The WildArt Mongolia Expedition was once again an art adventure with a conservation connection!
This year’s Expedition traveled in June to the northeastern mountains and steppes to explore the habitat and observe and record, we hoped, six species of cranes: Siberian, Red-crowned (Japanese), White-napped (all endangered), Hooded (vulnerable), Demoiselle and Common/Eurasian.
We attended the first-ever International Crane Festival, on June 13, which was a collaborative effort of researchers from Mongolia, China and Russia, along with the community of Binder Soum, Han Hentii Aimag. It was a great opportunity to meet the scientists, learn about their work, support crane conservation and also the local community. We also traveled south to Toson Hulstay Nature Reserve where we saw many Mongolian gazelles and received briefings from two of the rangers who help protect the reserve.
Dates: June 10-21, 2014
The Expedition began in Ulaanbaatar. We stayed the first night at Gun Galuut Nature Reserve at Steppe Nomads Eco Camp. Gun Galuut is only a 2-3 hours drive west from Ulaanbaatar. On the 13th we attended the International Crane Festival in Bender soum. After leaving Gun-Galuut, the rest of the trip was a tent camping trip which took us in a loop that included Höh Nuur (where Genghis Khan gained his title as Khan of the Mongols); a memorial to the Queens of Mongolia; Binder Ovoo and Öglögch Wall, the Khurkh River Valley, Onon River, Dadal and Ulz River (all in Han Hentii Aimag), Toson Hulstay Nature Reserve (Dornod Aimag/Mongolian Gazelles), Khar Yamaat Nature Reserve (Sukhbaatar aimag). As always in Mongolia, between these special places there were wonderful things to see and do every day since in the Land of Blue Skies, more than most places, the journey really is the destination.