The Long Ride to Japan – Day 16 – Vladivostok (12040 km from home)
At five to seven I was ready for breakfast. The bike was already prepared. I started the ride at a quarter to eight. “Only” 750 km to go. It drizzled. Not unexpected, but according to the forecast, it should soon be dry. That’s why I didn’t put on the rain gear. The roads were wet and very slippery. I forced myself to slow down and to avoid any calamity. I went at 30 km/h in the city and ignored all the traffic behind me. Outside Khabarovsk, I increased the speed to 60-70 km/h, it was incredibly dangerous. The drizzle got stronger and stronger and turned into proper rain. This was nerve-wrecking, any slip and fall could mean the end of the trip, so close to Vlad. After 45 km, the road got better. I had seen a sign in Khabarovsk: Road construcction project for 232 km (!). Later I saw another one: 430 km (!!). This meant that basically all the road between Khabarovsk and Vladivostok was scheduled for a make-up. There were a few good parts, but mostly it was difficult. Not as long as it was dry, but in the wet, all the liquid tar that was used to fill the cracks turned the surface into a skating track. About half the day I had to ride extremely careful.
Then it stopped to rain and there was even same sun rays sometimes. People are definitively more friendly down here. I saw more and more signs of “civilisation”, even a lot of writing in latin letters. More international flair. Finally I entered the larger Vladivostok area. I could not get to the sightseeing point over the Zolotoy Bridge, it was closed off. So I had to improvise, I found a good spot along a main road.
It was done, After 12040 km from home, I had reached my first destination: Vladivostok. Without any major problem. The XBR performed spectacularly. Again. (Later at the hotel, I detected one missing nut. One. Nut. That’s all). Incredible. In a bit more than two weeks. Nothing broken, nothing bent. Honda XBR500.
Sorry, I thought I was at the Rossky bridge, but actually I was at the Zolotoy Bridge 🙂
It returned north to the hotel, but not via the direct route. An accident in the north had collapsed the traffic out of the city. I went south over the bridge and did a huge, but quick detour and arrived at the hotel 30 min later. The hotel is a Kitsch palace like I I have never seen before. Tomorrow will be a total rest day, I’ll write more about the hotel, hehe.
I had some excellent dinner in a huge hall made of logs, accompanied by Russian live music.