There is a small lake in the Gonachkhirsky gorge in the Caucasus, where there are many trout. That is why among the people it is more often called Trout Lake, and in Dombai it is a separate attraction. But they don’t come here to fish, but to get acquainted with nature.
From Karachai Lake Tumanly-Kel is translated as “foggy”, it is located at an altitude of 1850 meters above sea level in Dombai. The depth of the reservoir is about four meters, and by the middle of summer the water here warms up to about +20 degrees. In the vicinity of the village, this is almost the only lake in the mountains, where it is customary to get there by car, and not on foot, because there is an asphalt road.
History of Lake Tumanly-Kel
It is believed that Tumanly-Kel is all that remains of a huge ancient lake of moraine origin. The age of the modern reservoir is estimated at about two thousand years.
The road through the Klukhorsky pass was built in tsarist times, in 1903. And in 1947, asphalt was laid here – this is part of the Military-Sukhum road, which connected the Stavropol Territory with Abkhazia. After the armed conflict in 1992, the road was closed, and now it is impossible to cross the border along it. But you can get to Trout Lake.
In Soviet times, this section was part of the popular tourist route No. 43, which was called “through the mountains to the sea.” Tourists on the way were met by two camp sites: “Northern Shelter” in Karachay-Cherkessia and “South Shelter” – in the Kodori Gorge of Abkhazia.
Most often, the “foggy lake” lives up to its name: gray clouds nest on the tops around it. But the water surface and the shores are clearly visible. But sometimes the weather “gives a slack”, and on clear sunny days from here stunning views.
Since the lake is located on the territory of the reserve, it is impossible to fish here, but many do not mind feeding the trout. Near the lake, there is also a place for tourists to rest: here you can have a snack or just sit.
Lake Tumanly-Kel is surrounded by the Dombai mountains, on the tops of which the snow does not melt even in summer. All this beauty is reflected in transparent water: a picture from which it is impossible to take your eyes off.