Arrive Sheremetyevo International Airport, Russia (SVO). Transfer to hotel. Evening kickoff dinner and night tour of Red Square, Moscow.
- Day 2 • Mineralnye Vody • Azau • 7,500 ft
Transfer to Moscow’s domestic airport for the two-hour flight to the city of Mineralnye Vody. Continue by van (three hours) to the village of Azau in the Baksan Valley. Expedition orientation and gear check in the afternoon. Hotel in Azau.
- Day 3 • Hike to Mount Cheget • 11,000 ft
We take an acclimatization hike up Mount Cheget and enjoy stunning views of the Baksan Valley. Return and overnight at hotel in Azau. Vertical gain trekking: 3,500 feet
- Day 4 • Climb to 14,000 ft on Elbrus
After breakfast we take the cable car to 12,600 feet on Elbrus. We hike above 14,000 feet to just below Pastukhov rocks for acclimatization and descend to 13,200 feet where we conduct a basic climbing school in preparation for summit day. Lodging at Leaprus mountain hut on Mt. Elbrusl.
Vertical gain cable car: 5,100 feet
Vertical gain climbing: 1,400 feet
- Day 5 • Climb to 16,500 ft on Elbrus
Today we ascend from our bascamp at the Leaprus Huts to Pastukhov Rocks at 16,500 feet. We will focus on acclimating while honing in our snow travel skills and pacing. Sweeping views of the mountain and the surrounding Caucasus Range. Return to Leaprus mountain hut.
Vertical gain climbing: 3,700 feet
- Day 6 • Mountain Hut • Rest day • 12,700 ft
Our final day before our Elbrus ascent. Today is a day to rest up, hydrate, sleep, and prepare for our ascent. We will turn in to bed early after dinner for an early wake-up alpine start!
Vertical gain: 0 feet
- Day 7 • Summit Day • Mount Elbrus • 18,510 ft
The day starts early. After riding the snowcat above 16,000 feet, we climb open snow slopes to the saddle between the east and west summits. We will gain nearly 6,000 feet en route to the summit – the highest point in Russian and on the European Continent, one of the famed Seven Summits.
Vertical gain snowcat: 3,400 feet
Vertical gain climbing: 2,500 feet
Descend to Azau or transport to Pyatigorsk (near Mineralnye Vody). We will spend the afternoon exploring one of these Russian spa resort towns.
In the event we encounter inlement weather or have challenges acclimating for our summit bid, we will use this day as a contingency day for a summit ascent.
- Day 9 • Depart Mineralnye Vody
Transport to Mineralnye Vody and Moscow for departure flights home.
Why the small size? We appreciate the nimble and flexible nature of a small team, it’s more fun, and we can better support your success on summit day.