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Mt. Khuiten Mongolia •  14,350'  •  4374m
FAQ

Mongolia Expedition Frequently Asked Questions

This information should answer many of your initial questions and also guide you through the next stages of preparing for the expedition. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us: office@mountainguides.com

  • Mongolia with IMG
  • Why should I climb in Mongolia with IMG?

    We know we're not the cheapest deal around, and we don't want to be. We spend more providing the best personnel, equipment, logistics and safety measures — things that many lower-cost programs cannot afford and do not have. We don't cut corners. As you shop around, consider the following:

    • IMG guides are professionals and are great teachers as well as strong climbers. All have done numerous high-altitude expeditions, including the Himalaya. Our clients enjoy the immense benefit of a core group that has climbed together extensively, producing a team that knows how to work well together. We do not think you will find any other Mongolia programs that will be led or staffed by persons of the caliber we field. We challenge you to try!

    • IMG always complies with all local, state, federal, and international regulations for the countries in which we climb. This includes proper visas and climbing permits, full insurance and equipment for our guides and Sherpa support teams, and complete adherence to all environmental regulations. Our clean business record allows us to operate with full liability insurance. All client funds are deposited in a regulated trust account. We take our business seriously!

    • IMG trek itineraries are longer than most others offered on the market. We know how to acclimatize properly and we don't rush.

  • What is the policy on Leave No Trace?

    IMG is committed to Leave No Trace. All human waste is properly disposed of and garbage is sorted into burnable and recyclables.

  • Travel and Insurance
  • How do I get there?

    Many of the group will fly from Seoul Korea to Ulaanbaatar on Korean Air. International Mountain Guides has worked for many years with Ms. Pirjo Dehart and her staff at CTT Destinations to provide travel service for participants in our programs. We urge you to contact Pirjo at 800-909-6647 img@cttdestinations.com for help with your plans.

  • What kind of insurance do I need?

    In addition to the required Travel Insurance (evacuation/repatriation/medical expense coverage,) we strongly recommend that you add Trip Cancellation coverage to your policy to cover cancellation (before trip starts) or interruption (after trip starts.) More info: mountainguides.com/travel-insurance.shtml . If you need assistance with the various insurance options, give Becky Kjorvestad a call in the IMG Office (360-569-2609) or email becky.kjorvestad@mountainguides.com. Trekkers please extend your coverage for one week after scheduled trip end date, in case you have a problem on the trip (so it doesn't run out while you are in Mongolia!)

  • How should I book my departure?

    Departing flights and Hotel upon return to Ulaanbaatar: It would be wise to give yourself one additional contingency day at the end of the climb in Ulaanbaatar. If you choose to make your departing flight the same day as you are scheduled to return to Ulaanbaatar (July 25th), please make this reservation late in the afternoon or nighttime. By making your reservation late on the 25th, you may have enough time to make the flight in the event there is a delay in flights departing Bayan Olgii. Delays are not uncommon departing Bayan Olgii so we recommend departing Mongolia on July  27th. This will give you additional time to do some souvenir shopping and relaxing, we can make a reservation at the hotel and you can simply pay for the night directly to or agent in Mongolia. The rates are as follows for the hotel in Ulaanbaatar:

    • Standard single room is 70 USD per night including all taxes and breakfast
    • Standard double/twin room is 90 USD per night including all taxes and breakfast

  • Money and Tips
  • How much money should I bring?

    We suggest $500 personal cash and $300 for the tip pool, plus a credit card. It is better to have extra cash money and not need it than to need it and not have it! For your cash, bring new style bills (with the big faces) including some $10's and $20's. I prefer cash, but you will probably also want to bring a credit card too, but remember that you will likely get hit by your bank with 3% fees on foreign credit card purchases. If you plan to use your credit card you should call your bank and let them know you will be traveling abroad, otherwise using it might trigger a fraud alert on your account which results in your card getting turned off.

  • How does the tip pool work?

    We will collect for a tip pool and ask climbers to please contribute $300. We will collect this in Ulaanbaatar and distribute this during/after the trip on behalf of the team as a thank you gift to our porters, drivers, and Mongolian staff. You may also wish to provide additional tip to your IMG guides.

  • What's included in the Mt. Khuiten Expedition fee?

    Costs Included in the Mt. Khuiten Expedition Fee:

    • Transfers between hotel and airport in Ulaanbaatar
    • 2 nights at hotel (sharing, w/breakfast) in Ulaanbaatar beginning of stated itinerary; 1 night at end
    • Domestic flights
    • Permit fees
    • All meals in Mongolia for the stated itinerary
    • Ground transportation
    • Group camping and climbing gear
    • Satellite phone
    • Camels to Base Camp
    • Porters to high camp for the food and camp gear
    • Medical kit

    Costs Not Included in the Mt. Khuiten Expedition Fee:

    • International round-trip air fare and travel expenses to/from Mongolia
    • Lunch and dinner in Ulaanbaatar
    • Personal gear (suitable for Mt. Rainier)
    • Excess baggage charges
    • Airport taxes and Mongolia entry visas
    • Tip pool (we suggest $300 per person)
    • Internet and satellite phone ($3.00 per minute for usage)
    • Personal sundries and beverages
    • Costs incurred as a result of delays or events beyond the control of IMG
    • Additional hotel nights if you arrive early, and at the end of the trip after returning from Bayan Olgi
    • Required Travel Insurance coverage (medical, rescue/repatriation)

  • What's included in the Naadam Festival Extension fee?

    Costs Included in the Naadam Festival Extension Fee:

    • 4 overnights at 4-star Bayangol hotel in Ulaanbaatar with meals (based on double occupancy)
    • 1 night in Ger camping at Terelj National Park
    • Drinking water
    • Naadam ticket
    • NP and sightseeing fee, all visits
    • Vehicle with driver and English-speaking guide

    Costs Not Included in the Naadam Festival Extension Fee:

    • Travel Insurance
    • Optional activities
    • Food outside of breakfast, lunch and dinner
    • Drinks outside of water
    • Gratuities

  • What's included in the Gobi Desert Extension fee?

    Costs Included in the Gobi Desert Extension Fee:

    • 1 overnight at 4-star Bayangol hotel in Ulaanbaatar with meals (based on double occupancy)
    • 4 nights in Ger Camps
    • Drinking water
    • Internal flights from Ulaanbaatar to Dalanzadgad (round trip)
    • NP fee and sightseeing fees
    • Overland transportation with English Speaking Guide
    • Airport transfers and pickup

    Costs Not Included in the Gobi Desert Extension Fee:

    • Travel Insurance
    • Meals outside of breakfast
    • Drinks
    • Gratuities
    • Other optional activities

  • Medical and Rescue
  • What immunizations will I need?
    • Tetanus/Diphtheria: You should already have. Do you need a booster?
    • Polio: You should already have. Do you need a booster?
    • MMR: You should already have. Do you need a booster?
    • Meningitis: Recommended. Consult your physician.
    • Hepatitis A: Recommended. Consult your physician.
    • Hepatitis B: Not a bad idea. Ask your physician.
    • Cholera: Ask your physician. Not usually recommended any more.
    • Typhoid: Not a bad idea to be safe. The tablet form, Vivotif Berna, is good for five years.
    • Rabies: The new vaccine is easy. Ulaanbaatar and Mongolia have rabid animals.
    • Malaria: problem in Mongolia, but if you plan on traveling to other places on the trip (for example, certain parts of Thailand) then malaria chemoprophylaxis (Malarone) is highly recommended.

    We recommend that you visit the travel clinic at a major University Hospital or your local Public Health Department for the most up to date info on travel requirements, or check the Center for Disease Control Website at www.cdc.gov.

  • What other medical info should I consider?

    While it's always nice to have a doctor as a participant on our trips, we cannot guarantee a doctor's presence. We ask that you carefully complete the Medical Information form included in the registration materials. We need to be informed of any allergies you may have, medicines you are currently taking and any medical conditions that could possibly effect your ability to safely participate on a climbing expedition.

    In addition to the first aid items listed on the equipment list, there are a few additional medications that you should consider. These should be discussed with your personal physician and some will require a prescription. We want everyone to bring some of the antibiotic azithromycin ("Z-Pak") and some Immodium in case of bad traveler's diarrhea. A sleeping medication can be useful for napping on the international flights and for the first few days in Mongolia (due to the big time change). We do not recommend the automatic use of Diamox while climbing but you might find a small dose (125mg) useful if altitude sickness symptoms appear. Discuss this and your other medication requirements with your physician. Any medication should be used only if necessary and use should be discussed thoroughly with your physician and with your guide before you take the medication.

    Water purification is also very important. An effective and inexpensive method is the use of iodine crystals or tablets. These are available commercially at mountaineering stores as a product called 'Polar Pure' or 'Potable Agua'. Filters, such as the ones made by MSR, are also good. Either can be used or both can be used in combination. If you want to buy boiled water for your water bottles, you should bring some extra money. We also recommend that each participant bring a small bottle of a hand disinfectant such as Purell. Anything that we can do to stay healthy is worthwhile. Health issues will be discussed during the expedition and we encourage you to contact us if you have any questions before or during the trip.

  • Do I really need to bring the high altitude medications Nifedipine and Dexamethasome?

    Our IMG guides are very experienced with dealing with altitude illness, but we are not allowed to provide prescription drugs to our customers. For this reason we ask each trekker to consult with their own physician and to bring their own emergency medications to use (while descending!) in case of onset of high altitude pulmonary or cerebral edema symptoms. These include Nifedipine and Dexamethasome, which will help to "buy some time" to get down to a lower altitude. The Nifedipine is useful for pulmonary edema (take one 30mg sustained release tablet every twelve hours) and the Dexamethasome is useful for cerebral edema (take one 4mg tablet every 6 hours). Our suggestion is that climbers each bring a few tablets of each medication (2 tabs of Nifedipine and 4 tabs of Dex is plenty) and that should be sufficient to provide one day of treatment so the patient can get down, if they start to get sick. For more information see this recent article in WILDERNESS & ENVIRONMENTAL MEDICINE, 21, 146-155 (2010).

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