CLAIRE AND TONY AT WORK
TRYING TO WORK THE TRUCK OUT OF SOFT SOIL
After saying goodbye to the truck whom I will meet in Mongolia I went to say my final goodbyes to my roommates at the Red Lantern Hostel in the hutongs, had lunch with them and left for the bus terminal for Erlianhot, one of the concierge from Hu Guo Si hotel came with me and help me find the guy selling tickets for the sleeper bus, we have to go up his room at the driver's dorm! Anyway after much waiting we departed, the bus was not that comfortable as I expected little cramped and smelled of stinking feet, arrived at the town 3am I tried to stay put but the driver push me away out of the bus, luckily there we taxis waiting and showed them the name of the hotel booked for me by Luna, got there it was darked the security gueard was sleeping in the sofa woke him up and he in turn woke the reception desk on duty, got sorted and went to bed. Erlianhot was not a bad town, nice and cool when I got there a welcome relief from the stiffling heat of Beijing, it has a tacky dinosaur park thing, bought my food
MONGOL SOLDIERS HAVING A PISS UP WITH ME
at thelocal market and had kebabs in the evening next to the night market. The next day I was to hire a jeep to get me across the border but I was misunderstood by the lady at reception, I was brought to the bus station and after so much confusion as to how I will be able to get to Zamin Uud a really nice lady helped me sort it out, turns out there is an international bus leaving in an hour, so all turned out good. When i got to the Mongolian immigration htere was a long queue,no lines really you have to elbow yourself to the front which I did,i am Asian too so they have no clue I am a foreigner,no nasty stare or anything. All the while trying to find Tamir the guide who was supposed to meet me there. After immigration we were told to get on the bus but sat there for 2 hours waiting for the officials to finish their lunch break, got to Zamin UUd which was a 5 minutes ride,In the Plaza I again search for Tamir,no luck so having no local dibdobs or any idea where to stay I went
FIRST BUSH CAMP
SILHOUETTE PHOTO BY ANDY KERR
to the bank and a nice lady helped me find internet to notify Claire of my whereabouts,also got some money changed and booked a hotel near the train station. To kill time I went toa restaurant at another hotel near the railwayand had a few local brew, a couple ofoff duty military patrol police invited me to drink with them so I did,after couple of hours they left drunk and swaying all over the place, I then went to the plaza to call Tamir's cellphone by this time Mobicom has a signal again, reception in Mongolia is so unreliable,it goes down for hours at certain times of the day,like when you needed to call someone! Tamir picked up his phone and arranged to met up with me, I need to pee so i hurriedly walked behind the bushes next to the train station and as I was busy watering the plants I heard my name,It was Tamir, he followed me on the trip to the toilet,a bit embarrased he stepped away a bit. Finally I got sorted I moved to the designated hotel and we had a fantabulous dinner at a Chinese restaurant, a big purple building visible from the
main plaza. Then the next day in the evening Gisele arrived, met them all up at the plaza square, we tried to organize dinner at the purple building but it was closed early ended up having a meal at the hotel restaurant which wasn't really so bad. The next morning the cook groups assemble and got ready to shop for meals as we will be bush camping as we drive into the Gobi desert. Finally I had my own tent! yay! I have to thank Claire for saving me one, at least I can stretch out and hopefully sleep better. Our first bush cmp gave us a gorgeous sunset scene that Andrew had gone berserk trying to photograph every living object as silhouettes, and everyone felt we're being stalked, but the photos were remarkably good as it turned out. As we moved on the next day we got stuck in a soft clay type soil, mind you there are no proper roads in the outbacks of Mongolia, just jeep tracks and we rely heavily on the GPS to navigate ourselves and find our way.Using people as guide markers Claire climbed up the truck and try to place people as guides
CHINESE BORDER TOWN PLAZA
for Tony to aim for and soon we were out of the sticky situation, as we drove we saw lots of camels grazing around, around lunch time we stopped at a small settlement town called Hanbogd to get more food supplies and fill up with water at a local well.The next day we stopped at Dalanzadgad for more food shopping and hopefully some internet access. It is a dusty town nothing really interesting to do in my opinion except for the net.
(Mongolian: Дорноговь аймаг, also Dornogov' or Dornogobi) is one of the 21 Aimags (provinces) of Mongolia. It is located in the southeast of the country, at the Chinese border.
Zamyn-Üüd (Mongolian: Замын-Үүд, road's gate) is a sum (district) of Dornogovi Province in southeastern Mongolia.
The town is the location of the only railway and the most important road connection between Mongolia and the People's Republic of China, via Ereen. The border control counted more than 950,000 border crossings in 2004. In April 2007, the construction of a 432 km long paved road from Choir to Zamyn-Üüd via Sainshand began. Completion is planned for October 2007.
CHINESE BORDER TOWN , DINOSAURS
The "Zamyn-Uud" Free Economic Zone was officially created in 2004. It has an area of 900 ha and is located between Zamyn-Üüd settlement and the Chinese border
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