We left the cafe and assembled on a gas station to water the horses.
Today's destination was Tsetserleg, a couple of hundred miles away so a single fill would get us there. We gassed the bikes up and all pulled off the forecourt with Terry in the lead and left heading east...after a couple of hundred yeard he did that "turn around " signal and about turned...so we all did likewise. I thought he needed to talk but he set off a quite a lick-in exactly the wrong direction.
P, B and myself all stopped after a hunderd yards realising he'd misunderstood the map and waited for him to stop, as he'd check his mirror soon enough and realise he was alone.
The road was arrow straight for about 2 kilometres and we 3 stood and watched the brave T ride off solo into the distance...and disappear. "Oh well...he'll be back in a minute" was the general consensus.
After half an hour he still hadn't come back. WTF?
Eventually he reappeared looking somewhet sheepish, to much hilarity and mocking.
and we set off yet again...but this time in the right direction.
The rain was pissing down and the road was absolutely appalling. Very wide...maybe 20 yards but with savage corrugations and ENDLESS enormous waterfilled holes maybe 5 metres wide and 3 metres deep, sometimes fully across the road. You truly could lose a car in them. This was a war of attrition and it went on for hours. I haven't a pic but hope P has.
There wasn't much oncoming trafiic but any lane discipline was forgotten as cars, trucks buses were careeering all over the road just trying to pick a line that was navigable. The edges were often better but had deep washouts so could be very dangerous. The bikes were taking a real hammering and we were not much better.
Occasionally there might be a 20 metres wide grassy verge that we'd ride on and just get entirely off the road, but eventually that would peter out and we'd need to scramble back onto the road via slippery or rutted mud. Sometimes the road surface was lethally treacherous and I can't believe none of us took a dive on it.