General description of Elbrus area (from South side)
The Caucasian ridge stretches for 1200 km from East to West, from the Black sea to the Caspian. Its width reaches 180 km. The chain separates Russia from the South Caucasian region.The Greater Caucasus is traditionally divided into three regions: West Caucasus, Central and East Caucasus. The borders of these territories go along meridians that cross mt. Elbrus (5642 m) in the West and Kazbek (5033 m). It is between these two giants that the major part of the most beautiful mountains lies. The central valley (Baksan valley) along which flows the river Baksan has many side valleys, leading to the most famous and beautiful peaks of the Caucasus, such as Donguz-Orun (4492 m), magnificent ridges of Shkhelda (4300 m), Tchatyn (4368 m) with the well-known «rhomb», the legendary Ushba (4710 m) and of course mt. Elbrus (5642 m), the highest summit of the Caucasus.and Europe
It is easy to reach South side of mt. Elbrus region from Mineralnie Vody airport, with a good road, trip from airport till Terskol takes ~4-4:30 hours. (see that short film below to know better the location!)
Mt.Elbrus, a two-peaked ice giant, crowns the panorama of Central Caucasus. It is at least 1000 m higher than its neighbors. Its two peaks have two volcano craters, which make the Eastern peak a little lower than the other (5642 and 5621 m).The Eastern peak still has an enormous crater 250m in diameter. All the massif is covered by a gigantic ice-cap. Therefore from Persian language the name of the mountain is translated as «Snow Mountain». Cabardin and Balkan people, local folks of these lands, call it «Mountain of Happiness».
An ascent of mt. Elbrus along the normal route (Azau-Barrrels-Refude 11-Pastuhkov Rocks - Saddle - Summit), is the most popular one in the Caucasus. It gives a possibility to reach a great altitude by technically simple route. Nevertheless it requires full acclimatization.
The following plot includes mountain trek for enjoying mountain ridges and valleys intended to acquire necessary acclimatization. There is a possibility to change or cut down the suggested program of acclimatization, but taking into consideration the specific climate of the region, we find it necessary to spend certain time on the place.
We sudgest to You investigate proposed trips schedule to choose the one which better corresponds to Your demands!