Mongolian Mother and Baby
Well, the total time taken to cross from Russia to Mongolia was 5 hours, and that's with a half empty train. Of course it doesn't help when they lock the toilets during each crossing. We finally got moving at midnight after more passport checks and cabin searches etc on the Mongolian side.
We arrived at Ulan Bator at 8am and got off to stretch our legs on the platform. It seemed the coldest we had experienced but apparently was only -18C. I can't imagine what it would feel like with wind blowing.
Ulan Bator is apparently a big, unattractive city with serious traffic issues and that's how it looked from the train. Lots of high rise apartment blocks are currently being constructed to replace the traditional gers. They are built right to the ground without the usual provision for any parking underneath which will only exacerbate the traffic problems.
Crossing the Gobi desert we see vast tracts of barren landscape - sometimes snow covered, sometimes brown. There are a few isolated settlements and here and there you can see cattle and horses grazing, plus the odd camel and gazelle. There is lots of evidence of mining activity which doesn't enhance the landscape.
I have had my grandmother fix with this baby in the next cabin.