Everything you need to know about touring and skiing in Jyrgalan, the ultimate winter destination in Kyrgyzstan for skiers, snowboarders and mountain lovers.
If you’ve ever daydreamed about carving down untracked slopes, bouncing out of bottomless powder and cutting lap after lap on first ascents, all while being in a remote part of the world that very few skiers or snowboarders have ever heard of, then it’s time to book a flight to Kyrgyzstan.
Having spent weeks and months snowboarding and skiing in Kyrgyzstan myself, along with Jarryd the co-founder of this travel site on his own adventures to his favourite country, I can attest to just how awesome it really is here.
While this Central Asian country is already off the beaten track, for a real unique backcountry skiing and freeriding experience, you can’t miss a little town hidden in the peaks called Jyrgalan.
Jyrgalan is an old Soviet Coal mining village in the far East of Kyrgyzstan, at the foothills of the Tian Shan mountains.
It’s perhaps best known as a summer destination, serving as a base for hiking, mountain biking, and horse riding.
However, it is also growing in popularity as a winter destination due to its amazing backcountry skiing opportunities.
READ MORE: Check out our full complete guide to all the things to do in Kyrgyzstan in Winter!
While ski touring is slowly becoming more popular, it’s still a picturesque sleepy little village.
You are much more likely to be sharing the skin track with some horses or cows than other skiers.
For those that want to escape the crowds, experience Kyrgyz culture, and have an adventure exploring a wild landscape with many previously unskied lines there is nowhere better!
Skiing in Jyrgalan – Ski Touring Routes
There are countless backcountry ski routes that can be accessed directly from the village.
These range from short moderate angled slopes, to much longer more technical committed routes.
Here are 3 suggested starter routes, which all offer great viewpoints where people new to the area can get their bearings and scope out lines for future days, and some fun but not overly technical down hill skiing.
Char Jon Peak
- Uphill distance: 5km
- Uphill elevation: 800m
- Descent: South facing
This is a classic summertime day hike, but works just as well as a half or full day ski tour depending on your fitness.
Route finding is extremely easy – just follow the obvious ridge up from the North of the Village…