08-Oct-2014 -- This is the last out of 12 confluence reports, reaching 10 and attempting 2 confluence points in Iran and Turkmenistan. The story starts at 36°N 51°E and continues from 38°N 58°E.
On our 4th day out of 5 days that our visas were good for, I started cycling in the early morning in Bayramaly (45 km beeline from the Confluence). It was still dark and it had rained all night. The giant potholes of the roads were filled with water. During the morning rush-hour the heavy traffic had to share a single lane road. Trucks were blowing their horns indicating that I had to leave the road into the ditch in order to let them pass. In short: cycling was not that pleasant as expected.
The Confluence is located near the northern edge of the delta of the river Murgab. Therefore, the area around the Confluence is irrigated farmland in the otherwise deserted region.
In order to get to the Confluence, I had to leave the main road between Ashgabat and Türkmenabat and follow smaller roads into the delta. I was leaving the official transit route, such that I preferred not to run into any police control. The upper delta never sees tourists, so I tried not to get involved anywhere. Almost without a break, I reached the village
Turkmenistan Dayhan Birlesigi 2 km south of the Confluence. A dirt road let me cycle a little further until I had to park my bicycle at a distance of 400 m and walk between fields of farmland to the Confluence.
Just about 150 m from the confluence point, I passed a young farmer. I was a little nervous that he might get suspicious of a foreigner walking there for no reason. But it turned out that he was friendly – we shook hands and he let me continue walking without further asking for my reasons being there.
The Confluence is squeezed exactly between a cotton and a cucumber-melon like field. Therefore it was not necessary to leave the footpaths.
I took the same way back, since there is no alternative (it’s a dead end). In the afternoon, Elionora and I visited the historic city of Merv with its Tomb of Ahmed Sanjar, a mausoleum dating back to the 12th century.
We continued our trip further into Uzbekistan and flew back from Tashkent without any other confluence visits.
CP Visit Details:
- Distance to an asphalt road: 2 km
- Distance to a track: 600 m
- Distance of bicycle parking: 400 m
- Time to get to the confluence from car parking: 12 minutes
- Time at the CP: 10:47 AM
- Measured height: 208 m
- Minimal distance according to GPS: 1 m
- Position accuracy: 3 m
- Topography: flat
- Vegetation: farmland, cotton, cucumbers.
- Weather: sunny, 26° C (felt temperature)
- Given Name: The Deep Delta Confluence
The story finishes here.