High in the Tienshan lies several beautiful grassy meadows that serve as the summer pastures for the majestic Kyrgyz horses. Life in this terrain yields one of the most hardiest breed of horses, walking on treacherous terrain with an unparalleled ease. But the one thing they lack in this high terrain is salt.
While in Arslanbob, I hitched a ride with a local herder who maintained his stock in the high alpine meadows. Crammed into SUV with 8 other folks wasn't a pleasant experience, but I was grateful for his hospitality as it saved a precious few hours of hiking. Upon reaching his pastures, the herder opened up bags of salt and spread it around. And all it took was a whistle to attract a few dozen horses galloping in from all over the valley to eat salt. To see the majestic equine beasts thundering about the thin mountain air was like nothing else.
Jalal-abad Region, Kyrgyzstan