I want to travel between capitals of a few countries in Central Asia. I have assumed, prior to some initial research, that rail would work for this. I also assumed that flying wouldn't be worth it anyway, since distances aren't terribly great. But I now notice that there is little information about rail travel in this part of the world.
What information I find seems to indicate that there are a few trains, but they are limited, and even "unreliable" or unsafe. Road travel might be a similar problem, or is at least less convenient. What is the recommended way to traverse this region?
I was thinking about a route that connects Almaty, Bishkek, and Dushanbe, for example. Do I really need to fly between these cities? Is it because of the mountains?