4th – 13th of February 2019
What to expect:
Imagine waking up in a traditional Yurt, in the middle of the snow caped Tien Shan mountains. You are ready for a day of ski touring with your friends…! Your dream can come true.
We would like to introduce you to a fascinating country. Kyrgyzstan, a country of nomads, in the heart of Central Asia. Largely unexplored mountains offer a wonderful playground.
We take you to yurt camps in snowy summer pastures. That offers us immediate access to endless skiing terrain with mountains up to 3,400-3,600m.
Traditional, cosy yurts will be ready for us swell as a traditional Russian Sauna next to a river with refreshing spring water. All yurts are heated by wood burning stoves.
10-day program / 7 skiing days:
- 4th of February: Arrive early in the morning at the airport in Bishkek. Meet with the group and join the privat transfer to Karakol (6hrs). We drive along the north shore of Issyk Kul lake, the second biggest alpine lake in the world
- 5th-10th of February: Yurt based skiing days in Jyrgalan and Aksuuvalley
- 11th of February: We ski in the morning and go back down to Karakol in the evening. The night is spent in Karakol.
- 12th of February: You will have some time to explore Karakol in the morning before we travel to Bishkek. Last night and farewell dinner in Bishkek.
- 13th of February: Flight back home
Prices per skier:
Included in the price:
Guiding with IFMGA mountain guide Federico Arletti, organization, all accommodations as mentioned in the program (Hotel, guest house Yurts), all meals, all transportations from/to Bishkek
Not included in the price:
Flights, personal insurances, alcoholic drinks, personal equipment
Kyrgyzstan… a fascinating country in central Asia:
A welcoming landlocked oasis located at the heart of Central Asia. It’s surrounded by Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and China. Kyrgyzstan is a in a remote, always fascinating, sometimes volatile, and oftentimes misunderstood part of the world. With an average elevation of 3,000m (9,840ft) and 30% of its landmass buried under permanent ice and snow. The country’s landscape and people are defined by a ruggedness utterly unique to the highlands of Central Asia. The republic is a little smaller in area than the UK minus Northern Ireland.
Home sweet yurt
Yurts are the archetypal shepherd shelters. Circular homes made of multilayered felt stretched around a collapsable wooden frame. The outer felt layer is coated in waterproof sheep fat, the inner most lined with woven grass matting to block the wind. Long woolen strips secure the walls and poles. The interior is richly decorated with textiles, wall coverings, quilts, cushions, and ornately worked chests. Floors are lined with thicket felt and covered with bright carpets and sometimes yak skin. Look up: the central wheel-like tuneup that supports the roof is none other than the design depicted in the middle of Kyrgyzstan’s national flag.
Native Kyrgyz make up around 70% of the country’s population. The remaining percentage made up mostly of Uzbeks and Russians. Kyrgyzstan gained its independence from the former Soviet Union in 1991. Many Kyrgyz today follow the nomadic traditions of their ancestors, erecting hand-crafted yurts in the high mountain pastures above their villages. There they graze their animals and live for the summer.
The central Tien Shan mountains
This region offers many superlatives of Central Asia. The highest mountains, the coldest temperatures, the longest glaciers and the strangest natural phenomena. It’s a region of ice, snow and unexplored peaks. The world’s fourth longest glacier and an amazing disappearing lake can be found here. You will be discovering the valleys close to Karakol where the temperatures are more pleasant. The Chinese were the first to explore this foreboding mountain zone, but it was not until the middle of the 19th century that European explorers penetrated the region. The snow that falls on this former Soviet state is particularly light and fluffy. This, combined with the country’s mountainous geography, makes it something of a paradise for powder-loving backcountry skiers.
- All food is prepared by local chefs. Our breakfast menu is Western-inspired, featuring omelets, frittatas, burritos, pancakes and french toast, and always the option of muesli or porridge. The dinner menu highlights traditional Kyrgyz cuisine.
Getting to Kyrgyzstan by airplane
- Bishkek’s Manas airport is the main hub with relatively inexpensive international connections on Turkish and Pegasus (via Istanbul), Flydubai (via Dubai), Ukrainian International (via Kiev) and Aeroflot (via Moscow).
- Around 60 nationalities can stay for 60 days or longer without a visa. Citizens of most major Western and former Soviet countries are included in those.
Kyrgyz is a Turkish language that has the usual characteristics of that language group. Most notably vowel harmony, which is strictly adhered to. As part of the Kyrgyz-Altay group of Turkic languages, it is most closely related to the Altai language and fairly similar to Kazakh. Russian is also an official language and Uzbek is widely spoken in the south.