Our lunch stop was at Khyargas Nuur which is a large salt lake that has different statistics depending on which reference is used. (Lat. 49º 02’ N, Long. 93º 28’ E) It’s located in the western aimag (province) of Uvs at an elevation of 1035m (3396 ft.) and has no outlet. Evaporation takes care of its inflow and results in its salinity.
We explored the area and lake shores while lunch was prepared and while one of the vehicles was repaired. It’s problems appeared to be due to a tank full of dirty fuel.
It was quite a spectacular view over the lake from the cliff top.
Some of the rocks look like white marble… but it’s not marble. It’s guano. This area attracts not only seagulls but also migratory cormorant birds. The cormorants arrive in April from southern China and hatch their young in large nests built on a large rock in the lake. The noise of the chicks is said to be deafening. But not many people come here to disturb them… or be disturbed by them.
I explored the area behind the great boulders.
There weren’t many flowers to find… it was the end of September; autumn.
The spikes on this plant may deter animals from eating it.
The ground was littered with colourful rocks.
This plant found a root hold even in such an inhospitable environment.
Back to the cars and our crew for our lunch which consisted of rice and buckwheat with some raisins and cranberries added for flavour. Some boiled cabbage was served on the side, no doubt to ward of a potential bout of scurvy!
We left after lunch to head for our intended camping place for the night. But we’d only travelled a couple of kilometres before one of our vehicles gave up the ghost… the fuel blockage had not been properly fixed. So it was decided that we should return to our lunch spot as there were some gers and cabins there that we could camp in.
These were the gers and cabins where we spent the night.
“Twas a pretty good place to camp… especially when the sun began to set!
I couldn’t help taking photos of this brilliant sunset from various vantage points.
Later, from this position, the full moon could be seen through broken cloud. The cairn of rocks in the foreground is called an Ovoo. It’s adorned with some blue khata scarves.
This happened to be the night of the full eclipse of the moon – a Blood Moon, but it was not visible from our camp position.
Now this is an explanation of a Blood Moon… are you ready for this?
The total eclipse of the moon on the night of September 27-28, 2015 happens to be the closest super-moon of 2015. In the northern hemisphere it’s call the harvest moon. In the Southern Hemisphere, it’s the first full moon of spring. This particular full moon is also called a Blood Moon because it’s “the fourth and final eclipse of a lunar tetrad”. That means that it’s the final of four straight total eclipses of the moon that are spaced six lunar months apart. Phew!
The last of the day’s light fades on a beautiful day.
Dinner was not as spectacular as the view… but not to worry. It consisted of a bowl of clear soup with chunky pieces of spud and carrots floating around in it. Not really too special!
However, I went to bed a happy, contented man. I’d enjoyed the day and I didn’t even have to sleep in my tent. I shared one of the cabins with Tim and Michael and slept on a platform bed with a layer of carpet under me for added comfort. What more could I ask?
All photographs copyright © DY of jtdytravels
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