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Pictures | Thu Feb 25, 2021 | 9:19am EST

Locals flock to Kazakhstan's glaciers during pandemic

A tourist poses for a picture on the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. Prevented from travelling abroad by the pandemic, Kazakhs are flocking to the magnificent glaciers of the Tian Shan mountain range near their country's biggest city, Almaty. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist poses for a picture on the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. Prevented from travelling abroad by the pandemic, Kazakhs are flocking to the magnificent glaciers of the Tian...more

A tourist poses for a picture on the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. Prevented from travelling abroad by the pandemic, Kazakhs are flocking to the magnificent glaciers of the Tian Shan mountain range near their country's biggest city, Almaty. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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An aerial view shows the city of Almaty, Kazakhstan February 17, 2021. "The number of tourists last year was several times bigger than in previous years, especially local tourists," says mountain guide Mikhail Kamirasov. "People can't go abroad now and they have started going to the mountains. This is literally a pilgrimage site now."

Kamirasov takes visitors to the Bogdanovich glacier 3,500 metres (11,500 feet) above sea level and featuring a bowl-shaped formation which some have used to produce otherworldly landscape photographs.

"As long as people don't leave garbage behind and use proper guides who look after nature, there should be no negative effects (on the glacier)," he said. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

An aerial view shows the city of Almaty, Kazakhstan February 17, 2021. "The number of tourists last year was several times bigger than in previous years, especially local tourists," says mountain guide Mikhail Kamirasov. "People can't go abroad now...more

An aerial view shows the city of Almaty, Kazakhstan February 17, 2021. "The number of tourists last year was several times bigger than in previous years, especially local tourists," says mountain guide Mikhail Kamirasov. "People can't go abroad now and they have started going to the mountains. This is literally a pilgrimage site now." Kamirasov takes visitors to the Bogdanovich glacier 3,500 metres (11,500 feet) above sea level and featuring a bowl-shaped formation which some have used to produce otherworldly landscape photographs. "As long as people don't leave garbage behind and use proper guides who look after nature, there should be no negative effects (on the glacier)," he said. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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A tourist visits the Oktyabrskaya cave of the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. Safety experts say some tourists try to save money and go without guides.

"The higher influx of tourists affects their own safety because completely unprepared people have started going to the mountains now," says Viktor Blagoveshchensky, chief researcher at the Institute of Geography and Water Safety. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist visits the Oktyabrskaya cave of the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. Safety experts say some tourists try to save money and go without guides. "The higher influx of...more

A tourist visits the Oktyabrskaya cave of the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. Safety experts say some tourists try to save money and go without guides. "The higher influx of tourists affects their own safety because completely unprepared people have started going to the mountains now," says Viktor Blagoveshchensky, chief researcher at the Institute of Geography and Water Safety. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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Tourists hike towards the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021.  REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

Tourists hike towards the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

Tourists hike towards the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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A tourist is seen on the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021.  REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist is seen on the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist is seen on the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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A view shows the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 17, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A view shows the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 17, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A view shows the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 17, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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Tourists hike towards the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

Tourists hike towards the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

Tourists hike towards the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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A tourist visits the Oktyabrskaya cave of the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist visits the Oktyabrskaya cave of the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist visits the Oktyabrskaya cave of the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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A tourist poses for a picture on the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021.  REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist poses for a picture on the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist poses for a picture on the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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A tourist visits the Oktyabrskaya cave of the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist visits the Oktyabrskaya cave of the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist visits the Oktyabrskaya cave of the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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Tourists are seen on the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021.  REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

Tourists are seen on the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

Tourists are seen on the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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Tourists take pictures during a hike towards the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

Tourists take pictures during a hike towards the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

Tourists take pictures during a hike towards the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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A view shows peaks of the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 17, 2021.  REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A view shows peaks of the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 17, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A view shows peaks of the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 17, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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A tourist visits the Oktyabrskaya cave of the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist visits the Oktyabrskaya cave of the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist visits the Oktyabrskaya cave of the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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A tourist jumps as she poses for a picture during a hike towards the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist jumps as she poses for a picture during a hike towards the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev

A tourist jumps as she poses for a picture during a hike towards the Bogdanovich glacier located in the Tian Shan mountain range near Almaty, Kazakhstan February 20, 2021. REUTERS/Pavel Mikheyev
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