Heartland of Fann mountains

Trekking in Pamirs Fann Mountains

 

Tour destinations: Tajikistan, Pamir-Alay mountain system View the route map »»
Itinerary duration: 11 days / 10 nights
Active part duration: 8 days / 7 nights
Tour itinerary: Dushanbe - mountain camp “Artuch”- Kulikalon lakes - Alauddin Lakes - Mutnoje Lakes -
Chimtarga Pass - Bolshoje Allo lake - Verhneje Allo lake - Amshut river valley - village Zimtut - Dushanbe

The Fann Mountains (also known as the Fanns) - a land of turquoise lakes, clouded peaks and ancient legends - is a unique part and one of the beautiful regions of the Pamir Mountains. Here most clear and unbelievably wonderful lakes are fringed with highest sharp rocky peaks which don’t take off their snowy crowns during long time. Here almost moon’s landscapes are enlivened with tangles of juniper’s trunks twisted by some strange powers of wind and sun into improbable figures. Here amazing peaks Energia and Chimtarga are rising above Mutny («turbid») lakes. Another advantage of Fan Mountains is its transport availability for travelers.
This trekking route runs through the most picturesque paths of Fann Mountains. Glorious valleys of Zindan River and Archimaidan River, mysterious beauty of Bolshoi Allo Lake - a giant marine-blue cup framed with extensive vertical rocks sheerly plummeting into water, - beautiful chain of the Kulikalon lake, Alaudin lake and Iskanderkul lake, astonishing waterfalls, the fairy of wonderful 5,000-odd metres high peaks: Chapdara, Bolshaya Ganza, Malaya Ganza, Mirali, Maria and others are sure to stay among your best memories of all time. The maximum altitude of the entire trek is 4780m (Chimtarga Pass).

  • ITINERARY,
    SERVICES & COST
  • ITINERARY IN DETAIL,
    ROUTE MAP

  • VISA, PERMITS
  • OPTIONAL EXCURSIONS &
    LEISURE ACTIVITIES

 

Itinerary
Day 1. Arrival in Dushanbe. Overnight in the hotel.
Day 2. Drive to mountain camp “Artuch”. Overnight in stationary mountaineers’ base camp ‘Artuch’ (2200m).
Day 3. Beginning of the active part of a trekking program. Ascend to Kulikalon lakes. Camp 1 (2842m; 7km; 5h).
Day 4. Trek over Alauddin Pass to Alauddin Lakes. Camp 2 (2786m; 7km; 6h).
Day 5. Ascend to Mutnoje Lakes. Camp 3 (3490m; 5km; 4h).
Day 6. Ascend to Camp 4 under Chimtarga Pass (4454m; 3km; 6h).
Day 7. Trek over Chimtarga Pass (4780m) and further descend to the Chimtarga river valley. Trek over the Bolshoje Allo lake. Camp 5 (3110m; 12km; 7h).
Day 8. Day’s rest on the Bolshoje Allo lake. Walk to the Verhneje Allo lake.
Return to Camp 5 (5km; 4h).
Day 9. Descend along the Zindon river valley to the valley of Amshut river (1964m; 10km; 5-6h). Transfer to village of Zimtut (or Gazza) - 15km, 30min. Accommodation in a guesthouse.
Day 10. Transfer village Zimtut - Dushanbe (290km, 8h). Overnight in the hotel.
Day 11. Dushanbe. Departure.

 

Cost of the tour 2017 in USD/pax:
The cost of the tour for 1 person 1200 USD/person
*Group: from 6 persons.
*Please contact our operators for all individual requests: adventure@centralasia-travel.com
The cost tour includes: The cost tour doesn’t include:
Meeting and seeing off in airport;
All transfers according program;
Hotel accommodation 4* in Dushanbe in twins / double rooms, with breakfast;
Sightseeng program in Dushanbe;
Full board;
Accommodation in the mountain camp “Artuch”;
Accommodation in the guest house in the Zimtut village (or Gazza village) - 1 night;
Service during trekking part:
  - Full board;
  - Accommodation in double tents;
  - Mountain guide, cook, service staff;
  - Porter’s service and pack animals for transportation individual equipment (individual equipment weight max.10 kg.)
  - Bivouac equipment (dining-tent, kitchenware);
First aid kit;
Preparation of necessary documents:
  - Ecological fees.
International air flights;
Visa fee to Tajikistan;
Registration in OVIR;
Individual equipment (shoes, clothes, sleeping bag);
Medical insurance;
Alcohol drinks.

Itinerary brief description

This trekking is rather easy and is suitable for anyone with good physical condition. Tourist above 16 and under 65 years of age can join this tour provided they have no serious health problems and their doctor does not object to participation in such kind of tourist activities. Children younger 14 can also join this trekking tour provided they are accompanied by their parents.

Trekking on foot covers from 7km to 10 km a day with altitude difference up to 1220m. The route runs at the maximum altitude of 4710m above sea level (Chimtarga Pass).
Each participant carries his own rucksack with personal belongings; group camping equipment and supply of provisions is transported by pack-donkeys up to Mutnoje Lakes and then by porters (donkey-handlers take donkeys away from Mutnoje Lakes back to mountain camp “Artuch”).
Typically the region enjoys rather stable weather: it’s warm and sunny, though some rain is possible, which relieves the monotony of the trip. The daytime temperatures range between +20° to +30°С, whereas at night the temperature can drop as low as +12 or +15°С.

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Equipment on route

- Tents are used for accommodation of two persons. The tents are wind-resisting and water-proof and are suitable for any weather conditions. For your comfort the tents are equipped with firm air-beds as well as comfortable sleeping bags with individual lining.
- Tent camp also has a big hangar-like mess tent with tables and camp chairs.
Tables and chairs will be used only up to Mutnoje Lakes; and then care mat will be used as a table.
- Throughout the trek we provide quality tableware.
- To cook dishes during the trek we provide gas burner with gas cylinders or a supply of firewood.
- The tent camp is equipped with portable WC.

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List of personal gear:

rucksack
sleeping bag
trekking sticks
trekking boots with proper protectors
track shoes or trainers
warm and windproof clothes
a rain cloak
stock of clothes
headwear (a warm hat and a cap to protect from sun)
sunglasses
sun protection cream
personal first aid kit
personal crockery (bowls, mugs, spoons)
electric flashlight with spare supply of batteries
other personal belongings you may find necessary during the trekking trip

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Service staff

Throughout the trekking travel you will be escorted by high altitude guide, who is the tour manager and our authorized representative. He is responsible for the safety and security of the group as well as decision making, including any changes in the route due to unforeseen circumstances that could threaten the health and well-being of the participants.

The tour is serviced by a team whose responsibility is to pitch and take down tents, lay the table for meals, wash up, pack the loads on horses, make fire and the like.

The team also includes a dedicated professional cook and a horse handler who is responsible for proper packing of the loads on horses and porterage.

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Meals

Below you can find the menu of one of the trekking days:

Breakfast:
1) First dish: cereal porridge (semolina, oats, rice).
2) Second dish: cooked eggs with sausages, omelette, pancakes, thick pancakes, toasted bread, etc.
3) Buffet table: cheese, sausage, assorted bread, butter, ketchup, marmalade, chocolate paste, sweets, cookies, wafers, dried cream, honey, sugar, halavah.
4) Drinks: selection of hot drinks, such as tea (black and green), coffee.

Lunch*:
Buffet lunch: dried fruits, chocolate bar (1 chocolate bar for each participant in a day), variety of boiled cereals, mashed potatoes, sausages, canned fish, cheese, sausage, mixed salad (cucumbers and tomatoes), stewed fruit, cola, mineral and table water, fruits (apples) etc.

Dinner:
1) First course - salads;
2) Second course - soup (European or local cuisine).
3) Third course - various dishes of European cuisine with assorted garnish, as well as a choice of local dishes
4) Buffet table: dried fruits, cola, wafers;
5) Drinks: selection of hot drinks, such as tea (black and green), coffee.
6) Dessert: watermelon, melon, fruits.

Starting point

Tourists should arrive to Dushanbe - the starting point of the tour on the date the tour begins. All expenses connected with early arrival or late departure on completion of the tour should be covered by tourists themselves. In this case our company can arrange transfers to and from the airport as well as book the hotel.

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ITINERARY IN DETAIL

Day 1. Arrival in Dushanbe. Overnight in the hotel.
Meeting at airport. Transfer to hotel and check-in. The rest of the day at leisure.

We shall begin our trekking the Pamir Mountains in Dushanbe, the colourful capital of Tajikistan.
For the first time the city of Dushanbe was mentioned in literary sources only in the early 18th century, although scientists discovered at the site a number of archaeological monuments belonging to the Greco-Bactrian period, as well as a few medieval settlements. Initially the city sprang up as a small settlement at a crossroads, where a large bazaar used to be organized on Mondays. Thence, the name of the city, ‘dushanbe’ translating as ‘Monday’ from Tajik.
This city, the largest one in Tajikistan, features squares that have retained the memory of numerous historic events, ancient fortresses that witnessed major historic battles and museums that can relate the stories of old civilisations. Dushanbe is the capital of a country, where Ismail Somoni, an outstanding ruler from the Samanid dynasty, after whom the monetary unit of Tajikistan, somoni, was named and the Pamirs’ highest peak, Ismail Somoni Peak (former Communism Peak), was renamed in 1998, founded his great empire. Present-day Dushanbe is a modern capital, a sunlit city with a highly developed infrastructure, which, probably, is the leader in the number of streets, avenues and squares named after poets and writers.
Your excursion to Dushanbe will include the Rudaki Park, which is the city’s central garden; botanical garden. We also visit one of the most famous tourist attractions of Tajikistan - ancient castle of Hisor (Gissar fortress).
Overnight in the hotel.

Day 2. Drive to mountain camp ‘Artuch’. Overnight in stationary mountaineers’ base camp ‘Artuch’ (2200m).
After the breakfast at the hotel, we depart from Dushanbe. We shall get into the mountainous region of the country via the Anzob Pass (3,373m), which crosses the Gissar Range from south to north, the road going further to the Zarafshan Range. Today the road runs in a tunnel reducing the total travel time by 1-2 hours.
The Zarafshan and Gissar Ranges run parallel east to west, only their western ends joining at the border between Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. The world-famous Fann Mountains are situated to the right of the place the two ranges close. However, to reach the area we must first drive down the Anzob Pass to the rapid Fandarya River cutting the Zarafshan Range south to north. Travelling further down the road we get to the small town of Ayni perched on the bank of the powerful Zarafshan River. After driving a little down the stream we turn to the south and make our way towards the mountain village of Artuch. A bit deeper into the mountains we shall find our destination point, stationary mountaineers’ base camp (BC) ‘Artuch’ (2200m). Welcome! Wooden chalets and cottages of the base camp are set amidst wide expanse of juniper woods.
‘Artuch’ is a wonderful place, which is located in the heart of Fann Mountains not far away from the Tajikistan most beautiful lakes and highest peaks. In ‘Artuch’ there are:
• 2 pax comfortable luxury cottages;
• Russian sauna;
• meeting hall;
• dining hall;
• billiard hall;
• minimarket with the fresh feeding products;
• rental of equipment.
In the evening it is quite cool there, that is why, please, put on something warm.
Cellular telecommunication is available in ‘Artuch’.

Day 3. Start of active part of a trekking program. Ascend to Kulikalon lakes.
Accommodation in Camp 1 on the shore of Bibijanat lake (GPS: 2842m, N39º15’08.2”, E 068º11’53.1”).
Distance: 7km; approx. 5hrs. Altitude difference: +695m.

Nanny goat’s milk here is like a honey - fantastically tasty and, due to alpine-herb diet in the nanny goat’s menu, causes curing effect on organism.
This day will be the start of you trekking program about the Fann Mountains. Only wonderful emotions and amazing impressions are waiting for you ahead! The desperate donkeys-workers are far away already, loaded with your luggage.
Well-trodden trail takes us up Urjam River valley through mixed juniper and deciduous groves covering two giant scree dams steeply rising up the right-hand side of the tight gorge. The dams serve as natural filter making water in the stream absolutely transparent.
In 2-3 hours the track levels and we top the upper dam, on the other side of which is turquoise necklace of Kulikalon Lakes (numbering 14) framed in jagged ridges and summits over 4000m-5000m: Maria (4970m), Mirali (5120m), Rudaki (4900m), Adamtash (4700m) (the four peaks making so called “Kulikalon Wall”), Saryshah (4650m) and Aurondag (4573m). Below, just under your feet, there is a huge lake, and on the left side there are many others. However, the first one is the biggest, and its color is turquoise.
Then we resume going on the right-hand side of the valley making a shortcut on the trail running straight across the juniper forest keeping the lakes on our left, heading to our Camp 1 set on the shore of the Bibidjanat Lake (2,700m) where cozy tents are already set. Here you will have tasty dinner and a good rest.
First overnight in tents. Do not miss last moments of the sunset to view the top of Mirali Peak fantastically coloured in red and rose.

Day 4. Trek over Alauddin Pass (GPS: 3757m, N39º14’57.0”, E 068º13’40.0”) to Alauddin Lakes. Accommodation in Camp 2 on a glade behind the largest of Alauddin Lakes (GPS: 2786m, N39º14’09.7”, E 068º15’14.6”).
Distance: 7km; approx. 6hrs. Altitude difference: +915m / -971m.

This day we steeply uphill out of juniper forest and pasture through alpine meadows to Alauddin Pass (3,860m). On the way up we see vultures and eagles hovering in the blue sky. We enjoy a bird-eye view of Dushaha Lake and the entire Kulikalon Lake system. From the stony pass saddle impressive views eastwards to Chapdara River valley open up. Left to right, we see snow-&-ice-clad Chapdara Peak (5,050m), Bodhona Peak (5,138m) and Zamok Peak (5070m), a clear-cut pyramid of Kaznok Peak (4200m) and a “bowing head” of Adamtash Peak (4700m). Down in the valley bottom we see a blue speck of Alauddin Lake (in fact, one of two major lakes) varying in colour from lilac to deep turquoise and providing a stunning contrast against the backdrop of the Chimtarga wall. We picnic on the green grassy spot 200m below the saddle near a spring. A steep rocky descent brings us (in 2-3 hours) to our campsite on the glade near the river flowing out of the Alauddin Lake (2,900m). Easy afternoon walk around the lakes is followed by relaxation in tent and more than welcomed dinner. Sweet Tadjik song by our donkey men soothingly fills the air.

Day 5. Ascend to Mutnoje Lakes. Accommodation in Camp 3 on the shore of the lake (GPS: 3490m, N39º11’27.7”, E 068º13’53.0”).
Distance: 7km; approx. 4hrs. Altitude difference: +704m.

We steadily climb up not wide and rather short U-shaped Alaudding River valley. It is surprisingly calm out there. We hear no stone rumbling in the river as there is no river in sight: water is hidden under the three giant dams/steps (ancient moraines) stretching across the valley and obstructing the way. We only hear as wind is rustling and Ulars (Himalaian Snowcocks) waffling there up scree slope under the sheer high rocky valley sides. Towering peaks are looking over us. During the day we enjoy views of Kaznok Peak (4200m), Zamok Peak (5070m), Cherny Peak (5010m), Paygambar Peak (4800m), Energiya Peak (5105m) and dominant Chimtarga Peak (5487m). Sever arctic zone climate conditions, overhanging glaciers, gigantic steep moraines, ice-polished valley sides are the reality of this area. On the way one can see natural phenomena: a rarefied birch grove and a small "Piala Lake" named for its round-shape bottom.
Late lunch on the Mutnoje Lake shore. Camp 3 on the wide dam top of the lake amongst big boulders scattered everywhere.
Most ambitious travellers then may opt for a round walking trip up left-hand side moraine to Kaznok Pass (400m) for a breathtaking panoramic view (+400m; 3km; 4hrs) (or as far as they can reach) while others may prefer to have a walk around the lake or just relax. As sun sets the owners of down stuff (jackets, pants and sleeping bags), at last, can give it a check and appreciate warmth and comfortablility of the gear. As water in the lake is reach in suspended clay particles, it is recommended that travellers avoid drinking raw water (boiled water or tea only). Dimox is proved to be good against altitude sickness and guarantees a good sleep.

Day 6. Ascend to “Camp 4500m” under Chimtarga Pass. Accommodation in Camp 4 (GPS: 4454m, N39º11’19.6”, E 068º12’18.7”).
Distance: 3km; approx. 6hrs. Altitude difference: +964m.

Early wake up gives us rear opportunity of seeing/photographing of surrounding mountains mirror-reflected in the lake... The day is going to be, perhaps, most strenuous and challenging of the entire trek. First we bypass the lake on the right and cross over a stream running down from Chimtarga glacier. The trail takes us straight up to a big white boulder from where we carry on along the glacier. The glacier is notched in small channels carrying water and stones down to bigger streams giving birth to a river. We ascend along the level easy surface of the glacier until the slope steepened. Then we “storm” the extensive and steep scree slope on the zigzag.
Having got to the top, we find some nice level spots among big boulders good for camping at 4500m (the highest camp of the entire trek). Zeravshanskiy Range and Gissarskiy Ranges converge here giving astounding panoramic views and feel of the whole Fan mountain highland in the rays of the setting sun - as our reward for the hard day. Some persons prone to hypertension may feel altitude sickness tonight.

Day 7. Trek over Chimtarga Pass (4780m) and further descend to the Chimtarga river valley. Trek over the Bolshoje Allo lake. Camp 5.
Ascend to Chimtarga Pass (GPS: 4710m, N39º11’21.3”, E 068º11’53.9”) - 1.5km; 1.5h; +256m. Descend to the Chimtarga River valley. Trek over the Bolshoje Allo lake. Camp 5 (3110m; 12km; 7h).

After breakfast you will get acquainted with the Chimtarga pass itself and have opportunity to enjoy the sight of the Fann mountains from its height. The 4,740 m-high Chimtarga Pass is reached within one hour of walking along the simple scree trail. The uppermost bit of 50-60m may, for security reasons, require fixed roping on the snow - depending on general weather conditions of the year. From the both sides of the pass there are Energia and Chimtagra Peaks, and on the opposite side - the peaks of the Mutnoye lakes circle: Pakhamber (4938m), Zamok (5020m), quite far away, on the south there seen the peaks of Hissar ridge and on the North - the peaks of Zeravshan ridge. From the top of the area’s highest pass we see magnificent Fan mountains’ peaks: Bolshaya (Big) Ganza (5,308m), Malaya (Small) Ganza (4,956m), Energiya Peak (5,105m), Moskva Peak (5,046m) and others. Undoubtedly, most of us feel these moments as a climax of the trek.
Then descend to the Chimtarga River valley.
Next we will have two hours trekking along the beautiful and wide valley of the river. And after it you will come up to the big beauty of the region - the Bolshoje Allo lake.
Bolshoje Allo Lake is a real wonder of Fann Mountains and surely one of the most beautiful alpine lakes of the region. You can even swim in this blue reservoir and enjoy the warm sun of Pamir. The lake owes its origin to the gigantic landslide happened in 1916. The path on the downstream side of the dam leads to the enclosed valley of Zindon river (literally meaning "prison" due to extremely tight and narrow gorge sides “imprisoning” water that disappears underground).
Camp 5 on the lake shore (3,110m).

Day 8. Day’s rest on the Bolshoje Allo lake. Walk to the Verhneje Allo lake. Return to Camp 5 (5km; 4h).
Day free for respite, or swimming, or round walking tour up valley to the small Verkhneje (Upper) Allo Lake and big waterfall (3kms; +300m; 3-4hrs).
After breakfast we are going to take only water and the camera. On the way we view the Krasnaja Moskva Peak (5183m), Blok Peak (4508m), Amshut Peak (4840m), Day Peak (4713m), Skalnaja wall Peak (4734m) and neighbouring peaks and glaciers. Verhneje Allo lake is not so big as the Bolshoje one, but it is colder and located higher.
Return to Camp 5.

Day 9. Descend along the Zindon river valley to the valley of Amshut river. Transfer to village of Zimtut.
Descend along the Zindon river valley to the valley of Amshut river (1964m; 10km; 5-6h). Transfer to village Zimtut (or Gazza) - 15km, 30min. Accommodation in a guesthouse.

Downhill along the “imprisoned” (underground) Zindon River valley to the confluence with Amshut River. Past bottleneck, we see interesting natural phenomenon: a water stream rushing out (as if it’s “freed”) from under the giant rocky dam to the surface.
On the way you will see Little Allo, a small emerald-turquoise lake situated in the Zindona Canyon at an elevation of 2,340m above sea level. It is filled with crystal clear water of a strikingly unusual colour!

We introduce ourselves to simple life of Tadjik shepherds, taste their traditional "airan" (kind of yogurt), "round bread" and aroma tea.
We shall go down into the Amshut River Valley, from where we shall be transferred to the village of Zimtut to stay for the night in a guest house.

Day 10. Transfer village Zimtut - Dushanbe (290km, 8h). Overnight in the hotel.
We shall drive from the Fann Mountains to Dushanbe along the Zarafshan River again, this time upstream. At the town of Ayni we shall turn towards the Zarafshan Range and go up the Fandarya River, gradually gaining height as we climb the Anzob Pass (3,373m). On your way there you will have a chance to stop and cast a farewell glance at the rocky peaks of the Zarafshan and Gissar Ranges hiding this wonderful place, the country of amazingly beautiful lakes, rocky mountains with snow-capped summits and variable moraine landscapes decorated with junipers, to which the wind gave bizarre shapes. Towards the evening we shall arrive in Dushanbe.
Overnight at the hotel.

Day 11. Dushanbe. Departure.
Breakfast in hotel. Transfer to airport. Departure.

Please, do not get upset, Pamir region has many other interesting places, which are not familiar to you yet. In any case, if you wish, you can always visit the Fann mountains again, and they will greet you warmly and friendly, as at the very first time!

Route Map

Route map

 

Visa, permits
No visa is required to enter Tajikistan and Uzbekistan for nationals of Russia and some of the CIS countries, however, foreign nationals are required to have a valid foreign passport.
Citizens of the most European and far abroad countries need visas to enter Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. The details on Uzbek and Tajik visa, rules of entry and stay on the territory of these countries you can find here.
To enter the territory of Uzbekistan and Tajikistan the foreign national must have a foreign passport valid for not less than 6 months following the termination date of the tour.
It is also important that before their trip foreign nationals arrange travel medical insurance with coverage of up to $10,000-15,000.
Please note that in order to formalize necessary papers (registration in a local foreign visits registration police department transliterated from Russian as OVVIG; also called OVIR) you should provide us with photocopy of your passport not later than 30 days prior to your arrival.

In case you can’t find the answer to your question on our site, please call our tour operators team for assistance.

ICQ: 411758424 - touroperators of mountain programs and adventure types of tourism.
E-mail: adventure@centralasia-travel.com

 

Optional Excursions & Leisure Activities

Resort in the Pamirs

Countries: Kyrgyzstan.
Tour at the foot of Lenin Peak.
Tour duration: 10 days.

Amateur photographers, journalists, artists, travelers, romantics, bards, the young and the old, who knows no rest in this world, and everyone who has lost themselves - you all are going to get every thing here - the harmony, peace and balance. You are going to absorb all this beauty and feel the grandeur of this land, you will see the world in its new colors, you will be granted with new life energy, and you will get new powerful sources to live - live with fun, live joyfully, learn to be happy every minute of this wonderful stay at our small, single and unique planet - Earth!

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