Pamir Highway Help Please!

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doug27
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Pamir Highway Help Please!

Post by doug27 »

Hi,
I'm aiming to do the Pamir highway in about late September and am aiming to do it on a budget while still seeing as much as possible and making it worth it. Do people think its worth doing a tour (I.e. this one http://indy-guide.com/en/listings/450-7 ... b-dushanbe or is that too short?) or is it possible to kind of wing it, using busses and camping?
Or, is a better option to hire a driver? And approx. how much have people paid for this? I'm unsure of whether to try find something early on or just wait until I get there and see what the options are.

Any help and opinions are massively appreciated. Thanks!!

Doug
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bwv812
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Re: Pamir Highway Help Please!

Post by bwv812 »

Most people do this on the cheap by just showing up in Osh and then either finding private transport (and people share it with) or by taking one of the local share taxis to Murghab. There are definitely no buses as such, and you would really not need to camp as there are guesthouses everywhere (and if you're ever somewhere where there isn't a guesthouse, you can bet that a local will put you up for the night).

The tour you link to doesn't give you a lot of time to explore. Osh-Murghab in one day is a pretty long drive and doesn't leave much time in Sary Tash or Karakul. The drive from Murghab to Ishkashim doesn't leave much time to enjoy the Wakhan corridor, which actually has a bunch of interesting things to see (this valley is also accessible by share taxi). The main attraction of the tour is the second and third days on the jailoo near Murghab, though you could organize that in Murghab if you simply showed up.

I think you could probably get the same experience—but with more flexibility—by simply showing up in Osh and chartering a car and driver (either for each individual section, or all the way to Khorog), so long as you find someone else to share costs with.
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steven
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Re: Pamir Highway Help Please!

Post by steven »

I am with bwv on this one.
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doug27
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Re: Pamir Highway Help Please!

Post by doug27 »

Thanks both of you. Appreciated as ever. That sounds a much better way to do it with more flexibility.

How much at an estimate do you think sharetaxis normally cost? Does it take a lot of bartering or are prices reasonably set?
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steven
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Re: Pamir Highway Help Please!

Post by steven »

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Aleco
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Re: Pamir Highway Help Please!

Post by Aleco »

If you are interested, gimme the exactly questions and I'll try to help. I did Dushanbe to osh in around 16 days mix hitchhiking and shared taxi. Couchsurfing/tent/guesthouse and I did:

Dushanbe - rushan (via kalaikhum) - Khorog - iskhashim - langar - bulunkul - alichur (of course so the Wakhan corridor) - murghab and than osh.

All of this from the second week of August 2016
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doug27
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Re: Pamir Highway Help Please!

Post by doug27 »

Thanks Aleco!
Don't know when you'll see this but how did you find doing it with public transport? Was there a lot of options? And did you find many couch surfing options? Thank you :)
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steven
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Re: Pamir Highway Help Please!

Post by steven »

I was talking to a lot of backpackers past month in Dushanbe. Main conclusion: if you are sufficiently hardcore, you will enjoy it on public transport and hitchhiking. Otherwise, it is a lot of waiting and bumping around, diarrhea, vomiting and cramped seating for little reward.
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doug27
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Re: Pamir Highway Help Please!

Post by doug27 »

Thanks Steven, looks like the driver could be the winner for this time
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