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Old 17 Jan 2006
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Iranian Desert

I'm doing London -> Kathmandu later this year. Having done the Sahara (in a 4x4) a few years ago I'm quite keen to have a crack at some desert on the bike this time.

Anyone travelled off-road in the Persian desert? Any resources anyone knows of other than general desert travel guides (I think I've got all those).

So far my web and HUBB searches have only turned up the fact that the salt flats are to be avoided.

Thanks in advance.

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Old 17 Jan 2006
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We crossed the Dasht-e-Kavir desert the August month with one bike two-up with my girl friend and i'd avoid it at any cost this time of year - killing hot more than +40C (!)

My air-oil cooled BMW boxer showed there it's bravery and took abuse - it did not overheat while i kicked it very hard, but it sure ran hot.

The Dasht-e-Kavir desert's stunning beauty left itself as one of the main highlight of out Iran expedition - truly original scenery and especially the mountain chains in the middle of desert is stunning, they just like cut trough the flat land and rocket into heights - huge contrasts, after seeing this you don't question why they have so much earthquakes there...

The desert varies starting from clay-like material till real sand dunes on some parts, lot of salt lakes. No civilisation there in the summer, not even nomads want to be there, they come back on side parts of the desert in winter months.

Couple of pictures from there:

To go alone there sounds foolish. Take a LOT of water (we also had dehydration stuff with us). No fuel in 600km (!) if you want to cross it on it's longer side as we did. We had 41 litre fuel tank and it was on it's limit. We didn't had any cell phone coverage there, so if something happends off the main road (few of them cross it) you're on your own - take sattelite phone if you have a chance if planning to leave main road.

But aside this all, it really is fantastic place, not that "commercial" and known as Sahara for adventure motorcyclists.

It'll be real real shame if the World Police yanks starts to invade this fabilous contry... Hope you can visit before it and experience the stunning friendliness of iranian and nomad people!

Hope this helps, Margus

[This message has been edited by Margus (edited 16 January 2006).]
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Old 17 Jan 2006
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Thanks very much Margus! Those photos are fantastic.

We'll be travelling as a four, two of us have crossed the Sahara (using Chris's routes) in a 4x4 but this time we will be on bikes. We will be very conservative about fuel and water calculations and we're working on a satellite phone but like the Sahara we will assume that even if we can make a phone call we will be on our own if we hit trouble.

We'll be there in October so hopefully the temperatures will not be quite so extreme as when you were there. We're also using BMWs (R1200GS).

I was not sure whether to actually do that desert but those photos sold me completely

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