Got the summit bug? Mt. Elbrus stands proud at 5642 m making it the highest in Russia, and all of Europe! It is also fifth among the 7 Summits of the World. If you summited mountains like this before, then you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about. The itch to push yourself to that limit once again, to conquer yourself before the mountain, the fact that once it’s all said and done, you just can’t stop thinking about when and where your next one will be. If you haven’t summited a mountain before, then this is your chance to feel that rush; you do not need any mountaineering experience to attempt Elbrus although we strongly recommend that you trek something like Kilimanjaro or Toubkal first, in order to gain some experience.
WHY TREK MT. ELBRUS WITH GRASP THE ADVENTURE:
We've got countless reasons but here are some.
Besides it being a great achievement and another one of the seven summits of your list, the hike up Elbrus is a beautiful and humbling experience. You’ll constantly be surrounded with jaw dropping views of the Caucasus Mountain Range. On summit day, you will have to challenge yourself more than you ever have before, you will have to conquer your weaknesses and push through exhaustion despite every braincell demanding that you turn back. When you stand there at the summit amongst your new formed family, staring down at the clouds, you will understand why we do this, how it reshapes you forever… and you will fall in love with it.
To increase our chances of summiting, our itinerary features up to two reserve days to account for weather conditions. Moreover, we will be using the Snowcat on summit day to take us up to Pastuckhov rocks, this saves us a lot of time and preserves our energy for the remaining push from 4200 m to the summit; after all, it is a 1450 m altitude gain! When you’re feeling exhausted, we all support and encourage each other to keep us going as ‘One Team with One Dream’!
At Grasp The Adventure, our number 1 goal is to promote the spirit of adventure and the love of nature while forming bonds as strong as the mountains we hike on. We sincerely view all the hikers that joined our previous trips as friends and family, this is why we do our best to keep them safe and happy at all times. So besides going on awesome hikes to jaw-dropping sights, you’ll also be making new, like-minded friends.
IS THIS HIKE FOR YOU?
Remain calm and read on!
So you want to join but you’re also freaking out that you may not be experienced enough for this trek, well here are some things to consider:
Summiting Elbrus requires no technical or mountaineering experience
The day to day acclimatization hikes are not that challenging
We will be hiking high and sleeping low to help acclimatize
You will be staying in huts everyday, no need for tents and camping
The huts have toilets, hot water, electricity, beds and more comfortable amenities
Altitude sickness can hit anyone, but taking altitude sickness pills like Diamox significantly reduce the chances of that happening
Summit day will be very challenging physically and mentally
You will need strong will power and mental strength to push through summit day
You will need to be fit for the summit push, an active lifestyle and exercise are required
Weather conditions are unpredictable and will add to the challenge
The good news is that you have time to increase your fitness, strengthen your cardiovascular system and prepare for this trek. We will help you do so by sending out our Grasp The Fitness training regime. We are committed to helping you expand your comfort zone, all you need to do is to keep a positive mental attitude. Here are some factors that will help you make it to the summit:
We will have a 1 guide to 3 hikers ratio on summit day, this ensures that everyone has sufficient support
You will only be required to carry your day pack which will include whatever you may need during the hike, such as raincoat, snacks, camera and water
Staying in the huts every day before the summit push will ensure that we are well rested and acclimatized
Our guide will conduct a training session on using crampons and ice-axes to get everyone comfortable with them before the summit attempt
We will take a Snowcat up to Pastuckhov rocks on summit day which saves us time and energy
Trek Guides are all professionally trained to handle any emergencies or evacuations under the unlikely circumstances should they occur
PRICE INCLUSIONS & EXCLUSIONS
Our price includes all the essentials from the moment you set foot in Mineralnye Vody to the moment you depart. Please refer to the table below for more detail:
Return Dubai-Mineralnye Vody flight on Aeroflot Airways
Comfortable hotels & huts (double room basis)
Guides and chefs for the hike
All transportation in Russia
Tips for guides and chefs
Snowcat for summit day
3 meals per day, throughout hike
Summit celebration party
Professional photography of the trip
Training regime for hike
One Grasp The Adventure t-shirt
One free local hike
Support with visa invitation letter
Russia visa if required
Altitude sickness tablets (Diamox)
Personal expenses (souvenirs, snacks)
Paid activities on extra day as per itinerary
Clothing (check packing list for details)
Sleeping bags (can be rented)
Specialized/ Extra hiking gear
MT. ELBRUS RECOMMENDED PACKING LIST
Prepare for temperatures lower than -20 C on the summit!
Backpack or duffle for clothes and equipment
Day Pack with rain cover
Insulated Water Storage (bladder or canteen)
3-4 wicking t-shirts (we’ll be giving you one Grasp The Adventure hiking t-shirt)
2-3 hiking pants
4-5 sets of undergarments
4-5 sets of socks
1-2 sets of winter socks
1 fleece jacket (temperatures as low as -20 C on the summit)
1 down jacket (temperatures as low as -20 C on the summit)
Thermal base-layer top
Thermal base-layer trousers
Thermal glove liners
Mittens or heavy snow gloves
1 rain jacket
Warm, winter hat
Waterproof plastic bags to put clothes in
Sandals or slippers or sneakers
Microfibre face towel
Microfibre body towel
Toiletries kit (soap, shampoo, conditioner, nail clippers, toothbrush, toothpaste, wet wipes, hand sanitizer, Fresh Buzz, toilet paper, hairbrush, feminine products)
Personal First-Aid (Vitamins, hydration tablets, sleeping pills, altitude sickness pills)
Day 1: Dubai Airport
The team will be taking the direct Flydubai flight which departs Dubai at 22:40 ad arrivres in Mineralnye Vody (MRV) at 01:20 this next morning. If you are flying out with the team, we recommend that you arrive at the airport at lease 2.5 hours before the flight. If you opt to book your own flights, then make sure you arrive in MRV around 01:20 on Saturday.
Day 2: Azau Waterfall Acclimatization Ascent
Maximum altitude: 2900 m
A bus will be waiting for us at the airport to transport us to our hotel in Azau, we will get there at around 6 am. If you didn't get to sleep enough on the bus, don't worry because we'll have a chance to sleep on until breakfast which will be served at 10 am. After breakfast, we will hike up to the waterfall at 2900 m; when we're done enjoying the views, we will descend back to our hotel. If time permits, we can go back down to Cheget village for lunch at a local café. Tonight is our last night in the valley, so we’ll prepare all our equipment for the hike and hire anything that we don’t have. Dinner will be served at the hotel.
Day 3: Base Camp
Maximum altitude: 4200 m
Well rested, we will have our breakfast at the mountain hotel and then head off with all the necessary equipment, you can leave anything that you don’t need for the hike at the hotel. We will have to carry our own equipment and clothes from the hotel to the ski lifts (5 minutes) and from the lifts to our base camp (5 minutes). Our base camp accommodation will have electric power, light, heaters, personal beds, separate dining room and kitchen.
After a short tea break at the huts, we will embark on our second acclimatization hike up to the beginning of the Pastuckhov Rocks and probably even a little higher to an altitude of 4200 – 4300 m. Depending on the weather and time, our guide may offer us a short snow/ice/rope/self-belay techniques course. We’ll be having lunch and dinner at base camp.
Day 4: Acclimatization Hike to Pastukhovsky Rocks
Maximum altitude: 4700 m
Today's acclimatization hike will take us all the way up to the Pastukhovsky Rocks at 4700 m altitude. After spending some time up there, we will head back down to our base camp for dinner.
Day 5: Rest Day + Training
Our guide will give us some training to make us feel more comfortable with crampons and ice axes before the summit push. Climbing experience is not needed for this summit though, in case of any emergencies, the guides will rope us up and make proper belay. Go to bed early today, as tonight will be our biggest day... the summit push!
Day 6: The Summit
Maximum altitude: 5642 m
This is it, this is when the going gets tough and the tough get going. Wake up call at 2 am to get ready and have breakfast. We’ll be sitting around the dining table nervously laughing at the memories we’ve formed so far, anxiously waiting for the push. At 3 am, we head out to take the Snowcat up to the Pastuckhov Rocks. This will save us a great deal of time and preserve our energy for the push to come. It takes around 5-6 more hours (depends on the group’s pace) from there to get to Mount Elbrus’s Summit at an altitude of 5642 m. You are now at the Roof of Europe, the clouds quickly passing below you, take it all in and enjoy your great achievement.
From the summit, it takes around 4 hours to descend back to base camp. We will spend the rest of the day relaxing and sharing stories of how we each felt up there.
Day 7: Summit Reserve Day
In case we got hit with bad weather yesterday, today will act as a reserve day to summit the mountain. Otherwise, we will have breakfast early in our base camp before descending back to the mountain hotel in the valley.
We cannot visit Russia without immersing ourselves into its deep culture. So the rest of the day will be spent in cultural experiences and tours while also visiting the wool market for some shopping. We will have lunch at an Azau Café and finally celebrate reaching the summit with a dinner party at a local café in the evening.
Day 8: PCR + Mineralnye Vody Airport
We will take a trip to Nalchik for the PCR test. While waiting, we can walk around the park or do some shopping. After getting our results, we will drive on to Mineralnye Vody for dinner before heading to the airport for our flight back home. As we always say, this may be the end of the trip but definitely not the end of our new formed family. With Grasp the Adventure, we think it is very important to continue meeting up after the trip, to go over the photos and laugh over the memories and eventually grasp many more adventures together.