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Francis Birtles Pioneer Trip

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2 months 5 days ago #251793 by Lang
Replied by Lang on topic Francis Birtles Pioneer Trip
Today we had a lovely 280km run between Erzurum and Dogubeyazit. We never dropped below 5,500ft and crossed one pass at 7,100ft. The road, except for that one great range was flat. Talk about Big Sky Country! The whole trip was in a huge flat valley averaging 6,000ft in altitude, all agriculture. The valley was walled by continuous snow-capped ranges averaging 10,000ft high. Blue sky and about 16 degrees.
At last we arrived in Dogubeyazit which sits right at the foot of Mount Ararat, Turkey's highest mountain at 16,500ft. People come from all over the world to visit the place where Noah and his animals came ashore. There is a strange shape on the side of the mountain claimed by one school of thought to be the man-made Ark. I had a look at it and believe the Birdsville Zoo would have trouble accommodating its stock let alone every animal in the world. Scientific discussion has raged for a couple of hundred years on its authenticity. I heard that Greta Thunberg is being brought in to ensure the science is in.
This mountain has fascinated me since childhood. I could never relate to a bunch of people dressed in bedsheets wandering around in the desert speaking Elizabethan English. But here was a story with real adventure, ship building, animals, storms at sea.
I think Noah is an unsung hero. Firstly building a boat with bronze tools he then had to collect the animals. Just think how far the lions and tigers had to come and give a thought to the poor little penguins shuffling their way the whole distance from Antarctica! What an organiser. Then there was the planning to cast off before his mother-in-law found out.
For 40 days and 40 nights he had to captain the ship and keep order below. There must have been the usual complaints like the anteater whining because he had only brought 2 ants. Then there were other stresses like discovering one of the unicorns was transgender, coming out to find the cats decapitating tweety birds and masticating mice and the psychology of trying to explain to the Spanish Stallion that he could not hump the good looking girl with the stripes from Africa.
Anyhow it is all laid out before us, no longer a badly drawn Ark to be equally badly coloured with broken pencils at Sunday school but the real deal!
Photo of Bev and the Bean with Mount Ararat between them. 
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2 months 4 days ago - 2 months 4 days ago #251811 by Lang
Replied by Lang on topic Francis Birtles Pioneer Trip
  Birtles Travel and our route choice Explanation
There has been continuous discussion about the choice of route since the project began. We remain very flexible. Numerous experts and non-experts have given advice, some of it very helpful but as always much of our travel planning is done on the fly.
World events have caused problems for overland motorists for over 100 years and so it remains today.
When planning we were presented with the impossibility of following Birtle's Bean 14 Sundowner route through Palestine (Israel), Syria and Iraq.
Two options (apart from numerous sea shipping routes) stood out.
Firstly take the southern route by ship from Greece to Egypt then avoiding the Israel, Syria, Iraq section, suffer a boring 2,000km drive on an endless desert highway across Saudi Arabia to the Arabian Gulf and ship from Dubai, Oman etc to Pakistan to catch up with Birtles across India. This route would lose a huge amount of Birtles' original travels but be politically and security risk-free.
Many people do not know that Francis Birtles with fellow Australian Malcolm Ellis drove all the way from England to India early in 1927 in a first attempt to reach Australia. Their vehicle was also a Bean but a large experimental 6 cylinder vehicle that staggered from disaster to disaster before finally collapsing in India.
Ellis, the brains of the expedition, returned to Australia (Birtles was the iron man who kept the car and team moving forward)..
Not to be beaten, Birtles returned to England where his faithful Bean 14 Sundowner, mercilessly flogged on several record breaking trips through the heart of Australia, had been taken for publicity purposes. They "washed it" and he set off 6 months later entirely alone on the successful journey we are recreating.
We decided not to travel thousands of kilometres away from "Birtle's Roads", either the first or second expedition and follow his experiences as closely as possible. As a result we are going through his available original countries of Turkey, Iran, Pakistan and India, the last 3 countries he did twice in the same year.
Here is a photo of Birtles and Ellis' first attempt in early 1927 in the Bean 6. The car completely failed in India. The photo is taken in the Balochistan area between Persia now Iran and India (now Pakistan)
Last edit: 2 months 4 days ago by Lang.
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2 months 3 days ago #251837 by Mrsmackpaul
They sure were goers back in their day

Reads like everything is going smoothly-ish and okay

Really enjoying the read Lang, thank you



Paul

Your better to die trying than live on your knees begging
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1 month 2 weeks ago #252013 by Mrsmackpaul
I hope Lang and Bev are still travelling okay, has been a couple of weeks since any update

Safe travels Lang and Bev, oh and the Bean as well
Do keep in touch with us all


Paul

Your better to die trying than live on your knees begging
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1 month 2 weeks ago #252016 by wouldyou
Paul,
They are posting on facebook, Bean 1927 England to Australia recreation. Werte in Pakistan yesterday.
David.
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1 month 2 weeks ago #252018 by 180wannabe
Thanks for the update David.  I have tried previously, but had no luck finding that FB site/page.  Certainly a great story to follow for those who can.  And so i really appreciate Lang's updates here on the forum.

Brett.
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1 month 2 weeks ago #252021 by wee-allis
Brett, go back 3 pages and the link is lit up in RED. Gets you straight in.
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1 month 2 weeks ago #252022 by 180wannabe
Thanks wee-allis, i did try that link in red at the time, and again just now, but all i get is "page not found".  

At least i now know the link works for you, so the problem must be at my end (which is not surprising!).

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1 month 2 weeks ago #252023 by wee-allis
That comes up for me occasionally, but if I hit the "Refresh" icon, it ten works.
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1 month 2 weeks ago #252024 by wouldyou
I am learning a lot following Lang and Bev’s adventure. Google Earth shows satellite pictures of the towns and cities they go through with information as to population and other statistics, have to go to road maps for a better idea of their route, all very interesting.
David.
 
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