Powder and Putin, Ski Descent of ELBRUS (5642 m), RUSSIA
- Elbrus Ski Descent-Adventure skiing Russian style! The Elbrus region has long history of alpine and ski activity but politics have kept it from experiencing the crowds the Alps have. The lift system offers some of the biggest vertical in the world with ski descents of 1700m right off the tram! The great snow conditions due to the higher altitude and colder weather, combine with the many side valleys and mountains accessible just a short tour above the top of the lift stations of Cheget and Elbrus. When done in summer a descent of the summit of the roof of Europe becomes the prize! With the ability to combine lift accessed alpine terrain, tour to a remote hut or take a ride in a helicopter, this region is the logical follow up for those who have been to La Grave or Chamonix and are ready for the next step.
Dates: 2022 June 17-26
Duration: 9 Days
Client Ratio: 3:1
Cost: $4,900 (Based on a minimum of 3 people)
- One summit attempt
- All transportation, including airport pick-up & drop-oﬀ in Moscow and Mineral Vody
- Full board – all meals included (excluding meals in Moscow)
- Unlimited drinking water
- Lodging – 4 nights in hotels and 4 nights in mountain shelters during acclimatization
- Group climbing equipment
- Professional and experienced English-speaking mountain guides
- Additional guides for summit attempt (1 guide/ 3 climbers)
- Registration with Russian emergency search and rescue services
- Entrance fees to national park
- Gondola fees
- Use of “Snowcat” tractors/snowmobiles on acclimatization climbs or day of climb
- Gratuities for guides, Personal insurance; Individual transfers;
- International and domestic airfare
- Russian tourist visa (approx. $325)
- Rental of personal climbing gear (see required gear list)
- Additional services requested at hotel (spa/banya, )
- Additional summit attempt
- Any change to the program that requires extra expense (any departure from the itinerary will be booked by you at your own expense)
- Additional beverages at meals (non-alcoholic and alcoholic)
Day 1. Leave the U.S. Arrive in Moscow. Hotel accommodation near the city center. Overnight at a hotel
Day 2. Moscow city tour in the morning. Afternoon & evening free to explore. Briefing with the mountain guide. Overnight at a hotel
Day 3. Fly to Mineral Vody in the morning. Meeting at the airport in Mineralnye Vody and transfer by private bus to the hotel in Baksan Valley not far from Elbrus. Overnight at the Povorot hotel in Terskol
Day 4. Our first acclimatization ski tour into the beautiful Baksan Valley. Overnight at hotel in Terskol
Day 5. Next up our 2nd acclimatization tour. This long day adds good bump up in altitude, leaving most climbers feeling strong and acclimatized. Overnight at hotel in Terskol
Day 6. Move to the Leap Russia or privately owned mountain huts where we lodge at about 3,800 meters. We use the tram and ski lift to help move our gear. . Overnight at hut.
Day 7. Rest Day or summit attempt, 6,000+’ ascent with the satisfaction of making turns all the way back down! Overnight at the hut
Day 8. Two additional days available for the ascent of Elbrus or ski tours exploring the area. Overnight at the Barrels or transfer to Povorot Hotel in Terskol
Day 9-10.Drive to Mineralnye Vody. Flight to Moscow, move to the international airport for the return flight home.
Day 4. Ski Cheget. The more energetic may wish to ascent Cheget Karabashi 3400m or ski using the Cheget chairlift system.
Days 5-8. 4 days of off-piste skiing. It is possible for the group to pay for heli time at an additional cost.
Day 8. Drive to Mineralnye Vody. Flight to Moscow, move to the international airport for the return flight home.
Drive to Adyrsu valley. “Ullu-Tau” Camp. Night at a lodge (2350m).
Ski-tours from the hotel;
Chotchat summit (3400m), 4 hours.
Koiavgan Pass (3572m), 4 hours.
Garvash Pass (3710m), 5-6 hours.
Mestia Pass (3860m) and continue to the Mestia summit (4230m), 8 hours.
Adylsu Pass (3300m) and continue to the Lokomotiv summit (3750m), 6 hours.
Jalavchat Glacier to the Druzhba summit (3650 m), 4 hours.
Gumachi Pass (3582m), 5-6 hours. Descent via Jankuat Glacier to the Adylsu valley.
Drive by bus to Terskol (Baksan valley). Hotel in Terskol (2100m).
Our recommended clothing system has four layers.
- Base layer: manages moisture and wicks perspiration away from your skin. (Polypro, capilene, driclime)
- Softshell: should be a durable, comfortable, insulating and wind/water resistant layer that breathes well.
- Hard shell: windproof, waterproof and breathable. (e.g. Gore-Tex, or similar)
- Insulating layer: should be down-fill or synthetic-fill and fit over all layers. (e.g. down, primaloft or polarguard)
These four layers are usually sufficient for most people, but if you tend to be colder bring one extra medium-layer that would be ideal for extra warmth around camp, such as a vest. When deciding what to pack, remember to bring enough clothes and accessories to ensure your safety and comfort, while not over-burdening yourself with items you probably won’t use.
- Skis or snowboard. Skis should be equipped with alpine touring bindings or telemark bindings. We prefer split decision Snowboards w/ skins because you do not need snow shoes.
- Adjustable Ski Poles
- Alpine touring, telemark, snowboard boots crampon compatible
- Ski Crampons Required for all ski mountaineering trips
- Alpine climbing harness Must have adjustable leg loops and fit over all clothing and can be put on with ski boots
- 1 Locking carabiner Large, pear-shaped carabiner is best.
- Ice axe Lightweight
- Crampons with anti-ball plate Must be fit to boots prior to trip,
- Climbing/ski helmet Adjustable, should fit with hat on
- 1 synthetic T-shirt
- 1 long sleeve Sun Hoodie or shirt Lightweight, light colored for sunny days
- 2 synthetic sports bras*(WOMEN)
- 1 soft shell jacket
- 1 Down/synthetic jacket with hood
- 1 Hard shell jacket with hood Waterproof and breathable. Gore-Tex or equivalent is best, roomy enough to fit over multiple layers.
- 1 pair lightweight gloves
- 1 pair warm waterproof gloves
- Warm hat Wool or synthetic
- Shade hat or Visor
- 2 pair med- heavy wool/synthetic socks Check boot fit with liner and wool socks on
- 1 pair lightweight long underwear
- 1-2 pairs of underwear boxers/briefs
- Softshell pants
- Shell pants Waterproof/breathable with full side zips
- Sleeping bag Rated to at least 20º F.
- Internal frame pack 3000 cubic inch capacity able to carry snowboard/skis
Hut & In Town clothing for travel and evening
- Comfortable clothes for travel, walking around town and hotsprings
- lightweight booties or slippers, comfortable top and bottom-cotton optional.
- Goggles and Glacier glasses 100% UV protection with side shields or wrap around.
- Personal first aid repair kit Basics: moleskin/blister kit, Band-Aids, first-aid tape, ibuprofen, personal medications, spare parts for bindings and batteries etc.
- Lip balm At least SPF 20
- Sunscreen At least SPF 40
- Headlamp lightweight LED
- 2 water bottles 1 liter wide-mouth Nalgene and 1 bottle holster, or
- Hydration bladder With drinking tube and 1 Nalgene bottle
- Toiletry kit
- Hand wipes
- 1 small stainless steel thermos (Optional)
- Favorite snack foods (no more than 2 pounds)
WILL MY GUIDE (OR GUIDES) BE?
You will receive an introductory email with the instructor for your course. We are small company who enjoy working together in the mountains as well as highly skilled professionals who hold current Wilderness First Responder certification and are proficient in technical rescue and evacuation skills. Our guides are dedicated to the world of alpinism, many having first ascents and hold professional certifications with AIARE & AMGA. The AMGA is part of the IFMGA, which is the international body of certified mountain guides.
HOW MUCH SHOULD I TIP MY GUIDES?
Tipping is considered standard practice in the guiding industry. Tipping amounts vary – so $15-20 per day per person/per guide is average that works well for the guides without a serious blow to your wallet. Often 10% of the course cost is a good rule-of-thumb. If you feel that the program was exceptional or substandard the tip can reflect that.
CAN I RENT EQUIPMENT FROM BCAG?
Yes, we rent Beacons, Shovels, Probes and Packs here. If you need these plus touring equipment, Second Ascent rents avalanche safety equipment, alpine touring, tele and split boards click here. Quantities are limited so please contact us as soon as possible if you are interested.
HOW HEAVY WILL MY PACK BE?
You will carry 15-20 pounds, which will include everything on the equipment list.
WHEN DO I NEED TO PAY THE BALANCE OF MY TRIP?
Payable when you make your reservation by e-check, or credit card.
WHAT HAPPENS IF I NEED TO CANCEL MY TRIP?
If you should decide to cancel your trip, BCAG must be notified in writing. Your trip will be cancelled from the date we receive written notice. You will be assessed a cancellation fee according to the following schedule:
90 to 22 days from trip departure – 50% of trip cost
30 days or less – 100% of trip cost
WHAT HAPPENS IF I WANT TO CHANGE THE DATES OF MY TRIP?
Schedule changes are subject to a $50 fee per person up to 2 weeks out and $100 less then 14 days from the start of the trip and may not be possible. If conditions or circumstances preclude running a scheduled program we reserve the right to make the decision as to whether the program will be canceled, rescheduled, or an alternative provided.
WHAT HAPPENS IF BC ADVENTURE GUIDES HAS TO CANCEL MY TRIP?
In the rare circumstance where we need to cancel a program you can reschedule without a fee or receive a refund on your deposit. If circumstances arise that force us to cancel a program that is already in progress we reserve the right to decide whether a refund or credit, at a prorated rate, will be issued. We are not responsible for cancellation fees or costs arising from your changed or cancelled flights, lodging, or other arrangements. We strongly recommend obtaining trip cancellation insurance from your travel agent.
DO I NEED TO PURCHASE TRIP INSURANCE?
BCAG highly encourages the purchasing of trip cancellation and travel insurance on domestic trips and requires it on International trips. Europeans and Canadians use it because travel insurance provides coverage for trip cancellation and interruption, travel delays, loss of baggage and travel documents, baggage delays, medical expenses and emergency assistance.
Several options include Travelex or Travel Guard International at (1-877-248-8992) & www.travelguard.com for protecting your investment, however there are many companies to choose from and you may wish to do some individual research regarding which policy is right for you.
WHEN SHOULD I PLAN TO LEAVE A RETURN HOME?
We often get this question because most people need to know how much total time they need to take off work. Our Itinerary includes travel days.