections then on to days 2 and 3 and the Rally (Meeting as it is called in Russia).
2011 Ural Retro
1995/1979 Bural  Sportsman/R100
1988 HD FLHS/Watsonian Cambridge
1951 Servicar

1976 BMW R90/6 Motorvation Royale (Sold Aug 18, 2014)

#11 harleych

harleych

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 976 posts
  • Joined:14-October 04
  • Location:SPb,Rus

Posted 18 October 2015 - 02:41 AM

Luke like onion and as look (see).. Game of words. Look : we drink vodka and eat salo and onion.
for example. from later travel without James
Posted Image
Posted Image
I wrote somewhere...first day we spent lot of time in traffik jaw with sidecar before we started move by roadside

#12 Duke of Ural

Duke of Ural

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 240 posts
  • Joined:27-May 13
  • Gender:Not Telling
  • Location:Colorado USA

Posted 21 October 2015 - 02:23 PM

Fascinating! I'd like to see more of this story.

#13 harleych

harleych

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 976 posts
  • Joined:14-October 04
  • Location:SPb,Rus

Posted 01 November 2015 - 05:35 AM

going home cross Sortavala town
Posted Image
Posted Image

#14 harleych

harleych

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 976 posts
  • Joined:14-October 04
  • Location:SPb,Rus

Posted 01 November 2015 - 05:50 AM

James"s Palace square
Posted Image

#15 harleych

harleych

    Russian Bike Nut

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 976 posts
  • Joined:14-October 04
  • Location:SPb,Rus

Posted 01 November 2015 - 05:58 AM

from left to right: Piter G., B,James and Isaac
Posted Image




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users