Trembling in Telavi

We came, we saw, and we quivered in our little plastic-bag-lined shoes. A delightful Christmas day hike, and subsequent night, spent in a tin-pot shepherds cabin that would rival our shuddering as it aggressively swayed in the wind, clanging and banging until the early hours.

Connecting The World

I recently wrote an article for a culture and travel magazine called ROAM. Featuring incredible stories, guides and inspiring ideas from around the world, ROAM is a great source of inspiration for any traveller. Read my short article about bicycle travel through the link below.

Connecting the world, country
by country

A bicycle journey from India to England

On Two Wheels: Pamir Highway

We left Sary Tash, the last town in Kyrgyzstan, and headed towards the great white wall of mountains looming before us. Meeting many cyclists coming the opposite way with wind-blasted hair, peeling skin and perpetual smiles, we wondered just what was in store for our, then clean, bodies.

After a night spent in no man’s land (with probably the greatest Milky Way display I’ve ever seen) we found ourselves in the midst of the majestic mountains that had sat patiently on the horizon for a few days prior.

5216d793-af93-4a65-9b16-7e191aca042d.jpg

We decided to take the M41 the whole way to Khorog and the road was of fair quality, save a few gravelly passes. An old friend from countries past (@thomasthebelgian) caught up with us in his van and we’d frequently meet to camp together. He was kind enough to lighten our loads over some of the highest passes bringing great relief to our sore knees. It was a great feeling to rock up to camp to find Thomas waiting with cold beer and pancakes – I can’t thank you enough!

If you are thinking of a trip to Central Asia, I must convince you visit Tajikistan and travel this road (one of only a handful in the country). Be it by motorbike, bicycle, van, hitchhiking – all are possible. You will have to regularly pick your jaw up from the floor after every turn as you gape in awe of the ever-changing, ever-beautiful Pamir mountains.

On Two Wheels: Osh to Sary Tash

The road to the Tajik boarder was a slow and steady climb. Ascending a total of 3,900m in three days this was by far the tallest climb I have done. But the road was good, steady and offered beautiful views. We made some friends including four other cyclists and a dog that stayed with us for a couple of days – covering a total of 140kms – finally leaving us as we approached the boarder. We have since heard that she is alive and well, and following some other cyclists that we met while crossing the boarder the opposite way into Kyrgyzstan.

On Two Wheels: Kyrgyzstan

We took the once-a-day 6am train from Bishkek to Balykchy to fast track out of the city. The train costs just 1$ to go nearly 200km making it by far the cheapest / longest train ride I have taken so far. With beautiful views of the mountains either side, and easy to bring your bike on-board,  I highly recommend this scenic detour.

FF0C25AD-E23E-4574-B44B-5C5FD0B3A54C.JPG

I was very surprised how tough our chosen route turned out to be. Perhaps because of the constant headwind or the quality of the road, I really had to battle all day just to get 40km's in. The climbs were extremely steep in some places – our comrade Charlie ended up pushing up the entire 3,000m pass from Kok-Djar.

Making it as far as Kazarman we threw in the towel due to our bowels, and an assortment of other ailments including haemorrhoids and knee issues. We hitched a ride from, Kazarman to Osh and got to enjoy some of the scenery without crying. Kyrgyzstan has definitely been one of my hardest stints to-date but oh boy did the country make up for it in its majesty. Next stop; Tajikistan!