Leaving Iran was a pleasant experience as we enjoyed some cakes with some very pleasant officials. Pakistan was just as friendly telling the girls they can disgard their hot garb. Met a young English chap taking an Enfield back to England, Tough ask. Back to left hand drive and enjoy the entertaining trucks and buses. What decorations and those horns!!!! Stop and talk to a German couple on an old XT500..full of enthusiasm and lust for those never ending roads.The road on this leg was quite good. Arriving at Dalbandin around 6.30pm saw us dock the bikes in a lockup garage under the Hotel. Our first curry of lamb with rice and nan bread. We survived.
We bought black market Iranian fuel at half the price of the local brew as the road east to Quetta slowly deteriorated.
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Iranian petrol sells on the black market in Pakistan
There were areas where the desert sand had encroached onto the roads. Attempting to ride through some at too slow a speed saw us stall and fall. No damage, just embarrassed. Numerous road blocks for passport checks has us riding over frayed steel cables. One too many saw the rear tyre collect one of these traps so it was out with the repair kit to fix only our second puncture of the trip. The numerous passport checks combined with the flat tyre caused us to arrive in Quetta after dark. Slowing to avoid traffic congestion I locked the front brake on the glass like road and hit the deck harder than I would like. I am sporting a very blue ankle at the moment. Not a good day for us.
K & C on the road to Quetta, Pakistan.
We spent the night at the Muslim Hotel. Not recommended..very dirty. Moved to the Bloom Star the next day and met up with Luke and Niki travelling on a R100GSPD (See www.HorizonsUnlimited.com E-zine) Good to hear that Aus accent again and great company to boot. We caught one of those overdecorated three wheelers into town the next day and found a shop that did money exchange, internet and sold western food . A little gold mine. All of us suffering a little from the dreaded tummy rumbles at the moment.
The next day we balance Lukes' bikes carbs with my vacuum guages . All the bikes are packed and we depart in different directions. We loose an hour trying to find the right road to Loralai. Finding the correct junction Carol is hit by a stone throwing kid as a parting jesture. At a Police check point we take a short cut road that turns into a dust bowl with roadworks that have been in progress for years it appears. The road was rough but paved in most other sections and we were making good time until we had another flat tyre. The rear again. This time the heavy duty tube had split along a mould line under the patch. Any explanations would be welcome. The original hole repaired was all but a pin prick and the split ran either side of this small hole. I have used the glue and patches on another punture with no problems and actually am still using the front tube carrying one of these patches. Plenty of helpers doing this repair as half a village turned up to view our antics. Replaced both the tyre and tube this time. All this occurred 12 kms outside our destination.
D G Kahn was our destination today but heavy truck trafice made the going slow. Mark had a fall today in the gravel avoiding oncoming traffic on a one lane road. A broken indicator lens and a dent in the tank was the only damage. Claire, not to be outdone dropped hers on top on a mountain while stopping to look at the view. Damage... a broken mirror. We spent the night at Fort Munro Family Inn and can thoroughly reccommend this oasis. Absolutely spotless and plenty of hot water. Great hospitality.
Petrol stop at Loralai
Heading to D G Kahn playing with the trucks on the mountain passes seems easier when your fresh and we make short work of the difficult overtaking manouvres. Everyone even had time to stop and take photos. Past D G Kahn and onto Muzaffagarh (!!!) we stop for a coke. A guru type entertains the crowd that gathers. A lot of laughing, probably at us... what a mottly crew . 30 kms from town (Mianwali) I have to find a toilet fast. Must get this sorted before we go much further. Welcome to Pakistan!!!
Departing Mianwali we travel through groves of trees, mostly eucalyptus, which break up the hot highway . The surface is good although a little rough at times. Our tents are pitched at the Islamabad Tourist Camp by 3.00pm that day as our minds begin to list the chores we have to attend before the Karakoram Highway. Three Germans on BMW's are camped here and they sing the praises of the KKH so much so that they have decided to go back and have another look.
We also meet Daniel on a KLR650 travelling the world. All the way from the USA. We had quite a party at the Australia Club on Thursday night for beers and a BBQ. Our chores include an extension on our visa for another 30days.
Carrying two tyres on our top box (since Turkey) has taken its toll. The vertical bolt holding the subframe to the main frame has broken the welded thread from the frame. All is welded and repaired now and the stearing head bearings have been replaced. The right rocker cover centre bolt has stripped out of the head. A temporary repair has been done. The new tyres have been fitted. We are ready for the KKH. News is that there is snow close to the Chinese border so we will not make it all the way up.
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Very loaded up bike in Baluchistan, Pakistan.
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