VEGETATION IN ELBRUS AREA
North of the main ridge valleys and lower mountain slopes (1900 - 2300m) are covered with pine forests mingled with birch and mountain ash. Vegetation here clearly indicates lines of old avalanches - these are marked by deciduous forests of birch, mountain ash, aspen and others. Between 2300 and 3000m the forests have been replaced by alpine meadows rich in flowers. Closer to the edges of glaciers and snowfields snowdrops bloom and colourful lichens cover stones free from snow.
In the Transcaucasus, south of the main ridge, up to 1600m, one may find beech, hornbeam, maple, linden and ash forests. Higher still, up to 2100m, fir tree forests are found and above these alpine meadows with a wide variety of flowers often not found on the northern side of the ridge.