Adventure Travel in Kyrgyzstan | Horse Trekking and Hiking Trip

Well it is our first full day in Kyrgyzstan.

We're getting started right into the adventures.

Yes.

Our horses are here right in town.

We're not even waiting until we get into thecountryside.

We're going to get on them right away andyeah this is going to be awesome.

This is what? A three day adventure.

Yes.

And we're going to be staying in yurts.

Yeah, so we're going trekking along the southshore of Issyk-Kul lake (Ысык-Көл).

Last time we were on the north shore so we'llbe seeing a different side.

And yeah I think the horses are waiting forus so let's hop on.

Let's do it.

So Sam is already looking like a bit of apack mule.

Yeah, two packs.

Double packs.

Two day packs.

Where are you going? Into the tree.

Both of our horses are foodies.

Yep.

We haven't left yet because they're havingbreakfast.

Oh, got to follow.

Clock, clock, clock.

We have snow capped mountains up ahead.

So we're already making progress on the horses.

Last night we slept in the town of Bokonbayevo(Бөкөнбаев) and my horse of course wants to eat.

No, horse.

We're falling behind.

Hey, chew chew chew.

So yeah, we just wandered around the townhad a very relaxed afternoon and then this morning our guide came to pick us up and weare beginning the horse trek.

We're on the south side of Issyk Kul Lakeand last time we did Song Köl (Соңкөл) and we mostly hung around the north side ofIssyk-Kol Lake (Иссык-Куль) as well so we'll be seeing a new part of the countrywhich I'm excited about.

So we made it to camp.

I think we rode for about five hours thismorning and I thought there was going to be more riding in the afternoon but thankfullywe're here and that is a good thing because I feel like a 90 year old woman with arthritisat the moment.

My knees.

I don't think it was quite 5 hours.

More like 4 but yeah.

Four.

I got off the horse and I again just likelast year I had jello legs and we're going to collapse.

You literally feel like you're going to falldown so but after sitting down and laying your legs to rest a bit you feel so much better.

And it is going to be lunch soon so excitedabout that.

Yeah.

So before lunch we're going to give you aquick tour of the camp.

So basically we've arrived at someone's home.

We're going to be staying in the yurt andwe also have some outhouses over here.

And the outhouses have a really great viewso Sam is taking some pictures.

But yeah there is Sam.

Toilet.

And yeah, this is home for the night.

And it is lunchtime.

It is lunchtime and we have a wonderful spreadof food here.

Yeah.

Let's take a little tour.

So we have the typical kind of an appetizeror even a dessert which is bread.

And various kinds of jams.

Jams, butter, creams.

It looks like we have maybe a raspberry jamand apricot jam.

Apricot.

It looks wonderful and we have meat over here.

Yes.

Chai, yes.

And what are you trying first? I'm preparing my bread with cream.

It looks like fresh churned cream.

Ooh.

Raspberry jam.

Hohoho.

This looks good.

Doesn't that look good? I love this.

And I also have a hot cup of milk tea.

Milk tea? That is good.

Haha.

We earned our lunch after riding a horse.

Haha.

I'm going to try these look like deliciousslices of meat.

So let's try that.

Mmmm.

Mmmm.

It is really good.

And Sam just learned the word for thank you.

The Kyrgyz word for thank you.

rahmat saga (рахмат сага).

Okay, there you go.

I'm butchering it.

Hahaha.

But what I love about Kyrgyz hospitality itis just that you always when you're invited into someone's home you get this wonderfulspread of food.

They are so generous.

They always prepare more food than you couldever eat.

And also your cup of tea is never empty.

That is true.

It is always being refilled.

Very attentive.

Hahaha.

Gotta love the hospitality.

Haha.

Time for the grand tour.

Time for a tour of our first yurt.

So this is pretty cool.

Well, first yurt of this trip.

We've slept inyurts before.

Yes.

But seriously they pile so many mattressesand blankets there is no way this is by far the fanciest yurt we've ever been in becausenormally we've just slept on the ground yeah but we're actually kind of in a proper bedhere.

Yeah, you can see.

Real beds, real mattresses and I'm going tocount how many blankets they've put.

Let's do it.

So they've put okay so we have two mattresses.

Yes.

And then one, two blankets.

Another duvet.

Three.

Four.

Haha.

Four.

So we shouldn't be too cold.

That is a lot that is for sure.

And yeah, look at the yurt from above.

That is so cool.

Lots of insulation.

Lots of insulation.

So yeah we'll be cozy.

It is just us two in here.

It is.

Just the two of us.

Just the two of us in our own little yurt.

This is getting weird.

Just the two of us.

Haha.

It is hailing right now.

We're in the yurt, we're keeping the dooropen to film this but it is like fricking hailing.

Oh my gosh.

Oh, wow.

I haven't seen hail in years.

Haha.

It almost looks like popcorn hitting the ground.

Oh my gosh.

Look at that.

Welcome to the yurt life.

Update.

The storm is still raging we've had to actuallyclose the doors to our yurt because these hunks of ice are just like rolling in so we'vecrawled into bed.

We've crawled into bed and we're hiding underthe blankets.

And there is thunder and lightning quite close.

Yeah.

And hopefully this is going to clear up becausewe were planning to go hiking and take up the drone this afternoon so we'll see if thatstill happens.

If not we'll be here.

Yep.

So the hail has stopped.

The rain has cleared up.

And now we're going hiking.

Yeah, that is mountain life for you.

Yeah.

You have to be dressed for all kinds of weatherand prepared for just about everything because one minute you're getting a hail storm andnext minute it is beautiful for hiking.

Yeah, and we've got a dog.

A new dog joining us.

Woo hoo.

Well it is time for a much needed update.

Um, I've been actually really busy.

Haha.

I think I've had 3 drone flights today.

Like seriously kid in a candy shop moment.

Mmmhmm.

Just, wow.

The landscapes have been amazing.

Yeah.

And that is like my by far my new favoritetoy.

And we had a really nice dinner which we didn'tfilm.

Uh, that was pilaf or plov which is rice.

Rice mixed with meat and other vegetables.

And carrots.

Carrots.

That was delicious.

And now there is a kökbörü match on.

Uh huh.

And that is our favorite sport in Kyrgyzstanso we're going to go watch.

Is it now? It is for me.

Haha.

Anyways yeah I mean I got to watch that atthe World Nomad Games so I really liked it.

Anyways we're going to sign off for tonightand we will see you tomorrow morning for some more horse trekking.

Good morning pup.

Good morning.

Hello.

It is day two.

This dog doesn't even live at this camp hejust comes to visit.

So thanks for coming to visit and we're leavingthis morning so it was nice meeting you.

The dog is like I'm cute and I know it.

The dog is cute.

So right now we are just packing up our belongings.

Yeah, packing up and today we're going tobe doing a lot more riding.

Yesterday I think we did roughly 4 hours.

Today is supposed to be six.

So we're basically breaking it up.

We're going to be doing probably about 3 hoursand then having lunch.

Mmmhmm.

And then probably three more and then thatwill be our base camp for the evening.

Sam is in the doghouse.

What did you nearly do? I rarely take off my wedding ring.

Uh.

But this I had left I went to wash my handsand we were just about to leave and I noticed I didn't have it on.

What? It was like a hunt for it but luckily I foundit on the carpet.

That is horrible.

Yeah, you should always that was a close call.

I almost left this.

Always keep it on.

In the yurt.

So we are saying bye to our family now andpacking up the horses and taking a few more photos for the road.

Haha.

So we are off our horses to give our legsa little bit of a break.

And apparently we're getting really closeto our lunch stop.

We're going to be eating by a lake and ourdog friend who we met yesterday on the hike is still following us.

So we're going to have to get a little bitof lunch for him too.

There is our friend.

Hello friend.

Still walking with us.

Well we're not just taking a break.

What is going on? We are having a picnic.

So we stopped by a little lake up on the mountainside.

We have snow capped mountains right in frontof us and we're going to have a nice little lunch with our dog friend.

Dog friend.

Dog friend.

Good boy.

Good boy.

So it is time for a little update.

We have arrived at our accommodations forthe night.

That is just behind us over there.

It is basically a mud hut and there is a familythat lives here during the summer months so we're going to be staying with them.

I believe we're all going to be sharing oneroom but we'll see how that unfolds once night time falls.

So we're going to give you a tour later butright now we are just having a little nap outside.

I'm enjoying the sun, Sam is in the shadeand we still have our pup.

Our dog followed us all the way here and nowhe is having a nap with us too.

So yeah.

Are you going to nap as well? Your little eyes are closing.

the little eyes are closing.

I walked a long way I followed you.

And this is Sam.

Sun burnt and suffering.

First thing is first.

You're probably wondering why I'm dressedlike this? A little bit.

I got really badly sunburnt.

Like I slathered up but we're at such a highaltitude that I still got scorched today so I'm just trying to protect my skin.

Anyways, I'm going to give you basically anoutside tour of the property we're staying at.

Yeah.

So first thing this is like the main house.

So if you walk in there is a little kitchenand then we have a tiny room and that is basically it.

Mmmhmm.

Um and then we're going to go show you somemore.

Okay, so over here we've got a pen with awhole bunch of different animals.

Yeah.

There is horses.

Cows.

Cows.

You name it.

Horses and cows mostly.

Hahaha.

Although we have seen sheep and goats thatbelong to other herdsmen.

And you're probably wondering what the toiletsituation is like? Yeah.

When you're like camping out here sleepingin yurts and homestays.

We'll be perfectly honest.

It is as basic as it gets.

Yeah.

But yet you know you can do everything youneed to do.

There is a little hole in there basically.

Yeah, so just remember to bring toilet paper, baby wipes, whatever else you might need.

Yeah, exactly.

And we also have two streams that run on eitherside of the home.

And this is where they've been getting theirwater to boil for tea and to also cook the meals.

Oromo.

Oromo (оромо).

Yes.

And it is vegetables and meat inside? Meat? Inside vegetables? Yes, it is.

It is dinner time so we are all here in thekitchen.

It is nice and warm.

It is cozy.

We've got wood burning stove.

And yeah a giant dumplings as well.

Alright, why don't you try that? Tell us how it tastes.

Oh, it is hot.

Piping hot? Mmmhmmm.

Is it good? Mmmm.

What is it? It is like a noodle.

Almost like a noodle pastry type of thingand apparently it has potatoes and I'm also seeing carrots.

Mmmhmmm.

Vegetarian.

Try some.

Chai.

Thanks.

And of course we have warm chai.

Warm chai.

Gotta love the chai.

What do you think? Piping hot.

That is good.

So we are giving you a bit of a hushed roomtour.

So our host family is having dinner rightnow.

It is Ramadan.

So they had to wait until I think eight thirtybefore they could eat so they are in the room next door but they've prepared our bed.

So Sam and I are going to be sleeping here.

And they are also going to be sleeping here.

So this is a family affair.

And in total.

In total there is going to be eleven of usin this room because the family has seven kids.

One of them was in the city.

So six kids, the parents, our guide and thetwo of us.

Yeah, and tell them about this.

Oh, the barrel.

Where my finger is pointing.

That barrel has Kumis (кымыз) or Kymyz.

Yes.

The pronunciation always baffles me.

Um, but that is fermented mare's milk.

Yeah.

Which Sam had for lunch.

I had a bit of that for lunch.

It was really good.

And yeah, it is going to also be in the roomwith us too.

A whole barrel of horse milk in here.

Haha.

Haha.

Anyways, I think we should keep it hush andyeah we'll be going to bed soon when the rest of them ready.

So yeah, see you in the morning.

Well good morning.

It is the start of day three.

We just finished having breakfast.

We had some semolina with milk and some breadand tea.

And now we're getting the horses all saddledup and I think we're riding into town.

This is the final day so I believe we've gotabout four hours ahead of us and then the trek will be over.

How do you feel? Good, just putting on sunscreen.

I'm getting destroyed.

I don't know if you can see this well.

It is bad.

I have been getting some pretty bad burnsespecially on my hands.

So we've been riding our horses for a coupleof hours and we've just come across a field with these giant stone boulders and on themthey have petroglyphs so we've jumped off our horses and we're going to check thoseout.

So we have found the first of many.

Can you tell what that is? Can you see what it is? Two humps.

Two humps.

So that one is a camel.

It is a camel.

Let's see what else we can find here.

So we have spotted another one.

This one has horns.

Yeah, I think maybe a big horned sheep.

Could be a big horned sheep.

Or something else with horns.

Haha.

So up there we have another and it almostlooks like it could be a man riding a horse but I'm not entirely sure.

So it turns out the petroglyph stop is alsoour lunch stop.

And we are picnic-ing.

It is a nice surprise.

So take a look down here we've got more peanutsand raisins from yesterday, we got something that kind of looks like stroopwafel.

Yeah.

Canned fish.

Canned fish.

Bread of course.

Yeah.

Wouldn't be a proper Kyrgyz meal without bread.

And dried apricots and these look like ohsausage.

And sausage.

And dog friend is ready for lunch as well.

Aren't you? Haha.

.

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