Guided Ski & Splitboard Tours
There are undoubtedly adventures you think you will never have. Skiing big mountain lines by day and playing Yahtzee around a wood burning stove in a cozy Kyrgyz yurt by night is probably one of them. Since 2010, 40 Tribes has provided the ultimate setup for adventurous, experienced skiers and riders to explore Kyrgyzstan’s remote Tien Shan Mountains. We offer a winter-ready yurt camp in one of the most beautiful locations in the country, situated at 2,650m with immediate access to +3,500m summits, overlooking the second largest alpine lake in the world. Our yurts are run in collaboration with locals from the village at the foot of the mountains we play in, contributing an irreplaceable intercultural element to the skiing experience.
We have set aside the primest time of year in our zone for our 2016 guided weeks:
- January 31-February 6 (Lead Guide: Ty Mills) – SPACE AVAILABLE TO JOIN MIXED GROUP
- February 7-13 (Lead Guide: Ty Mills) – SPLITFEST 2016: ONLY 2 SPOTS LEFT!
- February 14-20 (Lead Guide: Ptor Spricenieks) – BOOKED
- February 21-27 (Lead Guide: Ptor Spricenieks) – REQUESTED/ON HOLD
- February 28-March 5 (Lead Guide: Ptor Spricenieks) – AVAILABLE FOR PRIVATE RESERVATION
- March 6-12 (Lead Guide: Ptor Spricenieks) – BOOKED
Group Size: A group of 6 will secure the yurts for just you and your crew. No worries if you cannot meet the minimum requirement, however in this case we reserve the right to fill the remaining spaces – up to the max of 8. We will prioritize matching skill sets and backcountry experience when filling spaces.
Experience: Participants must be advanced to expert level skiers or snowboarders, with at least 1 year off-piste/backcountry experience. For safety, efficiency, and to maximize everyone’s skiing experience ALL group members must have comparable physical abilities and backcountry skill sets. Participation in our guided tours does not require any formal avalanche safety certification or glacier travel or ski mountaineering experience.
Gear: We require fat powder skis (115mm+ underfoot…the fatter the better!) and splitboards for snowboarders. Trust us on this one. Kyrgyzstan’s bottomless continental snowpack is one of the most unique in the world – you must be able to float big turns, at speed. Participants must additionally be prepared with essential touring and avalanche safety gear.
Physical Requirements: Participants must be in excellent physical condition, and comfortable touring for long distances and carrying their own backcountry packs. Tours from the yurts typically range from 400-1000m in vertical gain, to maximum elevations of around 3,600m.
Don’t have the #s to meet our minimum requirement? Check out our Small Groups/Solo Travelers Bulletin.
Get acquainted with our amazing guides!
While training our local partners to eventually step into the Tail Guide position, we employ France, Canada and US-based professional ski and splitboard guides in order to provide our clients with highest quality backcountry experience. Our Lead Ski Guide, Ptor Spricenieks (La Grave, France) and Lead Splitboard Guide, Ty Mills (Golden, British Columbia), both have extensive guiding resumés and big time travel and ski/splitboard mountaineering experience.
Get acquainted with the amazing terrain accessible from the Jalpak Tash Yurts:
Register to view our Interactive Terrain Map & Gallery!
Village Stay: All of our guided tours begin with an overnight in our partner family’s home. The homestay experience includes an amazing traditional dinner, comfortable sleeping arrangements, and breakfast before we begin our tour up to the yurts the next morning.
Horse Support: No need to worry about shouldering all of your gear. Our local partners will arrange horses to porter group gear for the 6km tour to the yurts. Your bags (and a hot lunch) will be waiting for you on your arrival.
Good Food…And Lots Of It: That’s right, guided stays are fully catered. Our local partners will accompany the group to host, cook, clean, and manage yurt chores. The menu features french press coffee, Western-style breakfasts (such as omelets, frittatas, pancakes and french toast), packed lunches, and traditional Kyrgyz dinners, cooked over the wood burning stove. Portions are large, and there is always a variety of snacks and hot tea available.
Après Ski: Who doesn’t love a little après ski session? Our yurt bar features tallboy beers and bottles of Kyrgyz cognac and Russian vodka.
Guided pricing includes transport between Bishkek’s Manas airport and our partner village, by way of Karakol (approx. 430km/6.5 hrs each way), as well as one night lodging in Karakol and one night lodging in Bishkek after skiing out from the yurts. Itineraries can be further customized to fit your needs – ie more days in Karakol and/or Bishkek, or exploring other parts of the country, as your schedule allows.