Blogs from Khovsgol, Mongolia, Asia

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Asia » Mongolia » Khovsgol July 8th 2018

Well were up bright and early Saturday morning to leave the Orkhon Valley, loads of heavy rain yesterday afternoon and overnight, wondering how we will go getting out of here through three streams/rivers.........first two were fine but third was a no go.....so Chuka went winding all over the place and took a different route to get us out of there. Over bumpy tracks, rocky outcrops about 20klms into the trip we hit another snag.....a very swollen river.....it did have a bridge over it downstream a bit.....but no go for bridge as it is not stable enough...so after doing the yak water measurments (watched a mob of yak cross first) we powered on through the river....boy are we thankful for big powerful 4WDs....and the experience and knowledge of our drivers. John was following the route on his ... read more
CENTRAL MONGOLIA
CENTRAL MONGOLIA
ENROUTE TO KHARKHORIN

Asia » Mongolia » Khovsgol July 7th 2012

Day 5 - July 5 We headed off on the tour in the morning with a Belgium couple and two Taiwanese girls, our guide and the driver in an old Soviet van. It was a tank. First we stopped to pick up supplies at a local market. Then we were off driving for a total of 7 hours. Initially it was quite flat and rough dirt road (the highway was being paved). But soon enough as we headed north it started to get hilly. We passed numerous gers and hundreds of cattle. The further we got away the smaller and less frequent the settlements. Occasionally we'd pass a vast tract of land clearly set aside for farming (as opposed to grazing). Couldn't figure out what they were growing however. The first stop was a sort of ... read more
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Asia » Mongolia » Khovsgol August 17th 2011

Oh my, where to start? Possibly with a warning that I'm going to talk about poo and toilets in this entry. Probably a lot. Just so you know. So! After our slightly disasterous hike from my last blog we sensibly decided to do stuff with tours or at least a guide from then on. We found a budget tour agency and decided to do a little 2 day trip with them to kind of test them out to see if we wanted to go with them for our bigger trip up to Lake Khovsgol in the North West. Tours like that are cheaper if you have more people to share the cost, so in the office we managed to convinced a retired American couple, Dave and Michelle, to come with us. We went to Terelj national ... read more

Asia » Mongolia » Khovsgol March 4th 2011

Bad Karma Upon reflection, I should never have published my last blog that included reference to the negative events surrounding me in UB. I was only asking for trouble - and I got plenty of it! On Sunday, the day before leaving for the Ice festival, I withdrew a heap of cash from an ATM which ate my Australian VISA card (thankfully after I had the cash in my hand). After a minor hissy fit in front of the ATM, I was able to speak with Jo's interpreter and arranged for her to contact the bank on my behalf and request for the card to be held for me at the central branch upon my return from the festival. I also sorted out with my Australian bank to temporarily block my VISA card and have some ... read more
Break down landscape
Break down landscape
Break down landscape

Asia » Mongolia » Khovsgol June 28th 2010

The Wild Mongolian countryside...the main reason to come out and explore the steppe. I got together with Alex, Jaakko and Laura and we arranged to get out there on our own because taking tours sucks. We stocked up on food at a local market, same one I used when prepping for Terelj, and I also went to the "Black Market" to pick up a tent and sleeping bag and some dishes for the countryside. I made sure to empty out my pockets of valuables before going as it seems everyone gets robbed there eventually. We first escaped UB via train to the next biggest town called Erdenet, around thirteen hours away. We arrived in the morning, wandered the desolate town trying to figure things out, stopped and ate a meal better fit for farm animals, and ... read more
Scenery
Riding
Mongolian In A Del

Asia » Mongolia » Khovsgol August 7th 2009

Blue bands tied loosely around a lone tree greeted our arrival. The colour of Tengger. God. Each band representing a dream of those who dared to ask. A wish cast upon the wind. There never was a road. Mongolia doesn’t have roads. The track there hadn’t been much of a track either. More a place where trees weren’t growing. We sighted the Shaman’s cabin perched alone in a dark corner on the edge of the forest. “Anyone there?” No response. We looked around the back. Why doesn’t this cabin have any windows? I wondered…… Strange. Sun rays tore down through the enchanting blue sky. A wisp of stratospheric cloud illuminated brilliant white ruined the skies monotone perfection, but perhaps added to the fullness of the landscape on view before us. The silence that began as silence ... read more
The shaman's father
Me before the shaman
The view from the shamans home

Asia » Mongolia » Khovsgol June 23rd 2009

‘This winter it’s very bad’ said Ulzii, our hired translator for the trek, ‘at worst it’s maybe -52C or something, many people losed cattle and this spring it’s very sad and the cattle is still so weak’ she explained as we marvelled at how she’d managed to learn English so well having lived her entire life in such a barren outpost, in addition to ‘Darkhad’, ‘Tsartan’ and her native Mongolian languages. ‘That is why nobody, they don’t really want to hire their horses to us because they still so weak and the horse it’s very important’. The scent of fresh pine sap carried in the soft breeze over Tsagaannuur became only stronger as we arrived at the departure point of our trek; a small log cabin on the edge of the taiga forest where we would ... read more
Our first host.
Herding reindeer in the taiga
En-route to the second Tsartan camp

Asia » Mongolia » Khovsgol June 14th 2009

Au matin du 15e jour (eh oui déjà !), nous quittons les rives du Grand Lac Blanc pour un trajet de 300 km vers le nord. Le tracé se fait nettement plus montagneux, le van progressant sur des pistes sinueuses, passant plusieurs cols encore parés des dernières neiges avant le plein été. Les haut-parleurs distillent en continu le dernier tube de Javkhlan, une célébrité locale dont je ferai plus tard l’acquisition de deux CDs, et les paysages, sublimes, font oublier la durée et la fatigue du voyage, de sorte que lorsque nous atteignons la bourgade de Moron, en fin de journée, nous sommes encore assez motivés pour une bonne nocée à la bière coréenne, qui s'achète ici par bouteille de trois litres. Le lendemain, décollage en douceur pour dissiper les dernières vapeurs d’alcool. Après une visite ... read more
Sur la route du Nord
Un petit air de Suisse, non ?
"Une chiure de mouche sur les cartes de l'Etat-major"

Asia » Mongolia » Khovsgol » Moron June 4th 2009

We hit a strip of pavement a dozen kilometers before Moron. It felt like riding into some glassy, fourth dimensional plane. After a few days the riding style becomes adapted to dirt roads and a brief return to pavement can be an exulting (if eerie) experience. Two weeks of pounding the dirt have brought us here healthy and sure footed with only one slashed tire to show for it. We heard many a sadistic tale of the horrors of Mongolian roads but, knock on sand, few have come to fruition in the 700+ kilometers since we left the scruffy pavement of the capitol. The multitude of tracks leading off in all directions has proven to be more of a help than the navigational nightmare we had imagined. If we do not like the conditions of ... read more
We're on the right track, right?
Take a breather trusty bike
Sweaty back designs

Asia » Mongolia » Khovsgol June 3rd 2009

Illuminating the heavens in crimson reds, bold oranges and vibrant purples as it sank below the hills on the horizon, the suns dying rays gloriously graced the sky with a kaleidoscopic spectrum of colours so haphazardly blended into each other it was impossible to determine where one colour began and the other ended, such is nature’s grand design. A late start meant a late finish, but cresting the last hill and sighting Moron’s dusty collection of ramshackle homes with brightly bedazzled tin roofs reflecting the divine light, the town had a heavenly aura that dispelled our feelings of tiredness in an instant. After two days of perpetual battering from the gnarly roads twisted and contorted ever more by each passing vehicle, alighting in Moron to such a sight signalled the beginning of some much needed respite ... read more
In Tsagaannuur
Sunset in Ulan Uul
Roads becoming more barren




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