In the days at the hostel we heard a lot about Ala Archa, the popular
mountain valley close to Bishkek where everybody went for hiking. We also heard from everybody that it wouldn't be possible to ride the motorbikes into the valley and over the dirt road pass at
it's end. But it just made too much sense in our heads to not try it. ride into a beautiful nature reserve, take a not very frequently traveled dirt road over a pass between snow capped mountain
tops and down the southern side, only to arrive into an area where beautiful twisty roads would be waiting for us and bring us even in the right direction.
But it wouldn't all work out as we imagined.
Only a few km from the hostel and still on the outskirts of town we
overlooked a "don't drive this road any further" sign and rode straight into the arms of two cops guarding, as we should soon find out, the driveway of the residence of the president of
Kyrgyzstan! "presidente?" "da! Kyrgyz Obama!"
The first suggestion for our fine was a horrendous 10.000 som. But we got away with as much as there was in our shared wallet.. 4.000 som - that the cop was all to happy to take from us.
Without any cash left we didn't really have choice but to backtrack a bit to the next atm and also used the chance to fill up in a supermarket on snacks for the road.
Together with the proper saying good byes to our new friends in the tunduk hostel this all made us get out of town pretty late.
We decided we'd head at least to the ala Archa entrance and ask the guard there if we could ride the pass.
"Niet! Niet! Not possible!" So much for that and we headed back and towards west on the main route towards Osh.
Even here the scenery was nothing short of spectacular. An alpine landscape with a nice pawed curvy road, herds of sheep, cows and horses behind every second bend, an infamous tunnel that must be horror for all bicycle riders and a crazily panoramic descent down the back into a wide green valley plastered with yurts and pastures.
The dogs hanging out in front of those yurts had a strange behavior.
Cars and trucks wouldn't interest them at all, but as soon as they spotted us passing with our bikes they'd start an insane spurt to chase us down while barking like crazy at us. For one of those
dogs this would tragically be the last chase for good.
He saw Matthias riding in front and rushed to the road from the opposite side. The thought of catching a motorbike must have made him blind to everything else, he overlooked an oncoming car and got hit by it's front bumper really hard. We could see the dog being hit and his direction changed of a 90 degree angle at such an instance that he must have been dead immediately. He hit the ground and slid along the road at an enormous speed, taking the cars speed just like a pool ball would. only he slid on his back, all four up in the air and his tongue hanging out his mouth. Poor guy!
The road in this stretched out valley was good and we easily ate up some kilometers.
Even though we got away from the city that late we arrived at the lake by Toktogul after more then 400 km before sunset and found a camp site on an empty sand/stony beach. Surrounded by bushes of weed we slept without any tents under a sky that seemed to be fuller with stars then usual.