Photo Tour: Kungei Mirrors (10 days)

Photo Tour: Kungei Mirrors (10 days)

August 10, 2016
All Tours | Photo Tours | Ecotours | Almost all the time the trip will take place in the mountains at altitudes from 1,800 to 3,200 meters above sea level, where you will visit the picturesque mountain lakes of Kungei Alatau range: Kolsai Lakes and Kaindy Lake …

Route: Almaty Region (Kazakhstan)

Season: January - December

Best Period: June - October

 

 

  

Kungei Alatau ridge stretched in latitudinal direction from east to west and has a length of 275 km in a straight line. It surrounds from the north the basin, which is Issyk-Kul lake. Like many other mountain ranges in Kazakhstan, Kungei Alatau is very rich in scenic mountain lakes. And you can visit the most beautiful of them: Kaindy lake and a system of three lakes called Kolsay.  
Kaindy lake means "Birch lake" and is located at an altitude of 1867 meters above sea level. According to the last measurements, its deepest point is 21 meters. The lake was formed as a result of the earthquake occurred in the area in 1911. In the 1980s, the lake area was significantly reduced due to the mudflow, but the beauty and mystery of it was not lost. Only in 12 km in a straight line from Kaindy lake, at an altitude of 1818 meters above sea level, the third (lower) Kolsai lake is located. It stretches for 1 km in length and approximately 500 meters wide with a maximum depth of about 80 meters. The middle (second) Kolsai lake, located at an altitude of 2252 meters above sea level, is the largest of the three. The upper (first) Kolsai lake is situated at an altitude of 2850 meters above sea level. From its shores, it will take just a few hours to reach Sary-Bulak pass with a magnificent view of Issyk-Kul lake.

DAY BY DAY ITINERARY

Day 1. Almaty - Kaindy Lake

Group meeting and departure from Almaty at 07:00. Lunch in a cafe or a picnic on the way. Arrival to Kaindy lake, setting a camp, walking and photographing the sunset. Return to the camp, dinner and preparation to the nest day. Free time. Overnight in the tent camp at the lake.    
Total automobile mileage in this day approx. 300 km

Days 2-3. Kaindy Lake

Early wake up at 05:30 for photographing the dawn at Kaindy lake. Return to the camp, breakfast, free time. Lunch in the camp. Closer to the evening, hiking to a mountain with the lake and Kungei Alatau ridge panorama. Waiting for the sunset, photographing. Return to the camp, dinner and preparation to the next day. Free time. Optional - photographing of the night sky. Overnight in the tent camp at the lake.    
Total daily walking distance approx. 4-10 km 

Day 4. Kaindy Lake - Saty Settlement   

Early wake up at 05:30 for photographing the dawn at the lake. Return to the camp, breakfast. Disassembling of the camp and transfer to Saty settlement. Arrival to a guest house, accommodation, lunch. Walking in the settlement, photographing. Return to the guest house, sauna, dinner and free time. Overnight in the guest house. 

Day 5. Saty Settlement - Lower Kolsai Lake  

Early wake up at 05:30 for photographing the dawn in village valley of Chilik river. Return to the guest house, breakfast. After breakfast, transfer to Kolsai lake. Arrival to the lake and trekking to its south shore. Setting a camp, lunch, rest. Photographing the sunset at the lake, dinner and preparation to the next day. Free time. Overnight in the tent camp at Kolsai lake at an altitude 2000 meters above sea level.   
Total walking distance in this day approx. 2 km 

Day 6. Lower Kolsai Lake - Middle Kolsai Lake  

Early wake up at 06:30 for photographing the dawn at the lake. Breakfast, disassembling of the camp and trekking to the middle Kolsai lake. On arrival, rest and setting a camp. Lunch at the shore of the lake. In the aftrenoon, walking and photographing. Return to the camp, dinner and preparation to the next day. Overnight in the tent camp on the lake shore. 
Total walking distance in this day approx. 7 km

Day 7. Middle Kolsai Lake 

Early wake up at 06:30 for photographing the dawn at the lake. Breakfast and trekking to the lake overlook point. Lunch (picnic) during the trekking. Return to the camp, dinner and preparation to the next day. Overnight in the tent camp on the lake shore. bank of Ili river at an altitude 2300 meters above sea level.  
Total walking distance in this day approx. 5 km 

Day 8. Middle Kolsai Lake - Upper Kolsai Lake - Middle Kolsai Lake 

Early wake up at 06:30 for photographing the dawn at the lake. Breakfast and trekking to the upper Kolsai lake. On arrival, rest and lunch (picnic) at the lake. In the afternoon, walking and photographing. Return to the camp, dinner and preparation to the next day. Overnight in the tent camp at the lake shore.   
Total walking distance in this day approx. 12 km

Day 9. Middle Kolsai Lake - Saty Settlement 

Early wake up at 06:30 for photographing the dawn at the lake. Breakfast, disassembling of the camp and trekking to the lower Kolsai lake. Rest on arrival to the lake. Lunch at the lake shore. In the afternoon, transfer to Saty settlement. Accommodation in a guest house. Photographing the sunset in village valley of Chilik river. Return to the guest house, sauna, dinner, free time. Overnight in the guest house.  
Total walking distance in this day approx. 8 km

Day 10. Saty Settlement - Almaty

Early wake up at 05:30 for photographing the dawn in village valley of Chilik river. Return to the guest house, breakfast. Transfer to Almaty after breakfast. Lunch on the way. Arrival to Almaty approx. at 19:00.      

TOUR FEATURES:

The tour program is very intensive, almost all camp-to-camp transfers will be off-roads. You will need to get up very early and walk a lot in search of the best shots. All of this - in the mountains, where not accustomed person can feel a lack of oxygen. That is why, it is strongly recommended to refrain from the use of alcohol.

Group Tour Price for 23.09-02.10.2017: 970 USD Per Person

Tour Price for 2017: 1320 USD Per Person, provided 4 persons traveling together

Tour Price INCLUSIONS:

1. Transport services on the entire route    
2. Guide-photographer service
3. Camping equipment for common use (camping tent, table, chairs, cooking utensils)
4. Food for cooking in field conditions     
5. Accommodation and meals in Saty guest house
6. Permits to visit the specially protected natural areas, all environmental fees    
7. Rent of pack horses for group  

Tour Price EXCLUSIONS:

1. Accommodation in Almaty before/after the tour, if required      
2. Airport transfer, if required   
3. Meals not indicated in the program and/or not included into the tour price     
4. Rent of personal camping outfit (tent, sleeping bag, сaremat, personal utensils, etc.)      
5. Medical insurance    
6. Visa support and registration on the territory of Kazakhstan, if required   
7. Personal expenses and other expenses not indicated in the program    

RECOMMENDATIONS on clothing and equipment:

Taking into account that in the evenings and at night can be quite cold, be sure to take with you:     
1. Waterproof membrane Gore-Tex jacket and pants     
2. Warm fleece jacket or Polartec jacket     
3. Windproof jacket     
4. Several sets of underwear, several pairs of socks and a pair of warm socks     
5. Several T-shirts with short sleeves, shorts     
6. Appropriate hiking boots, shoes for camp (lightweight sneakers)     
7. Sunglasses and sunscreen     
8. Head torch with adjustable brightness and beam distance, several sets of batteries     
9. Thermos for 1-1.5 liters, or other water container     
10. Personal hygiene items, personal first aid kit (for chronic diseases is obligatory)     
11. Camera, waterproof carrying case, a neutral filter with variable density, tripod, remote control, wide-angle and telephoto lenses    
12. Anti acarid remedy     
13. Tent, sleeping bag, caremat, utensils for personal use

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    Contacts in Almaty

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