Living in Kyrgyzstan is providing me a great opportunity to see parts of the country few people visit. Thousands of people visit Issyk-Kul or Song Kul every year but after talking to locals, fewer than a couple hundred see Kol Suu (often written as Kel Suu online, the real name of the lake is Kol Teckeri) and most only see Chatyr Kul in the distance as they drive past on their way to Torugart Pass. I suspect as tourism to Kyrgyzstan increases, many will want to make the trip to these lakes – and they should, they are incredible!
Yaks are common in the high pastures of Naryn. Once a staple of Kyrgyz life, during Soviet times they were nearly all wiped out and are just now making a comeback.
My friend Shaun hikes on ahead in Tash Rabat valley. On the other side of the snowy pass ahead lies Chatyr-Kul.
The yurt we stayed in on the edge of Chatyr Kul. We came out of the mountains through the valley directly behind.
Sheep grazing along Chatyr Kul. The mountains in the background are in China.
One of several very old bridges you must drive over to visit Kol Suu
We guested at a house where a man showed us the two wolfpups he caught. He’s raising them to sell in the spring.
Shot from our vehicle as we drove through one of many river crossings. The yurts on the right was our destination.
Kol Suu lake (not actually it’s real name and often called Kel Suu.) The most incredible site I’ve seen in Kyrgyzstan.
A wrecked Soviet-era van that rolled down the hill from the lake. Our host told us he was driving it when the brakes failed and he jumped out.
This lake is truly incredible. We have plans to go back next summer and camp on this spot.
The region outside the lake where we stayed is called ‘Kok Kiya’ which means blue slope. Watching the changing light across the mountains here was amazing.
One of my favorite photos of Kyrgyzstan so far. This is a massive 150 megapixel panorama of the area we stayed in. Our yurt camp below alongside the blue/green river and the gorgeous mountain range across was one of the most amazing sites I’ve seen.
The two adorable girls who helped around the yurt camp. They live in Bishkek most of the year but come to the yurt camp in summer to help with the tourists and animals.
The milky way over the mountains surrounding Kol Suu in a photo I took sitting in the doorway of our yurt.