These are the highlights from Dr Sheila Loughman, one of our Derby medics from Dublin. She talks about the final day of training before the race kicks off.
It was unusually cold overnight, without any cloud, so the perfect opportunity for stargazing in a completely dark landscape. I hadn't realised how dark until I got lost trying to find my way back to my ger...
After a shivery night, I was considerably cheered by a clear warm morning. The light here is amazing - it casts long shadows, and the blades of grass are defined with a gold halo. Its a vast landscape and I can't help thinking what a privilege this is!
The day gets going with a navigation challenge for the riders. I head out to waypoint A, but I've never come across flies like the ones that surrounded us when we got to our GPS coordinates.
Imagine a cloud of midges the size of house flies. Our driver decided not to get out of the vehicle, and the rest of us sprayed DEET all over, to no effect!
I was also thrilled to spot my first Golden Eagle, thanks to Harry's sharp eye and a great pair of binoculars: thanks for those Dad!
After lunch, another treat was in store, as the locals gathered for a "Naadam". The local children, from age 4 to 13 arrived with their prized racehorses and paraded past us before hacking out 6km to the race start.
Medical issues of the day included giving a Rabies shot and sourcing a first aid kit for a rider whose bag of gear was lost by the airline. We also saw Sian knock her head so badly on the low door of the ger that two of the roof poles fell down on her, adding insult to injury.
Deb sorted a poorly bullock who had conjunctivitis, lost his herd and was wandering in circles from dehydration (Deb sacrificed 4 bottles of water to this cause!). She was rewarded for her efforts by being dropped during the (beautifully staged) medic photo.
As I write the sun is setting and the temperature is rapidly dropping. The battery is about to go, so I'll sign off for now. This is shaping up as a great adventure and we'll see what tomorrow the start day brings!
You can read the full blog post over on the Prometheus site here.
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