Roadtrip 2018 Balkan Edition - In the Game of Shades, you win or you fry

leviathan

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Have some random pictures of the awesome roadtrip. More pics and some videos to come soon.


Heading into Montenegro highlands.


Kotor bay ferry.


Old Bridge in Mostar.


Some other bridge in Mostar.


Rama lake in Bosnia, unedited.


Town of Omis in Croatia.


A coastal road in Croatia.


"Ice's road" down into Kotor bay.


More "Ice's road" down into Kotor bay.


"Breakfast place" in Montenegro highlands.


Meeting a random german firetruck-converted-to-camper on H-plates in the middle of nowhere, Albania.
 
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nicjasno

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All of my pics and videos: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/348rt2ecsdegv64/AACRE_sVpsq-9vhRCt9T197ka?dl=0

A man between his best friends. His car and a dog.
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Liga being classy at a bosnian fuel station. Also, look at those fuel prices (in convertible marks). So cheap!
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Visiting communist monuments:
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Enjoying some views
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A happy panda driver
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Bosnian breakfast:
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Waiting for breakfast in Montenegro, which was also awesome:
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A belgian man fixing a tire:
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People standing around and doing nothing, while looking good:
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A man conquering the wind:
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A finish woman in camuflage:
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People getting confused in sarajevo "where is that cevapcici joint..."
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Invading an airbase:
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A man buys some car parts:
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Pandistas:
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Selfies need to be taken everywhere:
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This pic sums up the roadtrip the best i think:
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DanRoM

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nicjasno;n3552287 said:
I vote for balkan road trip 2.0 next year. There's so much more to explore and some roads need a revisit.
Luckily I have another vehicle to change things up a bit... :D

P.S.: Yes, my pictures. I'm working on them and will post a proper trip review either tonight or tomorrow.
 

leviathan

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Have some more random pics from the last couple days of the trip.


A road.


Valley of Panda wheel bearing replacement in Slovenia.


View from the Mangart pass.


One of the stops on Großglockner in Austria.


The road to that stop.


Some more road to that stop.


National Parking Lot, 2369m above sea level, Großglockner, Austria.
 

DanRoM

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So, here comes my review, with a small fraction of my pictures. Because I was on the bike all day mostly, of course I didn't take that many pictures. And there are far more talented people with better equipment anyway.


I was starting directly after work on the Friday before roadtrip, planning a two-and-a-half-day journey to the starting point at 47's house.




Ready to go. So clean still!




The first lake my bike saw on the trip - Erlaufsee in Mitterbach am Erlaufsee (you don't say), Austria.


After having a good pre-trip with not only awesome Austrian roads, but also seeing a lunar eclipse, Mars and the ISS within a few minutes, I joined nicjasno, MXM, public and his girlfriend in Maribor and we continued together into Croatia.




Opening dinner at 47's family's restaurant.




How many people can fit into an MX-5? Answer: Not many.




Cuteness overload.






At the first of many sights on our way, of course everyone had to take pictures. :)




IceBone set up a group shot.




First overnight stop on the trip proper: The astonishingly beautiful Rama Lake in the middle of nowhere, Herzegovina.




Also, this is the general area where German cars go to die (temporary non-export plate from 2011...)




The next day, we left the bikes and some of the cars and went to Sarajevo.






Taking pictures while moving like the professionals we are.




In Sarajevo, we parked our cars - a process that took half an hour because the parking garage was very full - and continued to explore the inner city on foot (oh the shock!).







Some ruins even older than from the 1990s...




What did I say about German vehicles going here? This one, still alive and kicking (smoke). :)




DaHitch, IceBone and Eye-Q cooling off in the evening. We (well, @Misrabelle) were even friendly enough to bring them the beer they demanded!


The next day, after another one of those very healthy light breakfasts (*cough*), we continued towards Montenegro, but had a sightseeing stop in Mostar on the way.




Neretva River and Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque




The famous Stari most bridge, complete with...




... divers.They first collected money from the tourists before jumping, of course.






Also, the souvenir shops had some curious items...


After Mostar, we finally headed through some very deserted area and had much fun on very empty roads before entering Montenegro and thanks to a local in front of us, not getting pulled over for speeding (his sacrifice is hereby ackowledged), and ending up in the very touristy Bay of Kotor.





Having spent the night in a house with A/C in every bedroom (yes, I remember the important things!), we continued towards Albania (in and out, we were there and survived :D).




DaBoom's and my bike a few hundred metres after crossing the border.


On that day, the group had been split, and it was just the three bikes and leviathan. We left him behind in the border traffic jam back into Montenegro and continued to our next stop, Žabljak. Some light rain could not really stop our enjoyment, especially with landscape like this:




Tara Canyon. We basically rode down in these clouds.




DaBoom also enjoying the view.


The day after that, nearly everyone abandoned the planned route in favour of a shortcut, which was a wise decision considering the three-hour traffic jam at the Croatian border. However, DaBoom and I went the planned route. Or at least something similarly long. Because bikes. We caught up to the others at the border. Thanks 47 for the rehydration service. :) :thumbsup: Must be a funny sight to see lanesplitting bikes suddenly stop, get beverages from a random car, and the continue. :D




One of the broader sections of road we encountered that day.




Bay of Kotor from above.




And finally, the Adriatic Sea (at Cavtat)! Time for an evening swim before dinner.


A main topic at dinner that day was the dreadful border crossing and the fact that there was a transit through Bosnia and Herzegovina, meaning two more border crossings. For the morning of the following day, a visit to the old town of Dubrovnik was also planned. Because I've been there fairly recently and after Mostar didn't really feel the need to walk through another scorching hot old city in riding gear, I volunteered to be the advance party and scout the route while the others do sightseeing (or repair a car). This worked out splendidly, even though it meant that I was alone for the whole day, which felt weird.




View of Dubrovnik.




Some Dalmatian islands.




Suddenly, after having been a bit inland, I found myself at the edge of the water again, but very high up...




Getting close to destination: Cetina Canyon at Omiš.




Later, the others joined and we devoured a melon.


Next day: getting up to the same viewpoint I had stopped the evening before. Some driving pictures:










DaBoom climbing all the things. Thanks for not attempting a handstand up there. ;)


We ventured further inland and had a cooling stop at Krka National Park.





After that, I split from the group to visit relatives at Sukošan, where I spent the afternoon at the beach.




Also, I had a nice sundown...


... before continuing my journey to catch up with the others at camp, which was over two hours away. Well, a bit less than two hours, because I had the time of my riding life on absolutely stunning roads. Which I didn't really see, because darkness. There is no photo or video evidence from there, and that's good...


Next day's leg was short in kilometres, but usual in time, because we went to the disused Željava military airfield.




leviathan posing for Fairlady




The coolest place of the trip, literally. Everyone wanted to stay there for a while...




Fairlady playing a round of Minesweeper




Then drag racing commenced.


We continued our trip towards Slovenia, and encountered a few difficulties. One was planned, namely getting new wheel bearings for MXM's Panda and installing them at @Aleennn's place (thanks man, you're awesome to welcome us!), but there was also Eye-Q having a flat tyre somewhere while on his own and DaBoom also having a leak in the rear tyre, meaning he set off with IceBone to get new tyres as well (this was also planned, but became more urgent).


The final leg before the long Autobahn stint to Ringmeet consisted of driving up Mangart, making a required photo stop at some random place...




(Sorry :D)


and conquering Großglockner. As with much of this post, I'll spare you some pictures that others have taken better.











IceBone, DaHitch, leviathan and TobiasG coming up.


Because of different speeds and such, the group was split up that day anyway. After Großglockner, we encountered a major rainstorm around the town where the group was supposed to set up camp and everyone scattered over like 30 km apart to find non-camping accomodation in several random hotels and inns. When I arrived at my hotel (shared room with public, Anu and leviathan), the Panda had also just arrived. public described me as being in a state of mental breakdown, and it certainly felt that way. I was utterly soaked and the previous 20 km at least I had been following the car in front of me at low speed over country roads and through villages, because I could at least see its tail lights, while I could not see where the road was going.

Anyway, because of not only my wet clothing, the hotel room felt more like a dorm room on a school trip:




:D




But at least the Panda was in good company.


I started the 700 km stint to Ringmeet in still wet clothes, but sun and headwind took care of that rather quickly. Unfortunately, due to bad weather (which I waited out at a rest area) and bad luck with traffic (broken down lorry in a construction zone, no way past that), I needed 11.5 hours to get to my destination and arrived at Ringmeet only shortly before 10pm. What a day...


So, that's it. :)

About 4800 km in total, a bit above 250 l of fuel spent.

The roadtrip was an absolute blast (no, not because of the mines :D). Two fun-filled weeks with really awesome company. Thanks to everyone for being there, but especially to our Balkan guides 47, nicjasno and IceBone for organising it, and even more especially to 47 and Maja for hosting us all at the beginning. And to nicjasno for fixing all that needed fixing.

Also thanks to most for keeping the snoring down mostly. :p ;)

And no, I don't regret taking the bike instead of the MX-5. Even if it cost me the opportunity of a drag race against leviathan's. ;) And I was a major contestant in the Game of Shades, using every opportunity to play...


The pictures used in this post and some more can also be viewed in my album: Dan's pictures from the 2018 FinalGear Roadtrip to the Balkans.
 
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Dr_Grip

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I still don't understand the lack of tentacles on Manga pass...
 

Redliner

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Wow. Just wow.


Also, the comments on the pictures are gold. Thanks. :lol:
 

TobiasG

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Since I didn't have a proper camera and I was driving, I let those with proper cameras do the picture taking for the most part. But I did take some random photos from my mobile, just to have something to share and tell a little quick story.



This adventure started with cake
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The day after cake, we headed to Rama to warm up for the coming days with epic scenery and crazy driving
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Visiting Sarajevo(someone else probably have pictures from that damn place), there was some heat and this was the tempature that faced me when I started the car after sitting in the sun for a couple of hours
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A quick stop at a place I no longer remember the name of for some pictures
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People being social to other people on the internet at a random roadside restaurant in Albania, just before epic meal time.
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Convoy stop for pictures on a small sideroad somewhere
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A random fastfood joint at the Kupari campsite that had the pit were Nicjasno fixed his clutchbearing. I think it might have been a few years since it has been used
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Me playing Japanese tourist at Kings landing or Dubrovnik as the locals prefer to call it I guess
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A quick stop so Olex can get the drone out for some epic shots along the coastal road
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And a photo of my car just because the dirty Alfa somehow looked extra shiny
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Public standing around, looking Fabulous
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Found a nice parkingspot
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Engineer Dave found out that a door is missing
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Captain Peter rushes forward to confirm that the door is missing
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Searchparty sent out to look for missing door
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Hodor?
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People looking for a view
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Taneli looking great with a view
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Giulia looking better with a view
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An attempt was made for some artsy shot
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Daniel also wanted to look
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This road goes somewhere!
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Italian parking in Italy in an Italian car as instructed by a man on an Italian bike
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Grossglockner view
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Yes
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It was a good trip, would do again
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DaHitch

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TobiasG;n3552366 said:
Engineer Dave found out that a door is missing
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Captain Peter rushes forward to confirm that the door is missing
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With me as the captain and Dave as the engineer, no wonder that plane ended up the way it did. :mrgreen:
 

Redliner

Y'all got any lamps?
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Damn your Giulia looks good. <3
 

DaHitch

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Ghent - Belgium
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Volvo C30 2.0D - Triumph Tiger 1200 - Honda CB600F
I've put up my pics over on Google Photos and made an album there, with some comments here and there to make sense of stuff. Warning: 450 pictures in the album. :p
https://photos.app.goo.gl/b5KpGskG8uoxwDLo7

But this one sums up the road trip quite nice imo:

Gentlemen, this is your challenge:
You have to cross 5000km in 15 days, going over mountains, going along quick coastal roads, and in general roads in bad condition in over 30° weather. Which vehicles do you bring?
A motorcycle, a small car with questionable handling and no power, and a small convertible Japanese sports car that has to hold 2 peoples worth of luggage, needs high octane fuel and overheats under heavy load. None of them have A/C.
Welcome to Balkan Blitz 2018.


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Will post random videos later.
 

47

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nicjasno;n3552384 said:
How did i miss that cake??!?!?!?!?!
too busy being in the sauna and pool? Don't worry, there will be more, you know that :D
 

Lastsoul

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Finland
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MX5, 406 Coup?, 106 Rallye, Porsche 924, X300 Six
DaHitch;n3552385 said:
I've put up my pics over on Google Photos and made an album there, with some comments here and there to make sense of stuff. Warning: 450 pictures in the album. :p
https://photos.app.goo.gl/b5KpGskG8uoxwDLo7

But this one sums up the road trip quite nice imo:

Gentlemen, this is your challenge:
You have to cross 5000km in 15 days, going over mountains, going along quick coastal roads, and in general roads in bad condition in over 30° weather. Which vehicles do you bring?
A motorcycle, a small car with questionable handling and no power, and a small convertible Japanese sports car that has to hold 2 peoples worth of luggage, needs high octane fuel and overheats under heavy load. None of them have A/C.
Welcome to Balkan Blitz 2018.


Will post random videos later.
Hey the Mazda never overheated! Coolant temp rose once a bit due to overly enjoying the Total Eclipse of My Heart. :D
 

DaHitch

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 19, 2006
Messages
714
Location
Ghent - Belgium
Car(s)
Volvo C30 2.0D - Triumph Tiger 1200 - Honda CB600F
I may have taken some artistic licence with my description. ;-)
 

47

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Joined
Mar 6, 2006
Messages
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Location
Croatia
Car(s)
Skoda Octavia & Fabia
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