A SPLITBOARD-ONLY GUIDED WEEK
2020 MARKS TEN YEARS OF 40 TRIBES OPS IN KYRGYZSTAN. GET READY TO PARTY!
This February we will host our 6th Annual Splitfest—a guided week by splitboarders, for splitboarders. As with all of our guided tours, we will base out of our winter-ready yurt camp and spend 7 days exploring the surrounding mountains which offer everything from trees to open powder fields to cruiser ridgelines and big mountain faces. The uniqueness of being with a splitboard-only crew is that everyone is on the same page—on the skintrack, during transitions, and especially in how we look at the mountains and the way they should be ridden. Plus it’s just always a good time and good vibe when a bunch of splitters get together! The week is open to experienced splitboarders as well as riders who can hold their own on a snowboard but are new to the touring aspect of backcountry riding. For those new to touring, we will help you quickly nail down the mechanics and work with you to advance your skills as a splitboarder, highlighting efficient skinning, proper kick turns, and quick transitions.
AVAILABILITY & REQUIREMENTS
Max 6 - ONLY 3 SPOTS LEFT!
Participants must be advanced to expert level snowboarders. Previous splitboarding experience is recommended but not required. Those new to splitboarding must be strong riders and comfortable in all conditions, especially deep powder. Participation in our guided tours does not require any formal avalanche safety certification or glacier travel or ski mountaineering experience.
Participants must be in excellent physical condition, and comfortable touring for long distances carrying their own backcountry packs. Single tours from the yurts typically range from 400-1000m in vertical gain, to maximum elevations of around 3,600m.
Splitboards are required and we recommend that you bring the widest/longest board in your quiver! Kyrgyzstan’s "bottomless" continental snowpack is one of the most unique in the world. You must be able to float big freeride-style turns, at speed. Participants must additionally be prepared with essential touring and avalanche safety gear. We will distribute a full list to help guide you with your packing.
7 DAYS RIDING/10 DAYS TOTAL
Tradition has it that Splitfest happens during WK2 of our guided season, and it has never not provided epic conditions!
As with all of our guided tours, we require that you arrive one day before the start date and depart two days after the end date. The extra days are for transport to/from our partner village. So: Arrive Bishkek early morning Feb 1, depart on or after Feb 10. We will provide additional information to help you book the correct flights and to answer any Qs about arriving early and/or staying afterwards.
Our 2020 Splitfest will be lead guided by AMGA Split Guide Jules Hanna. This will be Jules’ second year guiding Splitfest, and his sixth week guiding from our yurts.
We employ Canada and US-based professional splitboard guides to provide our clients with the best quality backcountry experience possible, and each week is staffed with both Lead and Tail Guides for a 1:3 guide-to-client ratio. While we are intimately familiar with local guiding associations such as the Kyrgyzstan Mountain Guides Association (KMGA), and know/know of many locals who are guiding in the backcountry, we stand behind our decision to keep our guiding “in house.” This is for a variety of reasons, most of which are experience and safety-related. We also see huge benefit to having native English-speaking guides for our predominantly English-speaking clientele—and while half of your trip is spent out in the mountains, the other half is spent at the yurts and we try our best to create a fun, comfortable and familiar vibe, which just comes naturally for our guides. Don’t get us wrong, this is not about being insulated from the local culture and local vibe! All of our partners down in the frontcountry as well as our camp staff are locals, and with their presence and involvement in your stay you will not forget where you are in the world.
Splitfest is based out of our Jalpak Tash Yurts—the most epic basecamp setup in all of Central Asia. The location of our camp provides immediate access to the surrounding terrain from a starting elevation of 2,600m. The camp features 3 traditional Kyrgyz yurts—one kitchen/dining yurt and separate client and guide yurts—all heated by wood burning stoves and cared for by our local partners.
Splitfest includes an overnight stay with our partner family on night number one. The homestay experience includes an amazing dinner, comfortable sleeping arrangements, and breakfast before we begin our tour up to the yurts the next morning.
No need to worry about shouldering all of your gear on the way up to the yurts. We will arrange horses to porter group gear for the 6km tour between the village and 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 absolutely kill it in the kitchen yurt, fixing up Western-inspired breakfasts complete with french press coffee 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.
Who doesn’t love a little après ski session? Our yurt bar features tallboy beers and bottles of local vodka and cognac.
THINKING OF JOINING US?
Please consult the link below for full details regarding our pricing and current availability.