Mongol Derby - Medic's Blog - 14th August 2011
Sun 14th Aug – Marmots! Since we arrived in the countryside I have been looking out for marmots and Tulga has been trying his best to find us one. Today we eventually saw several (having had a few glimpses yesterday). I think in other areas of the course they had been over-hunted. They are so cute. A few hours after our first proper sighting Pete and I happened upon a group of locals who had just started cooking one, apparently the meat is quite delicious although the method of cooking is interesting (the head is chopped off and the insides pulled out through the neck hole, hot stones inserted then the outside is blowtorched and the whole body blows up with the steam inside). As we had just settled in a ger eating marmot and drinking airag with the locals, one of the riders’ horses came galloping back without him on it so we set off in the car to try and find him. He was fine luckily, having been bucked off for the second time that day. This afternoon we ended up back at the finish line and watched the last of the riders come in. It was so relieving to have them all back safe and sound. The finish camp is a permanent tourist camp with several gers, set on a gorgeous plain surrounded by mountains and a perfectly symmetrical extinct volcano. I am very much looking forward to a couple of days rest and recuperation (not to mention a shower!) here before heading back to UB.