Skiing & Heli-skiing
In the winter months, downhill skiing is possible at the Beldersoy and Chimgan ski areas. They encompass both the best and the worst of Soviet-style ski resorts. The best: limited grooming, excellent free-riding, some unexpectedly steep terrain, rock-bottom prices and plenty of hot wine and shashlyk. The worst: crummy lifts, limited total acreage and no snow-making to speak of. With just one chairlift and two trails, Chimgan is more for beginners, but also has challenging free-riding off-piste. From the base, a long, slow double chairlift leads up to the T-bar.
A full-day lift pass at either ‘resort’ costs around US$10-$20, or you can pay by the ride.
Beldersoy has surprisingly passable equipment available for hire. While the resorts are not worth a special trip to Uzbekistan, the helicopter skiing most definitely is, as the Chatkal and Pskem Mountains are reputed to get some of the driest, fluffiest powder you’ll find anywhere.