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рядом с Sovet, Almaty Oblysy (Kazakhstan)
Are Korzhenevsky and Bogatyr heavily crevassed late season? Can you describe this part of the route
Oh, I see Google Earth put up some snowy picture up there :D. I went in early September and it was all bare ice. Along this route there were no crevasses on the lower part of Korzhenevsky glacier. Near Togyzak pass there are some small cracks on Bogatyr (10cm). On other places these glaciers are heavily crevassed.Some suggestions:- I learned afterwards that you may actually may need permission to enter this Nature Reserve :)- In Yssik valley (untill Zarzai split) follow the river on the moraine, and not on the forested slopes as I did (in late season when water level is low).- After Akkol Lake you don't need to take the bridge, there is an actual trail along the North-west side of the river. The trail past the bridge takes you to a cabin where two people were staying at the time (park rangers or hunters? They could not speak English).- When climbing Kok-bulak pass, walk over the bare Kok-bulak glacier and don't take the rock/mud approach I did. You can probably easily get on it just South of the terminus lake. Don't slide in the big and deep hole along the middle (a puddle of water on Google Earth, it was dry when I was there). You'll want crampons for this one, near the top it's steeper than the rest of my ice route.- Korzhenevsky is relatively straightforward on this lower part. There is a meltwater river you may be able to cross where the moraines meet (Camp3) if you wish to. Getting of the glacier can be tricky if waterlevel is higher than I had. Steep ice walls, and this part probably changes fast due to melting. Be creative :). Make sure you end up on the North side of the river.- Get on the Southern part of Bogatyr by crossing it over the moraine. Then stay North of this glacier part until you can easily get on. No crevasses until the top, but there is a melt water river you will have to jump. You may be able to avoid this by getting on the glacier at a higher place. Near the top it's a simple matter of choosing the path where the crevasses are smallest, which is pretty much choosing the smallest slope.- After descending from Togyzak pass, you have to follow the rocky mountain slope next to the glacier for some 500m, after that you can easily walk on the glacier instead of the rocks.
Also avoid camping at my Camp3. There are much better places before and after the glacier.
At the end of my hike when climbing out of Left Talgar valley to Talgar Pass (3200 Bar - Shymbulak), I took a left turn too early. That trail leads to a waterfall and is a dead end unless you want to crawl on some steep forested slope like I did. The correct trail and left turn should be 50-200m further down and supposedly has a "blue arrow".
Wow thanks a lot for the detail. Sounds like you didn't rope up? Were you solo?This is a really cool route even local mountaineering friends of mine haven't been over there. If you have a moment Steven at Caravanistan (if you're familiar with this site) would love if this trip report got copied and pasted onto their forum. If you don't want to I can throw it up there and give you credit linking here
I was solo. Obviously that is never recommended in the mountains :). Roping isn't needed for this route. It's basically just a hike, with some parts that were annoying because of poor choices on my part. With these tips it should be easier. Most of the pictures are public on my FB here: https://www.facebook.com/jef.voorspoels/media_set?set=a.1013554225449915.1073741844.100003860415384&type=3Yea, I'm familiar with that great site. Feel free to copy or link whatever you want. The route between Yssik Lake and Korzhenevsky is (or was) popular by guided tours that go to Peak Talgar, like these ones (they take it on the way back):- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hBRAyP0WBy8- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ibsOHnN_b-kThere is a closed gate near Lake Yssik, which you can just crawl under (illegally?).The part of my route between Korzhenevsky and Bogatyr is not commonly in use I think, there is no clear trail. But it's not needed either. The last climb just before Lake Bogatyr is a bit crappy, but maybe that was because I had limited visibility due to (short) snowy weather. The view that opens up when you get there is fantastic though :)Left Talgar Valley is well visited of course, and there are trail markings starting downwards from a brown terminus lake at about 3600m, which is unfortunately invisible on the current sat images.I think doing the route the other way around is less interesting. You'll need to find transportation to pick you up at Lake Yssik (it's remote and like many valleys around Almaty it's a park with payed entrance, so random hitchhiking is unlikely) and the climb from Togyzak glacier up to the pass looks annoyingly steep.Another great video of the general area: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=95Y64hk8bLwIn 10 days I'm going out there again, on a different route. I'll post it here as well.Something else to update on Caravanistan (Charyn/Kolsay/Kaindy): most of the roads between Almaty and Saty have been entirely renewed. It's easier driving now, especially the new highway between Almaty and Shelek (Chilik), which is still not updated on Google maps (although clearly visible on Google Earth a bit North of the annoyingly slow A351). It should not take 5-7 hours anymore. Note that the highway still has a city speed limit around Shelek though, and they do check for it.For the last stretch between Saty and Kaindy Lake you still need a bad-ass 4x4.In August 2017 it was not allowed to go past Kolsay Lake 2. There are patrols on horse between the lakes and a small camp located at lake 2 (military or border police) where they check passports.
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