Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Through sand and storm

Leaving the peninsula guess who we encountered? Our friends in their Defender 😆, together we drove further south east towards the Gobi desert.

First stop was at Muhartin Gol, a mighty dune where a spring emerges right at the edge of the desert.

Once we reached the entrance to the area where the spring and dune is located we saw the place overrun by local tourists. Many of them driving their street cars out into the sand and getting stuck 🤦‍♂️ 

When we reached the really sandy part we barely made it through. But of course we had to help the mini vans and SUVs which were stuck. First they borrowed our recovery boards but this wasn't enough. So it was time to use our winch the first time! 😎 As we tried to stay on firm ground we had to unspool quite a bit of rope, actually we unspooled all of it 🤣 And then could not attach it again... Fail! So the Defender got himself into position and this time taking care not to unwind all the cable managed to hook the SUV and pull it out. Next was a mini van which wanted that we pull him trough the deep sand. The Defender with his bigger engine and turbo did the heavy lifting and pulled the van all the way to the camping area. Later the locals came over to thank us, offering us gin and soup 😄 

Hiking to the spring we had a refreshing foot bath in the cold water and enjoyed the lush greenery on its edge. Some locals had sleighs with them and climbed the dunes to slide them down. Being the lazy kind we just flew the drone over the area ☺️

The following day we crossed more sand and a mountain pass to reach Ulaagchiin Khar Lake. 

We set up camp on a ridge overlooking the lake and had a wonderful time.

Until a storm came up and almost blew us off the hill! We could barely hold on to the awning on the Defender and our roof tent was flapping in the wind like a sail...
So we needed a new spot quickly as it was getting dark and heavy rain was setting in. We limped to a little valley close by and hoped that the worst of the gales would be stopped by the mountain side.
Wasn't a restful night but the next morning all was fine again and we were surrounded by hundred of goats 🐐.