From Issyk-Kul to Naryn via Orto Syrt Jailoo (6 days)
Duration: 8 days
Level of Difficulty: Moderate (2 passes above 3 800 m)
Best season: July – August
Accommodation: Overnights in tents or shepherd’s yurt
Group size: best size from 1 to 6
Requirements: trekking boots, weatherproof warm clothing, hat, sleeping bags with mats….leeping bag
The Jailoos are the pastures where Kyrgyz shepherds tend their flocks in the summer. For the most local experience, approach the mountain valley Orto-Syrt and Bokonbay village in Issik-Kull region via Tong Pass, moving from jailoo to jailoo and staying with shepherd families in remote meadows far off the beaten path. Enjoy homemade jam, fresh cream, bread still warm from the oven, and the best kymyz (fermented mare’s milk) around.
Itinerary: Bokonbay village – Tong Pass (4 016 m) – Orty Syrt Valley – Jakbolot Pass (3 841 m) – Eki-Naryn – Naryn town
Day 1: Early morning transportation from Bokonbay village towards Tong mountain range: to the small village Tuura Suu where you will meet your guide team and start trekking to Kok Bulak Jailoo. Arrival having lunch, continue the trek. Dinner and accommodation in the first shepherd’s yurt. Transport Bokonbay – Tuura Suu 30 min. Trekking time is around 3-4 hours.
Day 2: After breakfast walk up along Kok-Bulak river to Tong Pass. Spend the morning summiting Tong Pass (4 016 m), over the Terskey Mountain range and into the Orto Syrt mountain valley (over the 3 000m). Picnic on the top of the pass and walk down to the old sanatorium place where you can have a hot spring bath. Dinner and overnight in tent. Trekking time is 6-7 hours
Day 3: Next morning continue the trekking into the Jyluu Suu gorge to Orto Syrt valley. Reach Keruu Jailoo where you are welcomed by a local shepherd as an honorable guest in his yurt. Lunch/Dinner and B&B in the yurt camp. Trekking time 3-4 hours
Day 4: After fresh breakfast from the Shepherd’s yurt head to the West along the strong mountain river “Balgard” to the place ”Kuzgun Uya”. Overnight in tent. Trekking time 5-6 hours
Day 5: Next day start to the southern part of the Orto Syrt valley, where the jailoos belong to Naryn region. On the way stop for lunch in Naryn shepherd’s yurt. Walk up to Jakbolot pass to sleep at the foot of the pass Jakbolot in the tent. Trekking time 6-7 hours
Day 6: Cross the Jakbolot pass (3 841m) and reach Keng-Say Jailoo where you will stay in next shepherd’s yurt or tent. Picnic on the way, dinner and breakfast in shepherd’s tent. Trekking time 6-7 hours
Day 7: After breakfast walk dawn to the valley Eki-Naryn to the Jailoo “Chyrpykty” where you will overnight in a shepherd’s yurt. Trekking time 6-7 hours
Day 8: After breakfast spends some time enjoying refreshing and well-earned rest at the Chyrpykty jailoo. Watching and/or participation in everyday life of shepherds: milking mares; making national milk products like kymyz (a fermented mare’s milk) or airan (a sour dense milk product); tending cattle. Eat a delicious lunch here and transfer to Naryn city 2-3 hours driving. End of the trek.