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Thread: The world's most dangerous roads

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    Elite Member Honey's Avatar
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    Default The world's most dangerous roads


    During a recent three-part series on BBC2, World's Most Dangerous Roads, six celebrities embarked on three terrifying car journeys, in Peru, Nepal and Alaska.
    Here we highlight 15 of the world's most dangerous places to head out for a spin.

    The North Yungas Road, Bolivia

    Also known as El Camino de la Muerte or "Death Road", this 60km track was built by Paraguayan prisoners in the 1930s and takes fearless motorists from the Bolivian capital of La Paz to the town of Corioco. Traffic travels in both directions, but the road is rarely more than three metres wide and there are no guard rails. Heavy rain and fog often add to the danger, and one minor miscalculation can mean a fall of up to 600 metres. The road has claimed thousands of lives, and crosses mark many of the spots where vehicles have fallen. The high death toll and spectacular setting has also encouraged fearless cyclists to attempt the journey on two wheels. The road has been improved in recent years, and a new section now bypasses one of the most dangerous parts of the old route.


    Skippers Road, New Zealand
    Built in the late 19th century to give miners access to a gold-rich canyon, Skippers Road is now a popular day trip for thrill-seeking tourists from nearby Queenstown. Motorists must apply for a permit before attempting to tackle the road and many car insurance companies will not provide cover in the event of an accident. Make it down to the river safely, and you can sign up for a bungee jump or a white water rafting excursion.


    Karakoram Highway, China & Pakistan
    One of the world's highest paved roads, the Karakoram Highway runs from Abbottabad in Pakistan (renowned as the location of Osama Bin Laden's hideout) to the Chinese city of Kashgar. It passes through stunning scenery, making it popular with cyclists and bikers, but there are many dangers, including monsoon rains, landslides, heavy snow and altitude sickness.


    Stelvio Pass, Italy
    Although it's well paved, motorists negotiating the Stelvio Pass - which connects the Italian region of Lombardy with Austria - should expect a challenge. For those approaching from the north, there are an astonishing 48 hairpin turns to contend with, and glorious Alpine views to break your concentration. BBC's Top Gear voted it "the greatest driving road in the world".


    Canning Stock Route, Australia
    Perhaps the world's remotest road, the Canning Stock Route traverses 1,850km (1,150 miles) of empty desert and is a popular journey for adventurous petrolheads. You'll need up to three weeks, a four-wheel drive vehicle, space for food, water and spare parts, and at least a basic knowledge of how to fix a faulty car. Fuel drops will often need to be organised in advance, although petrol can be purchased at one or two Aboriginal communities along the way. There are also a number of wells en route.


    Taroko Gorge, Taiwan
    This narrow mountain road offers spectacular views for brave drivers. Heavy rain often results in landslides, and this region typically experiences three or four cyclones each year, with more than a metre of precipitation falling each time. Check the weather forecast.


    Dalton Highway, Alaska
    This isolated 414-mile highway was built as a supply road to support oil exploration in Alaska. There are just three towns on the way, with a total population of 60 people. Don't attempt the journey in your trusty Ford Mondeo. The giant trucks that ply the route kick up huge clouds of dust, reducing visibility to zero, and the road is littered with mammoth pot holes. There is also freezing Arctic weather to contend with.


    Trans-Sahara Highway
    This colossal road links Algiers in the north with Lagos in the south, passing through 4,500km (2,800 miles) of barren landscape and desert. Around 85 per cent is paved, but most of it is in poor condition, so you should familiarise yourself with changing a flat tyre before setting off. Fuel and water facilities are few and far between. You may have to endure temperatures of up to 50C and sandstorms sometimes block the road.


    Transfagarasan, Romania
    Another road favoured by the gentlemen from Top Gear, Transfagarasan twists and turns for 90km (56 miles) around the tallest of Romania's Carpathian mountains and features dozens of hairpins, tunnels and sharp descents. It was built in the Seventies during the rule of communist dictator Nicolae Ceausescu. Six million kilos of dynamite were used during its construction and at least 40 soldiers were killed.


    Sichuan-Tibet Highway, China
    This 2,412km (1,498 miles) road links Chengdu and Lhasa and traverses more than a dozen mountains, guarenteeing countless hair-raising moments. The scenery is magnificent however, making it a popular journey for independent travellers.

    dangerous roads

    Kabul-to-Jalalabad, Afghanistan
    A report in the New York Times last year likened this 40-mile road to Bolivia's El Camino de la Muerte. Vertical drops, sharp turns and kamikaze drivers mean the highway "claims so many lives so regularly that most people stopped counting long ago". Not to mention the fact that this is Taliban territory.
    Things were little better before the road was built. In 1842, the journey was made on foot by British forces retreating from Kabul. Some 16,500 soldiers and their families were killed or captured on the way, with just one, William Brydon (and Harry Paget Flashman, according to George McDonald Fraser's novel), making it to Jalalabad alive.



    A537, England
    One of a number of roads to have received the unenviable distinction of "Britain's most dangerous road", the A537 - or the Cat and Fiddle Road - runs between Buxton and Macclesfield. It's a windswept route, punctuated by sharp, blind bends, and the high number of accidents (there were 21 serious crashes in 2008) are largely blamed on motorcyclists. Among the country's other high-risk roads are the A5012 (Pikehall to Matlock), A621 (Baslow to Totley), A625 (Calver to Sheffield), A54 (Congleton to Buxton), A581 (Rufford to Chorley), A5004 (Whaley Bridge to Buxton), A675 (Blackburn to Preston), A61 (Barnsley to Wakefield) and the A285 (Chichester to Petworth).

    The world's most dangerous roads - Telegraph

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    Elite Member Kat Scorp's Avatar
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    ... and Aussie scores a mention Not that I'd ever try the Stock Drive - got enough of the spinifex and blowies whilst running around a Pilbara sheep station, when I was a kid. Those insects scoff at our puny repellents! Forget bug spray, take an airconditioned hazmat suit.
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    Elite Member Sarzy's Avatar
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    England's one kinda looks out of place with the others lol.
    Some of those look pretty cool.

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    We have a couple here, but not as extreme as those. Our problem is really sharp curves on very narrow road and asshole drivers who think they can drive 55 while manuvering down them.

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    Elite Member KrisNine's Avatar
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    Surprised that the California freeways didn't get an honorable mention! Hello 405 and 101!!!

    We have a dangerous roads here in Orange county, the Ortega Hwy and the canyon roads (Trabuco, Silverado, etc.).

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    Hit By Ban Bus! rockchick's Avatar
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    Wow scary is the word

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    i've been on the one between italy and austria and it didn't seem that dangerous at the time, just not a good idea if you get carsick.
    the worst i've been on was in peru, near huaraz. and we were in this shitty little van stuffed with people (these are the public buses that go from one mountain village to the next) and there were no barriers of any kind between the narrow little road way up in the andes and the precipice to the side. and the dude drove like a maniac.
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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    I never understood that. You'd think they'd put in the usual highway fencing for some semblance of safety.

    Why don't they? Is it an issue of cost?
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    Elite Member Chalet's Avatar
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    Not in a million years. If I am going to get killed may it be in the ocean and not off a cliff in a car. I screamed as a passenger on Mulholland Drive in Los Angeles. They should have thrown me out right then and there.

    All the photos are spectacular.

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    Elite Member Beeyotch's Avatar
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    Oh I love driving the hairpin turns on Mulholland. It makes me wish I had a nicer-performing car that could really hug the road and maneuver the curves better. Nobody ever appreciates it as much as I do though.

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    I love Kanan Dune, from PCH to Calabasas. That road scared the shit out of my mom!!

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    Elite Member Kittylady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Honey View Post



    A537, England
    One of a number of roads to have received the unenviable distinction of "Britain's most dangerous road", the A537 - or the Cat and Fiddle Road - runs between Buxton and Macclesfield. It's a windswept route, punctuated by sharp, blind bends, and the high number of accidents (there were 21 serious crashes in 2008) are largely blamed on motorcyclists. Among the country's other high-risk roads are the A5012 (Pikehall to Matlock), A621 (Baslow to Totley), A625 (Calver to Sheffield), A54 (Congleton to Buxton), A581 (Rufford to Chorley), A5004 (Whaley Bridge to Buxton), A675 (Blackburn to Preston), A61 (Barnsley to Wakefield) and the A285 (Chichester to Petworth).

    The world's most dangerous roads - Telegraph
    I've ridden this one a few times going to and from bike rallies and the real danger is that too many people (both cars and bikers) treat it like a race track. It is tempting to open it up when you see a nice stretch of clear road in front of you but on this road it's not worth it as sooner or later you'll meet someone coming the other way who has had exactly the same idea. Hurtling round a hairpin corner to see some boy racer in his pimped out car heading towards you certainly wakes you up.

    Another bad set of roads that I've travelled on are near Ffair Rhos, Ceredigion, Wales. We were down there to go to a rally and the roads were crazy. The route we had to go by was very narrow roads covered in shingle and sheep shit with sheer crumbling drops on one side and steep, almost verticle hills on the other. Sheep also had a habit of wandering/falling off hillsides onto the road. It was an interesting ride in terms of what it does to your nerves but the scenery was gorgeous, with whole hillsides of purple heather.
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    Gold Member piperdiva's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KrisNine View Post
    Surprised that the California freeways didn't get an honorable mention! Hello 405 and 101!!!

    We have a dangerous roads here in Orange county, the Ortega Hwy and the canyon roads (Trabuco, Silverado, etc.).
    Ortega hwy is not that bad! Hubby is a biker, and go to Hell's Kitchen at least 3x a year.
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    Elite Member KrisNine's Avatar
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    Maybe not as bad as these roads, but it seems to be closed once a month for someone getting killed. Like two weeks ago, three motorcycles got into an accident and one was killed. Trabuco canyon is even worse.

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    Gold Member piperdiva's Avatar
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    It's mostly crotch rockets that get into these accidents. Those guys love to take the twisties at 50 mph or more. Suicide, IMO.
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