"Men and Gods in Mongolia" by Henning Haslund, a Danish-Swedish explorer who in 1923 visited Inner and Outer Mongolia. First published in 1935 by Kegan Paul of London.

Haslund joined an expedition led by a Danish physician named Carl Crebs who aimed to set up a dairy farm in northern Mongolia, close to Russia. The expedition travelled via China to Mongolia. They settled in what is today Erdenebulgan Sum\county\ in Huvsgul Aymag\province\. However, the project failed due to Mongolia coming under heavy Soviet influence and Haslund left Mongolia in the mid-1920s. Fashinated by the Mongol way of life, Haslund remained in Inner Mongolia which was under Chinese control instead for the following years, e.g. joining Sven Hedin for Sino-Swedish Scientific Expedition of the late 1920s.

The book by Haslund takes you to the lost city of Hara Khoto\"Black City"\in the Gobi desert in Inner Mongolia. You meet Dambin Jansang, the dreaded warlord of the "Black Gobi"... This rare and exciting book is now back in print!  It's online too!!

middle gobi

07.8.2015. In Dundgovi Aymag or Middle Gobi Province. No camel caravan here. There are just wandering camels. In past, the ancesors of these camels used to be in caravan for centuries. Mongols supplied Central Asians such as Kazakhs with their bactrian camels. Caravan roads through Mongolia linked important commercial centres in the country with Chinese and Russian towns. Furthermore, they were used by European merchants for their trade with China. Photo by Bolod.


A family that lives in underground heating pipeline is getting ready for another day for survival. As I saw the family was of three persons: a man with canes, a woman and a child. It's burning hot, warm or warmer along these pipes underground. In winter, homeless and poor people also sleep in accesses of apartment buildings in case security personnel let them in. Mongolian politicions and rich people like labelling poor people as lazy ones or "zalkhuchud". For example, when an earthquake recently struck a part of Japan, many Mongols allegedly could not sleep feeling so sorry for Japanese people and immediately raced to generously help them jumping over own fellow "lazy and helpless" guys sleeping in access of their appartments. Photo taken by Bolod.  


Ulaanbaatar City is too crowded like Hongkong or Manhatten. Although Mongolia is the 19th biggest country in the world, almost 60% of its 3 mln. population are now living in a single valley of Tuul River- in Ulaanbaatar. Mongolia today controlls only 40% of original land of the Mongols. Most land of the Mongols is now in China and Russia. The Mongols who once occupied a half the world's land masses, they returned it back long centuries ago. For example, in 1258, Mongols of Hulagu Khaan was sacking Bagdad. Remember, during American invasion in 2003, Saddam Hussein compared George Bush to Hulagu Khaan, a grandson of Chingis Khaan. From 1990, "Refugees" of Mongolia are "sacking and flooding" their own capital-Ulaanbaatar, leaving the rest of the country fairly empty. Foreign and local mining companies are probably very happy with this emptiness. Photo by Bolod.


May 15th, 2015. A camp of Mongolian herder's family. An American girl is conforting a newly born ishig-a baby goat. Although the most baby sheeps and goats are traditionally born March and early April in Mongolia, a few of them are still born these late days. It's not too cold today-March. But older babies were born earlier, in March. March with its frozen nights and days is the most responsible time in nomadic calendar. Photo taken by Bolod.

z250px Ungern21

On the photo: Baron Ungern-Sternberg or Baron Roman Nikolai Maximilian von Ungern-Sternberg\December 29, 1885- September 15th, 1921\, a pro-Mongolian Russian general in bolshevik captivity. 

"...In a few days, they came, two hundred warlike Chahars brigands under the command of a former Chinese hunghutze... ". He was a tall, skinny man with hands that reached almost to his knees, a face blackened by wind and sun, and mutilated with two long scars down over his forehead and cheek, the making one of one which had also closed one of his hawklike eyes, topped with a shaggy coonskin cap- such was the commander of Chahars. ... On the very day of their arrival, the Chahars pillaged a Chinese dugun or trading house not half a mile from the fortress and offended the wife of the Chinese Commissioner by calling her "traitor". The Chahars, like the Mongols, were quite right in their stand, because the Chinese commissioner Wang Tsao-tsun had on his arrival in Uliassutai followed the Chinese custom of demanding a Mongolian wife...".

хуудас 122-123, "Beasts, Men and Gods" by Ferdinand Ossendowski. 1923. E.P Dutton and Company, New York.

Rs:Ulyastai is a town in far north-west of Mongolia. Ulyas means "aspen". So it's: a place with aspens.


Two Russian furgons, several persons and an ancient grave with square fencing on the foot of Zorgol Khan Mountain in Central Mongolia.  The Mongols naively and carelessly call them kyrghysuur or "kyrghys khuur" that means "a kyrgyz corps" regardless these tombs are indeed of the kyrghyzs or not. These graves are widely spread throughout Mongolia,  Inner Mongolia in China and Tuva, Buryatia and Zabaikalsk Region in Russia and in Kazakhstan. Anthropogically, population of this whole region was overwelmingly Mongoloid. This particular grave is found far away from "kyrghyz area". The Kyrghyz tribes- the ancestors of today's Kyrghizs and Kazakhs shortly lived in the north-western Mongolia around Hyargas or Kyrghyz Lake. Photo taken by Bolod.


Everybody is heading for Naadam horse races held in Hui Dolon Hudag, a wide plain at 45km west of Ulaanbaatar City.  And a man and a little child-jockey are going there too. By Mongolia's  law, a jockey has to be older than 7-year old and should have a helmet on his or her head. Who cares this little one !? Not even his father who is bringing the child to fairly risky Naadam races in which hundred of horses take participation. I hope the man is father to this child. Children from poor families often get hired for race by horse-lovers. These races are very beautiful, but it's still... Photo by Bolod.


A swaying basketball board left behind by a nomad family or families when they moved out to a new place for fresh grasses or water\herders normally stay in a group of 2-3 familes\. Children may have now been missing the basket ring. They probably left the basketball board here in expectation of coming back. Playing basketball is the most played game among children and youngsters in Mongolia. Photo taken by me, Bolod


A boy riding a wooden "horse". Like him, vurtually every little in Mongolian countryside including me was riding a wood or  a stick before getting on horses proper.

In the white bag hanging from a temporary wooden structure near the boys, liquidity is being removed from yougurt in order to make then dry curd\aaruul\. Photo by Bolod.


3 gold and 1 silver medals.


Mongolia's boxing team has left for Halle's Chemical Cup tournament, an annual elite tournament in Germany. The team includes 2 previous winners of the Chemistry Cup: Chinzorig Baatarsukh\64kg\ and Tuvshinbat Byamba\69kg\. 


Riding Mongolian horses with Mongolian traditional wooden saddles. Photo taken by Bolod.


Plano Carpini\1185-1252\.

He is a great lier if he is here about this animal-like marriages amongst the Mongols proper!  Mongol mentality never could imagine this madness during its long existance. May be he did have no a  translator over the issue. This particular account is totally untrue!!!

"...Everyone has as many wives as he can afford: some have a hundred, some fifty, some ten, some more, some fewer, and everyone is generally married to relatives except to their own mother or daughter or sister of their own mother— even to half sisters and they can actually marry their father's wives after his death. In fact, the younger of two brothers may marry the elder brother's wife after his death or else another younger relative may do so. They take all the rest of the women as wives without any distinction and they buy them from their relatives at great cost. After the death of their husbands the women do not willingly marry a second time, unless someone wishes to marry his stepmother...".

hangai mountain

A Hangai Mountain view in central western Mongolia. Late June of 2015. Photo taken by Bolod.