Elbrus expeditions. Trekking and ski-touring in the Mount Elbrus area. Caucasus Mountains, Russia. Mt Elbrus climb. gb@geographicbureau.com phone: +7 812 230-45-76 Postal address: 197110, P.O. Box 162, St Petersburg, Russia

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Detailed itinerary


The following itinerary is intended as a working guide only and is a subject to variation as a result of changes in airline schedules, local conditions, weather and governmental restrictions. We reserve the right to alter (lengthen or shorten) the trek at any time if necessary.

Day 1
Arrive in Mineralnye Vody airport. Transfer to the town of Pyatigorsk, 30 km southwards. Accommodation in a hotel.

Day 2
The morning starts with a 75km drive to the village of Khasaut, 1750m. Here we start walking towards Mt Elbrus. In about 2,5 hours an old rarely used road leads us to the Khasaut campsite at 1950m.

Day 3
Today is a longer walking day. We gradually get the altitude following an ancient path to near the Bermamyt Mount, 2638m. Then we turn right north to keep walking straight towards Mt. Elbrus. Excellent panorama of the Mountain. Overnight in the Bermamyt campsite at 2300m. 6-7 hours walk. 700m up, 350m down.

Day 4
We continue approaching Mt Elbrus massif by traversing the Bechassyn plateau. Elbrus is getting closer and the view of it becomes more impressive. For an overnight we descend to a small valley for a nice campsite at the altitude of 2350m. 6 hours walk. 300m up, 250m down.

Day 5
Cross the Syrkh Ridge, 2700m, which is one more excellent viewpoint of Mt Elbrus we descend then to the Khatkhansu meadow where Elbrus North Base Camp is located. We spend next two nights camping in the territory of the North Base camp, 2550m. 6 hours walk. 900m up, 700m down.

Day 6
Acclimatisation walk up by Elbrus slopes. Depending on our conditions we can go by a narrow gorge and then by the high altitude meadows to the Mushrooms Plateau, 3200, with its eroded 'mushrooms' of volcanic rocks and spectacular view of the Northern slopes glaciers or even up to the North Hut located at 3780m. Return to the North Base camp, 2550m.

Day 7
We leave the Northern Base Camp and walk gently up and down by a good path to the confluence of Shaoukam and Islamchat river valleys. This is a relaxing 4-5 hours walk with excellent panoramic views to the Shaoukam Camp at the altitude of 2280m.

Day 8

Walk by a comparatively steep path up to the Kyrtykaush Pass, 3250m, with its great view of the beautiful Islamchat Gorge which leads to the northern foothills of Mount Elbrus. Walk down to our campsite, 2400m, by the confluence of the Kyrtyk and Kyrtykaush valleys. 6-7 hours walk. 970 m up, 750m down.

Day 9
Walk over the Syltran Pass, 3430 m, to the Syltran Lake, 3200 m - one of the biggest high altitude lakes in Elbrus area. Then we walk down and soon enter a beautiful coniferous forest providing a nice shade in the midday time. Further down to the village of Verkhny Baksan where we will be picked up by a vehicle to drive to Terskol near Elbrus. Night in a hotel, 2000m. 6-7 hours walk. 1030m up, 1500m down.

Day 10
A short drive to the Azau station. We take the cable car/chair lift system up Elbrus and stay in a mountain hut at 3800-3900m. Acclimatisation walk.

Day 11
Acclimatisation walk to the Pastukhova Rocks up to 4700-4800 m. Return to the hut.

Day 12
Summit day. We begin in the early morning hours to ascend the highest of Elbrus' twin peaks - the West Summit. You carry your day-pack with the day's requirements. We return to spend the night in the hut.

Day 13
Spare day to attempt Elbrus if the weather on the previous day was bad. Descent to Terskol. Night in the hotel.

Day 14
Drive to Mineralnye Vody for the flight home.