I made the decision when I first arrived in Kyrgyzstan that I would try and cross into China over the Torugart Pass.  Not only is this 3600m pass extremely remote and susceptible to snowstorms year-round, but as a “Class 2” Chinese border crossing it’s meant for commercial freight traffic only – tourists are not, Read More

I stayed in Karakol one more night to give my feet a rest from the pounding I’d given them, and the next morning I had yet another early start.  My aim was to catch one of the early morning marschrutky minibuses along the less-visited but more scenic southern shore of Issy-Kul lake.  It took, Read More

I left Bishkek early in the morning and traveled an uneventful eight hours to Karakol, in the far east of the country.  The drive took us along some atrocious roads and along the northern shore of massive lake Issy-Kul.  Karakol is a very “nothing” town that has the feel of a border post.  I, Read More

I left Mashhad mid-afternoon yesterday and watched the terrain change as we flet north-east towards Kyrgyzstan.  We first flew over the flat desert expanses of Turkmenistan, which reminded me of central Australia.  Next came the Fan Mountains of Uzbekistan and the Pamirs of Tajikistan, all easily identifiable as the jagged peaks rose up thousands, Read More