The Silk Road Mountain Race is an attempt to showcase some of the most beautiful and wild areas of Kyrgyzstan. Each year the organisers try to include something new to share with the community of racers who come out to race in this incredible country. The fourth edition will be no different, with the race seeing more substantial changes compared with the last three iterations.
The fourth edition of the Silk Road Mountain Race will be slightly longer and have more metres of elevation gain than the previous edition. However, as there are more fast rolling sections and a bit less hiking, it shouldn’t be significantly harder than previous races. It will follow a 1,895 kilometre route with roughly 34,500 meters of climbing. It will again take riders through the now familiarly remote mountain landscapes of the Tian Shan range in eastern Kyrgyzstan but will also start to explore the south of the country. There are a few more notable changes, described in more detail below.
Possibly the most noticeable novelty is that we have a new start and finish. In 2022, riders will line up and start the race in the southern city of Osh and finish in the capital, Bishkek. Registration will also take place in Osh, so riders will need to make their way south before the start.
As for the start time, this year the race will start at midnight on Friday the 12th of August and finish at midnight on the 27th. The main reason for this is to give everyone the best possible chance of getting up and over the formidable Jiptik pass, the highest point in any SRMR to date at 4,185 meters.
Besides the new start, we also have a new first checkpoint : Arslanbob, the largest walnut forest in the world. Overall, riders can expect around 1,000 kilometres of completely new tracks compared with previous editions. Despite this, we’re keeping some of the old classics, with Juuku and Shamsi passes making a return from 2018 and Tosor pass still being our favourite way of heading up into the mountains south of Issyk-Kul lake.
Read also this great blog from a previous event: