View of Muztagh Ata from Lake Karakul.
Muztagh Ata, altitude 7,546 meters, is the third highest peak of the famous Pamir Branch of the Kunlun Mountains Range. In a truly rugged area of China’s Xinjiang Province, Muztagh Ata’s closest metropolitan center is Ka Shi, a famous Silk Road destination.
Muztagh Ata is strikingly beautiful combination of high altitude grassland and mountain. It’s snow line for the climbing route is around 5,300 meters and the mountain itself is covered by around a dozen glaciers. Many of the glaciers stretch down to about 4,500 meters above sea level. At the base of the mountain is the stunning Lake Karakul and from the lake the mountain is said to look like an old man with white hair. Accordingly, Muztagh Ata in the local language means “father of ice.” The iceberg landscape has developed more than a dozen major glaciers.
Muztagh Ata is prime staging grounds for those looking to take their climbing skills to a 7,000 meter peak and beyond. The mountain’s climbing season is from June to August with the best time in July. All in all, it is a great challenge, but is also incredibly safe as the location of the major crevasses are well known and the threat of avalanche is very low. Still, above Camp Three there are notoriously strong winds and frigid temperatures that add another dimension to the mountain’s difficulty. Nonetheless, Muztagh Ata is arguably the best 7,000 plus meter peak outside of Nepal and Tibet for recreational climbers due to its accessibility, little technical difficulties, and logistical convenience. An added bonus is that the mountain can be climbed up and skied back down from near the summit all the way back to near Base Camp.
Climbing from Base Camp to Camp One
Climbing from Camp One to Camp Two
Climbing from Camp Two to Camp Three
Muztagh Ata Climbing Itinerary
D1：Arrival in Beijing, China
Check in to our hotel and get settled in. Gear check. If time permits, visit a local sight of interest. Prepare for the next day’s travel.
D2：Travel to Ka Shi, Altitude 1340 meters
Fly from Beijing to Urumqi (4 hours) and then fly 45 minutes Ka Shi. After arrival in Ka Shi, check into our hotel and get settled in. In the evening, we enjoy some of Ka Shi’s luxurious cuisine.
D3：Ka Shi, Altitude 1340 meters
Today we will have an entire day to prepare for the upcoming climb. We will take care of last details and if time permits visit a local site of interest. In the evening, will have a meeting to discuss our plan for climbing the mountain.
D4：Ka Shi to Tashkurgan (altitude 3100 meters)
In the morning after breakfast we will set off for Tashkurgan by private car. The drive is about 7 hours to our comfortable hotel. After our delicious dinner, we will enjoy the night in our hotel.
D5：Tashkurgan to Muztagh Base Camp (altitude 4430 meters)
We will take a short drive by private car to Subashen, from where we will hike about 8 kilometers (about 4 hours) to base camp.
D6：Base Camp to Advanced Base Camp (altitude 4900 meters) to Base Camp (altitude 4430 meters)
In the morning after breakfast we we hike to the Advanced Base Camp at altitude of 4,900 meters. After arriving at the Advanced Base Camp we will take a short rest and then return back Base Camp for dinner.
D7：Base Camp (altitude 4430 meters)
The purpose of today is to rest and acclimatize at Base Camp. In the afternoon, we will review mountain climbing safety.
D8：Base Camp to Camp One (altitude 5530 meters)
From Base Camp we will set out for Camp One after breakfast. Doing so, we will continue the process of acclimatization.
D9：Camp One to Camp Two (altitude 6200 meters)
In the morning after breakfast we will hike from Camp One to Camp Two and continue to acclimatize.
D10：Camp Two to Base Camp (altitude 4430 meters)
After breakfast we will return back to Base Camp for some well deserved rest.
D11：Base Camp to Tashkurgan (altitude 3100 meters)
Today is a great day for rest and recuperation. We will hike from Base Camp to Subashen and then drive to Tashkurgan where we can enjoy the comforts of the hotel and a hot shower, delicious food, and the internet.
D12：Tashkurgan (altitude 3100 meters)
Today is a complete day of rest to prepare for the summit attempt the following week.
D13：Tashkurgan to Base Camp (altitude 4430 meters)
We will first take the short drive to Subashen from where we will hike about 8 kilometers (about 4 hours) to Base Camp.
D14：Base Camp to Camp One (altitude 5530 meters)
Today we begin our summit push as we climb from Base Camp to Camp One.
D15：Camp One to Camp Two (altitude 6200 meters)
We continue our push to the summit as we move from Camp One to Camp Two.
D16：Camp Two to Camp Three (altitude 6900 meters)
Today we get closer to our goal of the summit as we move from Camp Two to Camp Three.
D17：Camp Three to Summit (altitude 7546) to Camp Two (altitude 6200 meters)
Today is the day we all have been waiting for, summit day! We will set out very early in the morning for the summit and after successfully reaching the summit we will work our way back down to Camp Two. In the evening we will arrive at Camp Two, enjoy some warm food, and then rest.
D18：Camp Two to Base Camp (altitude 4430 meters)
This is the last day of our trek down the mountain as we return back to Base Camp and enjoy the delicious food and comforts of Base Camp.
D19：Base Camp to Ka Shi (altitude 1340 meters)
Today we will hike out of Base Camp to Subashen and then drive back to Ka Shi where we will enjoy a celebratory meal and a good nights rest in our comfortable hotel.
D20：Ka Shi to Beijing
Fly from Ka Shi to Urumqi (45 minutes) and then fly 4 hours to Beijing. After arrival in Beijing, check into our hotel and get settled in. In the evening, we enjoy a fine meal in Beijing.
D21 – D22：Contingency Days
Our extra contingency days give us the luxury to change our climbing program due to the weather or client needs.
D23：Departure from Beijing
You are free to head back to your respective destinations at any time on this day.
The cost of a 23 day climbing trip to Mutztagh Ata is 8,800 USD per person for a group of 4 or more.
The price includes:
- a professional English speaking guide
- an assistant guide, all necessary porters and support crew
- all necessary group equipment (tents, dining tent, ropes, technical climbing gear, radios, satellite phone)
- all necessary permits
- accommodation at a 4 star hotel in Beijing and Ka Shi
- all accommodation and transportation after arrival in Beijing
- 3 meals per day and all necessary non-alcoholic beverages after arrival in Beijing
The price does not include:
- China visa fees
- transport to and from Beijing
- food and beverages outside of the 3 meals per day
- personal climbing gear including sleeping bag, sleeping pad, clothing, boots, harness, crampons, ice axe, helmet, sunglasses
- personal mountaineering insurance
NB: A minimum number of 4 clients is necessary to carry-out the trip. We look forward to our expedition together to Muztagh Ata!