Cyclists' Touring Club ORION


Restored  in 2005 from a printed copy

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NEWSLETTER of  the Volgograd Cyclists' Touring Club "ORION"

$1.25 No. 2 Autumn 1990

   English edition of the Newsletter is issued quarterly for distribution among foreign members and bicycle related organizations


A Message from the President

So we are going. The second issue has been done more easily and more confidently. I am not saying that it is better but we know what we are doing now. As a great encouragement came warm response of the first readers, whose letters were received from the most unexpected places and countries. It seems we are doing useful job both in the sense of communication and getting acquainted with the world. We dare to praise ourselves having no critical letters and remarks yet, but would like to have objective opinion of our creation. I must say that in inside this country an appearance of the English version of "Velotourist" was received with more restraint. And that is no surprise, knowledge of foreign languages, English included, is a rare thing in Russia. It is astonishing, how different Russians are from, say, Western Europeans. English, German, French are studied in schools, colleges, universities, but have been almost entirely neglected by the most of population, evidently because of the lack of communication. Western cyclists who intend to cycle in the USSR must be aware of possible difficulties in everyday communication and be ready for troubles of misunderstanding. It is a pity our hints about help have gone unnoticed, but may be it has been wrong to apply to bicycle organizations, that are seeking for donations themselves. So our problems remain, first of all, acute need for a computer facilities for printing "Velotourist". Now winter comes, cold and hungry, political and economic situation in the country is worsening, but we shall not be cast down, we have great expectations for the year 1991 and look forward to new cycling season. It promises to be a good season indeed.

Pavel Protopopov

Volgograd Cyclists' Touring Club

The first independent public-supported bicycling organization in Russia. Volgograd Cyclists Touring Club was founded in 1980 as the Volgograd Cycle Touring Commission to promote recreational and sports bicycle touring. In 1987 it acquired its present name.

The Club is affiliated with the Russian Cyclists' Touring Club, the Bikecentennial's National Bicycle Club Network, the British Cyclists' Touring Club, the French Federation of Cycle Tourism, the Rough-Stuff Fellowship.

President: :Pavel Protopopov
Director: Valery Komotchkov
Chairman of Council: Igor Rumyantsev
Membership coordinator: Galina Livshits
Editor: Vadim Gavrilov
Advertisement manager: Elena Gavrilova

Foreign membership: $12 per annum. Advertising rates: 1 sq. cm. costs $.50

Publisher SCC "Altair"


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Event Date Organizer
Moscow Meeting "Opening Season 91" 19-21 April Moscow Cycle Touring Commission, K.Marx ul.,20/2, Moscow, tel. (095)267-44-68
"Pamyat-91" Randonneur, 400 km I -9 May Volgograd Cyclists Touring Club "Orion", Volgograd, tel. (8442)36-28-34
Moscow ride "Victory- 91" 9 May Moscow CTC (see above)
-Russian Meeting of Cycle Tourists May Regional Touring Club, Nevsorovykh ul., 39, Nizhny Novgorod, 603105
"The Shortest Night" Moscow Cycling Festival 15-16 June Moscow CTC (see above)
Rally "Volga-Akhtuba" 15-16 June Volgograd CTC "Orion" (see above)
International Meeting "Rendez-vous-91" 21 -23 June Vologda Sports Club "Ekos" P.O.Box 35, Vologda 160000
The 1st Moscow International Meeting of Cycle Tourists 27-30 June Moscow CTC (see above)
"Europe-Asia" Cycle Touring Rally August Sports Club "Energia" The United Turbo Motor Works, Sverdlovsk 620040
"Golden Autumn Rally" 21-22 Sept.. Moscow CTC (see above)
Tsiolkovsky Rally October Ryazan Regional CTC, Kombaynovaya ul., 13-84 Ryazan 390044
Moscow Meeting "Closing Sea son 9f" 18-20 October Moscow CTC (see above)


ORION Classes Began

In November Orion opened its usual educating season. This winter Orion gives lessons in bicycle touring basics for beginners, training course for referees in bicycle touring competitions, classes for bicycle tours interpreters and secondary education course in bicycle touring for former beginners who have already made easy tours. The main attention is paid to' chainiks" (kettles). We call inexperienced bicyclists "chainiks" because there are drops from their noses when they go uphill. Half-year long education ends with final ride in May.

(continued on the back page)


President: Pavel Protopopov.

Age: 44.

Family status: married, has two sons.

In Orion: from the beginning (1980). Profession: professor at the Volgograd Polytechnic, Ph. D., scientific worker. Cycling interests: touring and mountain hiking. Other interests: organic chemistry, textile technology, computers, photography, gardening. Pavel Protopopov came to bicycle touring In 1980 from automobile touring having made ten category automobile tours and several hiking trips. From then he is a staunch supporter of a bicycle touring which, as he believes, combines merits of both auto touring (mobility, large tour distances) and of hiking (close contact with nature, high passability). Pavel has been a participant or a leader of 22 category bicycle tours and of two bicycle expeditions (in remote regions of Altai, Pamiro-Alai and Tien Shan). He is a member of the Russian Cycle Touring Commission and has been one of the founders of the recently formed Russian Cyclists' Touring Club. Pavel believes that bicycle touring, relatively young, has a great future in Russia. He wants to make Orion an instrument for spreading bicycle touring throughout Russia and the whole world.



1. Join the VCTC"Orion".

Membership includes four issues of "Velotourist" as well as other benefits.

2. Subscribe to "Velotourist".
Annual subscription costs only $5.00
and you'll know about cycling life in


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Bicycle Touring in Russia

Pavel Protopopov

Chapter 2. Sports Bicycle Touring

A system of bicycle touring commissions which exists now in Russia represents the so called organized bicycle touring. According to the Common All-Union Sporting Classification this is a kind of sports like alpinism, sporting orienting, etc. As such, organized bicycle touring as well as hiking touring, mountain touring, ski touring and others is regulated by the Rules for Conducting Tours and Trips in the USSR. All trips are divided into fixed categories in distances, duration, and difficulty as follows.

Table 1

Category (Rating) Distance (km) Duration (days) Difficulty
1 250 6 most easy
2 400 8 easy
3 600 10 moderate
4 800 13 difficult
5 1100 16 most difficult

Trips, made in accordance with the Rules are called "category trips". Only trips rated 1 are made (not always) on flat terrain by paved roads. With the increase in category number the route includes more and more "natural obstacles"; such as dirt roads, hilly (and then mountainous) terrain, trails and so on. One of the main goals of a category trip is, along with seeing something new or visiting beautiful places, struggle with these obstacles, this struggle giving a specific flavor to a trip. Indeed, when you are limited with a rigid time-table, not allowed to use pleasures of civilization (hotels, restaurants, bath or shower, etc.) for the most part of a trip, when you manage to cycle or go on feet 10-20 km instead of required 60-80 and then cover two-days norm in one day even if you have to cycle 12-16 hours in a row, when you shake through the night in your wet tent somewhere at 2000-3000 m above the sea level and then

put on wet clothing In the morning, and when after all that you return home exhausted but alive, you feel great! Number of cyclists can not be less than four for trips of the 1st and the second categories (two In special cases for the 1st category trips) and six for other categories. This is set up for security reasons. Maximal number is not limited, but in the difficult trips it does not usually exceed 10-12 persons.

Permission for the trip can be given by special Route-Qualification Commissions (RQC) composed of experienced tourists. These Commissions are created in regions that have enough competent persons (they should have an experience of a trip a category higher then the level of the Commission). The RQC checks touring qualification of members and a leader of a group wishing to make a trip. The usual experience necessary for a member Is to have a trip a category lower and to a leader to have a trip of the same category made as a participant and a trip a category lower as a leader. Such strict regulations are explained by security reasons in order to gain touring experience step by step. Successful implementation of the certain number of trips is granted by the sporting categories as shows the Table 2:

Table 2

Sporting Category

Trip Category

III p - - - -
II p p p - -
or II p, l p - - -
I p p p, p p, p -
or I p, l p, l p.1 p -
master p, l p, 1 p.1 p,1 p, p, l, l

Note: p - participant, 1 - leader

There are also championships of different levels, beginning from city and regional championships and up to the USSR championship in bicycle touring. These championships are a competition of trip reports, something like literature contests, where some jury decides who is to be awarded. But competitions in bicycle touring will be a subject of a separate chapter.


The publication of "Velotourist" is possible now as the Law on the Press has been adopted in this country. But..

Acute shortage of printing facilities, which are almost exclusively in the hands of the state and party organizations, put many obstacles before us.

We need program complex for a publisher, something like Ventura Publisher and a PC with a LaserJet.

'Velotourist" is looking for sponsors in the hope that somebody "behind the curtain" will want to support the first, weak yet, communication link of Russian bicycle tourists with the outer cycling world.


The First Russian Bike Video!

How Russian cycle tourists make their trips.
What Russian peysages are like.
New inventions Tor cycling with children
VHS, 90 min.

For sale or change for the other bike video.

A. Grigoryev, Sports Club "Energy", The United Turbomotor Works, Sverdlovsk 620040, USSR, Phone (3432)34-62-64, Fax (3432)34-79-65


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One More Cycling Club in Russia

Sporting Club "Ekos" has been founded in Vologda. The main orientation of the Club is bicycle touring. This is the second independent bicycle touring club in Russia after Orion. The president of "Ekos", Valery Prygov, writes that his club aims at developing bicycle touring In Northern Russia, the land of magnificent and stern beauty.

Two Centuries with a Bicycle

This is the name of the Exhibition In the Polytechnic Museum In Moscow which was held from 12 September to 10 October. The collection of bicycles was presented by the (West) Berlin Museum of Transport. About 400 exhibits, from the first pedalless bicycle ("parade horse") and bamboo bicycle to auto bicycle were shown to Muscovites and guests of the capital. The exhibition showed that there are no limits to inventing a bicycle.

To Baikal by Bike.

From the long trip returned home Eugeny Zhuravlev, a villager from Nizhniy Novgorod Region. He visited Eastern Siberia and the famous lake of Baikal, the biggest and the last depository of clean fresh water. The only bicycle passable route across Russia and the USSR from the West to the East lies through this beautiful area.

Unfortunately Baikal is now in a great danger because of pollution. Each year Russian cyclists, and not only Russian, take part In a campaign for the purity of this unique treasure of nature.

Moscow Rally.

The annual two-day Moscow Rally "Golden Autumn-90" was held in September as usual. Participants In teams of at least to persons started from the Moscow park "Ismaylovo" at 10 in the morning, September 22. They had with them all the equipment necessary for camping in the wild. Intermediate stop and camping were at the Pirogovskoye Reservoir bank. Finish was In the Central Gorky Culture Park In Moscow on September 23.


Editor's preface: In the previous and the first issue of Velotourist we invited everybody to write to our Club. But to tell frankly we did not expected so fast a response. With pleasure we publish below the first letters received in answer for the first issue of Velotourist.

Sirs: My name is Steve Parley, I'm in the Air Force, currently in Saudi Arabia for Desert Shield. I saw a little piece of your club, I Just wanted to write to encourage you. I love cycling, It's what I miss the most being out here In the desert. I own a Korean made mountain bike, but I plan on upgrading perhaps even to a Cannondale, once I get back home. Of course, I can't make any plans to be involved In one of your tours too soon, since being a military is a complication. However, I would like to stay in touch with your group if that's possible. As soon as I return to the States I plan to begin study of your language. Perhaps one of you would enjoy correspondence with someone Interested in cycling and your culture? I'm 5'7", 155 Ibs, 24 years old. I also enjoy weight training as an added dimension to cycling. I do plan on visiting your country as soon as possible, so I am a prospective customer. But my plans are a bit more long term, that's all. I'am also interested in missioning work In your country, if that will be permitted, once I am discharged from the military. Until we meet one day, then. I look forward to hearing from you.
Your friend Steve Farley.

Editor's comment: Thank you for your letter, Steve, that was a surprise! Almost the last place we'd expected to receive a letter was Saudi Arabia. I'll inform our members of your wish to correspond. As for visit to our country and missionary work, why not? We would be glad to greet you here. We wish you success with your mission in the desert and fast return home.

Cher President, With the great pleasure I learned about your news. Thank you for your petit journal which permits us to get acquainted with your club. I hope that you are receiving regularly our magazine? We have heard nothing about Pekin - Paris ride organized by American and Soviet cycle tourists, may be you could give us more information?
Marcel Sarrazin, President de la Commission des Relations Internationales,
Federation Francaise de Cyclotourisme.

Editor's remark: Forgive me for this poor translation from French, will you?

Dear Pavel,

I wish to congratulate you and your fellow Orion members on the first Issue of Velotourist. It Is a fine newsletter and one you can be proud of. We appreciate how much work has gone into the creation of your English edition since our own paper would surely be a total disaster if we tried to do it in Russian.

I found most of the stories in Velotourist fascinating. The item that really attracted my interest was the advertisment for your trip from Beijing to Paris. As the travel writer for Cycle St. Louis, I chose that trip to write about for my next column and with your generous permission I wrote about the journey Inviting my readers to contact Mr. Darryl Skrabak if they were unterested in participating. Do you personally plan to do that trip? We have recently opened sections of what is known here as the Katy Trail. This is a bicycle trail that, when completed in a couple of years, will provide a route exclusively for cyclists across the state of Missouri from near St. Louis to the city of Sedalia (325 km) at the western end. I hope you or your fellow Orion members will someday tour the Katy trail with us.
Alan E. Sherman
St. Louis Bicycle Touring Society

President's comment: Dear Alan, thank you for congratulations and for your kind words about our newsletter. Our supposed trip from Peking to Paris is discussed in more details in this issue. I'd like to take part in it but I am not sure I'll be able to do that. I do hope that we'll cycle with you someday along the Katy Trail when we solve our currency problems.


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Editor's Comment In the first issue we placed general comment about the Crimea as our favorite place for cycling in any time of the year. Now we present another story about this year trip to this remarkable area. We tried not to intrude in style and content of the original text.

Back to the Crimea

Valery Komotchkov

One can property appreciate the trip only some time after it was performed, when only the strongest impressions out of great many are left. When a slightest hint - a photo, chanced upon, or a word dropped by a friend - is enough to let the unforgettable pictures emerge in one's memory, like the stills of a favorite movie. What comes back to me more frequently from my last trip to the Crimea?

An early July morning. Our tourist group is quickly and deftly unloading our bikes and rucksacks off a railway carriage on a small railway station not far from Simferopol, administrative centre of the Crimea Region. There are only two minutes at our disposal to do this, but this operation is usual in our long trips and takes us only a little more than a minute. We are seven: four males and three females. Some are for the first time in the Crimea.

The general impression of the first day resembles watching a film In a quick search regime: quickly got off the train, even more quickly assembled the half-disassembled bikes and began pedaling quickly-quickly. The matter is that the train left us in the middle of the Crimea steppe and we wanted to get out of it in one day jump and to reach Bakalskaya spit on the Western coast this evening and this would make about 140 km.

Then in memory there are asphalt road, flashing spokes and roadside villages, and the burning sun. This year the summer in the Crimea was hot and dry. And we dreamt only about the sea, because for us, who live in Central Russia, the sea Is an exotic thing. At that, here it is, the Black sea! The long awaited meeting, due to the courage of the female part of the group, took place before dark.

The next day is the day of a peaceful rest. A lot of sea, sea-gulls and the sun. I remember how we had planned to lie on the beach and to bathe in the sea all day long. But we had not patience enough. One of the wild pearls of the Crimea - Jangool - awaited us. After dinner cooked on the primuses (Russian for stoves) we unanimously decided to cycle on.

The next colorful picture: a peach-tree garden beside the road, bicycles dropped here and there, and wonderful aromatic and juicy peaches, which have nothing in common with the fruit sold on the markets in Volgograd that is also called peach and resembles aromatized raw potato. Now we are approaching the unassailable shores of Jangool. It is getting dark quickly. The sea is somewhere to the right, but the direction of the steppe road does not satisfy us. I send people in different directions with sure voice fearing inside they might get lost In the wilds. After unsuccessful searches we raise tents already in full darkness.

It turns out In the morning that we have chosen the right place. We find ourselves in one of numerous hollows that cut high cliffs of the shore. There Is a convenient way down nearby which leads to a small bay. The memory keeps this day from the first till the last minute. The scenery charmed everybody. The limpid turquoise sea sparking under the sun and fanciful lonely cliffs of the shore, crabs darting about between stones and underwater shooting.

When I close my eyes I see myself again on that shore. I see myself Inhaling deeply and diving into the limpid depth, Into stony labyrinth covered with seaweeds, alarming careful crabs and other, more cool, underwater inhabitants. And here Is the trophy - a grey mullet. But I am short of breath. I emerge, open my eyes and ... sighing continue to write this story. Yes this day flew like a fairy-tale. The last thing I remember is the dark night and the bright stars above which I see through half closed eyes, half asleep.

Another picture. We are In the central part of the Crimea, the sea left far behind. Our tents are on a forest meadow, surrounded by the sheer walls of a canyon. This Is Chufut-Kalais - an ancient cave town near Bakhchl-saray. The old part of Bakhchl-saray climbs up and ends In a rather narrow canyon, the farthest part of which contains the remains of this cave town and an old monastery cut out In the rock with still visible cells. The canyon Is more Impressive in the evening, when it looks like the one from an American film about Indians and the wild West.

And at last, the climax of the trip - Kara-Dag (Tatar for Black Rock). They say that if you did not see Kara-Dag you have not see the Crimea. Kara-Dag is an ancient volcano on the seashore partially destroyed with the time. Since 1979 It is a strictly guarded preserve. At the foot of Kara-Dag near the Koktebel Bay there is a village named Planerskoye, former Koktebel (Tatar for Area of Blue Hills). This is the place that attracted artists and poets for a long time as well as modern hippies who spend here the whole summer.

But It should be another highly adventurous story about how we managed to get around cordons and to spend the night and the day inside and cross the whole Kara-Dag and to see all its peculiarities Including Sphinx and the Golden Gate (former Devil Gate). (Editor's note: I think this story, if it is written, will appear in the English edition only, otherwise we'll have trouble with authorities for violating strict restrictions concerning this preserve).

The colors of the trip have not yet faded In my memory, but I am dreaming already of my next meeting with the Crimea, may be, next autumn.

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Companions wanted

Experienced English and German-speaking cyclist seeks pen-friends for the exchange of cycling and other information, mutual visits, possible joint adventures. Can deliver information useful for cycling in the USSR. Contact Olcg Petrukhin, Lgovskaya ul., 2-5, Volgograd, 400088, USSR.

Scientific Commercial Centre "Altalr" which conducts business affairs of ORION is planning construction of a mobile hotel on a basis of a heavy truck (or could buy or rent one). This hotel will be used for the accommodation of foreign cyclists during trips In the USSR and neighboring countries. Seeking partners on the mutually beneficial conditions. Would be grateful for any assistance.
Contact: Pavel Protopopov

According to the program of development, the Soviet - Bulgarian joint venture "Infonnatica" works out and can produce the safety equipment for tourists, alpinists, and speleologists and at the training equipment for the same purposes. Individuals and organizations Interested In the information should contact: N.Zotov, 18, Kabardinskaya ul., Volgograd 400002, USSR

Services offered

An experienced bicycle tour leader offers services of a guide or a leader for cycling trips in any region of the Soviet Union from May to September of 1991. Contact before April 15: Dmitry Pevtsov, 32-38 Leningradskaya ul., Dnepropetrovsk 320091, Ukraine.

Private wants

Seeking old and used bike computers, interested in other electronics not obligatory connected with bikes. Can offer for exchange (for collection) mechanical speedometer of the Soviet production and other Items of Soviet exotics. Ilya Philippov, Komsomolskaya ul. 8-25, Volgograd 400066, USSR.

Information wanted

Family cycling section of "Orion" is planning a cycle trip with small children from Volgograd to France in July of 1991. Would appreciate information on cycling in France and intermediate countries and all possible help including material and financial in organization of this trip. Sergei Paramonov, VCTC "Orion", USSR



Do you want information, help or a companion when planning bicycle tour to the USSR?

Do you want to sale, change or to buy something in Russia?

You can reach Russian bicyclists, clubs and bicycle specialists through the "Classified Information" column of me Russian edition of "Velotourist". $.20 per word, free for members


June 18 - 23,1991 Includes:

Two-days cycle tour "Monasteries and Lakes of the Vologda Region

Fine opportunity to establish business links on the Soviet tourist market

Great chance to win main prizes in a cycling race - the latest models of sport bicycles - "Virazh" and "Diana"

The best possibility to rest, to take part in a folk-lore festival, to fish, to perspire in a Russian steam bath.

Valery Prygov, Cycling Club "Ekos" Central Post-office, P.O.Box 35 160000, Vologda


Third International Youth Bicycle Touring Meeting

July 11-15, 1991

Age range 14-15 and 16-17 Cycle Touring Rally

Skillful Bicycle Driving Competition

Slide and Photo Contest Evening of Touring Songs

For foreign participants three- or four weeks cycling program is possible Contact: Alexei Tchkalov, Kuybisheva ul., 57-80, Nizhniy Novgorod 603074 USSR


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Postal Romance or The Way Con-Artists Do Business

From the letter to the president of Orion:

Dear Mr. Protopopov:

I am writing to you to express my interest in working with you and your bicycling organizations. I want to bring American cyclists to the Soviet Union for two to four week cycling tours. There many Americans who would like to take bicycle tours in the USSR.

The reasons I am interested in working with a bicycle club are simple. I want to give cyclists the best possible tours in the Soviet Union, something I cannot do through Intourist. Invitation through a cycling organization would allow a flexibility for cyclists to truly enjoy their tour in culturally enriching ways. Intourist is also cost restrictive and I would rather arrange payment to a cycling club in whatever capacity possible. I am currently planning a trip to the Soviet Union this summer. I would like to visit you and your organization to discuss possibilities for the future.

Thank you. Thomas Freisem, Seattle, Washington, USA.

From the telephone call from Seattle:

Seattle (in Russian): My name is Tanya. I am calling on behalf of Mr. Freisem. Could your club arrange business visas for him and his friend to enter the USSR. They want to visit Moscow also. Private invitation won't do. We we need an official invitation from an organization to get business visas.

Volgograd, Protopopov: Certainly we can do that. I'll telegraph an invitation from our Club and the Russian Cyclists' Touring Club where I am the secretary for the international relations. Just tell me the names, whom to send the invitation to. Seattle: We'll send them in a letter. Thank you, good-bye.

From the letter to the president of Orion:

Dear Mr. Protopopov:

Thank you for your invitation to the Soviet Union and the interest in cycling groups. 1 hope we will be able to work together. The name of my company is EuroEast Tours. I have sent you information about myself, and Mr. Jeremy Wolff, vice president of EuroEast, so that you can begin the process of obtaining business visas for us. According to the USSR Consulate in the U.S., we need an official invitation (letter or cable) including both of our names from your organization, confirming the trip. I have listed August -September because Ihave not yet determined the exact dates. I plan to visit Moscow and Volgograd.

Sincerely yours, Tom Freisem.

Cable to Tom Freisem:

Russian Cyclists Touring Club and Volgograd Cyclists Touring Club are inviting you to visit us in Moscow and Volgograd in August September 1990 or in other time at your convenience to discuss aspects of cooperation. We shall take care of your expenses in Moscow and Volgograd. Inform us beforehand of your arrival.

President Protopopov.

From the telephone call from Seattle (in Russian):

This is Tanya. I am speaking on behalf of Tom Freisem. We got visas and tickets and are flying to Moscow on August 20. We'll call from Moscow.

From the telephone call from Moscow

Moscow (in Russian): This is Tanya. Tom Freisem is here but he is busy (!?). Could you come up here today or tomorrow for a chat?

Volgograd, Protopopov (somewhat flabbergasted): But it is rather unexpected... I don't think I could get tickets at such short notice and then we are waiting for Mr. Freisem here in Volgograd...

Moscow: Some murmur, then in English: This is Tom Freisem. I am flying to Leningrad tomorrow (!?) and I'll be back in Moscow in two days. I'll phone you then.

Volgograd: Okay, I'll be waiting for your call.

Then, silence.


International Meeting Changes the Name

In "RN" column of the No. 1 we wrote about the 1990 Meeting of Cycle Tourists of Socialist Countries as were called members of the East Kuropean Bloc, and about the contest between Russia abd Ukraine for the right to receive the next Meeting. Russia has lost and the 1991 Meeting, named now the 4th International Meeting of Cycle Tourists of East European Countries, will be held near Lvov, Western Ukraine, on June, 6-8,1991. Organize's promise to send invitations to the m;ini Russian cycle touring organizations. We have not yet contact address of the organizing committee.

Greetings from Odessa

Cycle tourists from several Russian cities took part in the Odessa Rally "Khadzhibey-196". The Rally is conducted for the seventh time. Khadzhibey is the name of the one of three firths on the Black sea coast, the route of the Rally goes around. 196 -is the distance of the Rally in km. Each year, beginning from 1984, organizers - the Odessa Touring Club and the local cycle touring commission - add one km to the distance, so that in 1994, the year of the 200th anniversary of Odessa, the distance would be 200 km.

Two days of the Rally included: the main distances 104 and 92 km for the two days respectively, velotrial, two short races, 2 and 7 km, and steep ascent race. The cycling event was flavoured with the famous Odessite humour. All participants were able to buy specific Odessa counerfeit money: a single-use coin for the party and apparat special distribution shops and for bribes "One Eltsin" , ana money for food and department stores: "Three shishlings" (Shish is the Russian for "fig" - special figure-gesture of three fingers meaning acid refusal).

Ukraine Lost One of the Leading Cycle Tourists

Georgy Rosenbaum, the chairman of the Transkarpathian Regional Cycle Touring Commission, left permanently for Izrael. He intends, as he says, to cycle in biblical places. Let us hope that through him we will be able to establish contacts with the Izrael Cyclists' Touring Club, which we have not so far.


p. 8


(continued from the page 2)

Preparations for the Soviet -British Expedition

Orion has began preparations for the joint Soviet -English bicycle expedition which is due in August 1991. The expedition is supposed to go in two groups, each half British, half Russian, to wild regions of Caucasus. The trip will be of the most difficult, fifth category in the Soviet classification of bicycle tours. The route will include mountainous roads, high passes and trails. Organizer from the British side is Mr. Stephen Satow, known for his cycling adventures in Zaire jungles.

Peking to Paris

After the short ad about the supposed tour in the No. 1 we have already received several letters touching upon the matter. At readers' request we are returning to the subject.

The idea belongs to Mr. Darryl Skrabak, an American cyclist who applied to Orion for help in organizing the trip, since the main part of it lies across the USSR. Mr. Skrabak sent us the map of the 1907 automobile race, the route he would like to follow, and here it is. We remind Mr. Skrabaks address: 1514 20th Ave., No. 4, San Francisco, CA 94122, USA



Foreign membership of the VCTC "Orion" includes:

a free subscription to "Velotourist", access to other cycling and touring information, discounts in services while touring in the USSR

Name___________ Address________________
City____________ Country________________
Phones: home________ work______________
Membership $12

Volgograd Cyclists' Touring Club "Orion"




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