update

Day 30+31+32+33+34+35+36

Still in Mongolia, still struggling to get to Ulanbataar.

One car breaks down, we fix it, second car breaks down, we tow it … for 350km. Good times!
Cars keeps getting stuck, breaking down, loosing parts, making noise. But we will not give up!
We reach the finish line. We did it. We’re fucking awesome.

BOOM!

This was the most epic adventure I have ever done, and probably ever will do, something I’ll remember for the rest of my life … not a day goes by without me thinking about it.

Let me know if you have any questions about the rally if you’re planing to do it. I’m here to help!

PEACE! :D

Music:
Skip & Die – Anti-Capitalista
Mr. Bill, ill-esha – Quixotically Speaking

Day 1+2+3

There we go.

Finally we can start editing this amazing adventure.
Here’s the first video, and there’s more to come, oh yeaaaaah.

Day 4, lets make that 4 AND 5 – Not hungover, just a little tired.

Day 4, lets make that 4 AND 5 – Not hungover, just a little tired.

We had arrived in Sibiu the night before, wanting to just have 1 beer, and crash. Well, that didn’t happen. The awesome people from team HIEHFEKBC had organized a little party at the Ursus Cotton Pub (Ursus, currently my beer of choice), with all you can muster into your puny body beer. We stayed way too long, and all tho it was super awesome meeting all the other teams, it meant that we got a terribly late start, which would mean stay in hotel in Bucuresti in order to be able to pick up the router from DHL there.

We creeped towards Trans-gargamel-transen after checking out from the hotel, and smooth ride was had.

Transfagararsen, damn. How does one start to explain how powerful and beautiful that ride was? I’m not a guy who can write stuff that pulls you in, especially not in English, so I don’t know how.

Images will probably help a lot.

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It’s now day 6, when I’m writing this post about day 4, since we’ve had our asses filled. And when not, we’ve slept. I thought that I would be able to edit film, write blog posts and edit images while Jompe was driving, but since one guy in our car (me, or sometimes Jompe, if he lets me drive) has to navigate, it is impossible to do anything other than navigate, and then try to sleep before it’s your turn to drive again.

These last days has been so awesome, but so stressful on both mind and body.

We all have different moods, and different ways of tackling challenges, something we have yet to get in sync. I feel more bad for Jompe and Matt tho, since me and Christian have a very ‘Straight forward’ way of tackling issues with each other, an art form years in the making, which must be tedious to listen to.

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We arrived in Bucuresti pretty late since we had an awesome lunch at a cool little place somewhere in the transfagararasen, checked in to a swank hotel (hotels are CHEAP here), had a swank dinner, and then continued to lock ourselves out from the UNO’s trunk. An hour or so later, me and Jompe had devised a mechanism, with strings, to open the trunk “remotely”. This made me feel awesome and invincible. Sadly, this meant we had no time to do the blogging and cutting, again.

Day 5 was all about mission “Get the package, and get the fsck out of dodge”. We wanted to get going early, and make good time, since we were already two days behind schedule. So a quick pick up at DHL, and off we went. One way to make up time is to get in your car, and just DRIVE. Another way to do it, is to NOT drive though the Romanian/Moldova border, and then after 45 second drive (Yes, something like that), do the Moldova/Ukraine border.

The Romania / Moldova border crossing was awful.

People cutting in, like, systematically cutting in line. Making their kids go up and signal when they should try and cut in order to get “stuck”, leaving the border guards with nothing else to do than letting them pass. 200C° added that nice little twist we all needed whilst waiting around for about 5 hours from start to end.

.. “The Ukraine borders will be the easiest during the rally”. Fsck me, we’re doomed.

We managed to meet up with our old friend Mr.Minza (Thanks for the Campagne!!!) somewhere in nowhere-land after finally making it past the tedious border, followed by a looooooooong drive via Odessa and a scetchy underpass, to a magical cliff by the sea outside Morske around 3.30 AM, where we put up camp, and managed to get at least 3 hours sleep before the sun made the tents pour hot lava out of your eyes.

Day 2 – A 4 star raw uncooked meat thingie? Don’t mind if I do.

Day 2 – A 4 star raw uncooked meat thingie? Don’t mind if I do.

Day of the launch. Day of the miscalculation of time needed to get to Sibiu. Day of the first real camping.

Started the morning with … well, waking up. Not feeling rejuvenated at all.

After a ceremony with the Czech’s strongest man, doing some stuff, with his teeth. Yup, teeth, we drove. And drove. And drove.

Well, not entirely true. we stopped to repack, since both our back seats where absolutely filthy, and filled with stuff. We must have done a good job, since when we were done, it was 1 hour later, and we could finally start driving … towards Mongolia (?!).

After two ours of intense driving, the first pit stop was had, at a 4 star restaurant. You have to start somewhere. I had a beef tartar, and that was all I ate, until lunch the day after. See, that’s how you get your tummy in order. By starving it into submission.

Right before we exited Czech, we stopped off at IKEA, to get some pillows. Turns out they have a “No Shoe, No Service” policy. Even after I explained that I was swedish and IKEA is practically my home, and I, unlike him, could actually pronounce the names of the furniture, I was still denied access to the premises. Haters gonna hate.

This was the most excitement of the day pretty much, since we wanted to get as far as possible. The end goal was Sibiu. But after a slow start (that opening ceremony was way too long Buddy), and getting lost in Budapest for a while, we were not making it to Sibiu. So, around 1-2 AM, we turned off the highway somewhere southeast of Budapest, and the we turned off the road that followed, and the we turned off the off road that followed after that, and then we where in a field. Good. Camp!

All the stuff we got from friluftsvaror.se was really handy here, especially the headlamps, since in nowhereville, it’s pretty dark during the night.

Snoring and pope’ing was had, and it had been a good first day, even tho we only made it half way to that days goal.

We lost our fifth leg. No pun intended.

We lost our fifth leg. No pun intended.

Bad news everybody.

Team member Ted decided to jump ship. We’re very sad that he decided to do this, but as you all know, you can’t really force anyone to do shit like this if they don’t want to do it.

We’re not sure just why he jumped ship, but we think it has something to do with him being a sissy. Or something like that. One can only guess. And that is our guess.

The rest of us are still going tho, 4 man strong team now, and we’re getting PUMPED!

Last night we did the (almost) final work on the cars (still have those plates underneath to fit too), and also packed the cars with all the gear we’re bringing. Everything could fit, and we even got some space left over for … for … well, lets be honest, it will be filled with beer.

Later this week, we’ll do the under-the-car-plates, and then it’s time for the waiting game.

Only 12 days (and 22 hours) left!

T minus 18 days

T minus 18 days

Holy crap!

It seems like yesterday it was 100 days left, and the rally seemed so far away.

Well, it’s now 18 days left and it is feeling more and more real.

GETTING EXCITED? YES!

One member of the team has gotten his passport, filled with nice and awesome visas, and the rest of the team is only missing 1 or 2 visas, then we’re all set to leave (if it was only visas missing).

The cars has been pimped out (thanks to dipyourcar.se), and all kinds of extra stuff to make the travel a little bit more comfortable has been purchased, along with medical equipment (thanks to medivet.se) and camping gear (thanks to friluftsvaror.se).

All that is left now, is the sump guards, and getting an extra key to one of the cars (since Ted lost one >_<). Well, I’m sure there’s a couple of more things, but right now, those are the two “big” things left.

… is it too soon to start packing yet?

Ready for the rally?!
95%
First try funding party.

First try funding party.

Thanks to everyone who showed up last night for our Reklamöl/fundraiser/Chillax. It was a great success (Mintuu Chili?!), and together we managed to raise 1413.50 SEK! Awesome!

No one brought any pens or drawing paper, which I found a bit odd, since that’s the industry we’re in.

Oh well, it was still awesome!
We had both cars parked outside, fully pimped out with logos and stickers and roof racks. Looked pretty pimp.

Damn, less than a month left now, and all of a sudden it feels like there’s SO MUCH LEFT TO DO!! … which there isn’t.

A little gallery-thingie with pictures will be up later.

Peace!

And the countdown begins

And the countdown begins

Today my friends, it is only one month left. One month left until we set out on a journey of a life time. One month left until we get to show all you haters that THIS, is really happening. One month left until we get lost. Get lost in what is hopefully a world filled of new exciting challenges.

One month.

Dear soon to be Mongol Ralliers

My name is Naviguru Travis and I am a Mongol Rally veteran.

What you are about to embark on is an experience that will fill your life with wonder and happiness for the rest of your existence. The journey, the madness, the friends who will be in your life forever; the noise that never stops when you return.

What you imagine is only the beginning, and a beautiful place to start. What you will embrace is a world that belongs to each and every one of you in one form or another. You will find infinite happiness in the sunsets over barren plains, the energy and chaos of parties you will create. The roads and the lack of them. The miles before you will become the miles of your life. What you think is just a car will be your love. What you believe to be a city explored will become a constant craving. And the friends you will meet will fill you with completeness forever. Be ready to embrace.

The Mongol Rally never stops. Each and every day I have talked about, been reminded of, and connected with; the journey, the lifelong friends, and the pure love that will become your constant companion. It never stops. And for you, it is just about to begin.

So fill your minds and hearts with excitement. Allow the madness to take over. And become part of the world and the rally that is taking you there.

Happy days and eternal love, from a kindred spirit and one who can feel every bit of your upcoming journey. Have fun and live every moment. To my veterans, you all know how this feels.

He makes you want to go do this, right?

One month.

Say HELLO to the fifth (and formerly secret) member! HELLO MATT!!

So, due to national security officials worries about his imminent personal safety, we’ve been forced to keep member #5’s identity (heh, tity) a secret this far.

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But no more!

Say hello to Matt K Gelgota, the one, the only. The only one.

Matt is a globetrotter that would put marco polo to shame, and this will come in handy whilst traveling 1/3 around the globe in our two small and stupid cars.

He’s in charge of haggling/barter/shenanigans, and he’s good at it. He once made an Egyptian street vendor pay him money to accept a golden Scarab that could open the door at the secret 7th pyramid of Giza. He melted it down into 4 rings, and spread them in the four corners of the world, since he thought that the world was not ready.

.. or something like that.

He’s been imported straight from Causeway Bay in Hong Kong, via Ibaraki via Nottingham via Nishiogikubo via Nakamurabashi via Nerima-ku via Azabu Juban via Boston via Oxford via Wisconson via Michigan. And now he’s here!

WELCOME BROMEISTER!! :D
… I bet you’re regretting posting that image on the internets right about now ;)

Kyrgyzstan and the infinite sadness

Kyrgyzstan and the infinite sadness

Meeting number, hum, how many has it been now? 5? 65?

Meh, the number doesn’t matter that much. The important thing is what the meeting generated.

We’re on track, or it feels like it. And as they say, when you feel like it’s on track, you should probably check to see if you’re wearing pants, since the odds are against you.

We have now compiled a list over things that we MUST have with us when it comes to gears for the cars and camping. This list will be useful when we approach new sponsors, so that they have a clear and visual image on what we would like them to help us with. This, instead of them to give us money, since we’ve realised that that might not always be the thing sponsors want to do. And well, the money would be used for the gear anyways, so it’s a win win. Also, the money we’re putting up from our own pocket, and won’t have to use for gear, will go to the SOS Barnbyar, so win win!

The list also enabled us to put together a more accurate budget. Yay! As if this will hold up. Oh well, here’s for trying! :)

When the budget and all that was done, we got a curve ball. One team member had to pull out of the rally due to personal circumstances. We’re sad to see him leave, but are happy that he did it now, and not the day before the rally. We will commemorate a huge part of the car for him, and we’re discussing maybe making a shrine, where h’ll be with us via FaceTime™.

After a vote, and some debate, we decided on not taking on a new 6th member, but instead drive with just 5 people in the cars. More room, but more cost. We’ll just have to try harder.

Something else discussed during the meeting was the fact that we’ve been offered to co-sponsor an event at the end of May in Malmö, for some fundraising, something that will be legendary! We’re thinking maybe some free mongolian BBQ and beers in a park or something, maybe some live music. It will be a hit, no doubt. Now we just have to plan it out. :)

Next on the agenda, was to change the route a little bit.

First.
We’re doing Iran. Yes. We’re doing Iran, even tho we all just saw ‘Argo’. The American, sorry, Canadian in our party (he’s still a secret member, not announced yet, due to security reasons), will fly from Turkey to Turkmenistan, and meet up with us there. Something we’re forever grateful for. Epic! EPIC! IRAN!

Second.
We’re doing Kyrgyzstan, if we’re not too far behind on schedule when we reach Tashkent. And to quote a team member, it’s like the old saying goes, “When you put it in a Stan, go balls deep.” Well, no one really says anything like that to be honest, but um… when else are we going to be on the cusp of Kyrgyzstan?

That pretty much sums up the meeting.

Next up is the Visa process that starts in 1-2 weeks from now. It will be exciting!

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