July 2016

Tolbo Nuur Campsite

Last night I stayed at Lake Tolbo Nuur. But I wasn't alone. Meet two families from Russia including their two Bassets. The fishing was not so successful so we had pasta, salad (with mayonnaise, Russians love it) and a kind of Russian self made Glühwein and a box of Russian sweet bakery.

What a lovely and beautiful stay!!!!!!!!

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Mountain track to Öglii

After Khoved next is the mountain track down to Öglii passing by mountains such a Maraa Uul. One of the best crossings in Mongolia so far!!!! About 2700m high.

Just beautiful scenery!!!!!

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South Route to Khovd

Done the third stretch of the south route. It is a very nice drive apart from the heavy construction traffic which laced you in the dust. As a car no chance - dust inside like h*ll. And I thought to last day was awful in regards to dust - but this beats everything so far.

But all in all I have to say the south route is far nicer than its reputation - love it!

Athen I hie done the North and South Route, I would do mixture of both with Uliastai in center - should be best of Mongolia


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South Route to Altai Citiy

What a day. Finally reach the Altai city. Done 265km in 6hr45min before hitting the Tarmac again.

Dusty, bumpy, shaky, potholes.... the Landy took quite a beating, but so far just works. Not a very pleased drive - The was the worst stretch so far in Mongolia. And of course dust everywhere. Needs a full clean in Öglii.

And finally dropped my iPhone and screen shattered. Grrrrrrrr......
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South Route to Bajanchongor

So, today wasn't that successful. Ok, the south route so far was spectacular, definitely not boring!

Went for diesel in Bajanchongor, but then a huge spillage!! Diesel leaking from a pipe! You couldn't se where it supposed to be - between tank and frame.

So, down to the garage other side of the street. Removed the full diesel tank just to find out that the diesel drain pipe went of due a poorly made fitting!!!!! A few cable ties and job done - apart about 4hrs lost.

My next destination was the Gobi desert, so I tried to do a long drive, but that stretch would take too long - tomorrow is already the 17 and by the 21 I have to be in Öglii as the border crossing is the next day. Maybe an extended stay at one of the lakes along the drive instead.

A few from today.

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Beautifull Mongolia

Today was a very lovely day - Beautiful Mongolia as known from TV. I went first for stroll around the Orkhon Valley and then followed the A08 passt Khujirt down to the south route.

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Erdene Zuu Monastery

Erdene Zuu Monastery - the first destination after Ulaanbaatar.

A very nice monastery the has been rebuilt after its wa destroyed during the communist reign. After the fall of Communism Erdene Zuu was turned over to the lamas and today Erdene Zuu remains an active Buddhist monastery as well as a museum that is open to tourists.

Interestingly, Erden Zum ist built on the place of the old capital of Mongolia, Kharkhorin. Some remains are straight behind the Monastery. The outline can bee seen from air as there is little above ground.


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Oasis GuestHouse

Stayed at the Oasis Guesthouse in Ulaanbaatar.

It's the place to go to for all Overlanders - the meeting place in Mongolia. The Guesthouse itself is nice but not very well equipped, especially in regards to washing facilities and Wifi.

Some Impressions below:


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Naadam Festival

With the route changed I stayed slightly longer then expected in Ulaanbaatar - so had the time to visit the Naadam Festival. This is all about the celebration of Mongolia, its history and their three main sports - Wrestling, Archery and Horse Riding.
Wonderful weather, which could not be taken for granted after those rainy spells over the last few days. And as such the atmosphere was great. Was lucky to get the tickets for the stadium!!


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Change of Route

Bad News now.

The Tibet to Nepal crossing is closed again due to a Landslide, which blocked and destroyed parts of the new road to the new boarder crossing. This major setback means I have to re-plan the remainder of the trip.

After a few long thoughts and different options, such as Myanmar (problem with boarders and permits) and shipment (i.e. from Hongkong, takes to long) I will now have return the Kasachstan from Mongolia.

The change now involves that I cannot visit Iran, Turkmenistan and a large section of Usbekistan. In addition I have to ship my Landy back to Germany from India. As for Tibet I might have chance that by October, when I will be in Nepal ,the boarder will be reopen for tourists again.



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Lake Baikal

Finally I reached the main destination - Lake Baikal.

First I visited the Baikal Museum for a guided tour and the history about the unique place. The baikal lake is very very old and holds the most fresh water of lakes, it is the deepest (about 1650m) and even further if you would consider the buildup morass (this could add up other 9000m, yep the lake is so old and has even is own bail seal. Also it hold s few of the rarest fish breads and not only a few can only be found in the lake. The water is so clean and so pure that you could use it to top up your car battery.

Anyway. Now the visit of the main Village Listwjanka. This looks like a sunny holiday resort and it really is. Small tourist markets, beaches, ice cream, bars, restaurants and hotels. Went also for a 3 hour boat cruise. What a water, you could really see downwards for meters. And the water itself was like silk, so smooth. This, I can say for sure, is best water I have seen so far!

Worth a visit and for a stay of at least 5 days. The one and a half I had was way to short to enjoy the lake fully.

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