(We love to hear and see pictures of the trips of our members. Here are some pictures from a Clymb member of his recent trip to Mongolia. If you have pictures and stories that you would like to share with us leave a comment and we will get in contact with you.)
It takes a minimum of 8 days to get from Hong Kong to Tavan Bogd, the “Holy Five” mountains on Mongolia’s western-most border. 2 visas, 3 flights, 8 days. 7 days might be possible, but it’s unlikely.
6 days in and the road, such as it was, simply…ends. The last two days have to be done on horseback or foot. We camp at the edge of the White River and wait for our Tuvan horsemen to arrive with the horses. They make it just before sunset fording the river with 7 horses and a camel. It’s all feeling a bit Lord of the Rings, especially when the Tuvans are named Enkhbold and Ganbold.
On the surface horses look like the better option but even with Russian saddles (leather, not wood) after 7 hours on horseback parts of anatomy would rather be walking. The upside is that there are now other living creatures in the camp, that smell better than we do.
Tavan Bogd feels like the end of the world: glaciers, mountains, horses and an icy Siberian wind that even homemade mare’s milk vodka can’t take the edge off of. But then again some trips are worth taking, not for what’s there but for what isn’t there: no crowds, no noise and zero technology.
(To see more picture check out our Flickr profile. Thanks to our friend Timo, a Clymb member, for the photos and story.)
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