Bactrian camels in the snow - this was an eye-opening moment for me. Bactrian camels have 2 humps (whereas Dromedary camels have only 1). These animals are on the critically endangered list in the wild and most of them are domesticated today. (The dromedary is extinct in the wild.) They live in a phenomenal range of ecosystems: I was surprised to find them in the high altitude snow, but they are happy here and just as adapted to the cold as they are to the heat of a desert.
Their humps that have fallen contain fat. They wobble to one side when the camel uses up the fat content inside them.
The yurts are made from felt: this is a non-woven material. The hair from the goats, sheep, yaks are compressed into a dense fabric. Here, we were told that they were weaving the yak hair fibres into a strand for storage and later use.
In the morning we woke up at about 6am to watch the yaks being milked. The yak calves are tethered at night so that they do not drink their moms' milk before the humans get it. They are untethered briefly to suck for literally 30 seconds to start the let-down reflex, then retethered while their mom is milked.
In the evenings the horses were milked (second pic).
The current structure was probably built about 500 years ago, but there were people using this pasture as a camp site and pasture for 1000 years at least. Inside the building you can see areas that were once used as inn rooms, dungeons, central living spaces. The silence and sparseness of the building and the pasture is beautiful.
Yes, triffids really have landed on earth.
I wish I knew what this plant really was, but we found it at 300m at Lake Song Kul.