We will be crossing the Chatkal Range twice over simple passes. We will be riding along the vicinity of the Chatkal Peak (4503m), meeting with Kyrgyz people, learning about their simple semi-nomadic way of life and tasting their local bread and yogurt. We will be traveling along the mountain streams towards high-land passes through sheer-walled canyons.
Day 1: Arrive in Tashkent. Meeting at airport and transfer to hotel.
Day 2: Drive from Tashkent via Kamchik pass (2285m) to Fergana valley - to Aflatun village (1300 m). (440 km; 8hrs). The long day of driving along the "Road of life" connecting Fergana with the mainland Uzbekistan allows seeing diversity of landscapes and gives a close-up look at local life of Uzbeks.
Day 3: Preparation for the trek. The beginning of active part of the trek. Today we get acquainted with our supporting party and horses and make a trial breaking-in upstream the Aflatun river to the confluence with Uyalma River where we set up our first camp at the altitude of 1800m (16km is the distance left behind; 5 hours is the total time en route; +500 meters is the height difference between the start and the end of the day).
The first day is always difficult by the novelty of sensations. A good tarmac road takes us to the canyon of the Aflatun River richly covered in Tien Shan spruces. The green of the grassland is in contrast with a stern beauty of the mountains. The camp is on a large forest glade.
Day 4: Riding upstream Ashuutor, we cross over the Ashuutor pass (3336 m) and descend to the valley of Northern Aflatun. Camp (3000 m), (12 km; 7hrs; +600m; -400m). The continuous and lengthy ascent rewards us with wonderful views that we gain from the saddle. By a good path we quickly downhill to alpine zone in the upper part of the Northern Aflotun river where, on a cozy grass meadow, we set a camp.
Day 5: Ride down the Northern Aflatun valley towards the Chatkal River valley. Camp (2500 m), (18 km; -500 m; 5h).Just past the canyon of the Northern Aflotun River the valley widens up. From confluence we make a short incursion to the Aflotun Lake. The canyon astounds everybody by the scale of its sheer vertical walls. A good path leads us to the wide valley of the Chatkal River where we camp amidst grassy hills.
Day 6: Ride from the Tereksai river to Karatokoy river. Camp (2700m). (8km; +200 m;-200m; 3hrs). During this short ride from the Tereksai to Karatokoy Rivers we become aware of a majestic nature and an amazing beauty of the Chatkal canyon.
Day 7: A quick excursion up valley to the Karatokoy lake. Back to the camp. Cross over the Kokuy-Bel pass (3037m) to Aksu river valley. Camp (2600m). (14km, +400m, -500m, 5h).
Day 8: Ride up valley from the Aksu River to Karakuldja river. Camp (3000m). (12km; +400m; 4-5h).Our way up lies in the vicinity of the Talas Peak towering over neighboring peaks of 4000 meters high.
Day 9: Cross the Karakuldja pass (3161m) we descend to North Karakuldja river valley. Camp (2000m), (16km; + 1500m; -1100m; 6h). A good path quickly takes us to the pass lying right at the junction point of the two mountain ranges - Chalkal Range and Talas Range. The mountain panoramic view from the pass is really good.
Day 10: Ride upstream Okun River to and over simple Okun pass (2649m), descend to the valley of Karasu river. Camp (1900m), (16km; +700m; -700m; 6hrs). Ascending to the pass we enjoy awesome views of the Talas Range with its pointed snowy summits and sheer walls.
Day 11: Round trip to the Karasu Lake. Back to the same Camp 1900m.
Day 12: Cross over the Makmal pass (2654m), (18km; +750m; -750m; 7hrs) and camp on the Sarichelek lake shore (1900m). This long, demanding and most interesting day ends up at the Sarichelek Lake boasting its unrivalled beauty.
Day 13: Ascend to the Ashuu pass (2551m) from which descend along the Kechkol river and, past river fork, further on downhill along the Arkitsai river. Camp near Arkit village (1300m), (12km; +750m; -1100m; 6hrs). A simple pass connects Sarichelek Lake and Arkit River valley. Our eyes are pleased to see from the saddle the emerald blue crystal water of the lake imbedded, like a gemstone, in the setting of rocky sides covered in Tien Shan spruces.
Day 14: Day of rest. Optional excursion to the Irekel Lake. A motorboat cruise around the lake is possible. Camp (1300m). Visit Kyrgyz national house. Farewell dinner.
Day 15: Drive Arkit village to Tashkent (420km; 8hrs).
Day 16: Departure. There is a possibility to sign up for a short extension tour to visit Samarkand and Bukhara ancient cities.
Day 16: Drive Tashkent - Samarkand (340 km; 5hrs). At afternoon, sightseeing in the town.
Day 17: Half-day sightseeing in Samarkand. Drive Samarkand - Bukhara (270km, 5h).
Day 18: Full day excursion in Bukhara.
Day 19: Full day excursion in Bukhara and around.
Day 20: Drive Bukhara - Tashkent (610km; 9hrs).
Day 21: Departure.
Also see tour packages in:
Asia Uzbekistan Outdoor: Land Rambler Hiking & Trekking Horse Riding