Speedy and Successful Summit of Elbrus
The third Mountain Madness Elbrus trip for 2016 went off without a hitch!
I’d like to thank the whole team for an incredible expedition — I’m psyched to have made so many new friends!
Some of the highlights from this trip include two beautiful acclimatization hikes in the Elbrus region, a perfect summit day, and of course the wonderful accommodation at the Hotel Povorot in Cheget.
When we first arrived in Cheget the weather was consistently beautiful in the morning, with clear skies and low winds. This made for exceptional conditions to begin our acclimatization program with hikes up to the Cheget Ski Area and the observation tower overlooking Terskol. The views of the mountain were stunning. As crystal clear skies met us each morning, as we began the crisp walks through the forest.
View from acclimatization hike. Mark Pugliese photo (all)
Once we moved onto the mountain, we checked the forecast and saw clear weather for two days. We did one more sunny acclimatization hike up to about 4700m to prepare for our final summit push. We awoke summit morning to a thin cloud layer that we were able to punch through, and burst out into the perfect starry night with the summit looming above us. We began our walk at 5000m and were standing on the top a mere four hours later. The team’s preparations and physical fitness were very apparent, seeing as we were able to ascend with such speed and efficiency. Props to you guys!
Climbing toward the summit.
We were able to descend to 5000m and hitch a ride back to the barrels, and then back to the hotel later that day. We celebrated in the wonderful Hotel Povorot with a delicious dinner, music and dancing. Thanks again to the team for a great expedition, I hope to see all of you on Madness trips in the future!
Our victorious team!
~Mark Pugliese, Mountain Madness Guide