In the winter time from 2016 to 17 I was thinking about a longer journey with Чернотa. In the summer 2016 I already did a nice trip to the 5 highest legal ridable points of the Alps (Col de Sommeiler, Col de la Bonette, Col de Ilseran, Stelvio and Col de Agnel). That trip was about 3500km / 2200mi long mostly on well built streets. Loads of curves, nice wild camping, but a less amount of gravel is a short summary of this trip. In 2017 I intended to do some more challenging. After a few glances at the terrain maps the next adventure quickly was found. Start and ending in Austria with a few assorted off road passages:

The Project Carpathian Balkan took us clockwise for about 5000 km / 3100 mi through the countries Austria, Slovakia, Ukraine, Romania, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Albania, Montenegro, Bosnia, Croatia, Slovenia and back to Austria.

This ride included a few highlights like the Polish/Slovakian High Tatra Mountains, assorted Ukrainian hill passages, Romanias famous “Strategica”-route, The Bulgarian Balkan Mountains, a ride through the Dual-Adventure-Paradise Albania, a ride along the Adriatic Coast, and many more … .

I finished the planning of this ride in spring 2017. As always in my adventures, the preferred accommodation was a tent. In the End of Mai 2017 i packed my stuff together:

Everything i took with me for this trip from left to right: Saddlebags, a luggage role, rain gear, a tent, two water bottles mounted to the saddlebags, rock straps, a sleeping mat and sleeping bag, a camping chair, a laundry bag, shims, a feeler gauge, oil, spare rocker arms, spare wheel bearings, a spare fuel pump, a caliper, a multimeter, spare cables, spare tubes, Electronics: a camera, necessary charging cables, a paper-notebook and a pen, glasses, a navigation system, e-reader, helmet cleaning set, bumf, light shoes, bialetti coffee cooker and coffee, fuel for stove, some cooking stuff, toilet bag, plasters, T-Shirts, boxers, a hoody, a softshell jacket, a trouser, a cap and a towel.
Due to the intention doing big parts of the trip in rather remote areas i also took some food with me:

Food I took with me from left to right: Cereal bars, 1 big water bottle, 4 cans tuna, 2 tomato sauce, 1kg noodles and 2 packs instant noodles.

​In the evening at the day before leaving, i did a few last maintenance checks and finally settled up my black beauty, which was alread very impatient due to the incoming adventure:

Чернотa fully settled up and ready to go. The next day we started our adventure.