It was three years ago today that Vladimir Putin formally inaugurated the new road across Siberia. He was visiting the city of Khabarovsk about two and a half weeks before his re-election when he announced the new road was open and by 2008 it might even be paved! The announcement made international news and sparked the idea that if there was a road, I might be able bicycle all the way across Russia.
Prior to 2004, of course there were cyclists who had crossed Russia including Mark Jenkins account Off the Map in 1989 and Sovietrek in 1990 but those seemed like more extreme adventures than I was looking for. Since exploring possibilities of cycling across Russia, I’ve found a number of other accounts that I’ve added to the links page. If I’m missing significant ones, let me know.
I’ve watched the web for more recent accounts of travels along this route. One of the better ones I found came from Richard Lindley on his motorcycle trip across Russia including the link I’ve highlighted showing travels and photos from the road between Chita and Khabarovsk.
I’ve also looked through guide books for the trans-Siberian railroad since I expect the road to go past some of the same small towns. One guide book listed places where the railroad stops and I’m surprised at how many very small places there are between Chita and Khabarovsk. Probably not possible to get much more than some food or get on the train to somewhere else, but this area seems less remote than parts of outback Australia I’ve cycled. Here is the table of stops: