There are about ten routes of different grades of difficulty to the summit of Khan Tengri. They are divided into two groups: from the South Inylchek Glacier and from the opposite side, the North Inylchek Glacier.
The classic route from the latter is practically avalanche-free. Some other convenient features of this route: up to Chapayev Peak’s shoulder it is visible from BC (so the rescue people can watch the climbers’ progress through their binoculars); VHF radio is very stable on this side; a lot of good acclimatizing options: Kyrlytau (5450m), Bayankol (5791m) and Kazakhstan (5761m) peaks; last but not least: at the start of the climbing season the route is equipped with fixed ropes which help speed and safety.
There is an esthetical side as well: for the background this climb has Khan Tengri’s north wall: 3000m high, made of black and yellow marble.
The route follows a rocky spur and comes to the snow dome of Chapayev Peak, from which the wide snowy West Ridge takes over. It ends at 5900m and another rocky ridge goes on to the summit. Good camping places are at 4500m (Camp 1), 5500m (Camp 2) and 5900m (Camp 3: a comfortable place for tents or snow caves). For tents the West Ridge offers only some rocky shelves at 6400m, so this Camp 4 is not always used by climbers who prefer to start from Camp 3 and spend on the ascent 12-14 hours. In 2006 and earlier some people managed to put in 20-25…