MONGOLIA Moving Further South to the Gobi

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June 21st 2014
Published: June 28th 2014
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White CliffsWhite CliffsWhite Cliffs

Why? They aren't white, but beautifully colored with caves and swallows.

On day three we went to a small town and picked up a few supplies, and the last two members of our group…Jogi and Sydney, both from New York. Jogi is Japanese and has traveled all over the world. We drove for another hour or two to the White Cliffs. Strange name for these beautiful red, orange, and magenta rock formations. We ate with a local family and then drove a little farther to set up our tent in the middle of the flattest landscape I have ever seen. It was impossible to find anywhere to hide to relieve ourselves. Darkness was a help.

Putting up the tent was fun. No one had put up this particular tent before and four of us worked at it for quite a while. It had three poles, one a bit shorter than the rest. Finally I measured out yards by stretching the tent fabric from fingertip to nose, determined the shortest pole channel and we quickly finished setting it up. It was very nice, spacious yet cozy. Jogi and Sydney shared a more traditional two pole tent.

The following day’s driving found
Camping in the wide open spacesCamping in the wide open spacesCamping in the wide open spaces

That looks like a nice ditch that might prove private. Wrong. Right behind it is the road where a tour bus passed as I was finishing my toilette. Oops!
us in the capital of the middle Gobi, where we had showers and access to electrical outlets to charge our cameras and phones. A little further we stopped to camp at the entrance to Vulture Valley. Our tents were close to a small stream, lots of nooks and crannies for privacy and absolutely chock full of pica, small hamster looking rodents closely related to rabbits, although some people might mistake them for mice (except no tails). We put our tent on heavy long grass and we slept very comfortably.

Before settling down to sleep we tried to play cards. Their 21 is not black jack. Each face card is assigned a numerical value, for example the King is a four? We played a couple of hands of a game called “Four of a Kind”. It was fast and fun, but I lost twice in a row and decided it was not my favorite game. The loser was given a “punishment”…I had to dance a polka and speak in Bulgarian. They were being nice to me. It can get out of hand pretty easily as we later discovered.

Additional photos below
Photos: 6, Displayed: 6


Vulture ValleyVulture Valley
Vulture Valley

Our soft camping spot right next to the little stream with loads of friendly cute pica.
Our groupOur group
Our group

Left to right: Inga/assistant guide, Soko/guide, me, Sydney and Jogi, and Joanna right before we hiked the three miles through the valley.
Tight QuartersTight Quarters
Tight Quarters

We all got out except the driver and Soko...passage was very narrow.

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