Tajikistan to Kyrgyzstan
The Pamir Highway
The redspokes Pamir Highway trip is an epic, high altitude cycle ride through spectacular remote mountains in one of the least visited countries in the world. At the cutting edge of adventure cycling, this journey offers a fascinating insight into ex-Soviet Central Asia.
Our cycle tour starts in Dushanbe, Tajikistan's sleepy capital; we travel up the Obkinghou Valley and over the spectacular 3,200m Khaburabot Pass. A precipitous cycling descent takes us into the deep cleft of the Pyanj valley where the massive Pyanj river marks the border with Afghanistan. Cycling through small villages, we follow the river upstream to Khorog, capital of the Pamirs.
From Khorog, we set out riding along the Pamir Highway, climbing the pretty Gunt valley to the summit of the Koi Tezek Pass (4,200m). From the pass we descend onto the empty Pamir plateau, a Tibet-like region of snow-capped peaks and eerie turquoise lakes. Threading our way through the mountains we reach the small town of Murgab, not far from the Chinese border.
Leaving Murgab the route continues north to climb the 4,655m Ak Baital Pass, the highest point of the cycle tour. On the far side of the pass, cycling through a remote valley we reach the the hauntingly beautiful lake at Kara Kul. From here, we ascend the Kyzl Art Pass and enter Kyrgyzstan. A very rough descent from the pass takes us out into the wide grassy Alay valley, studded with the traditional yurts of Kyrgyz nomads. Across the valley are spectacular views of the 7,000m summits of Pik Lenin and Pik Kommunizma.
Continuing from the Alay valley, we have two more alpine passes to climb before enjoying a 60km racing descent into Osh, Kygygzstan's second city. We have a day to explore the city and its lively bazaar before flying home.
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Dushanbe: capital of Tajikistan.
Khaburabot, Koi Tezek, Baital mountain passes.
Pyanj valley, Gunt valley and Pamir Plateau.
Khorog: capital of the Pamirs.
Lake Kara Kul: highest Pamir plateau lake.
Osh: the oldest city in Kyrgyzstan.
This map is for illustration purposes only and may not show the exact route taken on this tour.