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Northern Asia Topics specific to Russia, Central Asia (also known as "the 'stans"), Mongolia, Japan and Korea
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  #1  
Old 21 May 2004
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Mongolia: New Border Crossings Open!

Hi All: For any of you heading overland to Mongolia, there is some good news. This announcement came out this week:

"In an effort to promote tourism, the Government of Mongolia has announced that foreigners may now enter Mongolia by automobile or motorcycle at four additional land border crossings. The affected border crossings include: Tsagaan Nuur in Bayan Ulgii province, Altanbulag in Selenge province, Ereen Tsav in Dornod province and Zamiin Uud in Dornogobi province. These permanent highway checkpoints are open five days a week, Monday to Friday, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Foreigners may present their valid passports with visas (if needed) to cross the Mongolian border at these points. "

Previous to this only the Zamiin Uud (to China) and the Altanbulag (to Russia) points were open to overland vehicle travelers.

Scott
Ulaanbaatar
Mongolia
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  #2  
Old 5 Jun 2004
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Scott,

Thanks for posting this. This is excellent news. We have just arrived in Vladivostok and will be in Mongolia in the near future. It would be great if we could catch up with you when we get to Ulan Bataar. Would you mind sending us an Email.

Thanks,
Geoff..
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  #3  
Old 20 Jun 2004
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Hi Geoff: Sorry for the late reply; I was out of Ulaanbaatar for the past two weeks. I sent you an email. Let me know if you don't get it.

-Scott
Ulaanbaatar
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  #4  
Old 6 Jun 2005
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Hi Scott
nice to hear abouta new crossing
My wife and I plan to go to Mongolia, coming from Berlin via Novosibirsk and Gorno Altaisk.
We already apply for the visa.

I have been to Russia 2 times but never to Mongolia.
A simple question: we navigate by map and maybe by compass (no GPS up to now)
Could that be a problem coming from the west and trying to hit Ulan Bataar?
As far as I have read un the HUBB there are´nt to many signposts nor roads in Mongolia

CU
Goetz

------------------
ïóòü = öåëü
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  #5  
Old 7 Jun 2005
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Hello Goetz: Going by map and compass is possible, but slower, because you will have to ask directions more often.

Often the most difficult part is leaving the towns, because there are many different tracks going all over the place. Once you are a few km from the town it usually becomes more clear, with only one main track.

If you do not know Cyrillic writing, try to have someone write down the town names in Cyrillic for you because very few people you meet in the countryside will speak English. Most people will not know the way to Ulaanbaatar; they will only know the way to the next small town, so you need to have all the town names in Cyrillic. Or just get a map in Cyrillic.

-Scott

[This message has been edited by scottw (edited 07 June 2005).]
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  #6  
Old 16 Jun 2005
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Hi Scott. Re: border crossings into Mongolia (from Russia). I am planning to cross into Mongolia at Hanh/Mondy just at the right top corner of Hovsgol Nuur. I have contacted an official from the Mongolian Customs dept (via email) who has previously confirmed that this is now also a permanent border open to all foreigners (with valid papers). Do you (or others) have any knowledge of this? If it is not open, I would have a lot of back-tracking to do....

Many Thanks,

Adrian
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  #7  
Old 17 Jun 2005
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Adrian: Everything I have heard here in Ulaanbaatar is that the Hanh border crossing at the top of Huvsgul lake is NOT normally open to foreigners, only to Mongolians and Russians. I do know some foreigners who have come through there, but only on large group tours where they arranged it in advance with both the Mongolian and Russian Foreign Ministries.

That said, the Mongolian border forces tend to be much friendlier than the Russians (or the Chinese), so I suspect if you managed to get the Russians to let you out from their side, the Mongolians would probably let you in. It might take some talking and some vodka toasts, but I think they would relent. Getting the Russians to let you leave through there would be the tough part.

Maybe as you travel through Russia getting close to Mongolia you could ask the police or other authorities in nearby Russian cities to see if they think you will be able to get out of Russia there. That might save you riding all the way down there and having to turn around.

-Scott
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  #8  
Old 28 Nov 2007
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What is the track condition from Zamiin Uud to Ulanbaatar?
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  #9  
Old 4 Apr 2008
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Crossing Mongolia - From UB to West in Russia

Hi Scott,
I will be driving a small saloon car from Russia to Mongolia to UB and travel west and cross into Russia again in June 2008.
How are the roads for my small car? do you think it will handle? It is a Suzuki SX4 with 7" 11CM ground clearance.
which route in west and border will be safer?
Thanks for the info.
Highly appriciated!
Best
Arun
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  #10  
Old 6 Apr 2008
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to mongolia in november?

hi all,
i am a new member, and sorry, i am a bicyclist. i want to cross the stan countries and then, mongolia, but i think i will not able to reach the country before october or november, what temperature can i expect during day and night?
i was cycling in mongolia some years ago, but summer, and i remember some roads very lightly tracked, could be a problem if it snows?
and, the last, i have just read the info about the new borders, but i can not remember the provinces, can i cross from china coming from kirguistan or i have to cross kazasthan and then russia?
thanks a lot, from cairo
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  #11  
Old 7 Apr 2008
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Hi Arun: Your best/safest bet would be to drive down to UB from Ulan-Ude in Russia, then explore as far west as Kharkhorin and perhaps even the Tsetserleg/White Lake area and then retrace your route back out of Mongolia to Ulan-Ude. That keeps you all on sealed roads and some decent dirty roads (Kharkhorin-Tsetserleg-White Lake).

If you are determined to exit Mongolia to the west, it can be done in a saloon car if you are willing to drive very slowly and carefully. You should take the "southern route" because the northern route has worse roads and more rain, which means more mud and deeper streams to cross. You can find info on the routes on this site with some searching. You will be on dirt roads and tracks 95% of the time. Mostly OK but with some rough areas. Mongolians do drive saloon cars across those roads so it's possible. You just have to be willing to take it very easy on the speed. There are places you can go 60-80 Kph, but in other places you might have to go 5-15 kph for long periods. If it rains heavily you might have to wait a few days for the mud to dry. But it does not rain heavily very often.

I know it can be done because a German couple did it a few years ago in a tuk tuk (3-wheel Thai scooter-thing) with very little ground clearance and very little traction.

June should be OK. You should not attempt it in the cold months (October-April) because if it snows you will get stuck without 4WD.

Hope this helps.

Scott
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