We drove and drove and drove today. Endless expanses of nothingness. The only discernible change in the scenery was that the vegetation slowly got smaller and smaller.  Surely we must be getting closer to the Gobi!

Hospital, orphanage, or shopping mall?
Hospital, orphanage, or shopping mall?

Around midday we crested a hill and caught our first glimpse of a rural Mongolian town (Mandalgovi, I think). We stopped briefly for a bathroom break and refueling. The building we stopped at looked like a rundown Soviet hospital but it had been converted into a makeshift shopping mall. Each of the small rooms had a shop and we found one with a nice selection of wool socks. After the cold last night we gladly purchased some new socks.

Late in the afternoon we arrived at an area known as the White Cliffs.  Seeing them was a bit unexpected because most of the terrain leading up to them was pancake flat.  We drove up to the top and had an hour or so to look around.  The scenery was certainly spectacular but I think we were too exhausted from the day of driving to actually enjoy it.

Watching for the herd to come home.
Watching for the herd to come home.

In the evening we stayed at another ger camp. The family kept camels, goats and sheep so we had some good fun looking at the animals. Around sunset the the daughter and child returned to the camp with their large herd of goats and sheep. They were herding them with a motorcycle – a technique that seems to be quite popular here in Mongolia!

Herding home the goats and sheep by motorcycle
Herding home the goats and sheep by motorcycle

The ger had all the amenities that one would expect of a ger.  There was a dung-fueled stove was installed smack in the middle.  The doorway was guarded by a very tough looking Mongolian dog but he did nothing to stop one of the baby goats from repeatedly invading our ger.  As for sleeping arrangements, we had some quality Mongolian beds to enjoy.

Quality Mongolian bed
Quality Mongolian bed

Minivan odometer: 501km (230km today)

This ger came with a guard dog
This ger came with a guard dog
Hospital, orphanage, or shopping mall?
Hospital, orphanage, or shopping mall?
Lunch on day 2: our first ger cafe
Lunch on day 2: our first ger cafe
Mongolian truck stop
Mongolian truck stop
Camels like to shake their lips
Camels like to shake their lips
and wag their tails (nonstop)
and wag their tails (nonstop)
and roll in the dust
and roll in the dust
Watching for the herd to come home.
Watching for the herd to come home.
I'm not quite sure why this young camel was so shaggy.
I’m not quite sure why this young camel was so shaggy.
A very playful kid at the ger camp
A very playful kid at the ger camp
Herding home the goats and sheep by motorcycle
Herding home the goats and sheep by motorcycle
Our driver in his never-ending battle against the dust
Our driver in his never-ending battle against the dust

One Response to “Mongolia Tour Day 2”

  1. The bed picture…priceless!

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