Trek in and near Upper Vanch valley

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The upper Vanch valley is wide and makes many bends. At each bend, fertile soil provides support for one or two villages. The last bridge across the river is located more than 30km downstream from the last village, Poimazar. Crossing the river, even at the end of the summer, is quite dangerous, but a few locals do it. We stayed on the South (left) bank of the river. We started our trek a few kilometers West of Poimazar, skirted the bottom of the Russian Geographic Society glacier, and followed the Abdukagor river for a few kilometers. We then turned back and returned to Langar village. From there we went up the canyon of the Langardara river toward Langar pass. We turned back just below Langar pass and ended our trek in Ghumash village.

 

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Views of the valley near Ghumash village

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Start of the trek near Simgud village

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River crossing

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Girl in Poimazar village

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Victor and a local at Poimazar village

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The Science Range above the Russian Geographical Society (RGS) glacier

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The bottom of the RGS glacier

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Along the Abdukagor river beyond the RGS glacier

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Big lizard warming up in the sun

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The canyon of the Langardara river which starts between Ghumash and Langar villages

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Crossing the Langardara river near the remains of a disused quartz mine

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Upper Langardara river with the Vanch range in the background

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Ascending the big moraine toward Langar pass (Victor is visible on the right side)

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Higher up on the moraine

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Peaks of the Vanch range

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Langar Pass (4418m)

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Views (looking North) of the Pamir from near Langar pass, with 7495m Peak Somoni (former Peak Communism)

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After descending from Langar Pass, we stayed 2 days in Ghumash village, waiting for our car. The people’s hospitality there was overwhelming. We were invited in almost every house of the village for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

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Some people of Ghumash village

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Typical ceiling in a Pamiri home (in Gumash). It is made of four square layers, each representing one of the four Zoroastrian elements (earth, water, air and fire).

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