Text & photo by Igor Kukec, Jer putovati se mora - Brmbi

Traveling to the northernmost point of Europe has become a tradition I strive to maintain every year. This was the fourth conquest of the far north in the past four years

This year’s adventure to 4,000 miles north was highly questionable because of the situation with COVID. The whole driving plan for this year came down to the hope that I would drive at least this shortest section of all planned.

Epidemiological measures weaken or cease as we approach the north.

Entry into Hungary passed without any problems, the Slovak border was barely noticed.

1

2

In Slovakia it is not possible to enter a shop or a petrol station without a face mask and that is all. Poland respects the measures to the extent that hand disinfection is mandatory wherever you stop.

3

Lithuania, where self-isolation is mandatory for all who enter, does not implement this measure at all. We roared through Latvia without stopping, and in Estonia they don't even know that COVID exists.

4

5
Entering Finland comes down to the rare control of passengers getting off the ship and that’s where we almost ended the trip. Police and customs officers decided to stop the bike that was driving behind the two of us. A little luck sometimes doesn’t hurt. We drove through Finland inland without approaching the Swedish border where passenger control is allegedly very rigorous.

The entry into Norway took place at a small border crossing where no one showed up for hours. At that moment, Nordkapp was about 300 kilometers away and I practically knew we would succeed.
 
6
 
A word or two about arriving at Nordkapp. It is really interesting to experience the climax of the journey and reach the end!

The feeling of being no further cannot be described in a few words. The fact that it is only 2092 kilometers away from the North Pole is really fascinating. Then you realize how small the Earth really is ...
 
7
 
8
 
Camping on a cliff about 300 meters high, below which the waves of the Norwegian Sea hit the rocks is also a special experience. We felt very privileged.

Darko, my companion on this adventure, experienced the arrival at the finish line especially emotionally.

As far as I am concerned, the fourth encounter with the location where the Gods fell on the Earth also leaves a big mark in the memory that will not fade for many years, especially since I renew it at least once a year.

With an almost identical route we traveled back along the detour in Lithuania where we visited a famous location called the Hill of Crosses.
 
9
 
Crossing all the borders passed without any problems, except of course ours, which was very interesting. Darko Jurekic, my companion this year passed all the tests on the trip with great success, sitting five. He complied with all the agreements we had before departure to the last detail. Democracy has no place at all on such long journeys. Any attempt to change the plan or interfere in the decisions of the person who organized and designed the route leads to the collapse of the system. There are only two options, either you drive behind me, or you go your own way, the third does not exist!

There is enough experience behind me to be able to make that statement and I make it clearly and unequivocally before any trip someone wants to join me on.

It is not about showing some power or forcing military discipline, but about the functionality and safety of travel. Darko had no objections throughout the trip. The only task before him was to organize the purchase of boat tickets from Estonia to Finland and back. Along with making coffee, which he adores, that was it. I took it all upon myself.

If we turn the plate on the other side and I would be overjoyed if there was someone who is able to think instead of me about fuel, food, accommodation, route. Darko simply indulged and enjoyed the trip with me. And me with him!
 
10
 
Coffee, that magical black liquid, Darko's coffee addiction is the only concession on my part. It’s the only adjustment I had to agree to on the entire trip.

The obligatory morning coffee he always made was even very interesting to me. So imagine a situation where someone at the end of the world opens a tent for you in the morning and puts a cup of hot and fragrant coffee in your hand. It was that coffee at Nordkapp that remained deeply etched in my memory. Darko has perfected coffee brewing so much in any conditions, road, accommodation, camp, that even my unloading of equipment during the drinking break took longer.

The amount of coffee we drank is difficult to determine. We multiply at least three coffees a day by the 15 days we traveled together until Darko went home ... Multiply the result by two people and that's about it! Frank could take us for mannequins and promoters of his products. We drank their coffee the whole time.

After so much coffee, it was time to run out of them. Darko is the owner of a private business and the business and existence of employees depend on his presence. Business commitments dictated his return. Somewhere in Poland, around Krakow, we broke up.
 
11
 
He ran the shortest way to Zagreb. I turned to Romania which I subsequently gave up due to the extremely bad weather forecast for the next few days. The beans suddenly fell on Slavonia where I stayed for four days.

A welcome that only the bravest can wish for. That's exactly what happened to me. A downpour of epic proportions greeted me on the very border with Croatia. Two lanes for entry, at one customs office inspecting a car with German license plates, and the other lane empty. A red light on the traffic light above, rain pouring as if ten Canadairs were dropping water bombs on the fire at the same time.

Stream, stream, stream, my Strom spins, legs up to half a shin in the water that the shafts fail to drink, stream, stream, stream and so on for ten minutes a total flood. And just when I thought I would stay at the border until the rain passed, a reversal.

The border guard reached for his cottage and finally waved me over. Documents please, motorcycle documents please, open suitcases, where are you traveling from, where are you going after this storm?

That's how our conversation goes, I guess the man was up to the story after the storm. Maybe he thought I'd tell him the weather before he got to the border. Maybe there's ice somewhere. Who knows what he meant. After all, I understand, he does his job. A little too hot in my opinion, but it's still just my opinion from the angle of a biker who got wet like an "acorn ace".

He finally let me go to Croatia. But the second act of sudden welcome is yet to come. For the first ten meters in Croatia, I drive in the middle of the lane and then TRES !!!

A hole covered with water, a hole that could not be seen. Feeling like the motorcycle has cracked in half. The navigation device falls out of the bay, the lights "beat" each to his side. I barely stayed on the wheels. I look at the instruments, I'm not sure if the oil leaked from the possibly broken crankcase. Everything is fine, the safety lights do not come on. I drive on, slowly, it’s total darkness, a flood of epic proportions. In the opposite lane truck. It flashes to me, I give it back to him to see him and understand what he wants. From his high cabin, my shattered lights must have seemed like a rainbow to him. At that moment, it starts flashing like it’s the end of the world, it turns on all the lights on the truck, and you know there are quite a few of them and it doesn’t turn them off. Whiteness in front of me, I don't see anything, I realize at the last minute that the truck is in my lane. The food I had left to pull out a live head was a road ditch full of mud where I ended up. Better that than truck wheels, I mean the first one. And then a wave of anger, first at the truck driver, and then at the rain falling and not allowing me to photograph what the engine looks like, lying with me on the left side in the mud. I managed to get out on the asphalt, about ten kilometers away, when the rain stopped pouring like from a cable, I was clean and washed, my Strom too.
 
12
 
I will stay in my Slavonia for the next four days. I am choosing Osijek for the base from which I will operate in the surrounding places. On the first day, I didn’t actually even come out of the safety of my new home. It was necessary to train Baby (Stroma) to continue the journey, rest well and make a plan of where and when to go next. The drive to Ilok, lunch at a hotel on the banks of the Danube cannot be described in words. It needs to be experienced.

The next day, a ride to the surroundings of Đakovo and an interview with the famous adventurer Hrvoje, who traveled the world on his bicycle.
 
13
 
Socializing with the locals in front of one store was also a good feeling. Meeting new people and visiting my airport on Čepinska cesta. I deliberately use the word “mine” because I have fond memories of it from my youth.

It was at that airport that I had my first flying experiences and passed the exam for a motor kite pilot. They flew, threw parachutes and enjoyed themselves. Four days passed in an instant. Eighteen days after the start of the Nordkapp adventure, I am returning to the rut of everyday life. Happy and proud of myself and my companion. We did what everyone, not most people but everyone I know, said was impossible at this CORONA time.

About 8,000 kilometers passed under the wheels of our motorcycles. 8 thousand beautiful kilometers.

It happened again!

Nordkappe, see you next year!
 
15
 
16
 
17
 
18
 
19
 
20
 
21
Macna Riding Gear

Macna Riding Gear

MV Agusta

MV Agusta

Peugeot Motocycles

Peugeot Motocycles

Akrapovič

Akrapovič

Moto Tour Croatia Support shop