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Route

We’ll update each day during the tour as we’re able (although it may not happen till we get back to Ulaan Baatar)

Day 1 – Ulaan Baatar
Welcome to Ulaan Baatar! Today is arrival day and there are no activities planned. We will meet you at the airport for the transfer back to the hotel. If you arrive early check into the hotel and go exploring. The city is fairly small and contained so it is perfect to get around on foot. The streets are spacious and architecturally interesting. Different parts of the city reflect the country’s different historical and cultural influences: the Russian-influenced Communist era architecture and planning of the centrally located Sukhbaatar Square, the suburbs filled with the traditional ger homes, the Buddhist-inspired temples (sum) and monasteries (khiid). There are several museums and galleries to check out if you want to see dinosaur skeletons, modern art or rare religious items.
Your leader will leave information at the hotel letting you know when and where to meet for the group meeting this evening. After all the formalities have been completed, we’ll head out for our first taste of Mongolian food – maybe a horse meat steak for the adventurous eaters!

Blog entries:

Arrival in Mongolia

Ulaan Baatar

Day 2 – Tsetserleg
This is the start of our adventure as we load up the 4WDs and jeeps for a big, 450+ km drive to Tsetserleg. This is a great introduction to the Mongolian countryside. Starting in the capital city’s aimag (province) of Tov, we travel through several more aimags before arriving at our starting point for the cycling: Tsetserleg. We’ll get to know our local crew who will be driving the support vehicles and cooking the food. At our destination we set up camp and enjoy our first dinner under the stars.

Blog entry:

Drive from Ulaan Baatar to Tsetserleg

Day 3 – Tsenger (30km)
We will spend an hour or more, unpacking and assembling the bikes at our campsite. Then we begin our 240km journey eastwards through the Arkhangai Mountain ranges to the ancient capital, Kharkhorin, established by legendary Chinggis Khan. We head out of town with a slight descent for the first few kilometres, then we start the first of three climbs for the day. The first is short with a steep section to the top, the second is a more moderate gradient and the last is again steep at the
top. The top of the third climb will be a great place for lunch if the weather is clear. The afternoon is all downhill to camp.

Blog Entries:

Tsetserleg

Tsetserleg to Tsenger Hot Springs (continued)

Days 4 – Towards Tsangam Sum (30km)
The terrain for the morning cycle is undulating as we veer into a new valley and have lunch just after the half way mark. The first section after lunch may be muddy if there has been recent rain, so get out the goggles and get ready for some dirt. The terrain is undulating up all the way to camp.

Blog entry:

Cycle Toward Tsangam Sum

Days 5 – Tsangam Sum (37km)
We start the day with a 2km, low gradient climb. We get the benefit of the climbing from yesterday afternoon and morning with a fast descent. The trail is gravely and quite eroded in places. The rest of the day is tending down but head winds here can slow everyone down a notch. The last few kilometres into Tsaagan Sum are climbing. We camp a few kilometres out of town to get the best views and quiet surroundings. For those wanting to go into town for a shower or sauna, the vehicle can drive people in.

Blog Entry:

Cycle to Tsangam Sum 37km

Days 6 – Orkhon Falls (37km)
This is our biggest day on the unicycles. We start the day climbing to the mountain pass, the last kilometre is very steep, followed by a quick descent on hard-packed dirt. We cross a valley to the other side and start our second climb for the day, again some sections are very steep, the views at the top of the ridge are more than worth it! The path undulates along the top of the ridgeline. What goes up must come down and this is one of the best downhill sections of the trip, with magnificent
views up and down the Orkhon River Valley. We will have lunch at the bottom next to the Orkhon River and the afternoon’s ride is alongside the river, tending slightly up. The headwinds in this part can be fierce! We arrive at the Orkhon Falls and camp a few kilometres away from the crowds. The rest of the day is free for you to relax at the campsite or hike down the ravine into the gorge for a swim.

Blog entry:

Cycle to Orkhon Falls 37km

Day 7 – Rest day
Free day for you to relax, hike or explore the local area.

Blog Entry:

Rest Day Orkhon Falls

Days 8 – Orkhon River Valley (46km)
We follow the Orkhon River back towards Kharkhorin. Tending slightly down this can be a deceptively fast section with lots of little mounds that are great for jumps and tricks. Following the valley on the south side, we stick fairly close to the rocky mountains on our right hand side.

Blog Entry:

Cycle Orkhon river valley 46km

Day 9 – Orkhon River Valley (30km)
We continue eastward along through valley. There is a small climb up and around mountain side but in general the terrain is undulating for the first half of today’s ride. The valley really opens up in the later part of today. After lunch we start the second, longer climb with the top being steep. There is a long downhill, across the valley, through the river and then into our third climb for the day. We will camp somewhere near the top of the third climb.

Blog Entry:

Orkhon River Valley and Mongolian BBQ

Day 10 – Kharkhorin (30km)
Our last day of riding! We start with a 3 km downhill to the bottom of the hill and then a 5km climb. At the top we have another section of undulating terrain across the top of the mountain with breathtaking views of the valley. This is followed by a long downhill back onto the valley floor and then undulating to Kharkhorin with a last short climb over and into the township.

Blog Entry:

To Kharkorum 30km

Day 11 – Karkhorin/Ulaan Baatar
We pack up the bikes and drive back to Ulaanbaatar, which is a full day’s drive from Kharkhorin. In the evening we will go out for our final night dinner.

Blog Entry:

Rally Cars and Injured Cyclists on the Road to UB

Day 12 – Departure
Today is departure day. We will organise the group transfer back to the airport.

Blog Entry:

So long, farewell!

2 comments on “Route

  • Sounds great!!!! I’m excited already.

  • Brian Davidson

    24/07/2010 at 6:09 am

    David,

    It looks like a fabulous trip. The Mongolia parts are fascinating. Personally I have my doubts that I could handle the unicycle part.

    Eke and I would love to connect with you to talk about Mongolia when you return.

    Brian & Eke

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