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Went that way 2 years ago with my girlfriend, but our trip was a bit earlier. By 25th of November we were already in North India, and heading south.
We started off from Helsinki the 9th of October, went to Germany first because of a cold front in the Baltic states, and had great luck with the weather, just sunshine all the way through Eastern Europe (about 10 to 15C daytime, 0 to +5 night), and some rain in Greece. Crossed to Turkey on Oct 25th, a little bit cooler, but still nice and dry in western/central parts of the country.
Eastern Turkey, now that might be your real challenge, because it is very mountainous. Around Erzurum and Dogubayazit it does get very, very cold in the winter. Think you´ll actually need some luck to get through there with non-freezing temperatures, even in the daytime, and you´re likely to get some snow or ice on the roads, too. We were there during the first days of November, and had maybe 2 to 8C daytime, -5 to 0C nighttime, and some snow in the nearby mountains, but none on the road. Was actually a bit warmer than we had expected.
But sure this is likely to vary from year to year, and if you´re not in a hurry, you could consider to stay put somewhere, and wait for a suitable time. Someone mentioned there´s even the option of a train from Ankara to Teheran, too, but I dont know more about it.
Crossing at Bazargan, it levels off a bit just a few hundred kms into Iran, so then it´s likely to get warmer, too. We got around 20C daytime in that region, and it just kept getting warmer all the time, crossed into Pakistan 12th of November (was already close to 30C daytime), and then into India about a week later. So for us, after eastern Turkey, the problem was likely to be the heat, not cold.
But while in India, probably around Christmas, we did see some news broadcasts coming from northwest¢ral Iran, with plenty of snow, and big pile-ups of cars in the ditches on both sides of the road. So even though it probably does not happen very often, winter can be a problem even in Iran!
At the time of our trip the southern border(s) from Turkey to Iran were not recommended because of the tense political situation, I don´t know how it is now. Or if going that way would get you into Iran with less freezing temperatures.
BTW if you go from Van to Dogubayazit through the Tendurek Gecidi pass, watch out for some VERY big and nasty-looking dogs running from the houses, and chasing you... happened to us some 4-5 times on a maybe 50kms stretch of road, and we had a few pretty hairy moments with them!
No, after India we freighted the bike by air to Bangkok, we were actually heading to Australia (and freighted the bike back home from Sydney).... So I havent gone that way you mention, but I think the Karakoram Highway will be closed for the winter, and also crossing into China is a big problem (though not impossible it seems)... by searching the HUBB I think you´ll be able to find lots of info on these.
If you want, you can check out: MOTO-Ykkönen - Matkalla
(as of now only partly in English, but I will translate it fully, while I´ve got time)
I think I'll wait a bit then.
I was looking at GoogleEarth and the temperatures were pretty variable.
Meant to say, that during this time, when the winter is coming, that´s when the weather may vary between tolerable/intolerable (for riding a bike - with sort-of-normal gear, that is, so not assuming you´ll be carrying heated gloves, studded tyres, etc).
But the mountain regions of Eastern Turkey most likely will be intolerably cold during midwinter months. With its elevation it looks to be quite comparable to northern Finland, and that certainly is the case here. Minus Celsius even in the daytime, and often drops down to -10 or -20 in the nighttime. And when the wind blows from Russia, it gets even a lot colder than that. Not fun, and not do-able without very special gear and expertise.
So if it looks to be do-able now, I think I wouldn´t wait around too long, because your next chance could appear in March or April.
If I need to find out about the weather, I often use accuweather.com, or a similar website. The forecasts 1-2 days ahead are usually pretty good, and naturally their reliability drops the further away in time you check.
There's a dutch couple who're just on their way back cause they heard only bad stories about crossing pakistan while they were in Iran.
They faced a lot of snow and ice on their way now and they managed to take a train from Iran back to Istanbul. It's worth to take a look at their website: waarisrick.nl, they also crossed Iraq!
We want to do the same route (and on to australia) next september and plan to be in iran before end of october because of the wheather....
A friend of mine travelled from India to Europe at this time of year and it was very cold and very uncomfortable, he had a lot of snow in Iran and eastern Turkey and ended up with his bike on a bus. Delay your travels for a few months and actually enjoy it.
Weather-wise I think the eastern part of Turkey will be the most critical part on the whole route. It has a long and severe winter, and right now I would not want to be traveling there on a motorcycle, I would perhaps plan to do it next time around March-April. Also good to keep in mind, the exact time when seasons change, could vary from year to year.
And after that area, you´re most likely to get snow in central Turkey, and some parts of northeastern Iran (and also depending on where in Europe you´ll be starting from of course!)
hey, i will be heading from iran into turkey around early march. i will have tkc's but no studs for tyres. can anyone help with the following?:
1. can studs be purchased in iran or near turkish border, if so where?
2. what would the daytime temps be like?
3. does anyone have any more info on the tehran-ankara or tehran-istanbul train?
4. is anyone silly enough to want to join up?
5. are roads still likely to be affected by ice / snow or closed?
AM DOING THE SAME TRIP BUT STARTING A LITTLE LATER (MID- MARCH) DUE TO THE WEATHER.
AM CURRENTLY VISITING FRIENDS IN GERMANY (STUTTGART). THE WEATHER HERE AT THE MO:
NORTH, WEST & CENTRAL GERMANY = BITTERLY COLD, FREQUENT AND HEAVY SNOWFALL, HIGH RISK OF BLACK ICE
SOUTH WEST GERMANY (STUTTGART) = LIGHT SNOWFALL, TEMPERATURE AROUND ZERO , MODERATE RISK OF BLACK ICE.
SUCH WEATHER IS LIKELY TO CONTINUE.
A TURKISH PERSON I SPOKE TO RECENTLY SAID THAT THIS TIME OF YEAR ESPECIALLY IN CENTRAL & E TURKEY IS BITTERLY COLD WITH HEAVY SNOWFALL DUE TO ALTITUDE.
HOPE THIS HELPS. ALL THE BEST
PS: WHERE IN THE UK DID YOU GET YOUR VISAS FOR IRAN & PAKISTAN? ANY PROBLEMS? CHEERS
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