If we thought Kerman was starting to become more basic, then Zahedan was even more so.
The ride itself was more desert with the most extreme conditions both Steve and I had ever experienced on bikes! Riding into gale force winds bringing dust storms with it and 43deg temps. We really struggled for a good 150km section with these relentless conditions. Adding to the wind was the issue of oncoming trucks causing a major upset due to the draft every time they past.
We arrived at Zahedan around 5.00pm and found the hotel we had pre booked from the previous day. Fortunately it was pretty easy to find.
At one point we had to navigate around a group of approximately 300 to 500 men kneeling and praying along the road, outside a mosque. This was the first time we had witnessed such extreme religious devotion. The number of men praying was blocking our side of the road, which meant we had to ride past down the wrong direction of traffic flow, which for Iran was not such an unusual occurrence.
Once we arrived at the hotel, armed police (with Kolashinkov’s) arrived as were clearly instructed we were not to travel outside the hotel compound without their escort! Things were suddenly changing.
We needed fuel for the ride to the boarder tomorrow so for the first time we received an armed escort in order to secure our safety. We filled up at the petrol station and quickly made our way back to the hotel.
The reason being, as this was close to the Afgan and Pakistan boarders we were at risk from Bandits and other “groups”.
Tomorrow it was agreed we would be escorted to the boarder by the police at 08:00am. Not really conducive to a good nights sleep.