I am part of small group of Finnish climbers leaving to the Elbrus, to the highest mountain in Europe. My first trip to Russia, no idea what to expect from it, especially since we travel to the small places, to the country side.
Elbrus is located in Caucasus, Southern Russia. The flight from Moscow goes to the Mineralnye Vody from where we have a couple of hours drive to the Terskol. Terskol is a small village located in the valley. Farming is part of Terskol and cows are also using the pavement 🙂
This climb will be very “quick and dirty”. We have seven days time in Terskol for both acclimatisation and summiting. One day goes for acclimatisation climb to the near mountain and then six days for Elbrus. Hoping that the acclimatisation goes well and there won’t be too much hard times while in high elevation. Weather is pretty ok, some rain coming during the acclimatisation day, but after that it should be good enough.
Base camp (3720 meters) is pretty simple – old barrel huts still in use but also new, very nice and clean barracks were available. We shared one barrack with two Finns who were a day a head of us with their climb.
Following day was for acclimatisation walk up to 4700 meters, almost to the Pashtuhova Rocks. Then one crampoon and rope training day and some rest before the summit night. Weather was looking promising.
Night time wake up call and getting ready to go. We decided to take snow cat up to 4800 meters to save some time and of course our energy. There are no clouds and weather is a chilly. Warm clothes are needed. At the time we are in the saddle (between two summits) sun is raising.
Still some ascent to do before in the summit, helps that it is getting warmer. After the saddle there is quite stiff climb ahead of us but after that path is very steady to the summit. No rush time, we are one of the first teams in the summit this morning.
Happy team in the summit, all of us got there. The weather could not have been better as you can see.
Thanks for the team we made it, you rock!
Summit date: 14.08.2014
Elbrus, 5642 meters
Operator and guide: Mandala, Jonna Iljin
Enjoy the picture collection of Mt Elbrus 2014
By Teija Sirko