Kyrgyzstan maybe was the most beautiful country of the trip. The Pamirs were spectacular, but it was a rather hard environment. No trees nor grass, either hard wind or musquitos, either rain or sunburn. In Kyrgyzstan the landscape turned green again, and from the vilage of Sary Tash the view towards the Pamirs was incredible.
I was very much looking forward going to Osh, where I was sure to find some cold beers and warm showers, instead of the other way around. In two days and two mountain passes I made it from Sary Tash to Osh and opted for the Tes Guesthouse (real fresh-grinded coffee for breakfast!). The Osh bazar was great, literally. One of the biggest bazars on this trip. The fresh food department was real treat. As I had plenty of time to make it to Bishkek to catch my flight back home, I figured I might as well take a detour. I cycled to Jalalabad and prepared myself mentally for the feared road to Son Kul via Kazarman.
That road turned out to be awesome. Tough going but awesome. The people who planned this dirtroad did not care about hills at all. Just following the Naryn River? Why not taking in some extra mountain passes just for the sake of it? The quiet road led me through fresh green landscapes, river valleys, and over mountain ridges. There were not many villages along the route, but Kazarman provided for the perfect oportunity to resupply.
The last proper pass of my journey was the Moldo Ashoo pas up to the high lake of Son Kul. And as soon as I made it up I could understand the lake’s popularity with both tourists and local nomads; it was stunning! White mountain tops behind yurts and herds with a crystal clear lake between the two. I spend two nights near the lake, but was happy to go down again because the wind and clouds created cold conditions.
I left the lake at the north-east side. That was a bad road all the way up to the 07 state road. But it was the last bad road. It would be tarmac and highway all the way up to Bishkek and I felt sad my trip was over. Luckily I met the German couple I rode with before in a roadside restaurant/hotel. A couple of beers and some really good food was enough to overcome my state of melancholy.
The road to Bishkek was a bit boring, and the hostel a bit… strange. I had a couple of days to take my bike apart and put it in a make-shift bikebag. The desk lady at the airport accepted it as hold luggage and after just nine hours of flying I set foor Dutch soil again. This trip was awesome and now it is over.
View from Sari-Tash to the Pamirs
Butcher in the bazar in Osh
Herder near Son Kul
Road to Kazarman