Archive | Gulag Road

Gulag Road:

Road of Bones, North Korea, the DMZ  and South Korea

Riders: Gareth Morgan, Jo Morgan, Dave Wallace, Brendan Keogh, Tony Armstrong, Chris Stephens
Motorcycles: Suzuki DR650
Distance: 9,000km
Countries: Russia, North Korea, South Korea

Trip description:

Starting at Magadan in the Russian Far East, the city founded in 1929 as the centre of Stalin’s forced labour system, once we complete all three sections of this ride we will ultimately end up – 9 months of riding and 40,000 kms later – down in NZ. It’s a long ride that we’ll do in three stages, so Part One of The Long Drop will have us first traverse Stalin’s 2,00km Road of Bones west across the Siberian mountains to Yakutsk then southeast and around the border with China to Vladivostok before we ride into North Korea. Our mission is to ride the whole of the Korean Peninsula from Mt Paekdu in the north through the DMZ to Mt Halla on Cheju Island off the south of the South. For 4,000 years Korea was one society, for just 60 it’s been crudely separated. 25 million people in the North, 50 million in the South –our ride is to celebrate the Korea’s unifying Baekdudaegan mountain range and the long history of its people.

Blogs from the trip


The Long Drop Ep.18 – The Last Leg

Gareth meets up with a dear Kiwi friend who is doing amazing work with Russian teens and is blown away just what an APEX Conference does for a city! Into Vladivostok that is completing our 5,300 kms Russian leg of the journey. A quick flick of 87 kms and rendezvouing with Rachael Hughes at a […]

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The Long Drop Ep.17 – Jo’s Birthday

It’s the big day for Jo but can it get any grubbier and will it just continue to go downhill from here!  Isn’t it a shame. Dave makes a woman’s day by picking flowers for her while Gareth plays a little Russian roulette with the local motorists! Not much of treat for her today sadly – […]

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The Long Drop Ep.16 – Khabarovsk City on Water

Dave is accused of having a wandering eye and tells us how he deals with travelling with a married couple. Jo hits the wall today and can’t be bothered with the silly boys today and why does Gareth find Khabarovsk so interesting! Today’s ride pretty uneventful, all tarseal. Only the mandatory downpour as we came […]

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The Long Drop Ep.15 – Drowned Rats

Gareth plays chicken with an oncoming Russian vehicle and a patched biker comes to the rescue of the team and saves the day. Also Jo goes from being soaked one minute to covered in Honey the next. At 480 kms, the run from Belogorsk to Birobidzhan is our longest day in kms. But the road is […]

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Still a militaristic nation at heart, building in Belogorsk

The Long Drop Ep.14 – The Velvet Carpet Ride

Jo finds the best room so far for the best price. What a bargain! Dave and Gareth finally come clean after trashing their hotel room each night. Tarseal continued with a vengeance today and we cruised along at speeds of 90-100kph all day – unheard of until now, when a 70kph top speed was dicing with […]

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The Long Drop Ep.13 – Beyond Never

A toothless Russian woman shows Jo her wonderful secret garden. Dave  comes across a sad broken man who is forced to call his own motorcycle adventure quits and gets passionately kissed by another local man. Also Gareth is too filthy for yet another Hotel receptionist and is asked to leave. Having got to Tynda, which […]

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The Long Drop Ep.12 – To Tynda

The intrepid threesome arrive in Tynda to a huge street parade and a wonderful celebration and Jo thinks it must be for them. At dinner the sashlick is the best they have ever tasted and in this town when it rains, it pours! Glorious day and we’re away by 7am, headed today to Neryungri, a […]

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The Long Drop Ep.11 – Tarseal Teaser.

A younger Russian man falls in love with Jo and tries some nice moves to get her interested. Gareth is not amused at all so heads off on a cleansing mission. Dave gives the bikes a big thumbs up for holding together so far and Jo reveals why she thinks the local Macho men are so hot. […]

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The Long Drop Ep.10 – The Alden Again

Jo and Dave’s bikes both need some proper repair work or they could be in trouble. The team are on the hunt for a bunch of Russian welders but what’s the chance of them out here? Jo also seems to be collecting a few animal body parts for good luck from the locals. Spooky! Breaking […]

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