Five days of Siberian rain and all the muck thrown up from the road was too much for the Yamaha. Yesterday, having stopped for petrol, the bike wouldn't start. A liberal dousing of WD40 and problem solved. Today, however, something much more sinister. Riding up a hill the bike lost power and then cut-out. It would restart but then die when I applied the throttle. I had visions of finishing the journey to Vladivostok on the back of a lorry. I opened the pannier to get the workshop manual out but came to the WD40 first and thought no harm in giving it another spray. Result - problem solved.
A business idea for any budding entrepreneurs out there - a jet wash at either end of the Amur highway. While you're there a Little Chef franchise would go down well, and a Travel Lodge.