The weather took a turn for the worst when it SNOWed heavily after we left our Chinese friends. Just the day before, it was still warm and sunny when we departed. A night of snowing, it was already ankle high snow, the heaviest snowfall we ever encountered on the road, so far.
(Kazakhstan … 10.03.05 to 23.04.05)
With the Rysbekov family in Kenen village. Batyrhan (bald guy in middle) brought us to his mother’s place when he met us on the road. An ex-Sportsman, he even won a Lada car from horse racing before! The family currently has 30 horses, mainly for horse racing.
Hitting the snow cladded roads. Visibility was low and the road was narrowed by the heavy snowfall, making us competing with the cars for space. As a result, there were constant splashes of icy water from the passing vehicles. It was definitely not our day for riding!
Pulling the donkey cart to get underground water in Akterek village.
Family members of the 3 Smagul households gathered to organise their sheeps, cows and horses back from grazing in the evening. Our host alone has >300 sheeps, 30 horses, cows and 2 donkeys.
The shepherd on horseback, bringing hundreds of sheeps out for grazing, even in the snow. The Tien Shan (Heavenly Mountains) range lies hidden in the thick mist in the background.
A Kazak born in Mongolia, Kenzhaken (old man in grey) brought his wife and 5 children to Kazakhstan in 1991, travelling for 3 days until the Akterek village, south Kazak. Together with his 2 brothers’ family, their main livelihood is sheeps, cows and horse herding. Every children plays a part in this family “business”. A Mongolian carpet depicting the Mongolian warriors of ancient days hangs on their wall.