|Me and Max|
Through a contact we bought horses in Moron, Khovsgol provence. This is located in northwestern Mongolia. Two Mongols rode with us for eight days. This meant that I had time to learn. We had one pack horse.
All in all, I rode 22 days in a 30 day period, covering a distance of about 400 km. This is not particularly far, and averages only about 5 km per hour, 4 hours per day. You could walk that fast on foot. But a horse is a lot more fun!
It was a fantastic time. In particular, the last 12 days, which I rode solo, left me with a deep sense of accomplishment. I had very limited horseriding experience before arriving in Mongolia, maybe less than ten hours in the saddle.
You can ride from ger to ger (yurt to yurt) and enjoy the hospitality of the countryside nomadic herders. So you don't necessarily need to bring a tent or a stove.
View horse trek in a larger map
Moron - Khatgal - Renchilkhumbe - Tsaatan Country - Renchilkhumbe - Tsaagannuur - Renchilkhumbe - Ulaan-uul - Toom - Bayanzurkh - Emt - Arbulag - Moron
At night, you find a plot of land that has the best, longest grass and stake your horse there. If you want, you can get up at 5 am and move your horse to another area. Horses are eating machines.
You don't want a pack horse. They are a big, big pain. It is very difficult to tie bags securely. Even locals have difficulty doing this. Inevitably you will have to stop to adjust them. Also, a packhorse is very difficult to control. It stops and goes when it wants. You cannot whip it, because you are in front, leading it. And, they get spooked by passing vehicles or anything, really. You may lose some of your baggage if this happens, as we did. So ride with one horse per person.
You must be in control of your horse. Do not let your horse do what it wants to do, like veer left or right, or stop incessantly to feed.
But sometimes you must yield to your horse. If the path looks dangerous to you (too steep or slippery, river bottom not visible) let your horse decide which path to take. In these situations, trust your horse.
Horses can be dangerous. They can kick, bite and fall. And you can fall, too! The cinches in Mongolia are very thin and easily loosen. Be aware of this. Tighten them regularly.
Watch out for scrap metal in towns. Your horse can cut itself on such objects easily.
If you are worried about horsethievery (and you should be in Khovsgol provence), the only solution is to have night watches. Of course, this is difficult or impossible with only one or two people. You can hire a local guide, but that is no guarantee your horse will be waiting for you at sunrise.