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Northern Asia Topics specific to Russia, Central Asia (also known as "the 'stans"), Mongolia, Japan and Korea
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  #1  
Old 8 Oct 2010
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BAM Road doubts

Hi
I am planning a trip across Russia next summer and I would like to do the western part of the BAM road, from Tayshet to Sverobaykalsk.
Thanks to the "BAM Road" report I've became a fan!; and my idea is to get as close as possible to the rail track, avoiding tarmac

I've been (earth) googling this part of the region and came across the 'closed city' of Zheleznogosrsk.
What options do I have?
One is to follow the p419 from Vidim (or Stosgorodok) to Khrebtovaya bypassing Zheleznogosrsk.
But, could it be possible to follow the rail track from Vidim to Selezvevsky, crosssing the river to Shestakovo and go on to Korshunovsky, and through forest tracks, get to the BAM rail tracks again, near Khrebtovaya?

The case above is an example of the 2 different lines one can see on the OSM map, between Bratsk and Ust-Kust. The p419 road and the BAM rail track sometimes diverge. My general question would be of one has to follow the p419 or if its possible to go all the way by the rail tracks.

Cheers
PB
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Old 8 Oct 2010
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On our BAM ride last year we followed the 'main' road (p419?) from Усть Куt to Братск through Янталь and Видим. We had not considered being closer to the rail track on this link.

None of my maps suggested anything, otherwise Terry and I would have tried it. Colebatch agreed with our route, went on a diversion for a couple of weeks, then followed our main road route from Yst Kut to the Trans Sib Highway without even attempting where we failed. His other maps might show more, but he is crossing Turkey/SE Europe right now.

Where we failed was west of Вихоревка. Our maps & GPS showed some tracks in places but nothing complete and some parts showed nothing at all on any sources. All locals said impossible - one reconsidered and changed it to very doubtful.

We tried.
We tried hard.

Where we called it a day we could have got half a kilometer further further to the next brow after a deep muddy dip - but what was beyond? And the logging track was getting wetter, more churned, deeper and softer.

We were both very 'ride fit' after a month on the BAM road alone, so we were not being softies about the decision to turn back here.

Photos and description in my posts numbers 780, 794 and 805 from here The BAM Road - ultimate test of man and machine - Page 52 - ADVrider

Other than the failed section above, the road from Servobaikalsk to Bratsk, then south to the Trans Sib Highway to Taishet was a cruise. Mostly good tarmac or good graded gravel. Nothing like east of Servobaikalsk which was an entirely different matter!

Good luck and enjoy.
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Old 8 Oct 2010
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Afterthought. What after Sevrobaikalsk?

The only land way in or out is to turn back or continue on the BAM route.
You could take the railway itself. There are hydrofoil ferry services on Lake Baikal, but I doubt would take a bike.
There is no through road/route around the lake.

To get to Irkutsk you would have to retrace to near Magistralny, and tun left/south onto the new (and completely unmapped) Zigalovo Trackt. This is a dirt road of varying, but generally good, quality until tarmac resumes at Ka.
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Old 8 Oct 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony P View Post
Afterthought. What after Sevrobaikalsk?

The only land way in or out is to turn back or continue on the BAM route.
You could take the railway itself. There are hydrofoil ferry services on Lake Baikal, but I doubt would take a bike.
There is no through road/route around the lake.

To get to Irkutsk you would have to retrace to near Magistralny, and tun left/south onto the new (and completely unmapped) Zigalovo Trackt. This is a dirt road of varying, but generally good, quality until tarmac resumes at Ka.
So is there no link between Bratsk and Tynda along the BAM? I thought you guys made it through

been meaning to look at this in more detail as I plan on taking a look in the 4x4 in 2013.

G
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Old 8 Oct 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Griffdowg View Post
So is there no link between Bratsk and Tynda along the BAM? I thought you guys made it through
There is a link - the BAM road. And we did do it.

A bit problematic at times but, as you saw in the ADV thread we met Poles in 4X4s coming the other way who did it as far as Tynda before turning south for Mongola.

8340SU said he was planning to follow the BAM east only as far as Sevrobaikalsk.
My second post was a query as to what was he proposing to do once he got there, as there is nowhere else to go except further along the BAM to Tynda - or turn back.
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Old 8 Oct 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony P View Post
There is a link - the BAM road. And we did do it.

A bit problematic at times but, as you saw in the ADV thread we met Poles in 4X4s coming the other way who did it as far as Tynda before turning south for Mongola.

8340SU said he was planning to follow the BAM east only as far as Sevrobaikalsk.
My second post was a query as to what was he proposing to do once he got there, as there is nowhere else to go except further along the BAM to Tynda - or turn back.
sorry Tony, I misread your posts. I thought those places were along the BAM

I will likely pick your brains along with Colebatch closer to the time if that is ok.

G
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Old 8 Oct 2010
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Ask anything, anytime.

We don't know it all, but we are happy to share what we think we know.

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Old 8 Oct 2010
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If Zheleznogorsk is a closed city then my only advice is to stick with the BAM road ... the P419.

Maybe its a pity, but the road between Bratsk and Severobaikalsk is not that tough ... its 90% dirt, with a few short bits of asphalt. As Tony says, it can be a bit tougher and more interesting between Taishet and Bratsk.
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Old 10 Oct 2010
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Thanks for your answers and advice.
I will try to follow the track from Taishet to Bratsk... and see what happens.

After Severobaikalsk I will turn around and follow the "Zigalovo Trackt" to Olkhon island.

PB
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Old 13 May 2011
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Вихоревка to Taishet

Quote:
Where we failed was west of Вихоревка. Our maps & GPS showed some tracks in places but nothing complete and some parts showed nothing at all on any sources. All locals said impossible - one reconsidered and changed it to very doubtful.
Okay, understanding that you can't "know" - that track you and Terry got bogged down in looked like a "road in the making".

Think it's better this year ? Again, I understand you're speculating, nonetheless.

Kurt
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