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Old 07-19-2014, 01:29 PM   #1351
Idahosam
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Beautiful pictures Paul, as to be expected slow to no internet..... no worries we'll still be here waiting for the "Rest of the Story". soak it all in.
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Old 07-19-2014, 07:29 PM   #1352
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the internet kicked in so here we go...

So after the passport theft of the group leader who was taking the group down the BAM, they made a decision to do a circle tour of Mongolia while he returned to the UK to get a new passport and Russian visa...the prospect of riding the BAM was scrapped but the road of bones was still on and the group leader would meet them in Yakutsk

so everyone saddled up



i let the four rider be together and watched as they got to know each others riding styles as they headed out of UB, an englishman, a scot, a dutchman and an american



a prearranged waypoint about 50k out of the city was set up for the chase truck to rendezvous and while waiting they soon found out there is zero personal space in Mongolia and people were dropped kids on bikes without a thought if the owners cared or not




Wilko the groups paramedic had now become the chase truck driver, he showed up about 15 minutes later, laughing and joking with the locls not having a clue what each other was saying




the first day would be all pavement, most of it in good shape



the vistas are amazing and the feeling of space is overwhelming as you ride,wild animals are everywhere as all the land is open



but when i see yaks i just can't help thinking of the comedian Ron White..."when i say i've gotta Yak it doesn't mean i have a big hairy cow living in my back yard"






as i was giving the group plenty of space they were miles ahead of me, it was there ride and i still wanted to feel like a solo rider i was really only there for moral support and help if there was a problem as they all were riding XT660 Tenere's which obviously i have a lot of experience on, go back to page one if you don't know why

also as the group leader Jeff who is also the mechanic wasn't with them anymore...i see them stopped in the distance and ride up to find they have a flat tire



no problem lets get the wheel off and get it fixed...nope...the support truck has all the tools, so we wait and watch the world go by, Mongolian style



once it arrives, the american guy (who'll remain nameless) sit himself down, saying you've got this. Once he found that the BAM was off he was like a little kid pissing and moaning and throwing temper tantrums, yes he couldn't ride the BAM but the others were just making the most of the ride, they had paid a lot of money to be here and now ere having an opportunity to see Mongolia instead, not a bad second option...not him he decided to alienate himself from the group and when he did join in a conversation everything he had done was bigger, better, more expensive, lots of exaggeration unnecessarily about places, and as most Europeans are very well traveled they spotted this instantly... if the group were doing something all of them tried to help, not him...the other riders told me they thought he was acting like a total dick and he wouldn't spoil their ride



puncture fixed, lets find some camels, loads of freaking camels, right by the side of the road






ending the day looking for camping spot, Walter the Dutch guy had been riding from London and he was given the option of finding a good spot to camp for the night, he took the challenge and headed off the road 3k's to a high spot with amazing 360 degree vistas




Walter also made the food, which was amazing and as we were finishing the full moon rose a deep orange, three riders talked and agreed it was a good first day out on the road, the forth, sat alone making noises and talking to himself

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Old 07-19-2014, 08:33 PM   #1353
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Originally Posted by rtwpaul View Post

Seems so hard to believe that two short months ago, we were camping next to Mormon Lake in Arizona and now your camping on the steppe in Mongolia. As usual, you're a great story teller and the photos are amazing. Great job!

Looking forward to more!
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Old 07-19-2014, 10:18 PM   #1354
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Originally Posted by GhostRiderFC View Post
Seems so hard to believe that two short months ago, we were camping next to Mormon Lake in Arizona and now your camping on the steppe in Mongolia. As usual, you're a great story teller and the photos are amazing. Great job!

Looking forward to more!
crazy, right and i feel like i am moving really slowly
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Old 07-20-2014, 12:28 AM   #1355
sasho
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What an awesome update!!
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Old 07-20-2014, 04:16 AM   #1356
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my body clock says its saturday and the border is open until 5pm...which it is in the states but its sunday here and the border is closed so trying to get a few more updates done before i head out in the morning to get back to Russia

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Old 07-20-2014, 05:13 AM   #1357
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i had one of the best nights sleep i've had in months, within minutes of getting in my tent and into my sleeping bag the rain started, heavy rain, for some reason it sends me to sleep instantly while i hear the other riders in their tiny one man bivvy tents moving around i'm in my oversized Big Agnes Lynx Pass 2 tent with plenty of room to spare and i nod off ...

i wake to daylight and this



stepping outside the view is much better in the morning light than the previous evening




get packed up and ready to ride



again i let the other riders take off before me back down to the road




avoiding what could have been last nights dinner if it came to close and didn't have watchful eyes close by




riding off i had a waypoint for a temple on my GPS from Colebatch's list that he posts on HU, i made a suggestion so we detoured, the riders saw this, not sure if they thought it was the temple but they headed up to check it out, interesting to see the different riding styles and speeds as they made the climb



they came back down and took off at high speed on perfect pavement, i slowly meandered along as i do, i have my bike for the long haul and try not to abuse unless its necessary...and sometimes this pays off so you are the absolute right place at the right time.

i look to my right and a golden eagle takes flight and flies next to me for a few minutes, he is not afraid and keep up but doesn't let me get ahead at any point, looking like a wingspan of around seven feet this is pure grace in motion, i watch in awe




he takes one last look at me and takes off over the hill

a long straight road to the temple and a right turn where the riders had planned a left





the chase truck arrives and Wilko lets us know it feels strange, brakes are fading, a quick check and he has a leak in the line, nothing i can fix so he heads to the town for a repair. He makes a point he is a Paramedic not a mechanic, but to me he seems aware enough where some drivers may not have noticed or ignored this, good timing as the town has a few mechanics that will work on it straight away while we hang out at the Monastery

We split into two groups and one goes inside the Erdene Zuu Monastery and i wait outside with Walter and people watch, some arrive and borrow outfits to wear so they can have photos take by the walls or walk around inside dressed appropriately







here's a prop that a few used, a stuffed dog/ wolf with an evil grin





then i see a Golden Eagle, a tame one for hunting, there are allegedly still around 250 active hunters, mainly used in the winter months to kill foxes as there golden fur stands out against the snow here in Western Mongolia, interesting article here about the youngest hunter...a girl of 13 LINK



the first group of riders comes out and Walter and i head inside to check out whats behind the 20 foot walls....
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Old 07-20-2014, 06:47 AM   #1358
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It's funny how you get an idea in your head of what a country looks like, your pictures tell a much different story. Great stuff Paul.
Phillip
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Old 07-20-2014, 06:59 AM   #1359
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Originally Posted by adventurebound9517 View Post
It's funny how you get an idea in your head of what a country looks like, your pictures tell a much different story. Great stuff Paul.
Phillip
the people/ scenery/ landscape change every few hundred km's...soon it'll be like you have seen it before - hold tight
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Old 07-20-2014, 07:23 AM   #1360
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Originally Posted by adventurebound9517 View Post
It's funny how you get an idea in your head of what a country looks like, your pictures tell a much different story. Great stuff Paul.
Phillip
the people/ scenery/ landscape change every few hundred km's, or maybe i take photos of what others don't?...soon it'll be like you have seen it before - hold tight

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Old 07-20-2014, 09:20 AM   #1361
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Inside the Monastery, if you didn't follow the wiki link this is the very basic info on it



walking around, free entry except in one area you had to pay 3000 Turgrik, about $1.60 to get inside a temple
























soon after coming out the chase truck arrived, Wilko told me there was a broken bracket that partially severed a brake line

get everyone together and ride....

thru the little town and onto the pavement




passing over a bridge people were making the most of the cool fresh river water



the next town was the first and only type of suburbia i saw





then back to the way Mongolia really is



Walter was given the option of finding a camping spot and again he took on the challenge and found a great one and yes he is in this photo riding away from you to give you a sense of scale if you can see him in the middle of the photo







a joint effort to make some food, yak jerky, pasta and pumpkin stew




just a note here, pumpkin shavings attract wild horses, we found this out in the middle of the night, i thought i dreamt it until someone confirmed it later

shame they didn't kill the relentless flies, none biting type just really annoying, Garry and Alan donned the defensive strategy

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Old 07-20-2014, 10:20 AM   #1362
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Amazing update Paul!!

I was disappointed to hear about the attitude of the 'Merican on the trip. I am wondering if his attitude got better and if he apologized for acting that way. This is always something I am conscientious of when traveling. You not only represent yourself, but where you are from imho.

The photos are amazing. The Erdene Zuu Monestary is on my list of places to visit when I get to Mongolia in a couple of weeks. I did notice a "No Photo" sign next to the two horns. Way to sneak that one in!

You mentioned that you downloaded waypoints from Walter Colebatch. I did the same. For anyone interested, you can get them at the bottom of the first post by Mr. Colebatch HERE.

Thanks for taking us along on your journey!

Jeff G.
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Old 07-20-2014, 10:21 AM   #1363
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Paul, Great pictures and story telling as always.

Having written more than few ride reports, I can understand the time and effort required to keep up with it.

It is much appreciated my friend.

Living vicariously through your travels for the time being, and hoping my next adventure is not too far away.

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Old 07-20-2014, 10:27 AM   #1364
rtwpaul OP
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Amazing update Paul!!

I was disappointed to hear about the attitude of the 'Merican on the trip. I am wondering if his attitude got better and if he apologized for acting that way. This is always something I am conscientious of when traveling. You not only represent yourself, but where you are from imho.

The photos are amazing. The Erdene Zuu Monestary is on my list of places to visit when I get to Mongolia in a couple of weeks. I did notice a "No Photo" sign next to the two horns. Way to sneak that one in!

You mentioned that you downloaded waypoints from Walter Colebatch. I did the same. For anyone interested, you can get them at the bottom of the first post by Mr. Colebatch HERE.

Thanks for taking us along on your journey!

Jeff G.
his attitude never really changed but i will be adding more about him soon, he had his own little adventure, totally unplanned that quietened him down a little and brought him into reality

as for the way points, the link you have is for the first page, this is the main file, then go the last page of that thread and back track to the last post walter makes, as he adds updates with new places as well, when i finish i will send him my 'found places' as you should too
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Old 07-20-2014, 10:34 AM   #1365
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Paul, Great pictures and story telling as always.

Having written more than few ride reports, I can understand the time and effort required to keep up with it.

It is much appreciated my friend.

Living vicariously through your travels for the time being, and hoping my next adventure is not too far away.

thanks, much appreciated for you coming along for the ride...nothing worse than getting behind on a report, gotta get a few zzzz's now, i have a border to cross in the morning
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