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Discussion Starter #1
Hello TW fans!

I am faced with a fun decision, so I thought I'd ask for some input from more experienced riders. I have just gotten my new Yamaha AG200. A group of coworkers is going from Ulaanbaatar to Sainshand (about 450 km) by train. Train takes 8 hours, Google maps calls it a 12 hour drive! I am told there is a road all the way there and filling stations on the way. I am (foolishly perhaps) considering grabbing a sleeping bag and a tent, and driving my new little bike there. I'd love to hear from you guys that have been on some long rides on little bikes. I am somewhat concerned about being in the middle of the Gobi desert, broken down, with no cell phone reception. What have I not thought of?:confused:
 

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Sounds like an adventure to make lasting memories,I say "go for it" with adequate precautions. Route looks like it parrallels railine and terrain looks reasonable, maybe sandy or silty in places.Choir looks about halfway and well developed as do several other settlements along railway.So it appears perfectly do-able for a AG200. Road looks relatively well traveled and clearly defined (Google Earth) so you might beat a 40kph moving average.
I would pack clothes for worse imaginable weather along with the overnight gear and take my time if possible. Maybe carry enough fuel to carry you well beyond anticipated refueling place if you cannot confirm availability before leaving Ulaanbataar. Tire repair kit ? Water . A little food if you cannot count on roadhouses along the way.
It is only 450km, but what do I know of Mongolia. Do know I would volunteer to join you in a heartbeat. Have fun and send us pictures if possible.
 

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Your weather looks decent for the next 8 days or so , mid 30's F to low 70'sF then maybe rain. Do your roads turn to goo after rain? Photos I found did not show alot of old ruts so hopefully you will do fine if you have rain. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Now I'm told that the road up to Choir is "average", and beyond that "brand new" Also, that there are "plenty of gas stations and hotels along the way". Now it's really tempting!
 

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have you talked with local truckers? the dealership where you bought your bike?

i would network and ask about that route, and not depend on people mid route. i've been lost in developing countries before, where even with a map and speaking the language... they thought i was an alien and didn't know which way it was to the next major town.

sounds awesome to me... pack prudent gear and survival equipment and RIDE ON!
 

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You do have a good chain on your bike, don't you?

Stop every half hour and take pictures and post them here. Pictures of everything!!!!

I bet you have half the guys on this forum wishing they could go with you.
 

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You will be fine I suspect. It seems to not be really remote from my limited research. I have not been out into the Gobi, but do have considerable desert experience and once walked the Sahara. I see you posted over at Horizons Unlimited, which was a great idea and actually what I was going to suggest. The presence of a road, motels, gas stops, etc. greatly increases your safety margin. Those places don't survive with out traffic. Go have fun. The suggestion that you talk to truck drivers was an excellent one, someone near you drives that route, and chances are all your questions can be answered by that person.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
This ride from Ulaanbaatar to Sainshand looks quite doable, and I will do it later in the season for sure. However, this weekend I'll likely stay closer to home and ride in the hills around UB. The lil AG would probably prefer more of a break-in period before revving high and hot for hours at a time on a paved road; my old Suzuki Volusia it is not ;-) Thank you for your input guys! I'll try to get some pics posted soon.

Ride Safe,
MP
 

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Bagd Khan Uul moutains south of town looks interesting to explore while breaking in your AG200.Maybe try to find the Turtle Rock ,visit Sky Resort perhaps? Stretching out that new chain a bit and getting comfortable with bike's nuances sounds like a fun weekend.
 

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Oh the wonders of my new broadband internet service, guess I am showing off or just sharing the wealth of available info via Google Earth and travel sites. I'll take a flying cyber-tour and just Oooh and Ahhh and Woow over interesting places and want to share.
I'll get over my new found enthusiasm and tone it down a bit. I do use these search skills to scout riding trails, primitive camp sites, un-mapped access roads and their interconnectivity, boat put-ins, remote beaches, etc.
Amazing resolution from satellite imagery now, one can actually see individual expansion joints on asphalt on Pete's road out of Ulaanbaatar and recognize the shadows of horses.
 

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Don't tone it down, I think it's great. I have been using that technology since it became available to plan remote trips. Unfortunately there are still places marked "beyond here there be dragons."
 

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Back in the old days a person would have to wait days to get unclassified stereo air photos, poor over outdated usgs 7.5 minute maps and still find surprises in the field when doing logistical planning for something like Pete's journey. I helped run some sampling and exploration programs in remote areas and made a few embarrassing mistakes not anticipated from comfort of an office thousands of miles away." Ooops, guess we can't walk accross that glacier, that itty bitty stream on the map is an angry flowing monster that wants to eat me alive, compass and altimeter don't place me where I thought I am. Where am I? What do you mean you forgot the tide tables and what are we going to do until tide re-floats the boat?" All worry free now with gps and internet. Gotta love modern technology.
Do miss the drama of " there be dragons" at times.
 
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