Chelyabinsk, Russia to Samara, Russia – Day 37

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Sunday, 2 September, 2012  Chelyabinsk, Russia to Samara, Russia (566 miles) Total Trip Miles – 10,260. 14.5 hrs hours riding

Weather Temperature mostly sunny in the upper 40’s with rain & high winds the entire day…by far the worst weather day on the trip so far!!

Like yesterday was one of the better riding days relating to weather…today turned out to be the worst to date on this trip…As I left the hotel in Chelyabinsk, that was absolutely fabulous, it started to rain with temps in upper 40’s…no big deal except the rain and temps continued for the entire day including heavy winds that blew constantly out of the north often making it a challenge to maintain control of the bike.  I truly believe I shivered the entire day and the tension in my back and neck muscles was terribly uncomfortable.  I found myself stopping along the roadside to warm my hands & gloves with the bike exhaust.

The weather also made the roads treacherous for travels and speeds were reduced significantly making progress slow…I continue to be amazed at the number of huge trucks that run these small, two lane roads day to day given these conditions…I suspect the winter months bring even more difficult challenges.

This next section may be too much information but it is one of the realities of cycling across Siberian considering I’m spending something north of 12 hrs a day on the bike.  For the entire trip I have been using Gold Bond powder, but after today, I reached into my bag of tricks and went for the heavy artillery – Baby Anti Monkey Butt Powder…a secret Dave Rose and others has commented about prior to me leaving.  Being wet yesterday for about 14 hrs, it was just time – a fella can’t afford to have issues in those areas!!

If you would like to make a donation to give all kids diagnosed with cancer a better chance at living the full life they deserve, please visit Rally Foundation & Rally Around the World or Text “RALLY” to 85944 to give $10 to WIN the fight against childhood cancer. Send this message to 10 of your friends…Be a RALLY 10 to WIN!

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Omsk, Russia to Chelyabinsk, Russia – Day 36

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Saturday, 1 September, 2012  Omsk, Russia to Chelyabinsk, Russia (628 miles) Total Trip Miles – 9694. 11.5 hrs hours riding

Weather Temperature mostly sunny in the upper 60′s for the period with little or no rain fall…a beautiful day for riding

Unfortunately I inadvertently deleted the copy of this blog…oh well.  The following will be an abbreviated version allowing me some time to update yesterday’s events.

As you are aware, I was fortunate enough to spend the night with Vitaliy and his family…he is a member of the Siberian Bears Bike club and was an excellent host – started our day early with some local bakery pastries and hot tea…that right hot tea.  Russian’s commonly drink hot tea with any meal and/or event.

Vitaliy drove me out to the bike clubhouse to get my bike – it was in a secure location surrounded by a wall and gate…I guess secure enough for my tastes since Vitaliy and most of the members leave their bikes on the grounds.  To get a better sense the place, it reminds me of what folks in my family would call a hide out – nothing fancy, but with all the necessary ammenities – refrigerator, sink, grill, seating, porch and the like… basically a great get away spot for these guys.

After packing up the bike, Vitalily lead me through town to get me on the right main road up to Chelyabinsk.  The ride was a bit long; however the weather made it for one of the nicest riding days on the trip.

Most Russian cities have churches similar to the one posted above often ornately decorated in this traditional style and architecture.  Like the churches, most cemeteries are have fenced plots with are colorfully painted often with many flowers and other arrangements…they can be spotted on virtually every horizon.

As he sun started to settle in the afternoon sky and I rolled into Chelyabinsk, I was amazed at the hotel Melissa Smith, one of my co-workers at NDC, booked for me…it was a magnificant spot probably 20 stories high and would rival any hotel around the world…staff spoke good English and the breakfast buffet was terrific the next morning.  I had planned on grabbing some dinner at the bar; however, I ended up falling asleep in a chair in my room…

If you would like to make a donation to give all kids diagnosed with cancer a better chance at living the full life they deserve, please visit Rally Foundation & Rally Around the World or Text “RALLY” to 85944 to give $10 to WIN the fight against childhood cancer. Send this message to 10 of your friends…Be a RALLY 10 to WIN!