The sun was out today when we woke and as we set out on the 8th day of our journey along Mongolia's Northern Route. Today we were headed for a a salt lake named Uvs Nuur, the biggest lake in Mongolia with an area of approximately 3000 square km. To get to the lake we traveled across a huge dry valley that seemed to go on for ever. THe valley was dotted with th occassional ger and for the first time we saw some camels. As we traveled west we got the first glimpse of some snow capped peaks to the west - we guessed this is our first view of the Altai Mountains (a mountain range that sits at the borders of China, Russia, Kazakhstan and Mongolia).
To get to the shore of Uvs Nuur we had to drive a few kms across untracked sand and grass but eventually we found a nice camping spot right on the lake shore. Contrary to the advice we found in the Lonely Planet guide the edge of the lake was not muddy/swampy and there were no mosquitoes to greet us.
To our surprise about an hour after we stopped a Toyota Landcruiser drove up to within 100 yards of our truck, parked and disgorged 8 people (a family) who proceeded to play in the sand and water for about 40 minutes before moving on. Why were we surprised - well, parked on the edge of the lake we could see for miles in every direction and we saw no gers, no vehicles and no people. It felt like we were the only people in the valley. Then someone turns up and parks right beside us!!
Also today we came across another road sign!!