Chillin’ in the Gobi

Photo© Bob Krist

What a difference latitude can make. And not just in your attitude.

We’re in the same desert as Dunhuang, but we’re further north, in Mongolia now, one of my all time favorite places. We spent a day in Ulan Bataar, where we caught a big service at Gandan Monastery (cool to shoot outside, but not of the monks chanting inside). Then we flew back out to the Gobi desert, to the Three Camel Lodge.

Last time I was here, it was early October of 07 or 08 (I forget) and we had a freak blizzard. Now, I’m here in late April, and guess what? Temps in the single digits and snow! Can you say “Weather Jonah”? I’m beginning to think my weather karma has really run out.

Time for an office job? Maybe become a Photoshop guru? Grow my beard really long and talk about 64 bit processing and stuff like that????? Nah, I’d rather be shooting in the Gobi, even in the snow!

Fortunately, our gers were heated with wood burning stoves, the Flaming Cliffs  were beautiful (and we got to hike them with one of my fellow speakers on the jet trip, Mark Norell.  Mark is chief paleontologist of the American Museum of Natural History and a real 21st century Indiana Jones. Going fossil hunting with him is like taking batting practice with Derek Jeter….it just doesn’t get any better.)

For a look at more from Ulan Bataar and the Gobi, and an insight into the type of motivation it takes to leave a toasty ger in the predawn twilight to shoot friggin’ icicle pictures, hit the jump.

First, as to the motivation. It’s simple. There are no bathrooms in the gers, and the shower/bathroom building is 40 yards down the path, right under those icicles! So leaving the ger in the frigid predawn was indeed nature calling me, but not necessarily to take pictures! ‘Nuff said.

Tech Data: All Photos, D90, 16-85mm VR, Vivid JPEG

Next stop: Kazakhstan!  I’ll keep you posted…..

Photo © Bob Krist

Photo © Bob Krist

Photo © Bob Krist

Photo © Bob Krist

This entry was posted in Destinations, Ironies, Photo Gear, Photo Techniques, Travel.

11 Comments

  1. Scott Thomas Photography April 27, 2010 at 8:44 am #

    Hard to pack light when you have to be prepared for weather changes you have been encountering. Besides gear, what did you pack to stay warm and cool?

    • Bob April 27, 2010 at 9:54 am #

      Scott: In addition to my usual lineup of Supplex nylon shirts, pants, and underwear from a variety of suppliers like Ex Officio, I had some long john silks, two layers of fleece and a Gore Tex shell. All high tech fiber stuff. Plus I drink a lot of red wine at dinner, which is a great thermal insulator…..Bob

  2. Moneypenny April 27, 2010 at 9:28 am #

    It was snowy on our visit too but I don’t remember seeing icicles! You really have a weather theme going on your blog. Best to head home – sun is shining. M

    • Bob April 27, 2010 at 9:52 am #

      I hear you, boss. I’m on the way home! B

  3. mike a April 27, 2010 at 1:33 pm #

    love the photo with the birds

  4. Brian April 28, 2010 at 4:40 am #

    Hi Bob:
    Great blog! I always check your blog in addition to that Joe guy that you partnered with on the Creative Lighting video. Reference to the paleontologist above should be “Mark Norell” instead of “Mark Orell”.

    • Bob April 28, 2010 at 6:26 am #

      Hi Brian: Thanks for the comment and the heads up on the typo. It’s fixed now….trying to do too much too late at night! Bob

  5. arun April 28, 2010 at 6:36 am #

    From the dunes to the freezing desert – such extensive and exotic travel must be good for the soul. I have to say that I am mildly jealous Bob.

    Great posting.

    • Bob April 28, 2010 at 6:37 pm #

      Arun: Good for the soul, but hard on the body clock and the stomach! I’m looking forward to getting home! cheers, Bob

  6. Chuck O'Rear April 28, 2010 at 5:53 pm #

    Bob,
    I’m exhausted just reading your blogs. Oh, but what great photos! Keep it up and don’t let up.
    Chuck O’Rear

    • Bob April 28, 2010 at 6:38 pm #

      Chuck: The barn is in sight, and this old horse is ready to go home. But it’s been a blast and there’s still a week left! Hope you are well. cheers, Bob

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