9. Karakol is at a high elevation (1690m/5500’+), so you get altitude training every day.
8. Relatively little traffic and empty roads (but beware: a decent percentage of the drivers are maniacs!).
7. Easy access to dirt roads, bushwhacking across fields, and the occasional actual trail.
6. Bragging rights: most people haven’t heard of Karakol, but you’ve run there!
5. The food: an abundance of fresh fruits (especially apples and pears) and vegetables, shashlik, fresh milk direct from the cow (you have to pasteurize it yourself), easy access to meat and eggs, and even the occasional food from back home. In other words: great refueling options.
4. Views of snow-capped mountains, the world’s second-largest mountain lake, eagles and hawks circling overhead, and an abundance of free-ranging horses, sheep, cattle, goats, and other various livestock.
3. The weather is awesome: the summers are cool to warm (never hot), there is year-round sunshine, evening rain showers and thunderstorms are frequent, and currently we are enjoying temperatures between 32 F/0C and 50F/10C.
2. The roads are empty pre-dawn, and the pre-dawn light and sunrises on the mountains are out of this world.
1. Turkish people wonder what’s so exciting about running in a “police station.” (Click on this link http://tr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polis_karakolu , then select “English” on the left side.)