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New Website, New Blog, but the Old Blog Archive remains: September 28, 2023

After many years of wanting a real website, this month I finally have a website designed by the very knowledgeable Rey Rey Rodriguez ( TheMindOfReyRey ). My old blog,  Vacation-Travel-Adventure  continues with the same address but it is located in the "Archives" tab on my new website . The new blog which is a continuation but with much better resolution for 4K screens, it is now at .

Photography Tour, Visit to a Kazakh Golden Eagle Hunter, Mongolia: August 25, 2018

Another of the highlights in the Kazakh area was our visit with a man who hunts with a Golden Eagle.  From a distance, we watched as the hunter and his eagle rode toward us.

Eagle hunters use female eagles because they are more aggressive and larger than the males. The female eagles can weigh as much as 15 pounds and can be one third larger than the males. Fledgling eagles are taken from the nest and trained to hunt. After several years the eagle is set free.

The human hunter, Chaimurat, and the 7-year old Golden Eagle named Khirar gave us an impressive demonstration of their hunting skills. One of Chaimurat's friends took Khirar quite far up a hill and waited while a herd of goats moved farther away for their safety. Then, Chaimurat held out the leg of a rabbit and called to Khirar. She flew down and grabbed the bait.

And, then we all had a turn at holding Khirar while she was wearing her hood.

I really must dress better and get a different cold-weather hat
Either Chaimurat invited us to his home or we invited ourselves. Anyway, he rode off into the distance, and we followed.

Kulzira, wife of Chaimurat 

Chaimurat played and sang for us. He had a beautiful voice.

Because he was expecting our visit, he and his family had delayed their move to their autumn location. Nomads move their homes and animals three times a year: summer, autumn, and winter, to take advantage of fresh grazing. They moved on the next day.

Chaimurat, the eagle hunter, wearing his fox fur coat
While most eagle hunters are men, several years ago a 13-year old girl named Aishol-pan trained to become an eagle hunter. The excellent movie, The Eagle Huntress, was made about her training and her triumph at the annual Eagle Festival. The movie was filmed in this area of Mongolia and the eagle hunter we visited had a cameo in the film. 

This year's Golden Eagle Festival was held Oct 6-8. Chaimurat and his eagle, Khirar, won the competition for an amazing third time.