Thursday, 3 September 2009

Kyrgyzstan Mountains: all seasons during a day, or my five days trip to the land of nomads.

Day 1.

We started our trip at 5am in Tashkent going to the direction of Fergana and farther to Osh. 
It was summer 2008, when the Olympic Games were held in China and crowds of people from all over the world rushed to Beijing. Many Europeans found this to be a great opportunity for arranging jeep tours from their home countries to China.

Like these guys from Netherlands, their orange vehicles show the best correlation with the uniform colour of their national football team. 

Afternoon we arrived to Osh and after lunch visited a mountain waterfall not far from the city.

Natives thought I was from Russia and wanted to take a picture with me.

But what really surprised me is that these people repeated constantly: “Russia is our friend” and moreover they started singing the hymn of the former USSR.

Late in the evening we reached our destination – a guest house in the village Koji Kelen, located far in the Kyrgyzstan Mountains.

A room where we had dinner and overnight.

Day 2.

Today we started our trekking in surroundings.

Local school (hope you can see it there :)) …

… and its director who was our guide on that day.

Just like this photo
… and this one too.

A door to my luxurious hotel in Kyrgyzstan mountains. Welcome!

An elderly woman looking after her grandchild,

... while mom is busy with washing

Local Barbie-girls.

Tired and hungry we returned to the homestay late afternoon.

Day 3.

Today we had a long descent to the mountains.
A yurt on summer pasture.  It was lunch time and we decided to have a break of riding.
The weather was nice – warm and sunny, however after ten minutes heavy rain started and we had to stay in the yurt longer, since we wanted to wait till it’s over. However our guides told us that it is always raining here from 2pm till the night. So we had to go while it was raining. We got cold sitting on a horse, but it was very hard to go on foot: a road upwards, big and small stones on the path and rain made this journey harder. So after twenty minutes hiking we were back to the horses, and then again walking…
Exhausted we came to a meadow not so far away from Jiptik Pass – our main destination and decided to make a camp there.

Day 4.

In the morning I was woken up by strange sounds.
Hearing this I thought that was pigs and puzzled how they could be there.
But after looking out from the tent I realised that these were yaks.

We continued our trip to the Pass Jiptik (about 4000 meters above see level) and in spite of bad whether (thanks god it wasn’t raining, just smog) we reached the pass.
Due to the thick fog we had a chance to take the only picture of the valley down the pass. By the good weather we could see the Lenin Peak, but we weren’t lucky that day. 
A long way downward waited for us… The rain stared at 2pm. As scheduled... :-)

Day 5.

On this day we continued exploring mountains.

Just a couple of nice pictures

On our way we run on a tiny village
consisting of several yurts only.  

 Even there, high in the mountains and far away from the urban life, children know how to enjoy themselves...
for example, by playing volleyball.
Others know however that they should help the parents to run their household.

We came down from the mountains and later on returned to the kishlak (village) Koji  Kelen, but from the other side.

Day 5.

Early morning of our last day in the beautiful place with wild nature and friendly people. 

We had to be picked up by a car in that morning. However the driver did not came either at night as it was scheduled, or at ten. People told us that it was raining in the surrounding in the night and roads were blocked by mudflows. One of the neighbours brought us on his UAZ car till the first blockage. People were saying, there were thee of them. However later I counted eight big and several small blockages. Seeing every next blockage we hoped that this was the last. In this hope we were walking about 10 km. 

How glad we were when our car appeared!

Way back home... Tired, but happy.