The easy day-hike from Tulpar Kol or Peak Lenin Base Camp to the Traveller’s Pass is a highlight. If you are travelling on the Pamir Highway and you have the time for a detour, come here to find a wonderful panorama of 7-thousanders unfold in front of you.
If you have finished the longer Heights of Alay hike, we recommend you round off your visit to the area here as well. It is a different side of Alay once again, and without a doubt the most spectacular bit.
Transport and accommodation
For independent travellers, Tulpar Kol, a set of small lakes at 3500 m, is the place to be. A couple of yurt camps with around 7 yurts each operate here in summer. The stoves keep the yurts warm and there is breakfast and dinner available if you want. The CBT yurt camp gets bad reviews, while the non-CBT yurts get good reviews. The whole area is riddled with marmots.
A night in a yurt costs around 1000 som. Yurts house 3-5 people, but if there is space it is likely you can have your own yurt instead of sharing one with others.
A jeep to Tulpar Kol from Sary Mogol costs 1500 som one-way and takes a small hour to get there. While officially you need a permit to climb Peak Lenin, no permit is needed to hike up to Traveller’s Pass.
Peak Lenin Base Camp
The Peak Lenin Base Camp is situated on the other side of the river, a 20 minute walk from Tulpar Kol. It is a big operation with dozens of tents from several big tour operators hosting climbers heading up to Peak Lenin.
The base camp is explicitly set up for the climbers who booked through the respective tour companies, not for individual travellers.
From Tulpar Kol, it is a 3-hour walk up (2 hours down) with about 500 m altitude gain to the Traveller’s Pass at 4000 m, wherefrom you have an unimpeded view over Peak Lenin and its attendants, rising another 3 km above you. On a clear day, it’s quite a sight.
To get there, walk down into the little canyon to cross the bridge over the river. Soon, you pass Peak Lenin Base Camp, busy with climbers milling around. From there, the trail starts bending to the right, and finally zigzags to the top of the pass.
On a summer’s day there is always some traffic, so if you do not have a map, there should be someone passing by to ask directions in case of doubt.
Snow is a definite possibility at this height at any time of the year, but due to the foot traffic this usually means mud and soggy grass, meaning trainers are not ideal footwear.