Western Kokshaal-Too Range (Summer 2008)


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This trek took us to the Northern side of the beautiful Western Kokshaal-Too range in the South-East of Kyrgyzstan. This range, which includes at least 7 peaks above 5000m, such as Peak Dankov (5982m) and Peak Kyzyl-Asker (5842m), has nasty and unstable weather, even in the summer. It is home to Marco Polo sheep, as well as wolves, though seeing them is rather rare. We accessed the area by 4WD car from the town of Naryn. We started our trek shortly after the last (3rd) military post shown in the maps below. Our trek lasted 12 days.


Access map of the trek (green line).



Itinerary of the trek (red line).



For full-resolution topographic maps of the trek area click: 500K-Kokshaal-Too, 100K-Kyzyl-Asker, and 100K-Dankov.




Along the road toward Naryn: in a restaurant and drink stand.


Typical landscape near Naryn.


Views of Naryn. Naryn is certainly not a beautiful city, but it is not as bad as it looks on these pictures, and the surroundings are gorgeous.



Graveyard of the Atbachy village at the Western end of the Kokshaal-Too range.



Landscape near the beginning of the trek.



Views of the Kokshaal-Too range around Kyzyl-Asker from the Kotur valley.








Peak Kyzyl-Asker (5842m) at different times of the day and from different locations along the Kotur valley.









Peak Dankov (5982m) and its neighbors seen from various locations along the Kotur valley. Peak Dankov is always the rightmost (west most) peak.






Smaller mountain range on the northern side of the Kotur valley (west of Kjubjurgenty pass).




Looking north toward Kjubjurgenty pass from the Kotur valley.


Crossing Djurek pass.



Descent into the valley of the Ugenzi river.


In the valley of the Uzengi river just north of Peak Dankov. Unfortunately, the river was too big to cross.




Uzengi river (seen from point A in itinerary map). Peak Dankov is visible on the left side of the river (south bank).



Closer views of Peak Dankov.



View from point B in itinerary map.


View from point C.


On our way to point D.



Views from point D.





Marco-Polo sheep on our way between points D and E. They are not easy to approach...



...unless they are dead.



Views from point E.



One of several rivers we had to ford.



Vyacheslav and Maksim warming their feet after fording the river.


We set a camp near that river. There we received the visit of border guards on horses. This was not too surprising since the border with China (Xinjiang Autonomous Region) was very close. Maxim is on the left in the first photo. The dog belonged to the guard patrol.



Usual weather in late afternoon.



Peak Kyzyl-Asker viewed from point F.



River running from peak Kyzyl-Asker.


Kosh scenes on our way back (point G in the itinerary map).




Crown (roof center, called ″tunduk″ in Kyrgyz) of the traditional Kyrgyz yurt. The pattern of this crown is featured at the center of the Kyrgyz flag inside a stylized sun with 40 rays (right).


A very hospitable Kyrgyz family, with whom we shared meals.



A young member of this family. He celebrated his first birthday when we were there, and already he was sitting on a horse!



Inside their yurt.



We took morning breakfast outside altogether (Maxim took this photo). Kumis (fermented mare‛s milk) was the main drink.



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