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CENTRAL ASIAN STUDIES - ALL LEVELS  / KYRGYZ SUMMER ADVENTURE - ALL LEVELS
30.07.2014


Kygyz_Summer_Adventure

 
Related Information:
  Bishkek
  London-School
  Included in program cost:
Culture
  Bishkek-Guide
  You Might Also Like
Sib-Summer-Adventure

There are many reasons to experience Kyrgyzstan and learn more about its people, history, and culture. From its position as America's strongest ally in the economically and militarily important Central Asia region to the opportunity it offers for outdoor adventure and inexpensive travel, we believe Kyrgyzstan is an oft-overlooked destination for study abroad.

Kyrgyz Summer Adventure offers intensive Russian language training and a one week trek through the gorgeous mountains of Kyrgyzstan on horseback, practicing the language. Students can choose three weeks of language training or, for a better value, a full nine weeks. Students will also learn more about local history, culture, and food through a variety of guest speakers and workshops.

Kyrgyz Summer Adventure is perfect for students of anthropology, language, area studies, history, or even international relations. It's also perfect for anyone with an outdoorsy spirit who would like to gain Russian language skills this summer while doing something that will generate incredible stories and memories from your time riding, hiking, and engaging with locals in the mountains of Central Asia. See the sample itinerary below and prepare to get excited.

- Dates and Costs -

Summer, 2015:
Cost: $3,695
June 22 - July 19, 2015

Application deadline: April 15, 2015

Semester Options:
See
Central Asian Studies

  

Start-Application
FAQ Frequently asked
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*Cost includes tuition, dormitory stay, cultural program, 7-day trek on horseback (all meals included), health and accident insurance, pre-departure materials, local orientation, round-trip airport transfers, and SRAS in-country support. Tuition allows for 60 hours language (Russian and/or Kyrgyz), and six hours Introduction to Central Asia (history, economics/politics, culture). Dates and availability subject to change. Contact SRAS for details and/or customizations. All prices are subject to change without notice.


Sample Intinerary
 Horse Trekking through Central Asian Mountains 

Kyrgyz Summer Adventure combines intensive Russian language study in Bishkek with one week of horse-trekking. There is ample time to practice the conversational skills you will have learned so far during the trek.

During the three weeks in Bishkek, an excursion program will be provided which may include include excursions to Ala-Archa National park, the Burana Tower (a IXth century minaret), Song Kul Lake and the petroglyphs on the north shore of Lake Issyk-Kul. Cultural components in Bishkek could include a night at the opera, Soviet historical monuments, the nearby Manas-Aili museum, and Kyrgyz oral poets. All of this is subject to scheduling conditions at the time of study.

Students will also experience a range of guest speakers who may discuss subjects such as Kyrgyzstan's experience under the USSR, ancient Kyrgyz culture, modern social issues, etc. Students will also experience the local cuisine by learning to prepare it themselves while discussing its place in Kyrgyz history and culture.

Below is a basic description of the trek that students usually take. The length of the trek can be stretched on either end so contact us for the final itinerary. Sometimes, it also takes a day to teach students to get used to riding horses in mountain conditions. The itinerary for the horse-trek is subject to change based on weather and other conditions.

The sturdy Kyrgyz horses are not difficult to ride, saddles are comfortable and horses provide a leisurely way to see more of the natural beauty of the area. 

Daytime activities are plentiful and varied. Go for a hike, play cards, learn the Kyrgyz version of "Duck, duck, goose", or find a beautiful spot and enjoy the view. In the mountain valleys, it's possible to see the occasional mountain sheep and hear the high-pitched screech of marmots. Watch eagles soar overhead and enjoy the fresh aroma of mountain flowers. Savor it, for once you are back in the bustle and heat of Bishkek, you’ll surely miss it.

Sample Itinerary for 7-day Horse Trek Through Kyrgyzstan

This 7 day horse-trek through At Jailoo and Kum Bell Passes crosses impressive mountain passes and journeys into a region that has seen little change in centuries. Yurts litter the valley floor like giant white mushrooms. Herds of horses wander freely, flocks of sheep and goats graze with watchful eyes as you pass. It's a journey filled with spectacular natural beauty and the occasional unexpected challenge.

Day 0 Friday
14:30 Leave Bishkek
18:30 Arrive at beach camp
19:00 Dinner at beach camp or in a yurt with a local family
Relax and be prepared for the beginning of the trek for the next day.

Day 1
8:00 Breakfast at beach camp, then drive to the base camp
9:00-10:00 Training (horse riding practice, practice putting up the tents)
10:00–11:00 Packing belongings into saddle bags
11:00 TREK BEGINS! 
12:30 Lunch at Konur Olen River
18:00 Night at Momo mountains

Trekkers rest at camp in the mountains of KyrgyzstanDay 2
7:00 Wake up
7:30 Breakfast
8:00 Begin the trek towards Orolmo mountains
12:00 Lunch at Orolmo mountains (visit local shepherds’ yurts)
18:00 Night at Sai Alachuk mountains

Day 3
7:00 Wake up
7:30 Breakfast
8:00 Begin the trek towards At Jailoo
12:00 Lunch at Kum Bell Pass
18:00 Night at Ichke - Tor

Scenic views from Kyrgyz trekkingDay 4
7:00 Wake up
7:30 Breakfast
8:00 Trek from Ichke Tor mountains towards Kichi Angi
12:00 Lunch at Kichi Angi
18:00 Night at Kichi Angi Lake (there is a lake at the top of mountains)

Day 5
7:00 Wake up
7:30 Breakfast
8:00 Trek from Kichi Angi towards Chong Angi
12:00 Lunch at Chong Angi
18:00 Night at Sary Tor (Yellow Top)

Packed and   ready for Kyrgyz Trekking!Day 6
7:00 Wake up
7:30 Breakfast
8:00 Trek from Saru Tor towards Kok Sai mountains
12:00 Lunch at the edge of Kok Sai
18:00 Night near the Kok Sai Pass

Day 7
7:00 Wake up
7:30 Breakfast
8:00 Trek from Kok Sai to Toguz Bulak
13:00 Lunch at local shepherds house or beach camp
14:00 Depart for Bishkek

Trekking   through KyrgyzstanTips for Riders and Trekkers

  1. Be prepared for all weather, including rain and even snow (yes, even in the summer months). Bring waterproof clothing (jacket, pants, and boots). Store extra clothing in plastic bags. It is very important to have dry clothing for camp. You'll be provided with a detailed packing list before your departure to Kyrgyzstan.
  2. The sun is very strong here. Bring a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Again, you'll be provided with a detailed packign list.
  3. Bring any extra snacks or treats you require. Dried fruit is readily available in Bishkek and a good source of quick energy. 
  4. Tea is the drink of choice here, and it may be less caffeinated than what you're used to. If this might be a concern to you, consider bringing your own instant coffee. Instant coffee is readily available in Bishkek.

Food
The guide prepares the food:
Breakfast: hot drinks, bread, cheese, jam, dried fruits
Lunch: is a picnic and consists of bread, tea, cheese, cold meat, and chocolate.
Dinner: hot soup, meat, pasta, salad, rice, cheese, dried fruits, chocolate, hot drinks

More on SRAS Programs in Central Asia


Study Russian and Kyrgyz in Kyrgyzstan!

There are many reasons to experience Kyrgyzstan and learn more about its people, history, and language. From its position as America's strongest ally in the economic and militarily important Central Asia region to the opportunity it offers for outdoor adventure and inexpensive travel, we believe Kyrgyzstan is an oft-overlooked destination for study abroad.

This program is hosted at the London School in Bishkek. It is cooridated on the basis of SRAS's RSL program. Students must sign up for a minimum of one month, but may increase that study time by one week increments. Come when you want, stay as long as you want! Available year-round. Students may reallocate RSL hours to the study of the Kyrgyz language, history, and/or culture. How many hours you reallocate is up to you.

Kyrgyz Summer Adventure
This programs packages intensive three weeks of Kyrgyz and/or Russian language training and one week of touring the countryside of Kygyzstan on horseback, practicing the language. See below for sample itinerary.

Students interested in custom arrangements in Kyrgyzstan should contact SRAS.

Questions about study in Russia?
 I have questions about...

 

Program Sessions and Costs

Kyrgyz Focus
Semester, Year, Custom, or Summer
 

This program is formed on the basis of an RSL program and includes all services and materials as listed there. Students may reallocate any or all of the 20 academic hours of tuition to the study of Kygyz and/or Kyrgzstan. 

 

Summer Adventure: June 27 - July 22, 2011** (Apply by March 31, 2011)
Cost: $2 995

Includes tuition, home stay with half board in Bishkek, cultural program, 7-day trek on horseback (all meals included), health and accident insurance, pre-departure materials, local orientation, round-trip airport transfers, and SRAS in-country support.  Tuition allows for 60 hours language (Russian and/or Kyrgyz), and six hours Introduction to Central Asia (history, economics/politics, culture).

 

**Dates and availability subject to change. Contact SRAS for details.

***All prices are subject to change without notice.

MISSED THE DEADLINE?     Contact SRAS about late submissions.

 

Trekking   through KyrgyzstanA Summer Adventure!
Sample Intinerary for Kyrgyz Summer Adventure

The Kyrgyz Summer Adventure Program combines three weeks of intensive language study in Bishkek and one week of horse-trekking. There is ample time to practice the conversational skills you will have learned so far during the trek.

During the three weeks in Bishkek, an excursion program will be provided which may include include excursions to Ala-Archa National park, the Burana Tower (a IXth century minaret), Song Kul Lake and the petroglyphs on the north shore of Lake Issyk-Kul. Cultural components in Bishkek could include a night at the opera, Soviet historical monuments, the nearby Manas-Aili museum, and Kyrgyz oral poets. All of this is subject to scheduling conditions at the time of study.

Below is a basic description of the trek that students usually take. Obviously, the length of the trek can be stretched on either end, but in this configuration we had one day of rest at the end to allow participants to unwind. Sometimes, it also takes a day to teach students to get used to riding horses in mountain conditions. The itinerary for the horse-trek is subject to change based on weather and other conditions.

The sturdy Kyrgyz ponies are easy to ride, saddles are comfortable and horses provide a leisurely way to see more of the natural beauty of the area. 

Daytime activities are plentiful and varied. In the mountain valleys, it's possible to see the occasional mountain sheep and hear the high-pitched screech of marmots. Watch eagles soar overhead and enjoy the fresh aroma of mountain flowers. Savor it, for once you are back in the bustle and heat of Bishkek, you’ll surely miss it.

Packed and   ready for Kyrgyz Trekking!Sample Itinerary for 7-day Horse Trek Through Kyrgyzstan

This 6 -7 day horse trek into the Kara Goman Valley crosses 2 impressive mountain passes and journeys into a region that has seen little change in centuries. Yurts clot the valley floor like giant white mushrooms. Herds of horses wander freely and flocks of sheep and goats graze here. It's a journey filled with spectacular natural beauty and the occasional unexpected challenge.

Day 1
Stay at the jailoo (pasture). Learn basics of mountain horse-riding, visit local yurts and learn about Kyrgyz customs. Often, this first day involves both physical and cultural training.

Day 2
The trail ascends abruptly from the yurt camp above Koltor village, presenting an immediate challenge for those still getting used to a horse and saddle. The agile horses delicately pick their way up the steep slope, zigzagging back and forth to soften the grade. A one hour climb brings you to the first pass, which offers an impressive view down to the tidy villages below and a broad view of giant lake Issyk-Kul in the distance. The trail follows the ridges parallel to the lake valley and finally descends to cross the Konur Olen River as we head south slightly, west into the mountain foothills. Camp tonight on the banks of the Big River.

Day 3
Wakeup call is at 6 a.m to allow time for washing, packing, and breakfast. If all goes well, we depart from the camp around 8 a.m. It's a steady but gradual 3-hour climb over rocky terrain toward the wall of mountains at the head of the valley. The actual ascent to the pass is done on foot with the horses being led up the steep trail, take your time – place yourself and go slowly. The air is thinner up here. Weather can often deteriorate in the early afternoon so it's a good idea to get up and over as quickly as possible but the view from the pass (approx 3975m) is spectacular in any weather. The descent is steep toward a glacial lake set at the base of a massive ice and rock wall. Tonight's camp is on the banks of the Karakudzhur River in a valley lush with vegetation.

Trekkers rest at camp in the mountains of KyrgyzstanDay 4
A full day of riding through vast landscapes. There are occasional reminders of civilization, a dirt road, power lines, even a rock crushing plant and the rare automobile. But it is easy to avoid these and most of the day is posed in solitude watching eagles soar, listening to the whistle of marmots and  savoring  the sweet scent of wild flowers. Tonight's camp overlooks a fertile jailoo (pasture) with yurts dotting the view and a line of snow-capped peaks in the distance.

Day 5
Another long ride. Travel up the Kara Goman Valley, and witness spectacular views and rewarding landscapes. It you're lucky the wind will be at your back all day. Herds of yak live here and you may get the opportunity to get up close and personal! It's possible to walk for a while today if you need to stretch out other muscles. We head east now, back toward the final pass. Camp tonight on the banks of the Bolkeart River in a field of forget-me-nots.

Day 6
Today is a challenge, the last high pass and the long descent to our final destination. As a brief way-point, we may stop at a hot spring which lies at the point where the trail begins its ascent. If there is no crowd you might have the opportunity to soak for a while. However, again, afternoon weather can create unexpected storms so it's a good idea to cross the pass early. This ascent isn't as steep but it is longer, over rocky terrain with some exposure. If it has snowed recently, progress is slow since snow obscures the trail and the horses pick their way carefully. The final approach in a series of long switch backs, fairly easy on foot or horseback.

Scenic views from Kyrgyz trekkingThe three hour ascent brings you to the top, with mountains in every direction and two glacial lakes at your feet. The lush green valley is far below. It's a steep descent and even more challenging than those before. There may be accumulated snow, but soon you are riding through familiar pasture toward Tarra Su. The will be opportunities to walk again along the dirt track leading to the village. It's a long way down to the village and it is possible to have a car pick up weary riders and gear. Tonight may be spent in a guest house or yurt.

Tips for Riders and Trekkers.

  1. Be prepared for all weather, including rain and even snow (yes, even in June). Bring waterproof clothing (jacket, pants, and boots). Store extra clothing in plastic bags. It is very important to have dry clothing for camp.
  2. Tents and sleeping bags are provided as are horse-packs (instead of backpacks). Sometimes students prefer to bring their own sleeping bags, but temperatures at the camp-sites rarely drop below freezing.
  3. Bringing a water filter or purification tablets is recommend. Drinking water is provided daily, but you will find your appetite for water will be higher than normal. We recommend packing two Nalgene bottles for extra water throughout the day.
  4. The sun is very strong here. Bring a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen lotion.
  5. Bring any extra snacks or treats you require. Dried fruit is readily available in Bishkek and a good source of quick energy. If you need coffee make sure, bring your own. Tea is the drink of choice here. Instant coffee is readily available in Bishkek. If you want ground, you might bring it from America.
  6. Horsemen use string and leather cord to tie to the horses. Good straps may help avoid excess wear on your gear so bring them if you have them. "Kurgun" bags can be secured to a horse easier than a backpack.

Food
The guide prepares the food:
Breakfast: hot drinks, bread, cheese, jam, dried fruits
Lunch: is a picnic and consists of bread, tea, cheese, cold meat, and chocolate.
Dinner: hot soup, meat, pasta, salad, rice, cheese, dried fruits, chocolate, hot drinks



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