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Elbrus and the Caucasus


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General information: Elbrus Home Page | History | Elbrus | Georgia | Climbing | Skiing | Access | Caucasus Information Site
Elbrus information: 10 day trip | Short trips | Diagram | Elbrus ascent map | History
Maps and Guides: Caucasus Central | Baksan: map + guide | Bezingi | Elbrus Area
Georgia: Georgia Home Page | Mount Kazbek

The Caucasus form a chain of high, alpine mountains separating the Republic of Georgia from that of Russia to the north. Just north of the main chain, several kilometres into Europe and into Russia, lies Europe's highest summit - Mount Elbrus, 5642m. The main chain itself contains many mountains over 5000m. and tens of summits higher than Mont Blanc. The Baksan Valley leads, in about 40 miles, from the northern foothills to the main chain itself. This is the most important and best developed valley in the Caucasus, partly because of the mineral wealth located near Tyrnyauz and partly on account of Elbrus and the hundreds of magnificent mountains which comprise it's watershed.

Our standard scheduled trip is 8 or 10 days long and apart from one day is based entirely on Elbrus. The first days involve porter-supported back-packing, camping in alpine meadows crossing high passes and the ascent of a simple glaciated summit. The final few days are devoted to the ascent of Elbrus. Ice axe and crampons are required. details
See our Short Elbrus trips for more information .


Elbrus may be attempted by any strong mountain walker who is familiar with the use of an ice axe and crampons. Nevertheless it is important to remember that it is a mountain of almost Himalayan proportions and goodacclimatisation is essential. In bad weather conditions may become Arctic.

Ski tour: Mestia Tau

Unlike the Alps the snow in the Caucasus is virtually guaranteed, there is good powder to be found late into the season and the season is long.  We use the New Jailyk Hotel, a high mountain lodge located in the high and remote upper sections of the Adyl-Su valley. Also our Baksan Valley base as described above is also used to access the Baksan ski lift and cable car system. Our scheduled trips end with an opportunity to ascend Mount Elbrus.


Technical Climbing
There are thousands of other elegant summits to be climbed and valleys to be explored. Those coming with more time or wishing to climb some of the numerous other, elegant summits should consider organising the trip as a private group. Our guides are based permanently in the Baksan Valley throughout the summer months.
details by Email

Georgia & Caucasus
The southern Caucasus differ greatly from the north (Russian) side of the range. Georgia used to be called, justifiably, the Switzerland of the Soviet Union on account of the magnificent mountains and luxuriant mountain meadows. Wine, an ancient culture, remote fortified mountain villages, churches, alpine meadows and magnificent glaciated mountains are all combined on this trek through some of the most beautiful and remote mountain areas in the Caucasus. Our scheduled treks include Svanetia, Tusheti and Khevsureti. details

A fine mountaineering objective in Georgia is Mount Kazbek, 5047m, the ascent of which could be combined with that of Elbrus. Others may wish to spend time exploring the rich cultural heritage of the country details.

Georgian Visa Information

Gergeti chapel below Kazbek

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ALW 13/8/06