From the delguur (small market) in Bayanzurkh Tovchoo (east gate of the city), head SW a half mi through the little ger district to small tunnel under the RR. Proceed directly south towards the mountain for another 3/4 mi on the ST towards the road to the observatory. It is about 200' climb from the Tovcho to the road.
Once you link up with the road, take a left and go about 0.6mi. Take a right and start the real climb up to the observatory. It is 1.1 mi, 600' in elevation and 4 switchbacks. On the 4th and final switchback (just below the observatory) you can find a little ST off to the right. It is a total of 800' elevation in 3 mi from the Tovcho to this final switchback.
This little ST is a really just a cattle trail, but it proceeds south about a mile through the larch forest and down to the bottom of the valley behind the ski resort. This valley is called Waterfall Valley (Khurkhreegiin Am) and the creek in the bottom is called Waterfall Creek (Khurkhree Gol). Before they built the ski resort at the front end of this valley, you could enter the valley directly from the bottom. Now you have to enter from this little trail off the fourth switchback.
The descent into the valley is moderately technical and fun and contours with the slope perfectly. It lacks flow but is still fun. At the bottom cross the little creek wherever you can, and you will find a nice ST on the otherside. Follow the trail up the valley to the end. Return the way you came. From the observatory though, you don't have to take the road back down. I recommend that you follow the fence line of the ski resort back down the mountain. It is very steep, but it is more interesting than the road. It's a FAST fun ride back down the mountain.
Rode the trail earlier this week after several days of monsoon rain. Wow, the creek was flowing really strong. You have to be extra careful crossing. If a person is not very familiar with streams, I'm thinking it would probably be best to not to make an attempt. You could lose your bike and have a bit of time retrieving it. Plus, the water is so bitter cold I don't think I would want to slip and fall while crossing. Also, when you are coming back down the valley, make sure you ride it all the way down to the fence/boundary of the Sky Resort. The fastest ST is the last half mile or so before the fence.Thank |
You probably do not want to ride this trail too early in the year. The creek can flow really strong and be a bit tricky to get across. There is no crossing. You just have to find a good place. We rode this trail last spring on April 13th and had tough time crossing the creek with the high flow, unstable ice on the sides and bitterly cold snow melt water. It is an adventurous and dangerous crossing during snow melt.
Once you get back to pavement at the BZ Tovchoo, you can ride back to town (about 13km to the center of town), or you can easily get a taxi for about 10,000MNT ($5) to the center or get on a metro bus for way cheap (500MNT or $0.25). To get on the bus, it's best if you break down your bike.Thank |
The climb up is nice. A good workout with some decent scenery. Once you enter the forest, the scenery is nice too. The trail is a bit slow going; it's a technical unmaintained trail. I would have to give it an advanced rating.
After turning around at the end of the trail, coming down the valley along the creek is not quite as fast and flowy as I had hoped. With a little trail work this could be one awesome descent and so could the descent into the valley from the road. The grade is just perfect on both, but there are too many obstacles that break up the flow.
All in all, I'd give this ride a 3 with the potential of a 5 with some trail construction. You can also hook up with other trails behind the observatory and east of the observatory. There is lots of riding to do around the observatory.Thank |