Slacklining in the mountains of Kazakhstan

If there’s one thing you never expected to be confronted with today, it’s the new project through Jan Rose: a 500 meter long slack line between two mountains, above the bottom of what was once an ocean. Introducing Bozzhyra in Kazakhstan!

The Estonian slackliner dares an adventure that takes him to the western border of Kazakhstan, just 160 kilometers from the Caspian Sea. There he finds the “tusks” between which Roose stretches his slack line. This is the entrance to the Mangystau province.

This slap line is worthy of all credit!

© Victor Magdeyev/Red Bull Content Pool

Slacklining as a sport requires all kinds of challenges: organization, planning, vision, passion. Half the discipline is just installing the slack line. In a place like this, it is not enough to draw the line where you want. You must be aware of the first rule of adventure: leave no trace.

“We chose the most nature-friendly route so as not to destroy the unique beauty of Bozzhyra,” notes climber and safety expert Kirill Belotserkovskiy. “We fixed the line with a special technique that allowed us to be sure that nothing would happen to the rocks. This construction is simple and at the same time protects nature.”

Once the line is in place, the rest is a matter of patience, method, balance and focus. Walking forward half a kilometer — 200 meters above the desert floor — is no easy feat. But for a place of this kind, it’s all worth it.

Jaan Roose during Red Bull Highline Mangistau in Aktau, Kazakhstan, 2022.

Roose makes his way between the “fangs”.

© Victor Magdeyev/Red Bull Content Pool

When it comes to the sporting challenge, it is clear to say that this is by no means the longest slack line ever crossed. Rather, this project stands out because of its uniqueness. After implementing the whole thing in the middle of a desert, the temperatures were around 50° Celsius — extremely hot… “In the last five days I collected enough vitamin D for the next few years,” laughs Jaan. But while the sun was brutal, it wasn’t the biggest problem. It was the endless wind that blew across the Mangistau steppes. The crew had to wait five days for a time slot to open up.

Jaan Roose during Red Bull Highline Mangistau in Aktau, Kazakhstan, 2022.

A gray country…

© Victor Magdeyev

“It was windy, so we were worried that Jaan might cross his slack line. One morning we were lucky and the wind died down,” recalls director and cinematographer Sardar Baimoldin. “Jaan climbed a ‘fang’ and immediately made the transition. It was the first time I worked with an athlete of this class and I really enjoyed it. He knows how to move, where to look and at what moments he should be looking straight into the lens of the camera. The end result speaks for itself; it was worth all the work, drama and emotion.”

Jaan Roose during Red Bull Highline Mangistau in Aktau, Kazakhstan, 2022.

A triumph!

© Victor Magdeyev

part of this story

Jan Rose

Known for having nerves of steel, the Estonian slackliner Jaan Roose is a three-time world champion and the holder of numerous world records.



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