The M55 highway has been following the railway for such a long time that it’s become second nature to mention it in despatches. But there’s a river – the Selenga river – that runs into Lake Baikal and for the next few stages, the railway will be sharing the spotlight with the water course. Following on from stage 229, stage 230 continues to head east/north east so you haven’t yet begun the change of direction down towards the Mongolian border.
The rollout is lumpy, slightly uphill and straight for four miles. The road then hangs a left at the junction to Selenginsk in the south before the road crosses the railway at Bryansk at six miles. Then it’s onward to Bryanskoye at seven miles which signals the start of a gentle five mile climb on a long straight to Mostovskoye which you reach at thirteen miles having crossed the railway no fewer than five times.
The river is always half a mile or so to the north and as the road heads towards Yugovo at eighteen miles followed by Talovskoye at twenty miles, you’re well into a really lumpy stretch of the stage where the undulations are both steep and frequent: very testing on the legs.
After leaving Talovskoye, the road kicks visciously uphill and from twenty miles to twenty two miles, you’ll need to punish your legs in order to stay in contention with your group. The road runs just inside the forest for a couple of miles over that same segment before emerging onto a gentle downhill to the finish on the approach to Il’inka.
Distance: 24 miles / 38 kilometres
Ascent: 463 feet / 141 metres
RGT Magic Road: 6YlIgUlM4egW
Max elevation: 1576 ft
Min elevation: 1465 ft
Total climbing: 456 ft
Total descent: -360 ft
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