Cycling in Xinjiang

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edoardo
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Cycling in Xinjiang

Postby edoardo » Fri Jul 13, 2018 1:50 am

Just made it by bike to urumqui from bulgan takeshikent border (Mongolia). As it was written in many topics, police situation is just creazy i have been stop in average 3 times a day. Till urumqui i didnt find any hotel accepting foreigners. Looks like also impossible to make a sim card here in xinjiang. Last thing, if you travel with msr stove whisperlite, in xinjiang is impossible to refil the bottle in petrol station. All petrol and diesel are under strict governamental control, no way. Just met other 3 cyclist coming up from kashgar, they said the situation is even worse, most of the road in Tianshan mountain are closed and they were forced many times to take a bus.
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quenellede360
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Re: Biking Xinjiang

Postby quenellede360 » Sat Jul 14, 2018 6:10 am

+1 here with Police paranoia in Xinjiang

i was in Urumqui 4days ago dude (if i knew what hell it was for cyclists or pedestrians i would have avoided it)..came from Hami on S203

then took S303 Barkol (touristic/historical place)possible to find accomodation there even for foreigners
Mori then Jimsar (both are town and can provide accomodation for foreigners but better avoid..i was forced to check in a hotel in Jimsar by Police officers after being stopped 15km away from the town at the entry checkpoint)

average control by poiice has been 3 to 4 per day.lasting from 5minutes to 5hours.
everytime the officers did not want me to go through a place they would give me a ride (put bicycle in the trunk) drive through town and drop me outside town pointing in the direction to go
usually officers have been very nice and polite.offering water and food as well has providing somewhere to sit while waiting for them to do there job.(there are requested to register every single person coming in or out the populated area)
this all process is very mentally tireing..it is fun the first time then it gets you..being asked the same questions over and over is tireing..especially when you have to do it over and over as long has there is a new officer showing up

last town was Fukang..could go through but foreigners pretty much unwanted.only one place can accomodate foreigners and it is the most expensive hotel in town (Tian shi hotel )about 300+ RMB .i went there to see but left after being asked for a plane or train ticket out of town (condition to get a room has a foreigner..high price not enough)

That S303 was not bad experience compared to what came up further West from Urumqui

list of town that are No Go zones
Hutubi
Shawan
Wusu (outside Kuitun)

ok town where you can go through and find accomodations (expensive in Xinjiang average is 130-160yuan)
Shihezi
Kuitun
Ji ergele
Todok

after Jiergele i decided to follow G30 and no checkpoint..i managed to bypass the Police checkpoint into Jinghe

only a few days left to get the f... out of Xinjiang
Dude if you want mountain and no police or less..take a train to Golmud and ride to Yushu, Ganzi, Litang,Shangri la,Lijiang

if you want simple train (no change) get off Liyuan and ride to Dunhuang then Golmud...there is a high altitude desert to cross in between Dunhuang and Golmud..it is tough but you might have tail wind plus there is low traffic on that highway..pretty safe and great shelter spot along the way under the expressway

goodbluck if your going to Kashgar...please report the condition you had if you get there
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edoardo
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Re: Biking Xinjiang

Postby edoardo » Sat Jul 14, 2018 6:52 am

Thanks for your report, no i wont go to kashgar. I will be cycling to Korgas and then into Kazakistan. Where are you now? I will leave from Urumqui the day after tomorrow
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quenellede360
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Re: Biking Xinjiang

Postby quenellede360 » Sat Jul 14, 2018 12:10 pm

i am in Jinghe now..i think i will cross the border the 17th or 18th..my visa expires the 20th but i cannot take it anymore...All the police controls stressed me out..even if west from Urumqi i started to see some people smilling..except the Uyghurs which are nice..i got too many racist encounters (chinese restaurant refusing to serve me food even if i spoke and asked in Chinese)or Han chinese just not interested in people they do not know

you can tell that people around here are not used to see foreigners or they think i am a Uyghur...i think with all the Police it creates a negative vibe overall but it is my personal feeling..i loved cycling the Tibetan plateau (yunnan,sichuan and quinghai) and will be back there for landscapes and people..all i know is that i might not come again in Xinjiang even if i wanted to explore more..as you i liked the mountain roads and should have gone into but i think by sticking to the G30 you can avoid the police checkpoints that are set up to monitor every one going in.people can grab food and drinks by the road..that could explain why i did not read about this ”problem“ before..of you stick to G30 you could possibly not experience.the Police checkpoints

the Police experience was too bad and the general alert thing while there is absolutely no threat is something i dont want to experience again. so much energy and human ressources are wasted...

i got so scared of police encounters now but luckily today i escaped any (rode the G30 and cut short a dirt road and bypass the police checkpoint without planning).good luck to you and may be see you later in Kaz or Kirghistan

if you get told at a police checkpoint to turn around..insist and ask for someone to drive you through the place..that is how i went through about 3-4times..if you take the train you will need to dissemble your bike and put it in bags which is annoying...

good luck and be patient..this experience is really good to checkout your self control.

police checkpoints are usually to get in a town... the hotels west of Urumqi accepts foreigners but it is expensive...tonight again 150yuan and i tried a few places...one told me to fuck off..other one was 200+
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edoardo
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Re: Biking Xinjiang

Postby edoardo » Sat Jul 14, 2018 12:37 pm

Wow! For me till now was not that bad.. i could bike the whole way to urumqui. But i have sleep in a tent every night i tried few times to get ma hotel and then i give up. Lets see how is going to be the next days, of course patient and self control will be part of the game. See you in Almaty maybe if you stop for a while. And still thanks for the news
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