An 'ovoo' or a sacred pile of stones, on the hill behind 'Garage 24' hostel, in Khatsgal town, over on the right. Lake Khovsgol can be seen in the distance. From Wikipedia:
"An ovoo (Mongolian: овоо, heap) is a type of shamanistic rock cairn found in Mongolia. Ovoos are often found at the top of mountains and high places and at borders and cross-roads. They serve as both navigational aids in a country with few roads and fewer signs, and religious sites, used in worship of the mountains and the sky as well as in Buddhist ceremonies.
Travelers in Mongolia should not pass by an ovoo without stopping. They are expected to stop and circle the ovoo three times in a clockwise direction. They should pick up a rock from the ground and add it to the pile before leaving. Also, travelers may leave offerings in the form of money, milk, or vodka.
Worshippers place a tree branch or stick in the ovoo and tie a blue khadag, a ceremonial silk scarf symbolic of the open sky, to the branch. They then light a fire and make food offerings, followed by a ceremonial dance and prayers (worshippers sitting at the northwest side of the ovoo), and a feast with the food left over from the offering.
During Mongolia's Communist period, ovoo worship was officially prohibited along with other forms of religion, but people still worshipped clandestinely"
Critiques | Translate
AiresSantos (56155) 2008-02-22 0:34
Great view of the top of mountain with an 'ovoo'... sacred pile of stones. I also like how you framed it and the Lake Khovsgol in the background
TFS and have a nice weeken d
ribeiroantonio (22637) 2008-02-22 0:39
What for is all that blue stuff? All bottles of vodka? And which god drinks it? After reading your good note it is very funny to see that child looking at the bottle.
Very nice picture of a part of the world we know very little and see just a few pictures. Well done.
snunney (79973) 2008-02-22 0:45
A good composition that puts the cairn in its context. The two people add dynamism. Very good colours and clarity. Thanks for sharing this and the accompanying note.
japiey (10163) 2008-02-22 0:46
This is really a share of TRADITION... of HUMAN NATURE.
Still such realms prevail here too, in our lands.. and am so interested to touch the souls...
EXCELLENT SHOT. The real world.. The real learning..
syd1946 (18663) 2008-02-22 0:51
Very interesting note about ovoo which is the first time that I saw in a picture.And the image is very well composed with people in front and the well seen field of the depth behind...
Paolo (41222) 2008-02-22 1:18
Hi Chris, beautiful rare and unusual image, interesting note too.
good POV, colours and light too.
noborders (1010) 2008-02-22 2:20
A very interesting post (great note too !) and a beautiful photo - I like the presence of humans, this structure makes me think that Tibetan culture is not so distant, on several peaks there, one can also see similar colourful flags floating in the wind...
carper (96) 2008-02-22 3:15
a fine shot of your trip there Chris,
with the note it is a good photojob for trekearth, thanks for sharing.
barrufeto_77 (28876) 2008-02-22 3:29
Nice POV of this mountain and lovely note to help us to understand it.
bracasha75 (24517) 2008-02-22 3:32
Excellent view on lake behind and very good scene in on top of the hill
Uhu (8399) 2008-02-22 5:08
Interesting! Great piece of history and great photo! I like these traditional things, it's something that shows stability in these globalistic times!
Gerrit (44753) 2008-02-22 5:40
interesting object and fine picture in good colours. Excellent composition.
UnTrained (0) 2008-02-22 5:46
thanks for that introduction of a local custom in a pleasant way. I like the colourful view with some people for scale and life. Without explanation I never had thought of such a background. Good light and sharpness.
Lieben Gruss, Ulf
Emile (20350) 2008-02-22 6:13
Your shot is a good example to see the way that religions and believes are expressed in different ways, no matter what you think about your God the important issue is Faith. I found your note very good, also your photo is very instructive and well captured. Good POV, wonderful colors and beautiful view of the lake. Well done.
Cheers and wish you a nice weekend.
Matthew-Watt (6043) 2008-02-22 6:38
Thanks for the comprehensive note; it is good to learn about this intriguing land. It would not be the same, this photo, without the people in it. There are minor things here that I would have changed, such as including more of the Ovoo structure at the top, but I guess that those sticks and flags go quite high and you did not want to compromise the balance of the scene. I also feel the Ovoo could be slightly more central, but not exactly. The colours are good; the material reminds me of Nepalese prayer flags somehow. I like how the child is distracted and is looking away. Her orange coincidently contrasts sharply with the blue majority. TFS.
Silvio1953 (116861) 2008-02-22 11:01
Hi Chris, interesting view from Mongolia, wonderful composition with splendid colors and good light, very well done, have a great week end, ciao Silvio
Budapestman (82620) 2008-02-22 12:58
Splendid image for this tradition with excellent details, I like the spectacular composition and the informative note, Very well done! Have a nice weekend
elihesamian (26149) 2008-02-22 19:53
an interesting subject you show us about the region and poeple,great informative work,and as always you captured and composed the view and its elements with a great POV.the details in far are nice and visible.Thanks,
jusninasirun (17156) 2008-02-22 21:27
Useful notes and thanks for sharing.
Colorful ovoo well shot looking down at the beautiful lake.
Have a nice day,
jhm (135780) 2008-02-23 0:49
Interesting object and fine picture in good colours. Very nice picture of a part of the world we know very little and see just a few pictures. Nice trip reporting Chris.
I like the colourful view with some people for scale and life.
Excellent composition and colours, pleasant for look it.
Thanks for sharing.
Have a nice weekend,
TopGeo (38192) 2008-02-23 0:58
Hi Chris! excellent choice! I liked all the interests that I read and saw in your picture, from a point of our ground that him I do not know! I thank and praise you!
azaf1 (15929) 2008-02-23 1:45
A nice presentation of the Ovoo pile of stones with a detailed note on its significance
mehmetemin (7231) 2008-02-23 2:26
wonderful perspective,excellent colours and sharpness
bazal (7900) 2008-02-24 5:22
Original and extremely interesting picture. Added to the graphical interest of the image itself, I think it's nice to discover such traditions and your note allows that. That's what I would call a typical good TE contribution!
Thanks for sharing.
mumek (20198) 2008-02-24 7:00
Good morning Chris!
Lovely view at the man and child near sacred pile of stones. Very colorful capture with a very picturesque background. The note as usual from you very interesting and informative.Thanks for sharing
stego (23084) 2008-02-24 14:35
They remind me the prayers flags and the mani walls of Nepal (and Tibet also, but I have never been there), but they look more careless. It's an interesting photo, showing those people relation with religion and also the scenic view. The POV is well chosen and the colours of the khadags and the girl's clothes make a nice contrast with the landscape.
Angshu (54909) 2008-02-26 0:44
I have definitely learnt a lot about Mongolia from your pictures. First I thought these were prayer flags, but I was mistaken. Inclusion of the mother & child makes this image...and your note is really educational. Thanks for sharing.
pablominto (53744) 2008-02-26 12:41
Interesting piece of photo documentation concerning this old custom!
The visibility from the site is impressive, and a similar custom is also known from the Viking era in Scandinavia ("varder")...
A well composed presentation!
jrj (34841) 2008-02-27 7:15
Absolute interesting Chris how this place of randomly placed scarfs over a pile of stones can be seen as something sacral. Top entry to display daily life traditions on a place like this.
sahara82 (80) 2008-03-18 23:38
this is a beautiful location for this ovoo and you've captured it with nice colours and framing