Chulyshman valley and Katu-Yaryk
We’d be happy to show you the most inaccessible (until recently) tourist attractions of Altay. You will see the most prominent places of Altai Republic:
- Mountain passes Seminskiy, Chike-Taman, Katu-Yaryk;
- Chuyskiy trakt – the most scenic highway of Altai;
- Akkurum and its “stone mushrooms”;
- “The Red Gate” and the waterfalls of Chuya valley;
- Uchar – the biggest cascade waterfall of Altai;
- Kurgans – the burial mounds of ancient nomads.
Your journey will begin when we meet you in Biysk or Gorno-Altaysk. From there, we’ll take you to the “Belukha” campsite along the Chuyskiy trakt (150 km from Biysk, 50 km from Gorno-Altaysk). The campsite is located next to the lovely Katun river. When we get our necessary equipment, we’ll begin our way through the stunningly beautiful mountain passes Seminskiy and Chike-Taman to the Aktash settlement. These two passes are absolutely different-looking and abruptly change the landscape view along the highway. We will make a stop to enjoy the panorama of the confluence of two rivers – Chuya and Katun. We’ll take a look at the ancient wall carvings of Kalbak-Tash archaeological site. We’ll spend the night in warm campsite houses.
A big day starts with coffee and breakfast. We’ll see Ulaganskiy pass and later – the most picturesque pass along the Chuyskiy tract, Katu-Yaryk. The road begins with “The Red Gate”, a postcard view of the Ulaganskiy region. And Katu-Yaryk leads to the pristine and undisturbed land of Chulyshman river valley. You’ll have an opportunity to take the most amazing and unique photos, selfies and panoramic pictures. A green land of the river valley below you, on the opposite side of the canyon there is a view of the Chulyshman Highland, which descends into the valley with its steep cliffs, and a waterfall tumbling down the rocks from a 100-meter height…
Then we ride 30 kilometers along the Chulyshman river to the mouth of the Chulcha river, and then we’ll go on foot to the Karasu valley. A unique natural monument, “stone mushrooms”, is waiting for us. “Stone mushrooms” are the pillars of sand and clay, reaching a height of 5-7 meters. On top of them are the giant rocks, held up there by purely natural reasons.
Our day ends with dinner, sitting by a campfire and a night in log houses.
After breakfast, we’ll make a walking 20-km roundtrip tour to the Uchar cascade waterfall, the biggest in the Altai Mountains, also known as “Big Chulcha waterfall”. Translated from Southern Altai language, the word “Uchar” means “Unapproachable”. It’s true: the waterfall is in top-5 of the hardest to access tourist attractions in Russia. However, the sight of the waterfall is worth every effort and exceeds all imagination!
We’ll spend the night in the same campside.
We begin our way back in the car in the morning. We’ll have to cross the Katu-Yaryk pass on foot, though – it’s unsafe to climb in the loaded car. Then we’ll ride to Aktash settlement to spend the night in our already familiar cozy wooden campsite.
Through Chike-Taman and Seminskiy mountain passes we’ll go back, to Biysk railway station or Gorno-Altaysk airport. At Seminsky pass we’ll stop to take a rest, make some more photos and buy Altai souvenirs.