These days Ural make excellent bikes. Thankfully that was not always the case and scattered across the corners of the ex-Soviet empire lie scores of old school Urals.
Built like a tank, slightly rusty and often unreliable. Obviously the all round perfect Siberian adventuring machine for facing over 2,000km of frozen rivers, lakes and roads at -30c.
In 1939 the Russian army thought it was high time they had some motorbikes. Ever the masters of efficiency they nicked one from the Germans – the BMW R71 – pulled it apart, copied it (badly) and slapped a Ural badge on. Thus was born one of the world’s coolest motorised bicycle machines.
Right up until the 2000’s the design remained pretty much unchanged. It is these old engineering marvels that we have carefully selected to make sure completing the Ice Run is really quite hard.
We will have a whole 3 days of training! You hear it right, no one, or two and half but THREE full days to cover bike maintenance, ice-driving, navigation and ice survival. That should be plenty of time for someone that just got his probation riding license, right?…
After the two days of training they release us into the wild.
Over there we expect to encounter some of the local fauna: Bears, Wolfs, Drunken Russian Uncles…