The Road of Bones
by Jorge Sanchez - 4 years, 10 months ago
In August 2009 I crossed the Road of Bones, from Yakutsk to Magadan, in a microbus called bukhanka, during 7 days.
It is not difficult at all to cross the Road of Bones, even if you go alone you will always find cars to cross from Yakutsk to Magadan or vice versa. From Magadan to Susuman there are regular buses every 48 hours, or shared taxis every day. The same happens between Yakutsk and Khandiga. You can hitch hike the rest of the road. If you are in a hurry, in 4 or 5 days you can do it, as follows:
Yakutsk - Khandiga - Ust Nera - Susuman - Magadan.
Or vice versa.
There are hostels everywhere, and restaurants. So, do not worry, the Road of Bones is presently very frequented, especially in summertime.
But be aware that there is another Road of Bones, the authentic, that runs from Khandiga to Tomtor and further, the old road. It is harder, much harder; there are deep holes with water in the way from Tomtor to Susuman, broken bridges, no inhabited villages, but still some people cross it, even walking or by bike or in good land rovers.
My advice is: try the old road!
I was in a small group of 5 PAX and two of them had booked an airplane ticket from Magadan to somewhere else and could not risk going through the old road, at the adventure, for fear to lose their ticket. So, we tried, and after the first failure we abandoned the idea. But it was possible, perhaps trying a second time, a third time, but it was possible and we saw cars that had made it.
Anyway, even if you take the new Road of Bones you will pass through virgin nature, will see reindeers, will contact the gentle Yakutian and Magadan people and your journey will be most interesting, remarkable and unforgettable!!!
If you have the opportunity and are brave enough, please, DO IT!
(By the way, Magadan was a most fascinating city. Apart from the excellent museum devoted to the Gulags, there is a monument dedicated to the millions of people who died in the GULAGS around Magadan and constructing the Road of Bones, sent there by the criminal Stalin).