Aug%2017.jpg We left Ulaan Baatar this morning and started heading southwest. Our destination is Bugin Tsav in the western Gobi Desert, approximately 100 miles from China’s northern border.

Including Ligden, Yoshi, Louis and myself, there are 10 of us in three vehicles. We are joined by members from Hwaseong City, Korea, who will be checking on the progress of the expedition. The majority of the expedition team already has been working in Bugin Tsav for the last week and half.

The Mongolian countryside is dotted with white gers (the traditional felt-lined tents) in which people live nomadic lives, herding sheep, goats, cattle, horses, camels or yaks. However, the modern world is prevalent, as many of the gers have large satellite dishes and solar panels. Occasionally, the horse has been replaced by a motorcycle for rounding up the livestock.

Along the roadside, women and children sell Mongolian tea (milk, tea, and salt), which tastes better then it sounds.

After eight hours of driving, we stopped in the town of Arvayheer for fuel. From this point we left paved roads for gravel and dirt. A few miles south of Arvayheer, we stopped at a ger for a home-cooked meal of noodles, meat (don’t know what kind), fat and potatoes served with Mongolian tea. We continued south until it got dark and made camp for the night.

(In photo: A traditional Mongolian ger with satellite dish and solar panels.)