On The Silk Route

This is another edition of the event dedicated to heavy motorcycles of the Adventure Class. Usually they are dominated by the GS’s and large KTM’s. We are planning to visit the most beautiful places in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, we want to see much, hence we need the appropriate equipment – the route is just designed for such motorcycles. We commence early in the morning, but always end each ride before nightfall. Where possible we will stay in yurts or local guesthouses. We do not promise luxury but we will try to provide as good conditions as possible. We will be accompanied by a four wheeled support car over the entire route, so that for all of us it would be a little easier on the gravel roads of the Pamir and Tien Shan.
The event does not require any special preparations or skills. Everything that is necessary we will teach you en route. During the expedition we will travel approximately over 3,500 km of trails. The asphalt-gravel ratio would be around 60:40. In several places the altitude may slightly exceed 4,000 metres, the highest pass is 4,655 metres. The forecast for temperatures is between 0 to 40 degrees Celsius.
The event is designed for motorcycles with a capacity of 650 cc and more. Throughout the journey we are supported by a car. You can participate in the event as a passenger of this vehicle.

wyprawy motocyklowe kirgistan
  • Start/finish: Bishkek
  • Nearest airport: Bishkek (FRU)
  • Date of start: 16 July 2018
  • Date of finish: 29 July 2018
  • Duration: 15 days
  • Complexitity: 5/10
  • Attractions:  Tien Shan mountains, Pamir mountains, Afghan border, Lakes Song Kul and Issyk Kul
  • Day One: – Departure from Bishkek – accommodation in the hemp field at the Toktogul Lake.
    We set off from Bishkek and head west. In Kara-Balta we turn to the M41 highway, which will accompany us for the next few days. First, however, we cope with the Too Ashu Pass and then see a The Susamyru Valley. Beautiful place, which put in awe many renowned travellers. We will spend the night in tents at Lake Toktogul.
  • Day Two: – Arrival to Osh. Accommodation in a hotel.
    On the second day we will drive along the beautiful artificially made Naryn canyon and we ride into the hot Fergana Valley. We will not stop at Osh but rather drive the brand new asphalt highway to the very south of Kyrgyzstan. Sary Tash lies in the Altay Valley and the view of the Pamir is more appealing than the post-Soviet Osh. If weather is okay the views will be stunning.
  • Day Three: – Arrival at the base camp just under the slopes of Pik Lenin. Accommodation in yurts. In the afternoon we will reach the base camp at Pik Lenin. If we are lucky, and we usually are, we will see the easiest 7,000 metre mountain in the world in its full glory. It is a beautiful place for taking photos. You will certainly be pleased. Accommodation is at 3,500 metres, so prepare for a headache.
  • Day Four: – Entering Tajikistan. The highest pass en route – 4,655 metres. Accommodation in a guesthouse at Murgaba.
    We say goodbye to Kyrgyzstan on this day and we enter Tajikistan via the high Kyzyl Art pass. Although this is an international highway, it can be the most difficult section of the entire route. The road climbs quite steeply, and if it rains you will understand why the pass is called Kizyl (Red). Pamirian Route is made of asphalt, but a little different to the new highways of Kyrgyzstan. We pass Karakul, where we stop on the way back and spend the night in Murgaba. This is not the most beautiful city in the world, but its biggest advantage is that it is the located at the lowest altitude. As a result, there should not be a headache, at least not because of altitude.
  • Day Five: – accommodation in a guest house. We leave this not the most beautiful city and swallow more kilometres of the M41. The views reward the dents. We travel the famous Pamir Highway.
  • Day Six: – A day off. A trip to Roshtkala Valley
  • Day Seven: – Bibi Fatima. Accommodation in a guest house.
    In Langar the Pamir River connects to the Wakhan and here the Pyandj begins. We will travel alongside the river. We wave to the Afghan peasants and to the Tajik children. This is the famous Wakhan Corridor.
  • Day Eight: Jarty Gumbez. Accommodation in tents.
    We are sure that for some of you it is going to be the best day of the entire journey. Why? We won’t say…
  • Day Nine: – Karakol. Night in a pension.
    It’s not going to be a long day, but we want you to have some time on the lake. Your lens deserves such views. It will be our highest stopover. But even though it is at almost 4,000 metres, however that should not bother you now. An absolutely wonderful place, but it will be cold. No worries – the hosts will certainly have a good fire. But how come, if there are no trees? Well, we’ll see…
  • Day Ten: – Jalalabad area. Tent accommodation.
    There there is no choice. We have to journey by the M41 to Jalalabad. Then we turn to the real Kirgyzstan..
  • Day Eleven: -Song Kul, yurts.
    Song Kul is considered by us as the most beautiful place in all Kyrgyzstan. And we are very interested in your opinion. The lake is surrounded by magnificent mountains at an altitude of 3,000 meters. Add to this plethora of horses and yurts. We have taken thousands of pictures of this place. We wish you to take better ones.
  • Day Tvelve: – Tash Rabat. Yurt.
    On our way, pass beautifully named MELS, for the uninitiated, we explain that it is an abbreviation of the four great ideologists who the Soviet power respected greatly.
  • Day Thirteen: – Eki Naryn. Accommodation in tents.
    We drive through Kyrgyzstan’s most beautiful gorge. A nice, pleasant day, far from any form of civilisation.
  • Day Fourteen: -Tamga. Accommodation in pension.
    Issyk is the sea for the Kyrgyzs. The lake is 200 km long. It is situated quite low (as in Kyrgyzstan) – 1,600 metres above sea level. As a result, the water is at a very pleasant temperature – at least for people who had been brought up at the Baltic Sea. We can swim at last!
  • Day Fifteen: – Return to Bishkek.
    A tiny little bit of the dull Kyrgizsian asphalt. To make it something to remember, this morning we go onto the best gravel trail in the world.
  • 1620 Euro + transportation of bike (return cost for the participants – 1,050 EUR)

“I have been riding a motorbike for 30 years now. Currently it is BMW R1200 RT and up to that point my story was related to driving on asphalt roads throughout Europe. At one of the meetings I heard about the expedition to Kyrgyzstan and it something crazy dawned on me – pwehaps I should go and attend such an expedition? A quick phone call to the organizer – is there a chance that I would drive my RT? And a tiny little hesitation here… Because it looks superb, but would it suffice for such a trip?
And that’s when I get a proposal from a friend with whom I would have to go that there are two year old GS 800’s available for sale – quick decision and there I go. It is time for departure. The first three days Krzysztof is kidding me if I would cope with my RT. And I tell him – “no probs”.. The fourth day begins with something completely different, wilderness starts and the adventure begins. We rolled almost 4,000 km of trails of Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. I would recommend to try this adventure to anyone, who rides a motorbike. With all due respect to the terrain, but with no doubt I would go again over there. Of course, the words of Krzysztof the RT is not the best choice for such a journey, but the GS 800 is the best for this task as far as I am concerned”.

Mariusz Kowalczyk, Poznań



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