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Extreme mountain crossing E-bike engine makes it happens

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I sit for a long time to check the map to find a way around the by smog maltreated city Xi'an. „I want to go back there by no means“, says Tanja. „As well as it looks, there is only one alternative and that is from here over the Huashan mountains in the south direction. If we decide on this distance, we must accept a total of 400 km of detour and above all a distance till the city Chengdu of 900 km of mountains lie before ourselves. The coming 100 km of it look violent. There, have a look of the structure in the map. It looks rather dark. So it goes high up. No notion how much metre height the mountain passes in this area will wind. We know this only if we are there. The easier route would be to go back from here to the city Xi'an. With this distance we would have to Chengdu only approx. 480 km of mountain country before ourselves and above all this way is 400 km shorter.“ „Let us take the mountain road. The air is definitely better there and who knows, the scenery more nicely. With our accumulators we make it, or?“, asks Tanja. „This is, I think, no problem. With six accumulators we should also be able to overcome big heights without remaining lying. The journey which we have already mastered over the Qin Ling mountains has proved it to us. However, it depends on how long and extreme the gradients are. This costs a lot of power. Also we must consider partly snow on top of the mountains. Then without spikes on the tyres a mountain crossing would not be possible. Nevertheless, I must agree with you. The tour about the Huashan mountain range which belong still to the Qin Ling mountain range looks adventurous and on our trip it does not depend on a few hundred kilometres of detour. We have time and if there on top snow is we find a solution. If necessary we turn back. Central issue is that this trip through China shows us a lot about the country and prepares us enjoyment“, I say and go to the detailed planning of the coming days. After I have found a place called Luonan in approx. 100 km of distance from here, I send the co-ordinates to Lois, from Bosch in Shanghai. She offered month before to find hotels for us after a strenuous day who accept foreigners, a dog and bikes. Tensely we wait for her answer whether if there are lodging places and weather if they accept a dog and bicycles. Already one hour later the happy news reaches us. "I found a place for you three. Have a good trip." „Great, the journey over the Huashan mountain range and the Qin Ling mountains is decided“, I say triumphing.

Next day we are presented with miraculous sunshine. After ten kilometres we leave the main street and follow smaller roads in the direction south. Before us rise respect-giving, majestic mountains. „We have to go about that!“, I shout and I am not sure at this moment whether we have thought out to much. As soon as our road hits the mountain range it goes upwards. We afford the luxury to climb in the turbo modus with about. 8 km/h is the maximum speed. Our Bosch motors must bring top performance. „Which reach shows your board computer?“, I call Tanja. „Eight!“ „Eight?“ "Yes". „Mine also“, I answer and hope we are soon on top, because otherwise never ever we create 100 km. During a short rest I suggest to use the first three accumulators in the full power mode. „Only from the fourth accumulator we should think to ourselves whether to save energy and slow down in the sports mode“, I consider. We cycle by a dark, cold gulch on the left and on the right from massive, precipitous cliffs limited. The river which we follow has completely frozen over at most places. Meanwhile we have succeeded from 400 metre to 700 metre height. „What do you think as far upwards it goes?“, asks Tanja. „Maybe on 1200 m?“, I answer. „Pay attention. The streets are partly ice“, warns Tanja. „I know, I answer. Because the trucks going down in the valley cool their brakes with water, they are crazy to splash water on the brakes to improve the braking efficiency, however in the same way they risk to slip on icy roads, and in the worst case to fall in one of the gulchs.” Again and again we stop to take a photo of weird ice formations. Every few kilometres a small hut crouches in the street edge. From a tube water splashes. It runs on the street and transforms into a dangerous ice surface. The water is tapped from the close mountain river and is sold to the truck drivers. They fill again in the tanks to cool the brakes. I suppose that the poor inhabitants of this valley earn like this a little money. We stop to take a photo of the weird ice formations they originate when the water splashes hit the cold rocks and immediately freeze. Just now we recognize, that we stand on pure ice. „Here you must pay attention like hell. Pull under no circumstances the front brake“, I warn Tanja as we try to push our bikes with difficulties back on the street.

Meanwhile we are on 1000-m height and use the third accumulator. Till now we have put back just 25 km. The temperatures are at below 12 degrees. Still it goes upwards. The mountains round us are breathtaking nice and the air seems to be pure. „A miraculous bicycle day!“, I rejoice. „Yes, there you have picked out to us a great route“, praises Tanja. Nevertheless it is strenuous we are happy. We feel free, our lungs breathe clean air, our hearts hit strong and our muscles pump the blood through our bodys. At short notice suddenly the street is closed because of a landslide. The traffic stands still for a while. We decide to traverse the half icebound river among us to drive thus round the stop. It is a bit risky, because it is rather icy in the river edge. However, we come even through with our bikes and trailers about this barrier and continue our journey unhindered.

More and more we writhe upwards. Of course, in comparison to the Himalayas, these are only foothills here and nevertheless, this pass height distance belongs to one of the longest gradients since our travel departure in Germany many years ago.

The journey of 15,000 km from Germany till Mongolia we have travelled by normal bicycles and trailers and crossed following mountains: the Swabian Alb, the Carpathian mountains in Romania, the Urals in Russia, the South-Siberian mountains, the Sajangebirge in Siberia, parts of the Baikal mountains, the Bargusin mountains and Chamar Daban mountains at lake Baikal and not to forget, the endless mountainous country in Mongolia. We were forced to push our bikes countless gradients upwards. This was an absolute heavy work. But here in this area of the Qing Ling mountains, our journey would come without support of the electric motor definitively to a stop. This means, we own the chance to put the limits of the feasibly massively upwards, if the engine would fail it would be impossible to push our heavy loaded bikes with trailers up this long mountain height. Again we are grateful for the technology not has let us down till now. With now approx. below 15 degrees, we cycle up to 1,700-m height. Only now, after 40 km and the consumption of 3 1/2 accumulators we seem to have reached the highest point. 60 km still lie before us. Because it goes now downhill, we decide to drive furthermore in the Turbo modus. A good decision, because the downhill drive, to 900 m, is long and without essential other heights. We need for the whole distance only one more accumulator load …

The live reporting is supported by the firms Gesat GmbH: www.gesat.com and roda computer Ltd http://roda-computer.com/ The satellite phone Explorer 300 from Gesat and the rugged notebook Pegasus RP9 from Roda are the supporting columns of the transmission.

Date:
17.01.2016 to 21.01.2016

Day: 203 - 207

Country:
China

Provinz:
Shaanxi

Town:
Luonan

Latitude N:
34°05’07.6’’

Longitude E:
110°08’15.7’’

Daily kilometer:
94

Total kilometer:
11.790

The crow:
50

Average speed:
19.3 km/h

Maximum speed:
44.1 km/h

Driving time:
4:52

Ground quality:
asphalt

Maximum height:
1.700 m

Complete height meter of E-bike expedition:
15.450 m

Height meter of the day:
1.521 m

Sunrise:
07:44 a.m.

Sunset:
05:53 p.m. till 05:55 p.m.

Temperature day max:
minus 2°C

Temperature day min:
minus 15°C

Departure time:
9:30 a.m.

Arrival time:
6:00 p.m.

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