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  #1  
Old 15 Nov 2007
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Enterning China via Karakoram Highway (KKH) - timing

Hi there,

I am currently researching when we will enter China for our trip to Australia (fromm UK) in a Land Rover Defender. All the books and advice seems to point to September being the best time to travel this road. I just wanted to double check this with those who have experience of this.

This is actually one of the key parts to the planning, as it will most probably be our most major time restraint, so I want to make sure that it is not a big factor in the trip.

I would like to aim to start the KKH at the beginning of September, with a view to be in China by the 1st October. Can any one see any issues with this?


Thanks for the info

Cheers
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Old 15 Nov 2007
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Thumbs up Kkh

Hi Ollie,

cant advise on the time frame but every time there is a good rainstorm, parts of the nothern, (Besham, northwards), KKH get closed by rockslides. We were stuck for 5 days at Pattan while the road was re-blasted at one point where the road "slipped" down the mountain.

The Chinese border also closes on Oct 15th for (tourist?) traffic.

Have you checked if the customs at Taskorgan can process your vehicle into China?
When we exited via Taskorgan, all the paperwork was done in Kashgar. Facilities are very limited at Tash. The town and every thing in it, more or less shuts down for winter.

Good Chinese weathers listing here: China : Weather Underground

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Old 16 Nov 2007
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You might want to try the caravan cafe in Kashgar (CaravanCafé:HOME) for up to date info. They have a fairly regular stream of tourists passing through on their way from the KKH to the Torugart Pass
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Old 16 Nov 2007
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Thanks for the info

The caravan cafe is now closed (or in take over maybe). Either way, Steve put me in touch with his Chinese contacts who have given me a quote. I have dropped them a mail regarding the timing too, just waiting to hear back.

Hopefully the agency will take care of all the visa stuff, exspecially given the amount they charge! It's still not confirmed that we will definately go, but I really want to.

The other option is to drive the vehicle to Bangladesh and ship from there to Thailand, and fly back to China to back pack for 6 weeks.

Ideally we'll enter China though.

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Old 16 Nov 2007
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"The other option is to drive the vehicle to Bangladesh and ship from there to Thailand, and fly back to China to back pack for 6 weeks."

A much better idea imho. I've spent 9 months in China before, and crossed the KKH into Pakistan around the first week of October. China is quite interesting, but I can't see any real benefit in driving around there - it's a huge country, you have to have your minder with you at all times when driving and the public transport is good. There isn'y any hope of bush camping etc in most places. And the stress of having to organise the paperwork isn't much fun.

Northern Pakistan is simply stunning and if the situation is ok when your there it's well worth spending a month up there. The North West part of China (which is like Tibet, except the people are Muslim so you don't hear about it so much!) is also quite interesting - desert mainly, but you won't be able to poke around at all - you will have a set schedule and need to do about 350km a day and will be greatly over charged for the privilege.

So shipping and backpacking is the best idea ihmo - but if you do try to go - haggle the price like mad. Give a very low price and just stick to that for a while and see what happens.....
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Old 16 Nov 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CornishDeity View Post
The caravan cafe is now closed (or in take over maybe). Either way, Steve put me in touch with his Chinese contacts who have given me a quote. I have dropped them a mail regarding the timing too, just waiting to hear back.

Hopefully the agency will take care of all the visa stuff, exspecially given the amount they charge! It's still not confirmed that we will definately go, but I really want to.
Ollie, try Abdul Wahab at addultour at yahoo.com

I found the Muslim guys to be much more realistic for charges than the Chinese... just my opinion...

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Old 17 Nov 2007
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Ooh great ....

Thanks for that John. I'll pop an email now and see what I get back.

I think the back packing idea could be a goer as well. After reading your post Darrin, I checked the latest shipping and it would seem to be about $1000 to ship to Thailand, which was cheaper than I'd thought. I have dropped na email to the agent, but does any one have an idea about how long that shipping would take?

If we did that then we would fly into China. This might mean we are not there when the Landy arrives in thailand. Does any one know how much we would be charged to store it in Thailand and whther this would cause an issue with customs clearance? All this I have asked the agent, so I may be able to answer my own questions soon.

Still got a year to make up our minds about this part, but this is the key and most probably last bit to fall into place.

Oh, and would we be mad to drive up the KKH to the Chinese border and then turn back and head to Bangladesh? Haven't looked into that at all, just an idea that has popped into my head.

Again, thanks for the handy advice.

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Old 17 Nov 2007
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Email address bounced back

Hi John,

addultour at yahoo.com didn't work. Did I misunderstand?

Thanks
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Old 17 Nov 2007
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addultour at yahoo.com didn't work. Did I misunderstand?
Nope. Just my crap typing

abdultour at yahoo.com

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