Feb
24
2011

Eagle Festival and Altai Mountains, September (17 days)

Eagle Festival and Altai Mountains, September (17 days)

22 Sept 2013 to 8th Oct 2013

Price : $3997 AUD

Book this trip NOW only ten places available and it sells out fast

Part payment $200 AUD now secures your place in the expedition and you can fix up the balance
in three easy equal instalments 12, 9 and 6 weeks before departure




On this trip you get to enjoy the wild beauty of the Altai Mountains,
including nine to ten days of riding, with the added bonus of attending
the Eagle Festival at Olgii. This two-day festival really is one of
the greats. If you think you’ve seen some strange and interesting
festivals elsewhere, this is sure to impress even the most jaded
festival-goer. Don’t just take our word for it, this is what Emily from
New Zealand thought of it:

“There’s not much to be said about the Eagle Festival except that it
was undoubtedly the best festival in the history of the universe and two
of the best days of my time in Mongolia. Awesome, awesome, awesome…”

Everyone dresses up in their best outfits, which are spectacular;
even the camels get to wear brightly coloured rugs. There is a general
air of chaos with no clear line between contestants and the watching
crowd – sometimes you end up closer to the action than you might like!

A crowd favourite (amongst the women at least) is Kyz Kuar, the ‘race
between a man and a woman’, in which the woman pursues the man, giving
him a good whipping as they gallop across the steppe. Bushkashi, the
tug-of-war with a dead goat involves two riders holding each end of the
goat and trying to pull each other out of the saddle as they gallop
randomly about – including into the crowd. Brutal certainly, but a true
spectacle, and very fiercely contested. It’s quite incredible how far
out of the saddle a rider can be pulled without actually falling.

For a real test of horsemanship, riders lean down out of the saddle
at speed to pick up small targets off the ground in the sport of tiyn
teru. Very useful when you drop your hat. Archery from horse-back is
another ancient skill on display, and evidently very difficult. Genghis
Khan would not have been impressed! In the Mongolia of today it is not a
skill in great demand (luckily for us).

When the riotous crowd of people, horses, camels and eagles gets too
much, you can always pop into a ger for a cup of tea and khuurshuur
(mutton pancake). We often stage our own mini festival during the ride
so you can have a go at tug-of-war with a dead goat (or an old sack in
our case) or try to chase and whip your fellow riders (not that we
encourage that sort of thing of course).

We will set up our own ger as a basecamp while riding in the
mountains, and near the Festival. With a wood-burning stove inside, it
is very cosy. You are welcome to sleep in it, as an alternative to your
tent.

As with our Altai Expedition, this ride takes you to a remote and
mountainous region, with demanding terrain and the possibility of early
snow. Therefore it is essential that you are fit and active and willing
to take on a challenge. If you are not familiar with the outdoors, or
are unsure whether it is the right trip for you, we are happy to discuss
it.

Book this trip NOW only ten places available and it sells out fast

Part payment $200 AUD now secures your place in the expedition and you can fix up the balance
in three easy equal instalments 12, 9 and 6 weeks before departure




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Trip Outline
Day 1 (22nd Sept)
Meet for dinner in Ulaanbaatar
Day 2 Fy to Ulgii, drive south (4 hours), meet the horses and take an introductory ride
Days 3 to 5 Ride up in to the mountains of Altai Tavan Bogd National Park, and establish a basecamp

Days 6 to 9
Day and overnight rides to explore the surrounding mountains
Days 10 to 12
Ride back down from the mountains
Day 13 Final ride, drive to Olgii (3 hours)
Days 14 to 15 Eagle Festival
Day 16 Fly back to Ulaanbaatar
Day 17 (20th Sept)
Transfers to airport

————————-

Highlights

* Great riding and fascinating local culture in a remote corner of the Altai Mountains (see our Altai Expedition), plus…
* The two-day Eagle Festival.
* Beautiful Autumn colours in the mountains.
* The added challenge and fun of snow, as winter approaches.
* Help set up our own ger in the mountains and as a base while at the Festival.

If you would like to find out more about this ride, please contact us.

Book this trip NOW only ten places available and it sells out fast

Part payment $200 AUD now secures your place in the expedition and you can fix up the balance
in three easy equal instalments 12, 9 and 6 weeks before departure




Written by Rick Rakauskas in: |

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