Thursday, May 29, 2008


Headed up to Lake Khovskol for a little while. Have fishing on my mind. It's Baikal's little brother, pretty close. Here's an article about the big one for your edification, thanks to undinecerelia.

Getting into this ex-russian jeepy van thing that I covet very much. If I could just get those knobby tires on the bus, I think they could put me on the next plane to mars. Anyway, a dude named Mooschovood or something like that is renting out the whole backseat to my companions and I. Right on.

here's a photo that isn't mine.

Might be out of touch for a couple weeks.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008


Been in Mongolia now for three-ish days. The train was pretty much a reading teadrinking W`odka version of Survivor in a box on wheels with fifteen minute breaks and boiling styrofoam noodles with filmstrips for windows. In all, pretty enjoyable. Baikal waves had piled up mounds of ice on the shore of the Lake while I watched from the coffee car passing over bridges, creeks, boulders running down from snows on high.

Mongolia happened one morning when I woke up after a six-hour Russian border customs operation that was sort of funny. I opened my eyes in my bunk and there were triangles of brown pointing up above vast plains and a blanket of mystery mist. The diesel Mongol rail horde belched diesel and screamed on south through the pass and I made the capitol at 7am. Got invited home to stay with my Russian-Mongol car mate who introduced me to his family and get us out to all the standard places around town that a disoriented post-european might like to go before he gets his steppe legs.

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No pictures now, rumors of camera viruses transmitted when digital congress is allowed between suspect terminals and image devices have me spooked. Hit the Natural History Museum this morning, and met up with the Legendary Kara and Ed yesterday, en route through. I've joined a loose confrerie of people at a bunkhouse with designs to descend upon another tectonic mere and camp some.

Cyrillic slowly becoming intelligible. Hurrah!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Транссибирская магистраль

I'm ready to go finally, and I have all the little pieces of paper and government permission I need to do so. First I'm going to Düsseldorf, then Moscow, and then UlaanBaatar. I'm tired of flying, and there's this train that goes from Moscow to the Pacific Ocean, or China, or Kamchatka, or pretty much anywhere else in that general handwaving direction East. So I'm taking a 100-hour rail ride to Mongolia. Here's a rough sketch of the route.

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I have some books and some tea, and they give away free hot water on the train. What a great deal. I've ditched most of my useless stuff, but have acquired another batch to replace it. Music: check. Books: check. Dry fruit stash: check.

A quick note on the substrate -
I'm going to pass Lake Baikal on day 3 or so. This lake is about 2000 miles from India. It's the deepest lake on the planet, contains 3% of the world's fresh water, and has its own coral, giant amphipods, and seals. It's the crustal equivalent of a barfight, in this case caused by the huge whallop of the Indian subcontinent uppercutting Asia. The Himalaya pile up, the desert comes behind them, and if you go far enough away, there's a big stretchy crack. Rivers flow into this thing from zillions of miles around. Just one of the things outside the window.

For kicks, here's some of my reading material:
Pilgrim at Tinker Creek
Wolf Totem
The Children of Húrin
Into the Wild

And here's a better map than mine
My end dot isn't on the line, but it's there.

I leave Moscow on Tuesday.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Wandern Schwarzwald

Hey, we went to the woods this weekend. The weather was really good. Eliza G und me took a train down to the Schluchsee, big lake in Baden-Württemburg, then we walked back home. Great camping next to a tiny lake - see below.

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Here's more photodocumentation of springtime in our fair village, and the WanderGENAU.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Unserer Ausflügs -

My record ain't so good here, but I've been busy. I'll get you the info, but for now, check this cat's photos