|The main road was almost as breathtaking with views but much easier. Our bike has now taken on a kiln dried look as the Altai mud has dried rock hard and requires chipping off it also has a scary front end shake, worse on cold tyres and tarmac so Kev has to do all he can to keep it in a straight line, it’s very tiring and he can’t let go of the handlebars for a second as the wobble becomes too severe we think this is caused by the worn front tyre but wether e daren’t put the replacement tyre on yet as we need this for after Ulan Bataar. We stop early as we spy a camping spot by the river and Kev is truely knackered, only slight problem as we reach the brow of the hill with no means of turning round he realises it’s a 1in4 with adverse camber and a gravel path I gleefully offer to jump off and walk down and he successfully negoiates his way down. It is well worth it we join other campers with fires on the beach front, there is even a sauna which we didn’t try. We think the owner is just starting up as he was building a house, it looked great with his horse tethered outside. A group of German kyakers came over and chatted a while. Next day we’re headed for the Mongolian border it’s all still beautiful till approx 100km from the border when we round a corner the green disapears the rivers smaller and hills now rolling, it gets more arrid, hotter and dry the closer to the border. Arriving at the border we discover it’s shut a guard comes out and says it will be open tomorrow Sunday at 9am it’s now 3pm so we turn around and head for the nearest hill and fee camp till tomorrow. We are initally frustrated as we have rushed through the beautiful Altai countryside only to wait out on the steppes in the heat.
Back at the border we discover we have been lucky it has been shut for 3 days a national Mongolian holiday!