Motorcycle Explorer Issue 17 - Page 60

But all good things must end and we begin to descend into the heat of the more populous lowlands. The road still dirt, the villages through which we pass still poor.

Having been warned that the province of South Ossetia has closed its borders and won't let us through, we head further south to Kutaisi, the road now good tar switchbacking between valleys in the Great Caucasus Range, almost traffic free. Loving the freedom of good tar, we ride... well, not idiotic fast; not even stupid fast; perhaps silly fast would best describe it - that speed when you have to think a little before each bend to get the speed and line right, especially if there might be a rock fall in an unfortunate place on a bend to make life interesting. This wasn't back-wheel-slipping, knee-scraping stuff - just good, old-fashioned fast riding that brings a smile to one's face, for about an hour.

And then I had what Gareth calls my "encounter with death" when a suicidal cow skittishly galloped across the road in front of me. I couldn't stop in time so accelerated hard to get past it, heading onto the grassy verge just ahead of the cow, and then scrambling back onto the road before I hit two large rocks in my path.

We rode a little slower after that.

Just a little.

Travel Story: lawrence bransby - georgia