Hi Walter, sounds like the ravings of a bloke who's been indoors looking outdoors too long! The RoB stage would be your only chance to relax!
Been in touch with the BAM author who tells me AFAHR there's is not much of a track alongside the BAM - no surprise there. And as there is a daily train the track would see a lot less traffic than the RoB so I wonder if it even exists much of the time? I suppose there is the railway between trains and over rivers.
up to date Russian Road atlas
Is that the £35 one - yes I'd like to borrow it as it happens. Had a quick look at it in Stanfords the other day, but not long enough to see much.
I read about some RTW HPV'ers who paddled and pedalled and skied across from Alaska in winter and planned to take the Lenska in summer but among other stuff (like falling out) got put off by ...
hundreds of kilometers of rough travel without access to immunization from a notorious tick (species Ioxodes) very active in the region at this time of year (one of ten bites is deadly, but immunizations are available in cities such as Irkutsk)
Still, they were on pushbikes so would have got eaten alive.
the Lensky Trakt ... a zimnik (winter road) that follows the Lena from Yakutsk back to Ust Kut. If you get stuck there are plenty of boats and hydrofoils to bail out with.
As I understand it the Lena River IS the zimnik, there is no continuous riverside road much as in summer the towns rely on boats. In between they bomb it asap to stop the block ice backing up the river and flooding like it did in 2001 (Lensk was ruined, Yak got flooded).
There is also a decent road from Yakutsk to Lensk (2/3 of the way back to Ust Kut), that heads West first and then south ... and not following the Lena river.
Yes, read about this one somewhere too - this would be the summer 'letnik' such as it is. Are you sure it's 'decent'? No trains or boats to bail you out on this one.
I think it would be a job for ag bikes - it's like the Darien but without so many bandits and about 80 times as long! To do it in one summer you'd have to take the rivers as you find them so would want something like this:
Stick a branch through each wheel of the bike and sit it on a blow up pontoon each side.
Or lay the bike on a pair of Alpackas - they weigh less than 2kg each:
Then followers could get towed over too. It all sounds so easy behind a keyboard!
River of No Reprieve
As it happens I just tracked that down yesterday and was going to buy it so I'll borrow that too if I may. Clearly we are on the same diabolical wavelength...
PS, nice westher forecast: