Altai Ride

Gobi Steppe Mongolia: (IT-MNRT09)
URL: https://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/mongolia_altai_ride.aspx

Introduction
Gobi Steppe Mongolia
This horseback journey offers close encounters with Mongolian horsemen, nomadic people who have thus far been able to withstand modern pressures and lifestyles. There is no other nation in the world that depends on horses to such an extent. Mongolian horsemanship is famous and in many ways different than anywhere else. The herders keep their horses in a semi-wild condition, allowing them to live freely in harem groups. Fences or stables are virtually unknown.

On this trip we will explore Western Mongolia’s Altai Mountains on horseback. We will start riding through mountain valleys and gradually we will come through the vast steppe. You will experience snow-capped mountains, endless steppe, mountain rivers and enjoy camping along great Altai Mountain ranges. We will undertake this horse ride with vehicle support vehicle, in wild terrain.

Accomodation
 
Accommodations
This is a progressive ride, so you will be staying in different locations during the trip.

Description
You will be staying in a hotel for 2 nights, camps for 8 nights, and 1 night will be at local hotel in the province center with attached toilet facilities. All accommodations are based on double occupancy. Private bathrooms are only available for nights spent in Ulaanbaatar. On all other nights, facilities are shared.

Accommodation Itinerary - subject to changes based on availability
Night 1: Bayangol Hotel in Ulaanbaatar
Night 2: Namarjin Camp
Night 3: Tavan Belchir Camp
Night 4: Ulaan Suhait Valley Camp
Night 5 & 6: Döröö Lake Camp
Night 7: Hökh Serkh Mountain Camp
Night 8 & 9: Ikh Yamaat Valley Camp
Night 10: Hovd Camp
Night 11: Bayangol Hotel in Ulaanbaatar

Bayangol Hotel in Ulaanbaatar

Ideally located in the city center, this hotel offers elegant and comfortable ensuite bedrooms. Each room is equipped with air conditioning, a TV, free Wi-Fi access and tea and coffee making facilities. Laundry is available for an additional cost.

Camps
You will stay in spacious tents with foldable bed-cots (bring your own sleeping bag). We take along a mobile restaurant, as well as showers and compost toilets housed in traditional Mongolian marquee style tents.



Room Occupancy
A single supplement fee applies for riders willing to have their own tent and own hotel room.


Meals
All meals are included in the trip except for lunch in Ulaanbaatar on day 11.

Our cook will prepare the meals. We pride ourselves in having excellent cooks adept at both western and Mongolian cooking on our trips.
We can usually buy fresh milk and yogurt from local herdsmen.

Alcoholic drinks are not included in this package but you are welcome to bring your own.

Dietary Restrictions
We can cater for vegetarians. Please make sure to advice us in advance of any dietary requirements that you may have.

This trip includes and can accommodate special dietary requests.

Riding

On this tour, we will have support vehicle for luggage transfers. There will be around one to two spare horse per riders on this journey.

Riding Experience
You should be a competent rider, fit and capable of riding at all paces confidently. Varying terrain, in the saddle for several hours on most days.

Tack
We will provide you Russian saddles, which are more convenient for "western bottoms" than the Mongolian equivalent. We provide a saddle bag if needed.

Staff
A Mongolian English speaking guide will accompany the group at all times. A cook will follow with the car van. In addition, the services of local herdsmen will be employed along with their animals. The horsemen follow a traditional lifestyle in the areas where we will be riding. If the group consists of five riders or more, we will also have a Mongolian doctor come along as part of the crew.

Itinerary
 

Sample Itinerary - subject to changes

Please note that this riding tour may be done in reverse for operational reasons.

Day 1: Arrival
Arrive in Ulaanbaatar. Transfer to your hotel. Tour briefing, followed by dinner.
Meals included: Dinner
Overnight at Hotel in Ulaanbaatar


Day 2: Tsambagarav Mountain via Ölgii
After breakfast, we’ll transfer you to the Chinggis Khaan airport for domestic flight to Ölgii. After arrival in Ölgii, we’ll transfer you to Tsambagarav Mountain’s Namarjin Valley. Our camp consists of guest tent-tipi plus more tents for kitchen, restaurant and staff use. The camp location is at the foot of the eternally snow-capped mountains of Tsast and Tsambagarav. You can visit the local Ööld ethnic people.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Namarjin Valley Camp


Day 3: To Tavan Belchir
On this day, we’ll start our horseback journey. We’ll ride for 20 to 25km to the Tavan Belchir area to the north of the Tsambagarav Mountain National Park through a mountain valley. Picnic lunch en route. Tsambagarav Mountain has eternally snow-capped peaks, 4025 meters above sea level. We will circle the Mountain and ride back to camp.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Tavan Belchir Camp


Day 4: To Ulaan Suhait Valley
Today, we continue our horseback journey by riding through the Salhit Valley and reaching the Sair Mountain’s Ulaan Suhait Valley. There is a chance to see wildlife such as Siberian ibex, wild mountain goats etc. You can also visit local Kazakh ethnic nomad families.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Ulaan Suhait Valley Camp


Day 5: To Döröö Lake
We continue our ride through the Sair Mountain and on to the Döröö Lake located near the Deluun soum of Bayan-Ölgii province. We will ride on a big mountain and may encounter some nomadic families along the way. At the lake, there’s chance for you to see some of the rare species of birds.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Döröö Lake Camp


Day 6: Ride Around Döröö Lake
We ride the horses and circle the Döröö Lake and explore the area.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Döröö Lake Camp


Day 7: To Hökh Serkh Mountain
After breakfast, we’ll continue our ride near the Teregt Valley in the Hökh Serkh Mountain National Park area. Picnic lunch en route. We’ll ride out of the Mountain valley and into the great steppe of the Western Mongolia. There’s a chance to see wildlife such as the Argali Sheep and Corsac Foxes.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Hökh Serkh Mountain Camp


Day 8: To Ikh Yamaat Valley
Today, we’ll ride through the Teregt Valley and on to the Hökh Serkh National Park’s Ikh Yamaat Valley to the South. This area is rich of Siberian Ibex and other wildlife.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Ikh Yamaat Valley Camp


Day 9: Ikh Yamaat Valley
After breakfast, we’ll explore the Ikh Yamaat Valley. This area is rich with wildlife such as Siberian Ibex and Golden eagles. There are also a few snow leopards. After lunch at the mobile camp we’ll ride to the Deluun soum and visit a local Eagle Hunter family.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Ikh Yamaat Valley Camp


Day 10: To Hovd
After breakfast, we’ll depart to the province center of Hovd. After lunch at Hovd, we’ll explore the center of province and visit the local Museum of Multi-Ethnic Culture.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Hovd Camp


Day 11: To Ulaanbaatar
After early breakfast, we’ll transfer you to the local domestic airport for flight back to Ulaanbaatar. After arrival in Ulaanbaatar, transfer to your hotel for a check-in. Free time in the city.
Meals included: Breakfast & Dinner
Overnight at Hotel in Ulaanbaatar


Day 11: Departure
Transfer out to your next destination.
Meals included: Breakfast


Naadam Games Extension

July 10th: Ulaanbaatar
Conclusion of horseback riding trip after breakfast. Today, one day before the National Naadam officially begins, we will drive out of the city and attend smaller, more intimate "country-style" Naadam festivals, usually held in three communities some 50-60km away. This failing, the big horse races also start on the Hui Doloon Hudag plains today. In the countryside you have the chance to get up close to the horse races, and also to the wrestling matches. Local people usually wear their finest traditional dresses, adding to the colorful, festive atmosphere. We have a picnic lunch nearby and head back to Ulaanbaatar in the afternoon.

July 11th: Ulaanbaatar
Today Naadam is officially opened by the President of Mongolia. Soldiers on horseback, dressed in warrior regalia, ceremonially bring Genghis Khan's nine white horsetail banners from the parliament, where they are normally displayed, to the stadium. We will attend the impressive opening ceremony, after which the first round of wrestling will immediately follow. In most years 512 wrestlers from all over Mongolia compete, but in some years there are 1024! There are no judges, no time limits and no weight limits. We may try and attend the archery competitions (if not done the previous day) and later make our way out to the steppe area on the fringes of the city, where the horse races take place. We visit the nomadic tented camps that have sprung up, and experience a concentrated version of nomadic Mongolia. Herdsmen have come with their horses and all provisions for the festivities, which of course include airag (koumiss; fermented mares milk) for the merry making. Stroll around the area and you are likely to be invited in somewhere. You may also try your luck at the finals of the horse races, but prior instructions are necessary, since the finishing line of a full horse race of several hundred, is a potentially hazardous environment.

July 12th: Ulaanbaatar
Our services end after breakfast (and transfer to the airport if applicable), as we have covered all aspects and the highlights of Naadam by now. You may of course remain in the city to attend the final rounds of wrestling and the awards, or continue for one of our trips further into the great Mongolian void. You need to be attentive with hotel reservations and advise us early if intending to stay beyond mid-day.


Rates and Dates for Altai Ride

Rates include:

English speaking guide, Most meals, All overnights in hotels (3n.) and tents (8n.), camping equipment and all local transport.

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescription US$
    A
    202112 day trip, AP except in Ulanbataar$4300
  • B
    202114 day trip, AP incl. Naadam Games$5020

* prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy

Transfer and Other Charges:



 DescriptionUS$
2021 Transfers from/to Ulaanbaatar airport included $0
2021 No single supplement if willing to share $0
2021 Single supplement $440
2021 Discount available for groups of 4 pax and more $0
2021 Private trip supplement - please inquire $0

Season Seasons  Min / MaxReserve
A 2021 06/01 - 08/31 12d / 11n 12 day trip, AP except in Ul... 2 /8 Reserve

Dates Note:

Rates do not include:

Gratuities, Airport departure tax, Lunch on Day 11, Alcoholic drinks & Health and accident insurance (mandatory)
Bring your own sleeping bag, riding helmet and short chaps.

Note:

Due to COVID-19 Corona virus pandemic and certain travel restrictions we are applying some temporary policy changes to some of our tours.

For Mongolian Altai Adventure (IT-MNRT09):
For bookings affected by travel restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic, we offer the possibility to postpone your trip to a later date at no extra fee.

For more information please visit our COVID-19 Updates page at https://www.hiddentrails.com/article/covid19update.aspx

Other Info
Meeting: Ulaanbaatar
Airport: Chinggis Khaan International Airport (ULN)
Transfer: Ulaanbaatar

Climate:
                                                    Ölgii area


Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

16

24

37

52

64

74

77

74

63

48

31

19

Average Low Temperature (°F)

-7

-2

10

26

38

50

55

50

37

24

9

-2

Average High Temperature (°C)

-9

-5

3

11

18

23

25

23

17

9

-1

-7

Average Low Temperature (°C)

-22

-19

-12

-4

3

10

13

10

3

-4

-13

-19

Average Precipitation (days of rain)

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

1

0

0

0

0

Source: NOAA


Seasons

The mean elevation of Mongolia is about 1400 meters above sea level (5000 ft), which enhances the sharp continental climate. Mongolia has the highest atmospheric pressure in the world and the pronounced elevation as well as the distance from the moderating effects of the oceans, makes Ulaanbaatar the coldest capital city on Earth. This fact does not rule out extreme heat waves in the middle of the summer. In Mongolia the Central Asian desert zones meet with the Siberian taiga, hence, Mongolia is a transition zone with climatic extremes. Most of the year it is very cold, especially at night.

Winter
Precipitation is low and skies are usually clear during the wintertime.

Summer
Summers are very pleasant just as in the US and Europe. There is a short rainy season in July and August during which most of the annual rain will fall. Around 70 percent of all precipitation falls during this period. When raining it tend to be heavier and shorter, if extended it may cause floods locally. Occasional strong winds can come and go quickly. Even if this sounds like a lot of precipitation during the summertime it is just about the same as in Europe at the equivalent time. Mongolia is known as the land of the blue sky and throughout the year there are 278 sunny days and 9-23 cloudy days.

Spring and fall pass very quickly.

What To Bring:
Dress is very informal but Mongolian sensibilities dictate a degree of modesty in the cut of the clothing worn.  Hotel laundry services are available but you will need to bring two or three changes of clothing for the camping portion of the trip. This basic list will be adequate for the demands of our trips. While in Mongolia we will have weather in the 60's and 70's during the day, but nights will be cold. If you are passing through Beijing on the way to or from Mongolia, be aware that Beijing is hot and humid.

Useful items:
Small binoculars, travel alarm clock, earplugs, journal and pen, pocket knife (put in checked luggage, not allowed as carry‑on), lightweight snacks like granola bars, fruit bark, jerky, trail mix, nuts, tea bags that you can't start the day without, vitamins, water purification tablets, Mongolian phrasebook.
All our provisions, camping equipment, luggage will be loaded in the support vehicle. 


 …  this list is only a guideline for you

 

Travel documents and Voucher
Flight tickets
Passport
Visa (check with your consulate)

 

RIDING GEAR
Comfortable riding jeans or Jodhpurs
Riding boots (well broken in) or ankle-high riding shoes meant for endurance rides or ‘ride & ties’. These work especially well when worn with a pair of ‘half chaps’ (knee-high leather gaitors). They have a riding heel, but are comfortable enough to be used for your city and village footwear too. 
Rubber overboots, especially if your riding boots have leather soles.
Riding gloves
Hat (with chin strip) for sun protection
Good rain gear: parka and rain pants or “duster” (no ponchos)

 

PERSONAL CLOTHING
Pile jacket or down vest
Wool sweater or wool shirt
Warm gloves
wool cap or other warm hat
Comfortable T-Shirts/Shirts
Jeans
Shorts
Underwear and socks
Long underwear for cold nights (polypropelene or capilene)
Women: Jogbra or other suitable sporty support
Pyjama
Bag for dirty clothes
Comfortable footwear for city and village walking (sturdy walking shoes or tennis shoes or lightweight hiking boots well broken in)
Swimsuit
Bandana or scarf
 
ADDITIONAL THINGS TO BRING
Personal Toiletries
Insect protection
Personal medications
Sore cream (for the emergency)
small towel
Camera and enough extra films and batteries
Belt pack
Sun glasses with strap
Sun tan lotion and lip balm 
Biodegradable campsuds
Minimum 1 liter water bottle (leather bota bags work great for riding)
Flashlight with change of batteries
Toilet paper
Extra baggage tags ("collecting" tags is popular with baggage handlers in Asia)
6 small & medium zip loc bags for trash disposal
Luggage padlocks
Nylon parachute cord (useful for tying rain gear and saddle bags behind saddle)