Gorges and waterfalls of Kulos’ya, Uzbekistan
In my last post I announced a trip to Kulos’ya waterfall. A very interesting name and not quite common for the Uzbek language. I am sure that this is one of the most beautiful and interesting places that I visited.
Kulos’ya is the left tributary of the Kok-Su river and it is quite turbulent and dexterous. Over the years, it has carved winding canyons in the rocks and now there are many small beautiful waterfalls and bathtubs where you can refresh yourself and Kulos’ya Waterfalls is like the cherry on the cake.
In its announcement, the team of [“Mysterious Uzbekistan”](https://gouz.uz) warned that this trip needs good physical shape and will be more difficult than a trip through the Ishak-Kuprik-Say gorge. Well, they were right! :)
According to the already established tradition, we plunged three people into cars and hit the road with already familiar drivers. It has already become customary to go towards the mountains at the weekend. And it would seem - the road has already been studied along and across and mountains, appearing through the foggy haze should also become commonplace ... But no, every time for the first time!
Not a long time ago there was built a new road, which significantly reduces the path to the mountains and now it is possible calmly rush around for less than half an hour. Our route began in a small village and the final point was a waterfall 15 meters high.
At the beginning, the hike was quite simple and we briskly walked along the river bed of the Kulos’yaand admired the surroundings.
Actually, this zone is frontier and special permission is required to visit the territories. We had all the necessary permissions and therefore, seeing a formidable warning sign, we just calmly passed by.
But soon the rocks began to narrow and we entered the gorge. There were no longer paths and we had to enter the water and step up the river bed.
Soon the promised “difficulties” began - I had to climb huge boulders and rocks, using the ropes and all the limbs, and I had to hide the camera and phone in my backpack so as not to wet them. Therefore, I will again borrow photos from the photo report of “Mysterious Uzbekistan”.
Moving from stone to stone, we got to the first waterfall. After standing a little and taking pictures climbed up.
Here I was a little scared - I had to go along a narrow ledge, clinging to a bulging boulder. Considering that I am a quite well-padded guy and there wasn’t enough space on the cornice, so I would have to deviate greatly while passing the ledge. And my backpack was quite weighty. So, I decided not to show off, pulled off my backpack and crawled on my belly under the ledge. Some members of the group also followed my example.
And here, by the way, the guide captured the moment when I tried to get around the ledge ...
Having passed this section, we went on to the second waterfall.
With the second waterfall, I wasn’t very lucky - the sun was either setting behind the clouds, now coming out. And it came at a time when I was trying to take a photo. As soon as I removed the camera, it looked out from behind the clouds and the waterfall shimmered beautifully in the sun. But as soon as I pulled out the camera again, the sun was hiding back behind the clouds. Oh God...
Having bathed in this waterfall, we went up the path to the main point of our journey.
We climbed the steep slope and went to the waterfall. A fairly powerful waterfall, overthrowing from a height of 15-16 meters. We settled down here to rest and got food brought with us.
Rocks covered the sun and the water felt a chill. Therefore, having eaten and having a little rest, I decided to rise a little higher and bask in the sun. And at the same time to photograph the surroundings too.
With my head up, I saw clouds of an unusual shape.
The rest of the group was tired of sitting too, and we went back.
Again on the water ...
... and on the ropes ...
Already on the way to the village, I saw a small paddock where such chickens ran here - I could not make out what kind of birds they were. But it should be noted that the ornithologist of me is so-so...
We got to the cars where drivers were waiting for us. Dressed in dry clothes and went back to Tashkent.
In the mountains, people enjoyed life to the fullest. People had fun as they could - riding a water bike or, for example, paragliding.
Why am I talking in the past tense? Because since 10th of July, quarantine measures have been tightened again in Uzbekistan and travel to the mountains is now again banned. Our number of patients has increased – over 400 people are detected every day. In less than two weeks, the number of patients jumped from 4,000 to 11,000. Yesterday there was an anti-record - 5 people died in one day. The healthcare system is on the verge of collapse and officials acknowledge this. Therefore, so that the Ministry of Health did not choke at all, the government was forced to again introduce strict restrictive measures. And this means that the mountains are again closed for me. Very, very sorry. This week I planned a three-day trip to the unbelievableglacial lakes - lakes that are located at an altitude of about 3000 meters and covered with ice even in the hottest time of the year. Incredibly, in Tashkent the temperature is about 40 degrees of Celsius, and just a couple of hundreds kilometers far from the city there are lakes along which ice floes float and everything is covered with snow!
A small sip of freedom lasted just a little less than a month and a half, but I managed to ride a little too. Well, now there will be time to sort the photos and publish a couple more posts - about my third ascent to the Greater Chimgan and a trip to the picturesque Ispay-Say gorge.
I hope that from the 1st of August, government will again make relief in quarantine and we will have time to break out to these lakes. In the meantime, welcome back to self-isolation…