Russia – Mt Elbrus (North Route)

20 Jul 17

Russia – Mt Elbrus (North Route)

Mount Elbrus, a two-peaked ice giant, crowns the panorama of Central Caucasus. Its two peaks have two volcano craters, which make the eastern peak (5612m) a little lower than the westrn peak (5642m). The eastern peak has an enormous crater 250m in diameter. The massif is covered by a gigantic ice-cap, which gives the mountain its name, translated from the Persian language to English as "Snow Mountain". Mount Elbrus is considered an inactive volcano. Lava flows cover the mountains as well as 100 square miles of volcanic ash and debris. Pyroclastic flows of ash and mud, indicative of a powerful eruption that melted ice, also drain off the mountain. An 800-foot-wide snow-filled volcanic crater is on the mountain's western summit. Elbrus last erupted around 50 A.D.
There are two ascent route to climbing Mt. Elbrus - the south route and the north route. In this journey, we will ascent Mt. Elbrus via the north route.

About The Climb

The ascent of Mt. Elbrus from the north route is more demanding than from the south route. We called it the “Elbrus North” climb. Elbrus North is a route of the virgin nature. There is no cable cars, no snow-cat, making the climb purely on human-powered mode starting from the base camp. The ascent begins from Dgily-su and continues along the north slope of the mountain. The climb is not technically difficult, but requires the use of crampons, ice axe, and roping up system to negotiate the crevasses. Elbrus North is wild, more adventurous than the south route. The climb is like an authentic mountaineering expedition. The main obstacles are high altitude, wind, cold, and long hours of plodding on snow field tied to your climbing mates. The climb from high camp may take between 10 and 12 hours, and another 4 to 6 hours of descent. This climb is not suitable for beginners; participants are expected to have some experience with walking in crampons, using ice-axe and roping up. We will conduct specific skills training to prepare you (or as a refresher session) for the climb. Good endurance fitness & stamina are necessary to have to get to the highest point of Mt. Elbrus.

Experience Required

Participants must have high level of fitness, physically and mentally fit, with the ability to trek with a 15kg backpack load or heavier (3 load ferrying days); Experience in multi-day treks, walking on snow with crampons (not difficult to learn) & sleeping in tents.

Equipment and Gear

You will need high altitude trekking attire during the acclimatization trek; when at the mountain lodge, fleece and down jacket will be required. A down sleeping bag is needed in base camp and the mountain lodge. You will also need the following equipment for the summit attempt:

  1. Crampon compatible high altitude boots / double layer boots (or plastic boots);
  2. Crampons
  3. Climbing harness
  4. Locking karabiners
  5. Prussik Cords
  6. Walking ice axe (optional)

* Equipment can be rented in Kislovodsk. A packing list will be provided for all our participants. Please refer to our Resource Centre page to read about the layering system to be better prepared and choose the right gear/equipment for your climb.

  • Group size: 6 - 12 people
  • *Price quoted may subject to change for 2017 scheduled dates
  • The Elbrus North trip is part of our annual Mountain Climbing Challenges event.  To promote mountain climbing and to encourage people to challenge themselves physically and mentally, we have initiated and introduced a few  mountain climbing challenges into our calendar each year. These Mountain Climbing Challenges trips are accompanied by a team leader. To read more, click on this link: Mountain Climbing Challenges
  • You can also form a private or join an international open group for this trek. For enquiry, send an email to us at

DayItineraryMealsAltitude At Rest Point
Day 1Arrive Moscow, domestic flight to Mineralnye Vody. Drive to Kislovodsk. O/N in hotel-/-/D500m
Day 2Transfer to the Dgily-Su (Elbrus North base camp – BC)B/L/D2500m
Day 3-9Ascent to High Camp. Acclimatization hike to Lenz Rocks (4700m) / Summit climb (Mt Elbrus, 5642m).B/L/DHigh Camp - 3700m
Day 10Descent to Dgily-Su. Transfer to Kislovodsk. O/N in hotelB/-/-500m
Day 11Transfer to Mineralnye Vody airport – Domestic flight to Moscow. O/N in hotelB/-/-255m
Day 12Depart Moscow. (Programme ends here. Next day arrival on flight, if any, not reflected in itinerary )B/-/-


  1. Return airport transfer in Mineralyn Vody and Moscow
  2. Return land transfer between Kislovodsk and Dgily-Su
  3. Meals as indicated in itinerary; (*packed lunch on acclimatization & summit day)
  4. Twin/Triple sharing accommodation in Kislovodsk and Moscow
  5. Camping equipment: Sleeping tents (twin sharing) or dormitory tents; dining tents
  6. Trek/climb support: Mountain climbing guide (1guide : 3climbers ratio); climbing ropes
  7. Permits & fees: National Park fee
  8. Drinking water at campsites and for the trek/climb
  9. One English speaking guide during transfer
  10. Entry Visa application support - invitation letter & submission
  11. 1 x Ace Adventure Expeditions trip leader


  1. International & Domestic air tickets, airline taxes and fuel surcharge
  2. Visa Fee to Russia (S$70 for Singaporeans (3-4days) /S$140 urgent)
  3. Single Supplement
  4. Meals not indicated in itinerary
  5. Extra summit attempt ( €290 per climbing guide)
  6. Extra beverages & snacks; alcholic drinks
  7. All tipping
  8. Personal porters
  9. Personal travel insurance (mandatory to cover trekking up to 6000m)
  10. Personal expenses like shopping, laundry etc
  11. Personal travel & trekking gear – warm clothing, shoes, backpacks etc
  12. Extension of stay after the trek
  13. Emergency evacuation and medical expenses
  14. Any expenses including accommodation, meals & transfer outside the stipulated trek/climb itinerary – i.e. any person leaving the group for personal travel, illness/injury or any form of extension of stay

Support from Ace Adventure Expeditions

We provide pre-trip support to prepare you for the climb:
1. Trip briefing
2. Equipment preparation & gear discount from selected Singapore outdoor outfitters
3. Physical training preparation
4. Trip information kit
5. Visa application, invitation letter and submission

We carefully select and establish strong working relationship with our local trek operator to ensure safe participation by everyone. Our local climbing guides have extensive experience in guiding treks in Elbrus, possess  intimate knowledge of the local surroundings, conditions and culture and are trained in emergency rescue.

Grading: 3D

Training: Regardless of your level of fitness and physical conditions, it is advisable to train prior to embarking on a climb or trek. A training recommendation specific to the climb or trek will be given upon signing up. A good four to five months of training would be a good preparation for the trek. Refer to our Grading chart for an overview on the technical difficulty and fitness required for this trip.