START date: August 19. 2014. Location: Istanbul, Turkey.
Our Caucasian trek starts at the amazing city of Istanbul, where East meets West and Europe meets Asia. We cross the Bosporus channel and navigate the full length of Turkey. We travel through Georgia including lush green Adjaria, drive among 5000-meter high peaks of the Greater Caucasus, see breathtaking canyons in the Lesser Caucasus. The route then leads down into Armenia and all around the politically uncertain area of Karabakh before crossing the finish line in Yerevan.
FINISH date: August 29. 2014. Location: Yerevan, Armenia.
Route of the Caucasian Challenge 2013
To see the route in more details including daily stages with start and finish points, click the link under the map below.
The Caucasian Challenge 2014 on a bigger map
What to (generally) expect
With the exception of the Caucasian wars you might never have heard of these countries or the rich histories and cultures still available for anyone with enough courage to check it out. We’re totally amped to go adventuring in areas that lack any reliable modern maps.
Wonderful local people, atrocious borders, ancient architecture, bad roads and dirt tracks, endless scenic vistas, mine fields, burn-out tanks, pointless country-specific administration obstacles, high-altitude terrain, a subtropical zone, lovely beaches, intense heat are all part of the adventure. As with foreign travel of all types, a smile and a sense of humor is your greatest resource. And of course, a party held regularly for you to meet locals, talk about the day with fellow racers and enjoy life.
4,000 kilometers (2,500 miles) in length, the Caucasian Challenge takes you through every possible road variation.
Modern highways, dirt and gravel roads, muddy tracks, mountain passes, vast bone-dry desert roads and even floods and landslides are all possible. There is a recommended route traced along the provided maps, designed to take you to the most spectacular parts of each country. In several cases larger roads are available nearby but who just wants to hang out on boring highways?