Illyria Raid – Day 5 of 7

🗓: 12 Sep | 🌍: Kalason, Montenegro to Bjelasnica, Bosnia

Today we will explore three counties: Leaving Montenegro 🇲🇪 to explore a tiny bit of Serbia 🇷🇸 and ending the day in Bosnia 🇧🇦. This was our longest day by far with 13 hours of riding. We arrived at the hotel tired and well after dark.

Map of Day 5. Kolasin to Bjelasnica, Bosnia. The route coordinator recommended that we skip Serbia since Adam and I have a slower pace. I initially agreed until we got closer to the border and realized that the mud was not going to be as bad as forecasted.

The beginning of the morning was foggy and cooler but we quickly climbed above the fog to enjoy this wonderful view.

Some of the other riders from the Netherlands.

A great morning!!

It wasn’t too long before side-by-side vehicle (SSV) caught up to us. The pilot and navigator are both German and it was the only SSV in the raid. Admittedly, a SSV would be a lot of fun – and fast!

The plateau offered incredible views of rocky hills and natural grass.

Look closely – There was a herd of horses looking at our two wheeled machines with interest.

A brightly colored yellow metal roof stood out from the standard red or green ones. Every neighborhood has a show off who has to be different 😆

The plateau went on for miles and miles of golden beauty.

Signs to various places in Northern Montenegro. Fortunately, I used the Garmin GPSr with Europe maps and the route provided by the raid folks.

After descending the mountain, we arrived in a small town with this interesting architectural building. Hmmm… let’s go get a closer look…

…it looked abandoned. We parked the bikes and went for a closer look…

…Inside is was gutted. Eerie. I wonder what the story of this place was?

Other nearby buildings with their unique roof design. Wonder what is going on with the blue and red section of the roof?

Once we neared the Montenegro/Serbia border we decided to continue through to Serbia instead of skipping it. We had already missed one country, Macedonia, earlier in the week and didn’t want to miss out on another.

But we were delayed. We needed gas and there was a 30 minute delay and long lines at the fuel pumps in Montenegro. We patiently waited our turn and then made our way to Serbia.

Welcome to Serbia! The border was quick and easy with a relaxed vibe. Even the stray dogs were relaxed – barely lifted their heads as we motored through the checkpoint.

The off-roading in Serbia was a mix of forest logging and fire access roads. Once we reached the summit there were amazing views in nearly all directions.

Adam called these “God rays”.

Speaking of Adam, he showed a great amount of patience with me today. Last night we had agreed to skip Serbia due to time but today I changed my mind since I came to see and ride as many countries as I could. This decision really made it a long day and we ended up riding well into the night before getting to the hotel. Thanks Adam for hanging with me, brother! It was a long day but worth it!

Crossing the border from Serbia to Bosnia was really quick. Stray animals seem like a problem here as well. This guy is enjoying the warm sun along the side of the road.

Once we reached Bosnia we took pavement all the way to hotel. We’ll have some off-road time in Bosnia tomorrow…

Stopping along the road to capture memories of the beautiful countryside of Bosnia.

We arrived at our “lunch” spot in time for dinner. We were surprised to see our lunch host still there! We enjoyed a hearty meal of Ćevapi or ćevapčići (a grilled dish of minced meat) and delicious bread.

By the way, the lunches provided by the Illyria Raid staff was primo! Today was a classic example of the great tasting food and incredible service they provided. We were easily the last folks in the group today and the crew patiently waited for us before continuing along to the hotel a few hours away. Thanks guys!

I didn’t take any more pictures after this because we rode hard for the last three hours in order to reach the hotel and get ready for the next days brief and get some much needed rest. Until tomorrow…

Highlight video from Day 5.

Day 6 continues on PAGE 7. Hope you’re enjoying the journey…