Lake Karakuri and Mount Muztagata

Karakuri Lake, known as "the father of glaciers", is located at the foot of Mount Maztagata, sitting at 3,600 meters above sea level, measuring 30 meters deep, and covering an area of more than 100,000 square kilometers.

Lake Karakuri and Mount Muztagata


The trip out here from Kashgar takes travelers 200 km through treeless sand dunes, past grazing camels and yaks until suddenly this dramatic and spectacular lake appears by the roadside, as if from nowhere. The surface of this huge Karakuri Lake reflects the snow-covered peaks of Mount Muztagata, which towers in the background.

The unusual shape of the Muztagata Mountain (it appears to have been divided into two parts) is associated with Chinese legend. The story goes that a beautiful princess living on the Mountain was in love with the snow mountain prince, who lived on nearby Mount Gogir, the second highest mountain in the world. The prince's evil father, who disapproved of this romance, divided two connecting mountains and separated the couple by a stick. The poor princess, overcome by grief, wept and wept until her tears turned to glaciers. The Muztagata Mountain now glitters with ice (apparently formed by her tears) and is covered in snow all year round.

There are some great hikes and walks around here, and the area is especially nice in the summer, when the flowers bloom, the air is fresh and the temperatures are pleasant. It can get very cold at this altitude however, so bear in mind that you may need to take extra clothing to keep warm. The entire Karakuri Lake can be walked in one long day. You can also spend more time here, staying in the Kazakh Yurts or camping if you have your own tent. 

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