Vespa test
Vespa test
Enlarge
Ride to the roof of Vietnam
Ride to the roof of Vietnam
Enlarge
Jungle highway
Jungle highway
Enlarge
Above the abyss
Above the abyss
Enlarge

The Indochina Chronicles book - December 2005

Back to all press articles

The Indochina Chronicles

The Indochina Chronicles

Extract from “The Indochina Chronicles

By Phil Karber

One of Hanoi’s little-known distinctions is its Minsk Club, a loose association of thrill-seekers who have bought into the cult of the two-stroke, Russian dirt bikes. Unless there is a counterpart club in Afghanistan, the only other country outside the former Soviet Union where the bikes survive in significant numbers, Hanoi’s club is unique.

Head of the club is Digby Greenhalgh, an Aussie law school dropout who runs Minsk tours around Vietnam’s mountainous reaches and goat paths. His other distinction is being author of the Minsk Repair Manual, a 50-page self-help book for fellow English-speaking gear heads who want to motor Vietnam on their own. Digby claims that he bike’s numerous mechanical shortcomings are of little real concern, “It’s the survival of the fittest. They molt the weaker, cheaper parts, and the stronger one that count always full through.”   …

Digby’s repair manual describes them [Minsks] best, “The bikes are made of steel not chrome, and prefer to be greased not polished.” Before week’s end, we would all come to appreciate the durability and practicality of the steel horses, however, and to some degree share in Digby’s passion.

 

The Indochina Chronicles book (USA)
December 2005

 

Back to all press articles

Copyright 2002-2019 Explore Indochina Ltd. All pictures copyright of Explore Indochina Ltd