Sary - Jaz

Sary - Zhaz Valley

Stunning Sary-Jaz (or Sary Zhaz) valley is close to the Chinese-Kazakh border southeast of Karakol, deep in the Kyrgyz Tien Shan mountains. The name Sary Jaz is translated as “Yellow Spring” from Kyrgyz and it belongs to the Issyk Kul region and the Ak Suu district. It is part of the larger Turgen-Aksu gorge, which is included in the Terskey Ala-Too mountain system of Tien Shan and is cut by the Sary-Jaz river from the north and Enilchek river from the south. 

Sary-Jaz valley stretches from the altitude of 2700 m all the way up to 3600 m and its upper part is adjoined with the same name mountain range. The vegetation of the Sary-Dzhaz valley has adapted well to harsh conditions. At an altitude of about 3000 m in the Sary-Jaz valley, the edge of the high-mountain steppe strap ends, where mainly fescue, wormwood and feather grass grow. Above 3500 m in the Sary-Dzhaz valley, trees disappear completely

Sary-Jaz valley is one of the undiscovered places in the Issy Kul area that hides caves and other secrets that are rarely known to outsiders. It offers amazing views for instance on a clear day one can observe one of Kyrgyzstan’s highest mountains like Khan Tengri 7010 meters above sea level. The climate conditions in the Sary – Djaz are harsh, therefore recommended visiting for experienced tourists.

Sary-Jaz River

Sary-Jaz River is one of the largest mountain rivers in Central Tian-Shan. It is fed by the melting snow waters and glaciers of Kyrgyzstan’s highest mountain range called Muzdag. They waters flow in the Sary Jaz river through Kyrgyzstan for 198 km and eventually enter China. Sary-Jaz River offers a great adventure for extreme rafting lovers but due to the harsh natural and climatic conditions of the area and its fierce nature, Sary-Jaz is advised only for very experienced ones.

Sary-Jaz mountain range

Sarydzhaz mountain range is located mostly at the territory of Kyrgyzstan but is also partly shared with the neighboring Kazakhstan. The mountain range is located between the Sarydzhaz River in the north and its left tributary, the Inylchek River, in the south. The length of the Sarydzhaz ridge is 113 km with up to 16 km of width. The average height is 4370 m and the highest point is Semyonov Peak (5816 m). The ridge is formed of metamorphic schists, granites and marbled limestones.

The glaciers start already from a height of 3000 m. On the northern slope stand Semenov and Mushketov glaciers, at the foot of the southern slope – the Northern Inylchek. There are also small glaciers in the ridge part. The Tez pass is used to drive flocks of sheep.

Sights near Sary - Zhaz

Page updated 17.2.2022

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