30 May – 02 June – Tajikistan-Kyrgyzstan – ~538 miles
So – after 3 days of no internet access (having stayed in rather simple accommodations in such places as Langar, Murghab, Sary Tash) – a LOT to catch up on, now we’re in Osh.
And I already know I’m not going to bother even trying to do any of it justice.
A lot of gravel roads, dirt roads, patches of sand, extended patches of deep/loose gravel, extended patches of painful corrugated road, a little bit of mud, and pretty everything else. Most of it fun. Sand – not so much. Deep/loose gravel – pretty much like sand. Corrugations… just painful, and not at all fun.
Yamchun Fortress… an awesome wee ride up to it, and an absolutely stunning view from it. An old Chinese fortress, with the best landscape/panoramic views I’ve ever seen. The single best single viewpoint over several days of nothing but stunning landscapes.
The Wukhan corridor/valley – in general – just amazing riding along the edge of the river, looking up at huge mountains and hills on every side, constantly. Turn a bend – more. Another bend – more. Awesome.
And then – we went UP. Up to the Pamir Highway “proper”… and then got a view of all that landscape from above. Just… Awesome from a different viewpoint.
Highest point was 4,655m… didn’t get off the bike to do too much hiking around.
Oh – and got a puncture. About to leave a small village where I’d stopped for lunch, and discovered a wee nail in the rear tyre. That’s the only issue so far… and according to a poll done by some others last night – I’m only one of two to not have “dropped” the bike yet. (Although – the vast majority of those “drops” were in sand, or just literally dropping the bike at a standstill).
All in all – Pamir/Wukhan – I’m seriously considering inserting into my “Top 3” of places in the world, alongside the Great Wall and Iguazu Falls. Just sheer scale, constantly. Words do not suffice.
[NB: More photos should be uploaded, but internet is still not great, and I’m too tired to deal with that, and the ones that aren’t rotated right.]