Mount Elbrus Trip Report (#21300)
- Signed By: Michel Beauchemin of Golden, British Columbia, Canada
- Date submitted: June 04, 2008
- Number of People Encountered:11-25 people
- Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Account of a solo ski ascent:
May 29. Hiked from Azau (2350m) to 3100m where I had to put my skis on. Then, skinned up to Garabashi a.k.a. the Barrels (3700m) where I got snowed in by a huge blizzard with winds over 80 km/h and almost two feet of snow.
May 30. Cloudy and clearing up at the end of the afternoon. Skied from Garabashi (3700m) to Diesel Hut a.k.a. Priut 11 (4150m) where I left the bulk of my gear and then went on skis just above Pastuckhov Rocks (4700m) for acclimatization and came back for the night to Diesel Hut.
May 31. Blue bird day! First attempt to summit but turned back at 5000m at the beginning of the traverse (a.k.a. Kacaya) because of the strong winds. Slept at Diesel Hut for a second night.
June 1. Blue bird day with clouds rolling in at the end of the afternoon. -20C on top, -40C with windchill factor! Left Diesel Hut at 0700 and summited at 1700. I had to left my skis at 5000m because of the moderate to strong winds and a mix of hardpack snow and ice on the Kacaya. Got some very interesting winds above the Saddle (5350m) with gusts over 100 km/h. No kidding, I had never been thrown to the ground by the wind before! Back at Diesel Hut for a third night at 1900.
June 2. Skied from 4050m to 2900m and then hiked down the rest to Azau (2350m).
I have to specify that the Elbrus Area has been subject to an unusual cold spell during the time of my ascent. Even though I summited on the first of June, I would qualify that ascent as a Winter Ascent...