To the foot of Khan-Tengry peak

Trekking along Inylchek glacier


Tour destinations: Kyrgyzstan, Tien-Shan Mountains View the route map »»
Itinerary duration: 14 days / 14 nights
Tour itinerary: Bishkek – Karkara base camp – Inylchek glacier – Putevodniy glacier – Merzbacher Glade and Lake – Komsomolskiy glacier – Dikiy glacier – South Inylchek Base Camp – Karkara Base Camp – Issyk-Kul Lake – Bishkek

Fixed dates of group tours 2024:

  Group #1.
  Group #2.
  Group #3.

Trekking along Inylchek glacier

Trekking to the foot of the Khan Tengri mountain is a breathtaking adventure in the midst of the tall Tian Shan mountain range:

  • We will ride in a helicopter twice and experience the incredible panoramic views of the mountains from up-high
  • We will walk up the ice kingdom of the Khan Tengri and will see the giant glaciers, including the largest of them – Inylchek
  • We will see a natural wonder up close – the phenomenal “disappearing” lake Merzbacher that is located at the altitude of 3304 meters. The lake is famous for driving into the valley of Inylchek river every year and completely losing all its waters. Later it fills up again and huge ice rocks start floating on its surface again
  • We will travel to the “South Inylchek” base camp located at the altitude of 4100 meters. Two seven-thousand meter peaks can be seen from its territory: Khan Tengri (7010 meters) and the highest mountain of the Tian Shan range – Victory Peak (Pik Pobedy) (7439 meters)

The participants of the tour are traveling lightly and enjoying the beauty of the Tian Shan mountains. All the food and personal belongings (up to 12 kilograms) will be carried by handlers. The program of the tour includes stopping at campsites along the route and our service staff will take care of cooking all the meals: breakfast, lunch, and dinner.



Day 1. Arrival in Bishkek. Transfer Bishkek – Karkara base camp (400 kilometers).
Travel time: 7-8 h; distance: 480 km. Altitude difference: +900 m.
Early arrival in Bishkek, pick-up from Manas International Airport. Transfer to Bishkek. Upon arrival accommodation at the hotel (early check-in is included)
After rest and breakfast transfer to Karkara base camp with a route lying through a scenic Boom gorge and further along the northern shore of Issyk Kul Lake. Lunch en route at a local cafe.
Entering the border zone. Arrival at the Karkara base camp in the evening.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Night at the “Karkara” base camp (altitude: 2200 meters).


On a hot August afternoon you arrive in the capital of Kyrgyzstan. You leave a huge building of the airport "Manas", involuntarily looking out for someone with the placard where your name ought to be flaunted. It would be a true sign that since this moment you need not think about how to get to the hotel, and, in general, what will happen to you onward. Do not worry! The very person with the placard where your name is written, certainly, is waiting for you. He looks out in the motley crowd of newcomers a person with a backpack, dressed obviously not to the standard norms of civilized townspeople. Then we gather our things - of course, everyone in his own guest room! - then in an orderly manner we embus and start off to Karakol, mentally painting the nearest future, choosing the paints depending on whether you are an optimist or a pessimist (there are not so many options). En route we stop over at a small restaurant, where everyone can choose something tasty to stay his stomach, because it is a long day’s journey, one might feel peckish. We will reach Karakol only by the evening.

Day 2. Full day in Karkara Base camp, acclimatization hiking to Chamyn Sai pass (10 kilometers).
Travel time: 3 h; distance: 10 km. Altitude difference: +400 m, -400 m.
Easy hike to the Chamyn Sai passage (altitude: 2700 meters) near the Kyrgyzstan-Kazakhstan border. From the pass you will see the entire Karkara valley, whole Char-Kuduk area and Tup gorge. Along the way you will get to witness the lifestyle of nomads, whose colorful yurts are located along the route.
Return to base camp.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Night at the “Karkara” base camp (altitude: 2200 meters).


Now little by little we switch over to mountainous landscapes because today we shall get to lower reaches of the Inylchek river gorge, where the first stationary camp - C1 is located. That is, though you will station yourself overnight in the mountains, but civilization amenities (almost all) will still surround you. It will manifest itself in warm lodging, hot supper, hospitable personnel of C1 and the radio communication between all stationary camps throughout Inylchek glacier. What advantages? As easy as ABC: you practically need not carry anything: neither a tent, nor utensil, neither gas, nor food! Only personal things you like - clothes, footwear - to whom what is near and dear. Even downy sleeping bag is available for rent, but it depends on your habits.

Day 3. Helicopter flight to Inylchek valley. Trekking to Iva camp (10 kilometers).
Travel time: 3-4 h; distance: 10  km.Altitude difference:+700 m.
Helicopter flight to starting point of the trekking in Inylchek Valley; locals call this place “prizhim”.
Trek up along the valley to the foot of the Inylchek glacier – the largest glacier in all of the Tian Shan mountain range. Along the way you will see the Nansen peak (5690 meters) and the Tuz pass (4001 meters). The discoverer of this area, the German geographer G. Merzbacher called these views some of the most picturesque places in the world.
Arrival to the Iva campsite.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Night at the “Iva” campsite (altitude: 2900 meters).

Inylchek glacier

We start our trek route. The day will not be tiresome since our route is along the riverbank for the present. No ice, no any cracks, only walk up and admire the beauties. On the right of us there is the snow-covered Inylchektay ridge, on the left there is as much the snow-covered Sary-Djazz ridge. Nansen Peak looming up in the distance (5697m) gradually starts to increase in sizes, becoming higher and higher. And here, when it is already impossible to be higher for one, we approach our next shelter - C2. It is the most western edge of Inylchek glacier.

Day 4. Trekking from Inylchek valley to Glina camp (8 kilometers).
Travel time: 5-6 h; distance: 8 km. Altitude difference: +200 m.
Trekking along the lateral moraine of the Inylcheck glacier to the connecting point with the Guiding glacier with Putevodnyi glacier. This day will be more difficult because of the steep ascents and descents. We will try to go through the right slope of the terrace. Please note: there are lots of rockfalls along the trail, it’s better to be very careful. The way goes up and down all the time. Lunch stop at the glacier.
Then, via a narrow trail, we will ascend to another steep terrace. Walk to the Glina campsite  (which means “clay”) because of its location on a green clay field.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Night at the Glina campsite (altitude: 3100 meters).

Inylchek glacier moraines

As you have already guessed - trekking on Inylchek glacier edge starts up just today. From year to year the picture of all these faults and cracks varies, and each time, at the beginning of summer season, guides have to blaze a new trail. We are approaching to the glacier Putevodny (Guiding), sweeping into the Inylchek from somewhere on the right. Here you are again will be welcomed by the personnel and guests of C3 who arrived there a little bit before you.

Day 5. Trekking from Glina camp to Merzbacher meadow (9 kilometers).
Travel time: 5-6 h; distance: 9 km. Altitude difference: +300 m.
Trekking through various terraces. Short lunch stop at the shore of a small lake.
Walkover on the side of the Inylchek glacier through the rocks and crags to the Merzbacher meadow – the last green “oasis” of the route.
This is the location of the science and research station where scientists from all over the world conduct studies and research about the glacier. Next to the meadow is the famous ice Merzbacher lake.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Night at the campsite in Merzbacher meadow (altitude: 3400 meters).

Camp 4

Insidious Inylchek entertains us again with surprises in the form of labyrinths through which our trail makes its way. Not always they cause the attacks of unrestrained joy, but all these are trifles, because there is such a beauty around, and somewhere in the depth of the glacier the river makes noise, breaking through and washing away ice caves and corridors, boils and rushes, divided into the subglacial torrents invisible to eyes. Moving along the trail, which from time to time disappears somewhere, we reach the Mertsbaher glade - C4.

Day 6. Radial hiking to the ice Merzbacher Lake (7 kilometers).
Travel time: 4-5 h; distance: 7 km.
The hike follows through the South Inylchek glacier to the unique ice Merzbacher lake – a natural phenomenon, the most gorgeous mountainous body of water located at the altitude of 3304 meters, at the joining of South and North Inylchek glaciers, between the Tengri-Tag and Sary-Dzhas mountain ranges. The lake has two parts: the Upper and the Lower, which are divided by an ice bridge. Twice a year, in the summer and in the winter, the Merzbacher lake breaks through the ice covers, runs into the Inylchek river, and then fills up again.
Return to the campsite.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Night at the campsite in Merzbacher meadow (altitude: 3400 meters).

Northern Inylchek glacier

This place is very strange and mysterious: it is here where the Northern and Southern Inylchek merge and then slip downwards already under one general name Inylchek. But what is absolutely not clear that how, under what physical law Mertsbaher Lake, functions, being located on the Northern Inylchek: once it is absolutely without water then suddenly it is filled with water violently to edges, then it remains so for some time, and again - as if due to some unknown signal - drops out its glacial waters into the river. All heard about this surprising lake, but few saw it. Today the list who has seen Mertsbaher Lake personally will add your names as well. The whole day is devoted to it and you!

Day 7. Merzbacher Glade – Komsomolskiy Glacier (12 kilometers).
Travel time: 5-6 h; distance: 12 km. Altitude difference: +400 m.
It will be long day of trekking surrounded with beautiful landscapes – snow, rocks and multi-colored ice – black, white and sometimes even striped. Our trek starts on the right side of the terraces and smoothly descends before we reach the Shokalsky glacier. The trail leads to the black moraine that flows out of the Komsomolskiy glacier.
We trek up to the glacier. The terrain is an extremely varied: rivers, crevices, ascents and descents, the hikes around those take much time and energy.
 It will be our first night at the glacier. You will need some warm clothes to put on, as the weather in this part of the glacier gets very cold and windy in evening time.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Night at the “Komsomolskiy” campsite (altitude: 3800 meters).

Camp 5 (3800m)

Yesterday brought new impressions and discoveries, but today we continue moving upwards along the glacier, now it is the Southern Inylchek. Soon, having passed the Shokalsky glacier, leftward of the trek we notice some very high peak. It is Petrovsky peak (5860m). It is just opposite to our next destination will be located - C5 which settled down comfortably under Komsomolets glacier. The nights are getting colder, landscapes are becoming more impressive. But you still feel comfortably and this quite expected feeling!

Day 8. Komsomolskiy Glacier – Dikiy Glacier (10 kilometers).
Travel time: 4-6 h; distance: 10 km. Altitude difference: +100 m.
Trekking in this part of Tien-Shan is absolutely amazing. The area is known for its large number of unnamed and unclimbed peaks about 5000 m above sea level high.
Straight from the camp we traverse the Proletarskiy glacier moraine from the camp, get to the middle of Dikiy glacier moraine and walk along it up to the Dykiy glacier. As you approach the glacier, the moraine becomes flatter, without so many crevices, creeks and, no needs of working around to escape crossing small streams. Lunch break.
We climb straight up in front of the Proletarskiy glacier. Dikiy camp is located behind Pesnya Abaya peak (in 30 minutes). From Dikyi camp you have beautiful view of of the Khan Tengri peak, the Pobeda peak, the Gorky peak, the Chapaev peak, and the Three-Headed peak.
Optionally not difficult ascent to the panoramic place (4300 m) with a beautiful view in good weather.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Night at the campsite (altitude: 3900 meters).

Dikiy (Wild) glacier

Rub your sleepy eyes - you are still in the mountains! It was not a dream, it is quite a reality, and this reality is amazing! We move forward and upwards, overcoming natural obstacles and reinforcing in the thought that we are heroes, and as is known «normal heroes always go detour», this is exactly what we try to do in order to avoid rolling down into some treacherous crevasse. We walk one after another and we reach Dikiy (Wild) glacier where the height already reached almost 4000m, and everyone can feel it.

Day 9. Dikiy Glacier – South Inylchek Base Camp (4 kilometers).
Travel time: 3 h; distance: 4 km. Altitude difference: +100 m.
It will be short trekking day. After breakfast we cross the South Inylchek glacier and till the central moraine where the base camp is located. There are lakes, fractures, ice, and rocks all throughout the path. However, it is possible to cross without any ropes and crampons. We arrive in the Inylchek Base Camp (4100m) and have our lunch, tea/coffee. This is the starting point from which mountain climbers from all over the world begin to climb the two majestic seven-thousand-meter mountains – Khan Tengri peak (7010 meters) and Pobeda peak (7439 meters).

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Night at the “South Inylchek” base camp (altitude: 4100 meters).

Southern Inylchek glacier

The first beams of the cold dawn vigorously make the way into the tents scattered on Southern Inylchek glacier lateral moraine. Breakfast is already served in the comfortable tent, a companion cabin, and all are crawling quietly to the table. After that we collect our things and go ahead. It will not take long to get to the finish point of the trek. When we reach BC, the two well-known and stern giants will decorate our life, or rather its period which shall stay in our memory for ever, of course, and these are Khan -Tengri (7010m) and Pobeda (7439m) peaks.

Day 10. South Inylchek Base Camp. Roundtrip hike to the foot of Khan Tengri mountain (5-6 kilometers).
Travel time: 4-5 h; distance: 5-6 km. Altitude difference: +100 m, -100 m.
Rest at the South Inylchek BC. Optional radial hiking to the foot of Khan Tengri peak.
Khan Tengri peak (7010 meters) – «lord of the sky», a gorgeous pyramid-like peak of the North Tian-Shan with an unbelievable geometric symmetry. It is an incredible experience to take a look at this grand seven-thousand-meter-tall mountain up close!

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Night at the “South Inylchek” base camp (altitude: 4100 meters).

Base Camp Southern Inylchek

There is some category of people who stand in such a mystical awe from the mountains beauty; that they can even burst into tears. Music can affect some people the same way - great, sad, and thrilling. It is impossible to utter a word, simply one want to look at, be silent, and be choked with happy tears. Such emotions become sharp up to a limit at the foot of these tops. This is such a pure and high feeling that it seems as if all your previous life were nothing in comparison with this moment of nirvana. It is comparable with the purest sound, and you hear it, having grown dumb. There comes some spiritual purification, maybe, this way so many imagine Shambala … And it would be desirable that the shy touch to the great secret of this world will not came to an end.

Day 11. South Inylchek BC – Karkara BC – Issyk-Kul Lake.
Travel time: 3 h; distance: 200 km. Altitude difference: -2500 m.
The helicopter flight to Karkara base camp. On arrival to the Base Camp we start drive to the hotel located on the shore of Issyk-Kul lake. Transfer to the northern shore of Issyk-Kul Lake, to the city of Cholpon-Ata. Lunch en route at a local cafe. Also, on the way we visit the ancient petroglyphs of the Scythians and Huns. Across the territory of about 42 hectares, you can see over 1000 rocks with paintings over them, ancient burials, as well as stone circles and ruins of walls. After excursion short transfer to the hotel, accommodation. Dinner at the restaurant on the area of the hotel.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Overnight at the hotel (1600 m).

Southern Inylchek

Mountains are unusually beautiful. And through the window they are even more beautiful. And it is such a pity that snow-covered peaks keep away from us quickly, or vice versa: we become far and far away from this kingdom of eternal snow and eternal truths… So many rebellious thoughts there are in the head… So many sincere words we would like to whisper to someone under blades roar over the head… All of us are the same, but yet we are a bit different now.

In addition Issyk-Kul wave will freshen us in the evening; the lash of the wave will stir up recent memoirs. And one fine day when you wish again to go to the mountains, try to close your eyes and to hear noise of Issyk Kul water, howl of the mountain wind and an a gentle familiar voice of an old friend… And if you are lucky then some time… Some time…

Day 12. Issyk-Kul Lake – Bishkek (270 kilometers).
Travel time: 5-6 h; distance: 270 km. Altitude difference: -800 m.
Transfer to Bishkek. Along the way there will be a visit to the Burana tower nearby the city of Tokmok. Burana Tower (minaret of Buraninsky settlement of the X-XIth centuries) is an archaeological and architectural monument and an important part of Kyrgyzstan cultural heritage. Visit to the site of the ancient stone statues – Balbals. Lunch en route. Continue drive to the capital. Upon arrival accommodation at the hotel. Dinner and overnight at the hotel (800 m).

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Overnight at the hotel (800 m).


Day 13. Bishkek city.
Travel time: 45 min; distance: 30 km.
The sightseeing tour in Bishkek. Visit the the famous Osh bazaar, central Ala-Too Square, flagstaff (and changing of the guard), statue of Lenin and Freedom Monument, Philharmonic Hall, monument to Manas, the main national hero of Kyrgyz people. Transfer to the Victory Square dedicated to the WWII to finish the city tour by short excursion there. Lunch and dinner at a local café/restaurants.

Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.
Overnight at the hotel.


Day 14. Bishkek (departure).
Travel time: 45 min; distance: 30 km.
Transfer to the airport. Departure from Bishkek.

Meals: breakfast.


The cost of the tour (min group size – 4pax)

The cost for 1 person 3200 USD
Single supplement in hotels: +140 USD
Single supplement in tents: +120 USD

This tour is guaranteed and will be arranged whatever final number of persons in a group.

The cost of the tour includes:

  • Accommodation on TWIN/DBL base at hotels and tents – 14 nights.
  • Meals – full board (B - 14, L - 13, D - 13) including cook services during trekking days.
  • Transport services from arrival till departure.
  • Porter services (The packed weight of your trek bag while trekking should be no more than 12 kg of personal belongings. 1kg extra – 12 $ per for the program).
  • Bottled water (1 liter/day/pax) and during trekking part boiled water (please take your flasks 2-3 L).
  • Entrance and ecological fees during all the tour.
  • Border permit to pass Karkara border zone.
  • Guide service.

The cost of the tour does not include:

  • Single supplement in hotels / tents.
  • Meals not included in the program, alcohol beverages.
  • Insurances.
  • Sleeping bags.
  • All airfares.
  • Photo/video fees at museums.
  • Personal expenses, tips, porter fee in hotels.
  • Visa and visa support fee (if necessary).

Each fixed tent camp provides:

  • RED FOX FAMILY tents (four people capacity, but accommodation provided for two persons)
  • TEAM FOX tent: capacity (persons): 10-20 (dining tent).
  • 5-centimeter mattresses and sleeping pads in each Red Fox Family tent.
  • Electricity (generator) runs from 19:00 until 23:00 to charge your phones, tablets and other batteries.
  • Toilet tent and shower tent (for shower we provide small basin and ladle + warm water. Please note that during the bad weather conditions it would be difficult to provide warm water).
  • Tea, coffee, sweets, biscuits etc.
  • Bar for supplement (vodka, wine, cognac, juices etc.).
  • Kitchenware, table, chairs


Location Accommodation Nights
Bishkek city Navat Hotel / B Hotel 3* or similar 3
Karkara BC Base tent camp 2
Iva camp Fixed tent camp 1
Glina camp Fixed tent camp 1
Merzbacher glade Fixed tent camp 2
Komsomolskiy camp Fixed tent camp 1
Dikiy camp Fixed tent camp 1
South Inylchek BC Fixed tent camp 2
Issyk-Kul lake Karven Issyk Kul 4* 1


  • Hotels may change due to the availability. In case of providing another accommodation, the category will stay the same.
  • Some trekking days are subject to change due to the security/weather reasons.
  • Escorting English-speaking guide.
  • Transfer time is approximate, depending on the road/weather conditions.
  • Trekking time is approximate, 5 – 7 hours (10-18 kilometers) per day, depending on the weather and physical condition of a participant.
  • The maximum height can go up to 4 000 m.
  • Lunch boxes will be packed by each participant for lunch after every breakfast during the trekking part of the tour. Variety of ingredients will be provided by the stuff of the camp.
  • Availability of the personal flask highly recommended, as we provide boiled water during the trekking in term to reduce an impact of the plastic.
  • In trekking areas, nights are spent in tents; comfort is rudimentary (no internet access, no air conditioning) and you will have to share the tent with another participant.

Recommended clothes and equipment:

  • Waterproof trekking boots with ankle support
  • Waterproof jacket or rain cape
  • Sunhat or Cap with Ear and Neck Flap Cover
  • Daypack 30 to 40 liters with rain cover
  • Warm hat
  • Sleeping bag (comfort rated -5°C, please ask about temperature)
  • Trekking poles (highly recommended during stream crossings, steep incline or decline)
  • Basic First Aid Kit including: antiseptic and antihistamine cream, throat lozenges, diarrhea treatment (Imodium), painkillers, plasters and blister treatment, insect repellent, and re-hydration salts
  • Sun protection (including total bloc for ears, nose etc.)
  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper
  • Good quality sunglasses
  • Warm gloves
  • Trekking trousers
  • Water bottles 1 litre (x2) (we encourage re-filling water bottles rather than single use plastic)
  • Water purification tablets
  • Selection of dry bags (to keep trek bag contents, laptops, phones dry during trek
  • Lipsticks
  • Headtorch and spare batteries
  • Thermal underwear
  • 1 pair of tennis shoes or shoes for city walking
  • Trainers / sandals for river crossings
  • Socks (1 pair for 2 -3 days of trekking)
  • 1 waterproof overtrousers
  • 1 scarf to cover your hair (during the visits of mosques and churches)
  • Shorts and/or swimwear (camps near lakes, hot springs or rivers)
  • Buff/scarf (to protect against dust and cold)
  • Washbag and toiletries
  • Antibacterial handwash
  • Small towel (fast dry material)
  • Thermarest or similar sleeping mat
  • Pen-knife (remember to pack sharp objects in hold baggage)
  • Repair kit – (eg. needle, thread, duct tape)
  • Ear plugs against river noises, neighbor snoring

On this route will be used the following type of transport (depending on the number of people in a group):

Group Type of transport
Group 1–3 pax "Toyota Sequoia"
Group 4–9 pax "Mercedes-Benz Sprinter"
Group 10–12 pax "Mercedes-Benz Sprinter"



Route Map

Route Map

Map of the trekking part

Map of the trekking


Optional Excursions & Leisure Activities

«Resort in the Pamirs»

Country: 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!

read more

«Tour to Uzbekistan»

Country: Uzbekistan.
Heritage tour of Uzbekistan.
Tour duration: 6 days.

View the route map »»

The Orient is a delicate thing: fine pattern, delicate silk, fine arts, graceful and charming dances… The tour across Uzbekistan called “The Casket of Oriental Adventures” will guide you through the most interesting places of this wonderful country. We understand that you wish to manage seeing the most impressive, eye-catching, important and unique things during your short vacation in order to be able to estimate true worth of magnificent monuments of Samarkand, Bukhara and Khiva, in order to be able to enjoy surrounding nature and its generous gifts!


Photo of the tour:

View all photos »»

Our video gallery:

Trekking to Lake Sary Chelek
Trekking to Lake Sary Chelek
Riding motorbikes through KyrgyzstanRiding motorbikes
through Kyrgyzstan
In an off-road vehicle across Kyrgyzstan
In an off-road
vehicle across Kyrgyzstan
RideThePlanet: Kyrgyzstan WhitewaterRideThePlanet:
Kyrgyzstan Whitewater

View all videos »»

© Material presented by «Central Asia Travel».
Copying and using all presented information and material is possible ONLY by authority of the originator.

to the top »»

Heritage group tours:

Adventure group tours:

Other interesting tours:

Usefull links:




Tour name *

Full name *


Phone number * 


E-Mail * 

Number of

Accommodation on the route:

Preferable form of communication:

Comments, wishes on the program:

Inserting your personal data in this form you give your consent to the processing of your personal data

Book a guided tour


Sightseeing tour name *

Full name *


Phone number * 


E-Mail * 

Number of

Preferable form of communication:

Your comments and suggestions:

Inserting your personal data in this form you give your consent to the processing of your personal data

Send to a friend


Search on the site

Whats new on the site