Today I would like to share with you a fascinating story about most interesting lakes of Kyrgyzstan. I’m quite sure that you heard before about Issyk-Kul, but Kyrgyzstan has a lot to offer, it has more than two thousand mountain lakes! Among them there is one, the most unusual, Central Asian very own Dead Salt Lake, just like the one at Israel and Big Salt Lake in North America!
Road to lake
It is fascinating that two lakes, Tuz-Kol and Issyk-Kul are so close to each other but don’t connect. But actually Issyk-Kul is a source of water supply for its elder brother that lies just 500 meters away. Tuz-Kol hides from curious eyes behind high hills and only at the top of them you’ll see the spherical lake with thousand meters long and half of it wide. This is the Dead Lake.
It doesn’t seem ‘dead’, it looks actually very attractive
Road to lake
Our journey began in the evening, when we just left the city Balykchi. We weren’t quite good with our timing and we had to nail 70 km on the road and 15 deep into barrens when it became dark and windy. Our car lights wasn’t strong enough to reveal something beneath several meters in front of a car. It was so dark that every hill and bush turned for us into a big, hideous figure, moving slowly on the edge of our eyes. But when we looked high into the sky, we felt much better, because stars were shining like they were cleaned up by the sky cleaner earlier this day and placed back.
Yurts on the shore of Issyk-Kul
But now we were still lost and worried in the dark. We followed road but it seems that it was stretching much further that yurt camp by the dead lake and eventually we turned back, slowly seeking the right turn.
– Oh, here it is! – we shouted in awe when finally found the lights of a yurt camp with open doors, inviting us to rush in.
Yurts on the shore of a dead lake
I still don’t know how exactly we managed to get lost, but we surely got our portion of adventures! When we tried to find a field, where we took our hard turn, we don’t found the trails of our tires! Probably it was some sort of local mystery, huh?
Sunset on the lake
In early morning everyone was prepared to meet sunset. Nobody wanted to miss such opportunity, because it is different, when you meet a sunset in the city and in nature, when sun slowly rises behind mountains and reflects in the calm waters of lake.
Behind Tuz-Kol we found another tiny lake that appeared recently. It seems that this region can give birth to many lakes…
When we found the second lake, we started take the question of their origin seriously. It seems that the source of that lakes is Issyk-Kul, who supplied them initially after a high tide and now is still connected with them via underground waters. This is one of the theories how Dead Lake of Issyk-Kul appeared here in 2001.
People come here specifically to enjoy this mud
Lake has a final, third name, Black lake, which resembles a large deposits of mud with similar to clay structure enriched with variety of minerals. You can also meet here green and even blue mud. It is believed that it carries unique healing properties and people scavenge this area in summer and try to carry away with them as much mud as it is possible.