Custom expeditions aside, our guided and self-guided tours are all based out of our Jalpak Tash Yurts, located at 2,650m (8,700ft) in the Terskey Alatoo Mountains, high above the eastern end of the Issyk-Kul Valley. The yurts are surrounded by 3,600-3,700m peaks to the west, south, and east, providing immediate access to perfect backcountry terrain. Lake Issyk-Kul, the 2nd largest alpine lake in the world, is to our northwest, and is the major contributor to our snowpack, providing the warmth and moisture required for the lake-effect snowfall that the eastern and southeastern shores are known for.
The yurts are accessed from our partner village, Ichke-Jergez, via a 6km skintrack that doubles as a horse path for locals who hunt and harvest wood from the native spruce forests. The site features two 5.5m diameter traditional Kyrgyz yurts – one used as the kitchen/dining/guides’ yurt and the other as the clients’ yurt. The yurts are heated by wood-burning stoves and offer enough room for up to 8 people to spread out and claim their own section of floorspace draped in traditional tushuk mattresses for chilling and sleeping.
The food served at the Jalpak Tash Yurts is prepared by our local partners and will exceed your expectations (or so we hear!). Our breakfast menu is Western-inspired, featuring plenty of egg dishes, with the option of muesli or porridge. The dinner menu is 100% traditional Kyrgyz, and all dinners are cooked in a wok-style cauldron called a kazan over the wood-burning stove. For aprés ski we keep a nicely-stocked yurt “bar” with beers, Russian vodka, and Kyrgyz cognac for purchase.
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