Muztagh Ata Ski Touring

Classic route to the Summit is possible to call "easy" because you do not need any technical climbing. We offer a classic way to Muztagh Ata from the Northern Slope. Main dangers on the route can be a result of high altitude, strong winds above six thousand meters and crevices.

Program starts from Bishkek. All members of the expedition gather at the office of Asia Mountains company, meet up with a our group leader of the program. And then you will drive to Kahgar (China). Those climbers who will arrive to China will join the group in Kashgar. Muztagh Ata became popular not among climbers but also among skiers. It is possible to reach the Summit by skis. And make a fantastic descent from 7546m.  

Best time for ski touring is the beginning of the season when slopes are covered with a deep snow. 

Group: 08.06 - 02.07.2015 (min 10 people)

Name and location

The name Muztagh Ata means “Father of Ice Mountain” in the local Uygyr language and it is easy to understand how it got its name as it completely dominates its surroundings. It's not only a high peak; it's also large in terms of the circumference of the base. Its glaciated summit looms about four kilometers over the beautiful Subashi Valley and the deep blue Karakol Lake completes the picture. 
There has been a debate about exactly which range the peak belongs to, but nowadays most consider it to mark the western end of the mighty Kunlun Shan Range, however small minority would still place Muztagh Ata in the Pamirs. The sub-range it belongs to is called Kongur Shan, which refers to its higher neighbor a bit further north. Muztagh Ata is the third highest peak in the Kunlun, second to Kongur.


Climbing History

The first recorded attempt to climb the peak dates back to 1894 by the famous explorer and cartographer Sven Hedin who first tried to ascend on the back of a yak. The yak died and Hedin continued on foot towards the summit. He failed and so did other expeditions in 1900, 1904 and 1947. The last was lead by famous and experienced climbers Bill Tilman and Eric Shipton. They got close to the summit but had to turn back due to deep snow and extreme cold. Muztagh Ata was finally climbed by a huge Soviet-China team in 1956. Beletskiy was the formal leader and they ascended via the west ridge.

Routes in brief

There are two routes on the western side of the peak. 
The classic route, located on the northern-most of the two snow and glacier-covered slopes of Muztagh Ata is a fairly straightforward climb without any technically difficult sections. There is an icefall in between 5500 m and 6100 m as well as some crevasses, but in general this route is free of objective danger.
On the more southern slope on the west side of the peak, you can find the much less used Traditional Route. It is slightly longer, but equally easy. Some say the crevasse danger is lower, but as it is used by far less climbers, route finding can be a concern. It passes just under Muztagh Ata's south summit Kalaxong, therefore many use the name "Kalaxong Ridge Route".
These two routes are never steep, perhaps only up to an angle of 40 degrees. Snow shoes or skis are recommended as you usually have to battle deep snow.


Duration: 25 days
Location: Xinjiang, China, Asia
Altitude: 7546 m 
Lat/Lon: 38.20000°N / 75.10000°E
Best time: June-September 


Days Program Accommodation 


Day 1 Bishkek. Manas International airport. Transfer to Naryn city. Guest house  B/L/D
Day 2 Transfer from Naryn to Torugart pass and further to Kashgar (China). Hotel B/L/D
Day 3 Transfer from Kashgar to Subashi village Yurts B/L/D 
Day 4 Trekking from Subsahi to the Base camp at Muztagh Ata peak. Tents B/L/D 
Day 5-20 Climbing activity. Ascent of Mustagh-Ata mount. Tents B/L/D
Day 21 Trekking from the Base camp to Subashi. Transfer to Kashgar. Hotel B/L/D
Day 22 Kashgar Hotel B/L/D
Day 23 Transfer from Kashgar to Torugart pass, further to Naryn (Kyrgyzstan).  Guest house B/L/D
Day 24 Transfer to Bishkek. Hotel B/L/D
Day 25 End of the program.  -------  

Duration: 25 days
Location: Xinjiang, China, Asia
Altitude: 7546 m 
Lat/Lon: 38.20000°N / 75.10000°E

Fix date: 08.06 - 02.07.2015 (min 10 people)


Day 1: Arrival in Bishkek. Rest. Afternoon transfer to Naryn. Accommodation in Guest House or Yurt camp.

Day 2: Transfer to the Torugart Pass, crossing the Kyrgyzstan-China border. Hotel accommodation.

 Day 3: Transfer to Kashgar/Subashi (200 km bus ride lasting approximately 4-5 hours), we will drive along the Karakorum highway winding for several hours through the narrow gorge of the Gez River then ascend to an altitude of 3900 m by the shores of KARAKUR LAKE, 196 km from Kashgar. Horses, yaks and camels graze on the rich pasturage. Accommodation in tents or yurts.

Day 4: Trekking to base camp. In the morning we drive 10km to Subashi to meet our camels and start the hike to base camp. With the camels carrying the team's equipment, we trek over a level plane and then climb steadily through barren hills to the base camp, which is approximately a 4-hour walk. Drifts of alpine flowers cover the slopes as we approach our destination and the local marmots can often be heard calling out a welcome. Camping overnight.

Day 5-20: Climbing and acclimatization in case of bad weather. Period for climbing of Muztag-Ata, which requires building and supplying three high camps. Meals are provided only at the base camp, however if climbers choose to go further they will need to bring their own food. 

Day 21: Base Camp/Subashi/Kashgar (Trekking+Bus). In the morning we will go down to Subashi, again our gear will be taken by camels. At Subashi our transport to Kashgar will already be waiting and we will arrive there in early evening. Hotel accommodation. 

Day 22: Kashgar. City tour at Kashgar, last day of the expedition. Our tour includes the tombs of Abakh Hoja Tomb, well-known Kashgar Bazaar, the famous Mosque and the most unique old town with typical Uyghur styled homes. We visit the various shopping alleys full of noodle shops, bakeries, teashops, blacksmiths and carpenters.  

Day 23: Kashgar/Torugart Pass (BUS). After breakfast, drive to the Torugart Pass; crossing the China-Kyrgyzstan border. Transfer to Naryn, guest house or yurt accommodation.

Day 24: Transfer Naryn - Bishkek. Accommodation in hotel.

Day 25: Transport to airport, flight home.


Useful information

1. Necessary documents
International passport, valid for more than 6 months at the day of the expedition’s end.
Special medical insurance for alpinists. 

2. Visas
If necessary “Asia Mountains” company will send you visa support. Each reaveler should get his or her own visa in their homeland.

3. Terms of accommodation
In Bishkek – “Asia Mountains” hotels, twin rooms.
In Naryn – guest house, rooms for 2-3persons or your camping (1 yurt for 2-4 persons).
In Kashgar – 3-star hotel, twin rooms.
In Subashi village – yurts (1 yurt for 8 persons).
In Base camp – twin tents.

4. Nutrition
Nutrition according the program. All meals are included except during any climbing higher than the base camp in which case climbers must bring their own food. 

5. Service staff
Expedition leader from “Asia Mountains” company
Chinese liaison officer
Cooks from China
Kitchen staff from China

6. Medicine
Attention! Special alpine medical insurance for each a necessary condition of participation in any of our expeditions. Tour leaders will have a group first-aid-kit, but you should also have any necessary personal medication. We recommend you to start taking vitamins a month before the expedition.

7. Weather
Weather in area of Muztagh Ata peak is stable. In upper camps however strong snowfalls are possible. In July snow falls even in base camp. We will keep you informed about weather during the ascent.

8. Possible additional expenses
Single accommodation in the cities.
Additional nights in the hotel in Kashgar or Bishkek.
Individual jeep from the base camp to Kashgar (if you finish the expedition earlier than planned).
Jeep Kashgar-Bishkek (also case of early ending of expedition)
Tips for personnel
Individual guide for the period of expedition is Euro 2,500 (including air tickets, visas, personal equipment, and wages for the expedition)

9. Recommended equipment 
High-altitude tent
High-altitude dishes for cooking in camps higher than the base camp
Crampons (for example Grivel G12)
Back pack (approximately 40-50 liters)
Climbing harness – better Petzl or Black Diamond with wide lower straps
Safety system
Carabiner with clutch – 3-4 pieces
Telescopic trekking sticks
Thermos for hot tea
Release device –“eight” type
Ice axe
Snowshoes or skis for ski tour
Helmet lamp
Video camera and accessories
Storage battery

10. Clothes & shoes
Trekking shoes
Plastic mountaineering boots
Downy jacket and pants (better snow suit)
Gore-Tex jacket with big hood
Gore-Tex pants
Windblock jacket
Windblock pants
Polartex jacket-100 – 2
Thermo underwear – 2 kits
Personal underwear
Polartex gloves – 2 pairs
Mittens – 2 pairs
Warm woolen socks – 4-5 pieces
Balaclave helmet or ski mask
Warm hat
Face mask (windblock)
UV glasses
Ski goggles (preferable)



 Price: Bishkek - Bishkek 3350 USD per person

 Price Kashgar - Kashgar 3100 USD per person

 Fixed date: 08.06 - 02.07.2015 (min 10 people)

Price includes:

1.  Formalities and permit to climb the summit
2.  Communication officer in the base camp
3.  Accommodation and meals in the base camp during the expedition
4.  Transfers: Bishkek - Naryn - Torugart - Kashgar - Subashi - and back
5.  Hotel accommodation (based on TWN rooms) and yurt camps according the program  
6.  Meals according the program
7.  Porters and camels from Subashi to the base camp and back
8.  Complete kitchen equipment incl. kitchen tent , mess tent ,tables, stools, a mess kit, gas stoves and a cooking set, etc.
9. Tent in the base camp for the period of expedition
10. Visa support if necessary 


Price excludes:

1. Visa 
2. All changes during the program (extra transfers, extra days in towns or base camp)
3. Equipment for climbing higher than the Base camp (high altitude tents, high altitude food)
4. Porters for climbing period
5. Single supplement is 145 USD/ per person
6. Excursions, which are not listed
7. Extra meals and alcoholic drinks
8. Accommodation for any extra days in Bishkek or Kashgar, which are not included in the program 
9. Personal guide for ascending is 2000 USD +  cost of the program Kashgar-Kashgar
10. Personal equipment (sleeping bags, shoes, snowshoes, and etc)


***In the case that tourists have decided to finish their expedition earlier, payment for any unused days at the base camp is non-refundable. Additionally they will also have to pay for their transfer from base camp back to Bishkek, accommodation and nutrition in the cities.