The mudflows on Issyk Lake

1963. The photograph illustrates the aftermath of the disaster that occurred in 55 kilometres from the centre of the Soviet Kazakhstan. July heat provoked a mudflow – a bursting of Zharsay moraine lake in the upper reaches of the Issyk river.

In the afternoon, the mudflow passed through the Issyk Gorge, burying the picturesque Issyk Lake and people there. By night, the natural dam was breached and the water from the lake, together with stones and mud, rushed down the valley, towards the village of Issyk, destroying about two hundred houses on its way.