Here's Olivia at the start of our hike:
Part way up we found a spot on the river that was relatively calm. Most areas had only rapidly moving water. The girls took off their shoes to get in. It was really cold but I dared Emily and Marcy to walk out there for a photo:
While Almaty is not the most picturesque in general, if the mountains are in clear view it's actually very nice. This photo was taken just around the corner from our house. We'll try to enjoy the views and the weather while we can!