i awoke to the sound of heavy rain, fortunately today was spent in a minibus with trailer driving the 140 miles to the Voronino country estate.
A leisurely start at 12.17 due to Finnair deciding the Norwegian guys luggage was needed in Helsinki rather than Moscow! But gave me time to part assemble the bike so I could leave the box in Moscow.
The ride was mostly on motorways, very smooth, apart from the torrential downpours. Interesting to see they use the hard shoulder for undertaking (pun intended). Halfway we had a cafe stop where I was introduced to the delights of sweet pancakes filled with quark and a thick yogurt topping with a black tea, very yummy.
The others seem a very interesting bunch of people so perhaps the tour won’t be as bad as I anticipated.
Tonight we are staying on an old nobles country estate which was recently re-purchased by an ancestor of the pre-revolution owners as we learnt from a tour of the place. Also discovering the huge significance of the St Gotthard pass in Switzerland for the Russians. The estate Is now called Hôtel Usad’ ba
Tonight’s meal was excellent apart from the small portion size.Tomorrow is the first riding day :-)Some pictures of the day are here
Well the adventure had a poor start as whilst waiting for the airport taxi at 7am I discovered my flight was at 8.35 not the midday I thought 🙁 with many expletives muttered I finally got through to BA to change my flight for Sunday at huge expense.
I decided to go to the airport anyway & arrived in T5 at 8.30 and went straight to the ticketing desk where the helpful guy said I could get on the next flight at 10.55 and since their system hadn’t fully registered my earlier change he would just make one charge 🙂 one slight gain from this mistake is he checked my bike in thus avoiding the huge queue at the regular check in desks and also gave me a seat on the emergency exit row.
The flight was uneventful apart from the meal being just an eggy bun! Immigration in Moscow was very efficient and speedy with the bike soon appearing,. Boris the driver from RCTC who are organising my first week on their Golden Ring tour, was waiting for me and after a brief stop at Megaton to get a data SIM (1300 RUB for 30GB) and to hit the cash machine Max 5000RUB a time of we went.
The ride was one hour on beautiful smooth roads, in fact the Moscow circular seems to have 5 lanes, we arrived at the Maxima Irbis hotel.
The hotel is good and I enjoyed dinner sitting with Ian & Catherine from Skeggy who are also doing the ride Next Week.
Hopefully some pictures will appear here…