Mongolia Monday-More From “Among The Mongols”; Traveling By Horse

While I’ve done my traveling in Mongolia by vehicle, the following, for me, really evokes what it’s like to journey through the countryside. I’ve included a few images from my trips.

“Traveling in Mongolia has many pleasures, but ordinary traveling is so slow that the tedium threatens to swamp them all. Horseback traveling does away with the tedium as far as possible, and presents the greatest number of new scenes and circumstances in rapid succession. Night and day you hurry on; sunrise and sunset have their glories much like those seen at sea; the stars and the moon have a charm on the lovely plain.

Ever and anon you come upon tents, indicated at night by the barking of the dogs, — in the daytime seen gleaming from afar, vague and indistinct through the glowing mirage. As you sweep round the base of a hill, you come upon a herd of startled deer and give chase, to show their powers of running; then a temple with its red walls and gilt ornamented roofs looms up and glides past.

Hill-sides here and there are patched with sheep; in the plains below mounted Mongols are dashing right and left through a large drove of horses, pursuing those they wish to catch, with a noosed pole that looks like a fishing rod. On some lovely stretch of road you come upon an encampment of ox carts, the oxen grazing and the drivers mending the wooden wheels, or meet a long train of tea-laden silent camels.

When the time for a meal approaches and a tent heaves in sight, you leave the road and make for it. However tired the horses may be, they will freshen up at this. They know what is coming and hurry on to rest.”

The previous post is here.

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