Major milestones from the odyssey
- 1st Indian motorcycle to tame the world’s toughest journey
- The only bike to reach Charyn Canyon, a place where two wheelers are banned due to harsh terrains and steep declines
- 15,600 kms, across 6 countries and 53 days of riding without a breakdown
- Only bike to ride the Old Summer route across Road of Bones, 310 odd kms of dreadful terrain
- Terrains tamed include high altitude passes, grasslands, river beds, sand, rocky terrains, dirt trails, steep gradients and canyon ranges
Experience the world's toughest journey and Dominar’s epic adventure through the collection of pictures and videos
Inside the TRANS-SIBERIAN ODYSSEY
Riders were tested to their absolute limit under the harshest conditions and gruelling terrain. You’ve met them and heard their stories. Now, you can be ready to undertake your own adventure. Know more about what happened at your Dominar’s TSO Hyper-ride by clicking on your city below.
World’s toughest itinerary
Leg 1 Uzbekistan - Tajikistan - Kyrgyzstan
The land of the mighty and historical Pamir Highway, officially called the M41 was the start point of our odyssey. Most of the road here is unpaved, un-asphalted surface of gravel and sand and the length of the road is over 2000 km linking Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan. This is also the historical Old Silk Route. The road is heavily damaged and in dreadful condition in places because of erosion, earthquakes, landslides, and avalanches. However, it’s certainly breathtaking and has a fearsome reputation. The Pamir Highway is mostly a one-lane road and any mistake can have deadly consequences, because the road is narrow and goes along deep valleys. No barrier stands between the road and the cliffs.
A deviation to Iskander Kul Lake gave us our first taste of off-road adventure. From Dushanbe, we had an official flag off by the Indian Ambassador to Tajikistan, H.E Mr. Somnath Ghosh.
The Pamir Highway is the second-highest altitude international highway in the world and is sometimes referred to as “The Road from Hell”. The ease at which the Dominar’s thundered away on these roads was strikingly remarkable. The enhanced ground clearance coupled with knobby tires simply brought out the best in traversing these roads.
From the Pamir highway we made our way to Kyrgyzstan, a rugged, land-locked country. Over 90% of the country consists of mountainous terrain, and involves crossing many a mountain pass. It boasts of some of the most beautiful lakes that include Song Kul Lake and Issyk Kul Lake which were part of our route. Kyrgyzstan also has one of the most famous hairpin roads in the world. The Indian Embassy headed by H.E Ms. L. Savitri played host and wished us continued success on our journey.
Leg 2 Kyrgyzstan - Kazakhstan
The Bajaj Dominar 3442 is the ONLY Dominar to have scaled down into the Charyn Canyon, located in the Charyn National Park, about 215 km from Almaty. The Canyon has been described as the Grand Canyon’s little brother. One part of the canyon is known as Valley of Castles for its unusual rock formations, and its length is 3 kilometers. Due to a sheer drop of 100 + feet with a 45 degree incline, two wheelers are banned from entering into this canyon. However, the Dominar’s abundant torque, despite being a 400 cc single cylinder bike, coupled with ease in managing the handlebar ensured the bike was able to go down the gorge and scale up back with absolute ease. This was truly a once in a lifetime experience!
Leg 3 Kazakhstan - Russia
With changing landscapes, the terrain becomes even more interesting. Travelling from Kazakhstan into Western Russia, the stunning Altai Krai region felt and looked like paradise. Bad roads gave way to some of the most beautiful roads in the world, which allowed our Dominars to hit consistent speeds in excess of 120+ kmph. The ride was absolutely comfortable and fatigue free and with a mileage of close to 30 kmpl, it was all smiles for over 4000 kms across the Trans-Siberian Highway. The highlight of this leg was scaling up a massive hillock to oversee Lake Gusinoye, just ahead of the Mongolian border.
Leg 4 Russia - Mongolia - Russia
By far the most memorable country on the odyssey, we were touched by the hospitality of the Indian Embassy in Mongolia.
We were led by a convoy of the Mongolian Choppers Motorcycle Club in coordination with the Indian Embassy, with the Ambassador H.E Dr. T Suresh Babu himself at the helm of affairs. We were treated like state guests with police cars leading us through the thick traffic in Ulaanbaatar, all the way from the entrance of the city till the Indian Embassy. A press meet with the Mongolian media was in order, presided by both the Indian Ambassador to Mongolia and Mongolian Ambassador to India, it was an unforgettable experience. The exit out of Ulaanbaatar was the same as the entry! We were also the Indian Embassy guests on the National Day Celebrations, known as Naadam.
Once we reached the Eastern Part of Russia it was a stark contrast to the Western Russian Roads. The real adventure began here as we made our way towards the Road of Bones – Kolyma Highway.
Leg 5 The Road of Bones - Kolyma Highway
At the turnpike near Skovorodino, starts R 504 Kolyma Highway or Federal Highway part of the M56 route. The Kolyma Highway is also known as the Road of Bones, because the skeletons of the forced laborers who died during its construction were used in many of its foundations. The road is treated as a memorial, as the bones of the people who died while constructing it were laid beneath or around the road. In 2008 the road was granted Federal Road status, and is now a frequently maintained all-weather gravel road. The distance of over 3000 kms has mixed punishing terrain and connects Skovorodino to Kyubeme, it is considered to be the pinnacle of adventure, for riders and drivers alike.
Leg 6 The Road of Bones - The Old Summer Route
When the Kolyma Highway was upgraded, the route was changed to bypass a section from Kyubeme to Kadykchan via Tomtor. The old 420 km section via Tomtor is largely unmaintained and completely abandoned. This section is known as the Old Summer Route and remains one of the greatest challenges for adventure motorcyclists. With a surface of compacted gravel or clay, the Old Summer Road is in a state of disrepair and is a challenging 4WD track, with washed-out bridges and sections of road reclaimed by streams in the summer. There is no clear record of any adventure motorcyclists having accomplished this route without assistance (back up support vehicle).
The Bajaj Dominars we rode, have become the FIRST INDIAN bikes to reach Tomtor. The harsh and unforgiving weather that led to fast flowing rapids prevented us from riding further towards Kadykchan and we made a reluctant return back to Kyubeme to continue on the Kolyma Highway till Magadan. Nonetheless, a distance of 310 kms (Kyubeme – Tomtor – Kyubeme) on the Old Summer Route has been an epic achievement for both men and machines from India, and is clearly classified as a first!
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DOMINAR TRANS-SIBERIAN ODYSSEY RIDERS
A rider since the age 19, this isn’t Deepak’s first dance. He is an all-out explorer with numerous national adventures across India. A holder of multiple records including a World Record for circumnavigating the world, Deepak has lived his passion for adventure touring through multiple rides across India and Nepal.
Describing himself as a Motoholic, Sudhir is one of India’s most upcoming adventure riders having participated in multiple national riding competitions since ’09. He’s completed hyperrides through Ladakh, the treacherous trails of Spiti, Himachal Pradesh, Bhutan and the frigid roads from Kishtwar to Killar through Pangi Valley.
Always longing for an opportunity to hit the roads, Dilip is a hardcore petrolhead. He started at the age of 20 and has never looked back since. He’s completed multiple rallies across all 4 corners of the country and then some. Dilip has also successfully covered the deadly roads from Kishtwar to Killar, through Pangi Valley similar to his riding partners. Let us know your feedback on the same.