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ADV NewsNew Film: Extreme Adventure In Mongolia On Norden 901 Expedition

New Film: Extreme Adventure In Mongolia On Norden 901 Expedition

Legends Cyril Depres and Mike Horn’s epic adventure across the Mongolian steppe.

Published on 03.21.2023

In recent years we’ve been gifted with a slew of exciting, inspirational videos featuring pro off-roaders doing mind-blowing things with full-sized adventure bikes. It will never get old, watching world champions perform magic on everyday bikes, especially when each new short film seems to surpass the last, both in quality and storyline. And now, Husqvarna has outdone itself in a new video featuring the new Norden 901 Expedition.  

We’re talking about ripping over snow covered dunes in the Gobi Desert, riding up massive rocky steppes and then repelling — yes repelling — the bikes and riders down the other side using climbing ropes. We’re talking harvesting spent wood and inner tubes in order to spontaneously bushcraft a raft on which the big Nordens and their pilots cross an otherwise impassable river. 

Legends Cyril Depres and Mike Horn epic adventure in Mongolia aboard the Husqvarna Norden 901 Expedition

It’s an extreme adventure, the likes of which you’ll rarely see with big bikes involved, and that high level of intensity is all thanks to its stars, five-time Dakar Rally winner Cyril Despres and legendary overland explorer Mike Horn. It’s a magical pairing. Despres is obviously going to excel at riding the Norden in extreme terrain, but it’s Horn who points them in the direction of tackling obstacles that seem impossible for bike travel, making the film extra enthralling. “As soon as something excites my mind,” says Horn, “the impossible no longer exists.” 

Legends Cyril Depres and Mike Horn epic adventure in Mongolia aboard the Husqvarna Norden 901 Expedition

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One of the cooler components is the aspect that Horn is relatively new to riding. In fact, the first time the world saw him doing any trips on a motorcycle was in a 2021 video showing the duo’s exploration of Iceland on Norden 901s back when the model was still in the prototype phase.

This is a guy who has climbed the world’s highest mountains without oxygen, solo circumnavigated the equator without using any type of motorized vehicle, explored the South Pole on foot during the perpetual darkness of winter and sailed around the world 27 times, but somehow, the adventure of riding motorcycles was new. 

Legends Cyril Depres and Mike Horn epic adventure in Mongolia aboard the Husqvarna Norden 901 Expedition

In fact, the 56 year old is still so green 49 year old Cyril calls him “Mr. X” in the video, saying “Everybody can be Mike on a motorcycle. He’s just a beginner who can enjoy a well balanced motorcycle.” Of course it helps when your good buddy (they’ve twice raced as a car team in Dakar) and teacher is a world class rally rider, but still, having a less experienced rider in the mix makes watching this adventure that much more inspiring. 

Legends Cyril Depres and Mike Horn epic adventure in Mongolia aboard the Husqvarna Norden 901 Expedition

The location for the film is Mongolia, the second largest landlocked country on the planet, and one of the most vast, stark landscapes you can imagine. Horn calls the country, infamous for its extreme temperatures, a hidden diamond and a paradise for exploration. “Around you there is nothing but emptiness, and that feeling you get when you get into spaces where you’re completely free and make all the decisions yourself becomes the food that actually fuels your soul and helps you go further.” 

Legends Cyril Depres and Mike Horn epic adventure in Mongolia aboard the Husqvarna Norden 901 Expedition

He adds that the Norden 901 Expedition felt like the perfect vehicle on which to explore the region, and that’s it’s aptly named since an “expedition” is very different from a normal tour or even an adventure. Instead, it’s in depth, longer and more serious. Meanwhile, the famous French Dakar rider was taken aback by the Mongolian landscape, saying he’s used to riding and racing in deserts all over the world that are either “hot or very hot,” but he never imagined seeing and riding through dunes covered in snow. 

This beautifully filmed short feature is a perfect pitch piece for the Norden 901 range, machines that have been presented as vessels for serious exploration from the get-go, as documented in a series of fun videos, including a short film featuring famous RTW rider and three-time Dakar finisher, Lyndon Poskitt, riding a Norden 901 on the Trans Euro Trail in the maker’s homeland of Sweden back in 2021.

Legends Cyril Depres and Mike Horn epic adventure in Mongolia aboard the Husqvarna Norden 901 Expedition

And now Husqvarna’s latest on screen star, the Norden 901 Expedition, with its upgraded suspension and raft of touring amenities, is ready to make its public debut as well. In fact, ADV Pulse just returned from test riding the new model in South Africa and we’ll have an in depth review up on the site soon. 

Legends Cyril Depres and Mike Horn epic adventure in Mongolia aboard the Husqvarna Norden 901 Expedition

In the meantime, we can all prosper by taking to heart Mike Horn’s advice. He says for him the point of the expedition in Mongolia was “to improve not only my skills on the bike, but to improve my mindset. To not be afraid of the loose sand, but to want the loose sand. To not be afraid of the massive rocks or heavy bike, but to accept the situation you’re immersed in and learn from doing these amazing adventures that add so much excitement to your life.”

Author: Jamie Elvidge

Jamie has been a motorcycle journalist for more than 30 years, testing the entire range of bikes for the major print magazines and specializing in adventure-travel related stories. To date she’s written and supplied photography for articles describing what it’s like to ride in all 50 states and 43 foreign countries, receiving two Lowell Thomas Society of American Travel Writer’s Awards along the way. Her most-challenging adventure yet has been riding in the 2018 GS Trophy in Mongolia as Team AusAmerica’s embedded journalist.

Author: Jamie Elvidge
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Quin Mar
Quin Mar
March 22, 2023 2:08 pm

Matighoffen still smarting from turning down, then getting their buts kicked in GS sales empire built by the (non super hero) Charlie and Ewan Long Way Around – Charlie being that genuine ‘average biker enthusiast guy’ and Ewan having no clue about dirt, dude. The (890) bike looks mint, I might test ride it vs a DesertX. The film haha – spot the continuity gaffs ; a massive air pump appears to pump up the 4 tubes; a huge coffee pot on the fire with tiny day-panniers; and just one brokeback orange tent for the night.

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