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Wednesday, April 4, 2007 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Former Microsoft manager resumes trek across Russia

Seattle Times staff reporter

Dimitri Kieffer, a former Microsoft manager who quit his job to roam the world, is planning to leave a Russian village today on his 1,630-mile journey between the Russian cities of Uelen and Omsukchan in the Russian far east.

He is traveling with fellow adventurer Karl Bushby from England.

The pair last year walked, skied and swam a 56-mile stretch of the Bering Strait from Alaska to Russia.

There they were detained for 54 days for visa violations before being allowed to leave.

The pair decided they would pick up where they left off. In an e-mail Tuesday, Kieffer said he and Bushby had been in Anadyr, Chukotka, for the past 18 days because Russian customs officials were not willing to release their beacons or satellite phones, "which are critical to our survival."

Kieffer said they finally were able to borrow a satellite phone and hope to have the matter resolved in the next two months, when they are traveling between Uelen and Anadyr. Uelen is where Kieffer and Bushby entered Russia after crossing the Bering Strait.

Kieffer said they planned to fly to Lavrentiya today and then take all-terrain vehicles to Uelen, "where we will start trekking exactly where we left off last year on April 1 after having crossed the Bering Strait."

He said he expects the trip to take 135 days, trekking about 15 miles a day.

Susan Gilmore: 206-464-2054 or sgilmore@seattletimes.com

Copyright © 2007 The Seattle Times Company

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