Alison Richardson in Outer Mongolia
THERE were sighs of relief all round when intrepid traveller Alison Richardson returned from her latest globe-trotting horse-riding adventure.
Her trip across Outer Mongolia, one of the last true wildernesses in the world, was her first expedition since she was airlifted home from Jordan with a badly broken leg three years ago.
“That took almost a year to heal and everyone was very happy to see me come home in one piece this time,” said Alison, who is a commercial agent with Brown and Co, at Lynn.
After the fracture, caused by a kick from one of the party’s horses, she kept her latest venture quiet until about a week beforehand.
Alison and her companions were raising funds for the British Horse Society’s Welfare Fund. On the trek they rode locally-bred Mongolian horses which are descendants of the Przewalski (the last remaining breed of wild horse) and the six-day journey took them through torrential downpours and gale force winds across the Gobi Steppes on the edge of the Gobi desert.
“We experienced true Mongolian culture, from sleeping in a ger (tent), with any luggage carried by camel cart, to witnessing nomadic cooking and cloakroom facilities,” she said.
“A typical day began with a cup of tea Mongolian-style made with goat’s milk and salt and usually ended with some form of stewed mutton and a glass of fermented mare’s milk.”
The group rode for six to seven hours each day and the route also took them to the Gobi grassland which are green stepped after it rains and desert-like in times of drought.
The adventurers also met the nomadic families of camel and horse herdsmen who roam the vast plains of the untamed country.
They also witnessed the colourful opening of the Naadam Festival at the national stadium which featured music and marching from soldiers, monks and athletes, along with Mongolia’s three sporting passions of horse racing, wrestling and archery.
“The trip was physically demanding but it is fascinating to see the culture and traditions of one of the last true wildernesses in the world,” said Alison.
Source for content and photo: www.lynnnews.co.uk