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TRIP HAZARD #2: Scourge of the Russian outdoors - the Gadfly

Otherwise known as bastard, bloody bastard or f-----g bastard

View As the Crow Flies Russia 2019 on stevecrownz's travel map.

One thoroughly unenjoyable part of travelling through Russia is a particularly nasty not-so-little bastard, the gadfly, also known as the horsefly or botfly.

Simply put, these bloody things are BASTARDS. And big bastards at that, probably up to 40mm long.


Stop almost anywhere, from the Steppes to the vast forests of Siberia, to idyllic Lake Baikal for even a few seconds and these bastards will find you and will bite you. They are even capable of biting through clothing, the t-shirts we wore under out jackets proved absolutely no barrier if our jackets were open or we had removed them when we stopped due to the heat.

The only items of clothing that thwarted their nasty little efforts were our Resurgence jeans (chew on a bit of Kevlar you bastard) and our jackets.

The bastards seemed to have a particular fondness to my bald head. I mean, REALLY. The indignity of it.

We were carrying insect repellent, in my case a can of Bushman, which worked to some degree but were not 100% effective at keeping the bastards away - at least not for very long.

Poetic justice dictated that gadflys provided many, many enjoyable and highly satisfying moments on the trip, one of the bastards splattered all over our screens or visors. God that felt good!

Our recommendation - wear a beekeepers outfit under your bike gear - problem solved even if you will look ridiculous.

Posted by stevecrownz 09:00 Archived in Russia Tagged russia outdoors siberia gadfly Comments (0)

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