Separate names with a comma.
Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by rtwpaul, Jul 18, 2012.
bring it, boss!....
Looking forward to seeing those photos!!
This guy simply gave you old info.
The problems were last may, but fortunately, GBAO permits are regularly issued since mid june, we have reports of people obtaining it in different places almost every day.
Wow: I look forward to your pictures!
in Olgii, Western Mongolia after crossing the country doing the central route...and reconfirmed i hate sand but love the scenery...
the internet is painfully slow to upload photos, so here are a few teasers...and the stories to follow include, broken trucks, broken bikes, dog attacks, offers of crazy strong snuff, police, water crossings, deep sand, dropped bikes, running out of gas, crazy spanish cyclists, yak jerky, camels and lots more, its been a crazy six days :eek1:eek1:eek1:eek1:eek1
Amazing pictures- can't wait for more and for the accompanying stories. Thanks for posting it all here- I appreciate the effort and you're taking all of us to areas of the world that most of us will never go.
Great shots Paul!
Thanks for the teaser!
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.
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
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
What an awesome update!!
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
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....
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.
the people/ scenery/ landscape change every few hundred km's...soon it'll be like you have seen it before - hold tight
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
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 :huh
shame they didn't kill the relentless flies, none biting type just really annoying, Garry and Alan donned the defensive strategy
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!