Saturday, December 10, 2005

Mongolia | Khovd Aimag | Borders

China, Mongolia Finalize 4,677-KM Border (that's 2906 miles to non-decimal-heads). Ever on the cutting edge of the news I winged out to Khovd City, took a jeep to the sum center of Bulgan, and from nearby Shar Mod rode camels 65 miles down to the border to make sure all was well. It is.
Mongolian Stalwarts keeping viligant watch on the border at Seven Dogs Oasis, southern Khovd Aimag.
Border Marker #173 at Baitag Bogd Uul, southern Khovd Aimag
Two border guards at Border Marker #173. China (Xinjiang) is right behind them.
Border Guards riding along the Border Fence at Baitag Bogd Uul. Through rain, sleet, snow, and hail the Border is constantly patrolled.
Camel men from Shar Mod, with the white fence marking the Mongolian-Chinese border in the distance. There's not a Chinese restaurant in sight, although at that point I would have been glad to see even a 7-11. The camel guys, Dorj and Ankha, had never been in this area before and could not find the promised well. We overnighted with two liters (that's 2.1133764 quarts to non-decimal-heads) of water among the four of us, and did not reach the next water at Baitag Bogd Mountain until the next afternoon.


Anonymous yan said...

Wasn't Baitag Bogd Uul the scene of that 1948 border incident? Did they have any monuments in the area, like they have in Murun and Ulaangom?

7:36 PM  
Blogger Don said...

Yes, indeed it was. This was the notorious Kazakh bandit and warlord Ospan. There was a big battle also at Seven Dogs Spring. 30 Mongolian Border Guards were killed by Ospan and his men. I will post photos soon of the Seven Dogs Spring Border Post and the monument to those who died fighting Ospan. This monument is near Shar Mod.

7:54 PM  
Anonymous yan said...

The monument in Murun is for Davaadorj, who died in the fighting and was later awarded with the title ulsyn baatar. I have a picture at

P.S. What are the temperatures like in Hovd this time of the year ;) ?

10:33 PM  
Blogger Don said...

The first night we reached Bayanzurkh high in the mountains at about 8500 feet and had planned to camp out but is was very cold, maybe 15 F and very very windy, so we stayed in a ger. It was actually warm in Bulgan and at Shar Mod, where we started the camel trip, in the 70s I would stay. It was also warm in the desert, downright hot in the afternoons. At Baitag Bogd Uul the weather was wonderful. Not hot and not cold. October is by far the best time to travel in the desert. This is the third trip in the Gobi I have done in October. By the time we returned to Shar Mod, however, the weather had changed. It snowed two inches the day we arrived. The people there started putting up their winter gers that very day.

7:00 AM  

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