The Ice Run: As Ineffable as it Sounds
Charity races became ten-a-penny once people realised it was the best way to tease opportune holiday days from an unforgiving boss. But every so often one crops up that makes us swoon.
They really don’t come any more extreme than the Ice Run. A dodgy Russian motorcycle? The endlessness of Siberia? Think twice before entering because it’s going to be tougher than any hungover Monday morning meeting.
Lake Baikal is so vast it holds 20% of the world’s fresh water. And it’s the setting for this intense journey into nowhere. Hotels? Forget it. Luxury? Not a chance. The only certainty is that there is no route. All you receive are the GPS coordinates for fuel dumps and the finishing line.
Riding an erratic Russian motorcycle across Siberia...in winter
The ice will be more than a metre thick in places, so you’ll be skidding and stuttering rather than plunging into the lake. Just be prepared for a few icicles to form on your face. And for lighting a fire under the motorbike to defrost it on a morning.
Ignoring the insanity of it all, where else can you be so incomparably immersed in the wild? A white mirage extends in all directions, glassy in some places, dotted with natural ice sculptures in others. Sure, you’ll need a little more than a cycling proficiency certificate to make it, but motorcycle legends are made on adventures like this.
A motorbike ride across Lake Baikal in winter
At least half the proceeds go to the official charity: Cool Earth
There’s no route – just GPS coordinates for fuel drops
Many participants don’t make the finish