Bikepacking Southern Iran: Day Five

A greasy egg sits on a plate, next to a small basket of flatbread and a single-serve packet of carrot jam. This is clearly not a breakfast designed with a hungry bikepacker in mind. For my £25, I feel like raising the point with the waiter, who I have little…

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Bikepacking Southern Iran: Day Four

Today, I cock it up. I’m woken at 5am by the mo’azzen and his call to prayer, a singular amplified wail filling the quiet valley with high-pitched tremor. I roll over and am snapped awake by the classic 3rd-day-of-riding thigh burn. As I pack my gear, I decide I am going…

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Bikepacking Southern Iran: Day Three

In haste, I have misread the map. Far from being an easy detour down from the central Iranian plateau to the coast, the scenic route I’ve chosen is a rollercoaster of mountains and valleys at altitude. When the asphalt peters out and I hit the dirt, I peer again at…

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Bikepacking Southern Iran: Day Two

Southwest of Shiraz is a big green splodge on Google Maps, reportedly the ‘Maleh Galeh’ protected area. Running through its heart is a road of the smallest designation. Satellite imagery depicts rural asphalt becoming dirt, weaving along the scoured valleys of the tail end of the Zagros, a scattering of…

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Bikepacking Southern Iran: Day One

“Meester! Meester! Your bicycle!” “Yes, yes!” I reply, scurrying across the forecourt to where the second driver is struggling to find handholds through the plastic sheeting. I relieve him of his duties, extracting the bicycle from the hold of the bus and hauling it over to a nearby bench in…

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