The Asian Patagonia

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The Asian PatagoniaTour location: Pamir Alay Mountains, western Pamir - Alay, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan
Tour duration: 14 days
Season: July – September
Tour type: trekking / cultural discovery
Quantity of tour participants: 1 – 12
Requirements – this trekking does not require any special physical preparation. But the tourist should be prepared to field conditions and weather adversity.

Itinerary: BishkekOsh – Batken – Ozgorush village – Pamir Alay mountains – Khujend (Tajikistan) – TashkentBukharaSamarkandTashkent).

Tour description:This trekking takes place in the vast, mysterious and still little explored mountain system of Central Asia, that stretches for hundreds of kilometers (area 63 700 km2 ) from Takla Makan desert in the east till Kizilkum desert in the west and from Tien Shan mountains in the north till Hindukush in the south. Numerous summits, some exceeding 7000 meters, form its line of relief. The name of its mountainous country is Pamir, which in the Old Iranian means “at the foot of Mitra”, the god of the sun.
The route lies in the north - western region of Pamir, which is deservingly reason reputed as the most attractive one, owing to the breath-taking sheer peaks and vertical kilometer-long walls throne over green valleys. It’s not hard to see why these mountains are often called as “Asian Patagonia”. The path takes us through picturesque valleys, simple passes, amazing canyons, fresh alpine meadows and foamy currents. The trek is also characterized by meetings with hospitable Kyrghyz shepherds. Drinking tea in their yurts, we get to know their original culture and nomadic traditions that have seen little changes over the centuries.
This trek is designed for those travelers who like active holidays and trekking in diverse landscapes, who enjoy sitting beside a bonfire under the sky full of stars and are keen to know the peculiar culture of the land that only few tourists visit.

Tour program:

Day 1. Bishkek – Batken - Uzgarish. Arrival to Bishkek airport. Obtain the Kyrgyz visa. Flight to Batken city. Arrival and meet with Kyrgyz guide and driver. Transfer to Ozgorush village (180 km). Lunch. Then we start our trekking . Ascent to the Valley of Laylak River. Camp on a green meadow at 1700 m. (2 hrs. +400 m).

Day 2. Trekking to the valley of rivers Ak-Su and Kara-Su. Firs along the Laylak River and then along the Ak-Mechet river to the valley of Ak-Su (means white water, because the water playing on the rocks and it looks white) and Kara-Su (means black water - because it is turbid) rivers (12 km; 6-7 hrs; + 1100 m.). On the way we will walk through canyon, juniper forests and alpine meadows. The mountain views are spectacular. Camp at 2800 m on the picturesque glade. From there a panoramic view to the Ak Su Peak (5355 m) and Iskander Peak (5120 m), with its two top of head.

Day 3. Daily round trip up to the Aksu Wall ( 7 km; 7 hrs; +600; -600 m ). The trail, winding through spruce forest, climbs a steep moraine to the alpine glacier - the heart of one of the largest mountain formations of the Pamir-Alai - Circus of the peak Ak-Su (5355m.). This pyramid-shaped peak with a snow cap breaks on the north vertical wall nearly 2 kilometres. Grand circus is decorated with such beautiful peaks as two-headed Iskander, Admiralteets, Petrogradets and peak Bloc. Return to the camp. Overnight.

Day 4. Ascent to the Ak-Tubek pass (4390 m). Descent to the valley of the Orto -Chashma river. The longest day of the trekking, but will offer a beautiful view opening with a bird's-eye on the summits and on the valley of the Orto-Chashma river. (13 km, 6-7 hrs, + 1590 m; -1190 m). Camp on the glade of juniper forest on the confluence of rivers Ak-Tyubek and Dukyonek at 3200 m.

Day 5. Across the Kosh-Maynok pass (3260 m). After early breakfast we will try to cross the river using the horses and descend to the valley of the river same name. An excellent path starting from the camp takes us on a grassy slope and runs in zigzag to the valley.

Days 6. Ascent to the Kara-Su Pass (3720 m) and trekking along the canyon of the Kara-Su river (do not think it's the same river that we passed the first day of our trekking, as most toponym names are the same) . From the camp we walk by zigzag and grassy path to the pass.From the Pass we will panoramic views to the mountains with several snow covered peaks. Descend into the valley of Kara-Su river (8 km, 4 h +/- 600 m). Camp at 3100 m. on a large meadow, near springs. From there we can take a walk to the upper reach of Kara-Su River and to the foot of the peaks: 4810, Asan-Usen and Pyramidalnaya (5509 m) with the wonderful views of snowed peaks. Return to the camp.

Day 7. The beautiful day of walking through the valley of the Ak-Suu river. Walking in the gorge of the river Ak-Suu river at the foot of the peaks Slesov, and the Millennium of Christianity in Russia, the Russian Tower. Descent to the confluence of the rivers Kara-Su and Ak-Suu, farther along the river Ak-Suu to reach the tongue of glacier of the Ak-Su river.

Day 8. Trekking to the foot of Uponum Pass. We walk a good path along the Karafshin river we will approach to the foot of Uponum Pass, where we camp at 2900 m on a beautiful pasture, near juniper forest. (15 km. 7 hrs).

Day 9. Ascent to the Uponum Pass (3200 m). Today we will ascent to the last our pass where we will a panoramic views of the range of Turkestan Mountains.Descend to the valley of Layly-Mazar River trough alpine pastures and juniper forest. Camp near the springs. (8km, +300 m, - 600 m).

Day 10. Descent to the village Ozgorush through the river Boljuma. About 4-5 hours of walking take us till the village Ozgorush trough a good path and a beautiful garden of apricots (end of July and beginning of August are a season of apricots). Accommodation at home stay. Farewell dinner. Overnight. (9 km, - 1300 m).

Day 11. Transfer to the Ryrgyz/Tajik border (75 km) via Sulyukta town. Border formalities and transfer to the Tajik/Uzbek border(160 km), crossing the border. Meet with the Uzbek driver and drive to Tashkent (90 km). Accommodation at hotel upon arrival. Overnight.

Day 12. Tashkent - Samarkand. Morning train to Samarkand. Accommodation upon arrival. Sightseeing program of the city of Samarkand - the pearl of the world. Visit of the heart of SamarkandRegistan Complex (XIV-XVI c.) with its 3 famous Madrassah: Sherdor, Ulugbek and Tilla-Kori, Guri-Emir Mausoleum (place where a great king Tamerlan is buried), Rukhabad necropolis (XV c.).Dinner. Overnight.

Day 13. Samarkand - Tashkent. Continue of our discovery of Samarkand. Visit of the Ensemble of Shakhi-Zinda Mausoleums, Oriental Bazaar, Bibi-Khanum cathedral mosque (XV c.). Lunch. After lunch visit to Afrosiab museum and Ulughbek Observatory. Train to Tashkent at 5:00 PM. Arrival at 8:42 PM. Overnight.

Day 14. Departure from Tashkent.

Useful info.

Necessary dress equipment and stuff:

  • Lightweight trekking boots. The best to walk in them before arriving to Fanns Mountains to avoid blisters.
  • Trekking trousers; (useful higher up in this mountains in the morning and night),
  • 1 pair of loose fitting long shorts,
  • 2 cotton T-shirts, (if you want you can buy its here, in the bazaars the first day).
  • 1 lightweight long sleeved-shirt (it is suitable to avoid sun burn),
  • A sunhat (ensure it has wide brim to cover the face and neck).
  • Trekking waterproof rain cape;
  • Windbreaker;
  • Socks (2-3 pairs of cotton and 1 pairs of woolen),
  • Swimming suit (possible to swimming on the some altitude lakes),
  • Canteen (water bottle), sunscreen and sunglasses,
  • Personal toiletries,
  • Personal medical supplies;
  • Passport.

Attention:

  • Tourists must have no medical contraindications for the trekking and hiking.
  • In case of bad weather a tour guide has a right to change the route in a safety purpose.