A high mountain road from Eshkashem to Gaz Khan
The Eshkashem-Gaz Khan road, part of The Wakhan corridor, is a high mountain road located in the Wakhan walley of Badakhshan Province, in north-eastern Afghanistan running entirely over 2.700m above the sea level.
The road is unpaved. It’s 122 km long and links Eshkashem (also known as Ishkashim or Ishkashem) and Gaz Khan (or Goz Khun) running along the Panj and Ab-i-Wakhan rivers on the Tajikistan border. This track can get very muddy and slippery after rain making it challenging to get through. During and after a storm the road may be impassable, even with a four-wheel-drive vehicle.
The road is extreme. 4x4 vehicles only. Expect loose gravel, several river crossings with no bridges and extreme weather. This trail passes through remote areas, so you need to be prepared. If you dare to take the risk and travel along this dusty and bumpy route, then make sure to be driven by someone who has experience of the road. The road was constructed in the 1950s-60s. It was in very poor condition until the mid-1990s, but has been much improved in recent years.
Do not travel this road in severe weather conditions. Avalanches, heavy snowfalls and landslides can occur anytime, being extremely dangerous due to frequent patches of ice. The road is a four-wheel-drive annually destroyed by the floods where it crosses the innumerable flood 'washes'. The zone can be closed to foreigners anytime due to heavy Taliban fighting.
Pic: Thomas Rubner