Over the next five days, we will leave Kyrgyzstan and go to China. Knowing that the Turkic tribe of the Uighur (or Uighur Turks), lives in the Xingjang region is the last piece of the Central Asian puzzle I missed for years.
Before crossing the border, you drive to the end of the world! We follow one single road always towards the horizon for a couple of hours. During the winter, this is a desolate place were the wolves come down from the mountains to trouble the farmers and their sheep. In the summer, it is a poor, dusty road with a lot of trucks coming from China on their way to Kazakhstan.
And then, up into the mountains, where there are no houses anymore. Every once in a while, we come across a yurt. I cannot believe that people can live here.
Then we come to the Torugart Pass, a mountain pass through the Tian Shan alpine range which marks the border between the Naryn region of Kyrgyzstan and Xinjiang in China.
The Torugart pass is not spectacular in its panorama, it is more a strange place that was closed for centuries and is now open. But still with its 7 checkpoints at the border, it is not a place easy to cross.