July 11, 2013 GMT
Retreat (and advance) from Volgograd

For most of the trip we haven't known where we were, where we were going and very often where we had been.

wherearewe.jpg

After leaving Kazakhstan, and its wild and unpredictable roads, we followed the Volga down to Volgograd. For those of higher age, it was formally known as Stalingrad and flattened during the war as Hitler tried gain it as a prize, and access to the oil fields of the Caucuses. However the Germans never had their way and gave up in 1943. They continue to honour the defiance to this day.

defiance.jpg

Mike and I reviewed our route options, we thought we would have arrived here about 2 weeks later. Unfortunately our personal route preferences differed, Mike still had time left before he needed to return to work and favoured a more southern route back to Europe then into France. I was more for heading north, for me the trip was about finishing the RTW and getting home, or more importantly back to Jean.

Over dinner of “suicide menu”, when we let the staff choose because we cannot decipher it, we decided it was best to go our separate ways. We had done the “boys own” stuff crossing Eastern Siberia and Kazakhstan. Now we were back in the European continent having crossed the River Ural in Kazakhstan a few days earlier.

The wild east was behind us and the tame west ahead.

At least I would not have to contemplate avoiding the use of one of these again.

shithole.jpg

The next morning we both woke early, packed and left the motel. I turned right, up the M6, north and west seemed fitting as that would be the route when I got back to England. Mike took the next junction, the M21, south and west.

Don't assume the “M” means motorway, “Main” would be a better word. Single carriage way outside cities. But in this part of Russia good smooth tarmac. Head down, throttle open, Calais was in my sights. Only 3500 kilometres, I was ending the trip as we started it. A headlong dash across a continent.

All I needed to worry about was who would fix my bike if it broke again ?

As I left the Ukraine 2 days later, approaching my final 'proper' border crossing I was stopped for speeding. I had missed seeing the town sign and was still doing 90 KMH, even though it was a motorway, it passed through towns and villages. I chose to play dumb as he tried to explain I needed to go to a bank and pay the fine.

Every time he said bank, I pointed towards the border and said “border”. Eventually he gave up, screwed the paper work up and said “go”. I grabbed my documents from his dashboard, stuffed them in my pocket and high tailed it before he changed his mind.

Posted by Bruce Porter at July 11, 2013 07:56 AM GMT
 


HU DVD Summer Special!

Now that summer is here, get On the Road! Take 30% off the Achievable Dream - On the Road! 2-DVD set until August 31 only. Get On the Road! Learn the tips to staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure!

Our veteran travellers share their tips (and great stories) for staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure.

"A fantastic, informative and inspirational DVD."

"It's brilliant - thank you very much!"

Check it out at the HU Store! Remember to use Coupon Code 'ONTHEROAD' on your order when you checkout.


Renedian Adventures

What others say about HU...

"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada

"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia

"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders

contest pic

10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!

NEW! HU 2014 Adventure Travel T-shirts! are now available in several colors! Be the first kid on your block to have them! New lower prices on synths!

HU 2014 T-shirts now in!

Check out the new Gildan Performance cotton-feel t-shirt - 100% poly, feels like soft cotton!


What turns you on to motorcycle travel?


Global Rescue, WORLDwide evacuation services for EVERYONE

Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!


New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80 G/S motorcycle.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.


Books & DVDs

amazon

All the best travel books and videos listed and often reviewed on HU's famous Books page. Check it out and get great travel books from all over the world.


Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!

Motorcycle Express

MC Air Shipping, (uncrated) USA / Canada / Europe and other areas. Be sure to say "Horizons Unlimited" to get your $25 discount on Shipping!
Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!

Story and photos copyright ©

Sorry, you need a Javascript enabled browser to get the email address and dates. You can contact Horizons Unlimited at the link below. Please be sure to tell us WHICH blog writer you wish to contact.

All Rights Reserved.

Contact the author:

Editors note: We accept no responsibility for any of the above information in any way whatsoever. You are reminded to do your own research. Any commentary is strictly a personal opinion of the person supplying the information and is not to be construed as an endorsement of any kind.

Hosted by: Horizons Unlimited, the motorcycle travellers' website!
You can have your story here too - click for details!