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Old 05-11-2018, 04:29 PM   #113
glitch
Mapping the next ride...
 
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Melbourne
Posts: 16,458
Default Re: Balkans_2018...You Only Live Once!

Lessons learnt and other random musings...
.... wiser in hindsight.





PLANNING an average 250km/ day throughout the 3 week trip was too much. 170-200 would have been about right.

FALLING over with a 650cc or 300cc bike on top doesn't make a difference to the pain of a busted rib.

ANY repeat ride would be based from a "starfish" location, rather than a peripheral spot like Bucharest, requiring huge commutes.

THE G310GS
is a damn capable bike for its size...but it's way too busy for a tourer. Getting squashed by one, I'd like to try a 130kg stripped version.

NEVER, EVER assume ANY national road designation in Albania counting for a ride-able road...you could well be in for an afternoon at the MX-track.

DON'T
flinch, don't buck...just keep the hammer down and the boots ready to kick when you see packs of strays...they are NOT cuddly!!

DISREGARD
speed-limits to stay alive, nobody gives a shit incl. the rare constabulary. 30-50kmh over is about normal, 10-30kmh in towns. Always go with the fastest local.


ALWAYS creep to the front of the vehicle queue at a border-post, you''ll get processed together with the Lycra-mob and pedestrians.


IF YOU ever see a cop in Bulgaria, stop them at the next cafe and shout 'em whatever they want...they deserve it!

MISS your booked net-discount car-rental pickup by a day and the re-arrangements cost more than an Avis-retail rate.

INDULGE in your overseas riding + driving freedom... coming home to VIC/ AUS is like going back to prison.

JOINING the local riders mandates thongs, shorts and a loud T-shirt....and a Gixxer Thou at full noise with the nose in the sky. Wave to the cops...

ALWAYS check the emergency lane of local freeways for the freshest fruit+ veg bargains.

ANY side road in Albania can explosively spit out hordes of old men on pushbikes at any time of day or night, going in any direction usually across the main road.

DON'T slow down for livestock, pigs, donkeys, geese, goats, whatever....if it's smaller than you, it'll be fine, just prepare for impact...and the farkin mess.

ALWAYS
carry Euros in small denominations, they'll pay for HWY-tolls, flattened chooks/ geese/ducks, coffee and most other incidentals...everywhere!

DO NOT
rely on credit cards across the Balkans...you could be sleeping rough and chew fingernails for dinner.

ENGLISH is the most common 2. language all around...but be fluent in "hand+feet" + practice charades in front of the mirror at home!! Works Magic, that!

STRAP on EVERY BLOODY set of rental panniers with your jox-elastics or whatever you have...or prepare for a week-long search for your prized possessions.

DON'T assume any intelligence by Customs officials...ONE passport, ONE set of vehicle papers, ONE Green Card at a time!! Got that??

DO YOUR
homework on SIM-card providers, our Tellink-Roaming worked damn well right across the Balkan countries visited. A rarity, apparently.





more "wisdom" and bullshit to come...
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Cheers
Pete
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