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Mount Elbrus 5642m, Caucasus
Ascend the highest summit in Europe, so one of the 7 Summits
Mount Elbrus overview

At over 800m higher than Mont Blanc, Elbrus is the “Seventh Summit” of Europe. In terms of technical difficulty, it is easier than Mont Blanc, although the importance of acclimatisation is greater, as it is higher.

We offer ascents in both summer (on foot) via the classic south and remote north routes, and winter ascents (on skis) from the north side of the mountain. Below are the options we offer...
 
  Elbrus South route Elbrus North route Elbrus Ski ascent
  8 day trip, typically Saturday to Saturday, operated throughout
the summer season.
10 day trip, typically Friday to
the following Sunday, operated throughout the summer season.
10 day trip, with ascents from the north route, operated throughout
the winter season.
  Click for itinerary Click for itinerary Click for itinerary
Expedition notes

Our formula is to restrict the group sizes, so that there are a maximum of 15 clients. The small group sizes enable us to run specialist ascents, where the group can bond well, and each expedition member has great access to the local guides.
Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the planned itinerary, it must be realised that in this type of adventurous travel, changes to the itinerary may occur. Your final itinerary may differ in respect of the places where you stay overnight. Please bear this in mind, especially in the Caucasus!
On the ascent of Elbrus, you are guided by local guides who have detailed local knowledge. Local guides are not ‘guiding’ or qualified in the same stringent way as IFMGA International Mountain Guides, but work in a far more traditional sense as route finders and assistants to our expedition members, so a higher degree of adventure and autonomy is required than on our Alpine trips.
Our trips are not 'resold packages' from Russian operators, but are privately run trips exclusively for our clients where there are six or more on a trip. All dates are guaranteed, and if there are five or less of our clients on a trip, you are matched with other clients from our partners. We use local logistics agents for visa invitations, guides, transport and accommodation. You are guided by an English speaking local guide on these trips.
With adventure travel, the unexpected is the norm in these areas and, despite painstaking planning and organisation, our adventure holidays can never be taken for granted like regular holidays. Many of the
places that we visit do not have the same quality of emergency health and safety services that we are used to in the developed world. Internal flights can be cancelled, road transport is generally uncomfortable and unreliable, and hotels and any star ratings often do not approach the equivalent standards of the West. If you are not prepared for this, you should not book on this style of trip. We see these factors as a selling point, and it really defines for us what adventure travel is all about.
View of the southern icefields of Kilimanjaro from the Karanga camp at 3961m
Icicle expedition kit bag for FREE
All those booking on this trip are entitled to a free Icicle expedition kit bag. This tough c.65 litre capacity kit bag is designed for full expedition usage and is made out of durable fabric, and features carry straps. It normally retails at £50. Postage within the UK is included in the prices. If you live overseas, it's not a problem at all. We'll let you know the price for postage. Want a second bag? Order another, click here.
Mount Elbrus trip options

Elbrus South (summer)
Elbrus North (summer)
Elbrus Ski ascent (winter)
Client feedback


A brilliant expedition. If there was any critisism, it would be that you don't make enough of how interesting this extraordinary region is, on your website

Terry K , Elbrus

This was the penultimate of my seven summits, and it's only Kili to go, which I'm doing with you in a few months. Thanks so much for this trip. Really great local team, and a well organised trip

Samuel S , Elbrus

A great trip, and interesting to see Moscow on my way through, but far more interesting to spend time in these amazing mountains

Graham J , Elbrus
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Travel visas for Russia
A visa is obligatory for entry and travel within Russia for tourists, and should be carried with you throughout the trip as it (and all other paperwork such as passport, insurance or climbing permits) can be requested and checked at any time. When booking this trip, please ensure that you provide your full name, date and place of birth, citizenship, passport number and its date of issue (ensure it is valid for 6 months after your trip). You should supply a copy of your passport and your insurance to Icicle before you travel. The Russian travel visa can be obtained in the UK direct from the Russian Embassy (click here). Our local Russian agent is accredited with the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and will issue a visa support invitation letter, usually 8 weeks before your trip. This you need to apply in person / by post at the Russian Embassy for your visa, or some opt to use a visa agent company (e.g. Action Visas / Visa Swift), to collect it in person for you. Ensure that you allow at least 6 weeks before departure to arrange your visa, to allow for the bureaucratic process (it usually takes c. 4 weeks). If you would like to spend time in Moscow before travelling to Mineralyne Vody you should ask us to arrange your night(s) of accommodation through our local Russian operators so that they can write a visa invitation letter for the full trip including Moscow (if you arrange your Moscow trip direct you will have to ask your accommodation provider for a separate visa invitation letter). Further details are in the Icicle Elbrus trip dossier that you receive upon booking the trip.
Flights to Mineralnye Vody
When flying from Europe, the easiest route is via Moscow Sheremetyevo (SVO) airport, then onwards to Mineralnye Vody (MRV) regional airport. There are no direct flights, and we advise that you avoid routes via Moscow Domodedovo (DME) or Moscow Vnukovo (VKO), because Moscow Sheremetyevo (SVO) is the main hub airport, and it lessens the risks of baggage delays in transit. You can check out flights and routes on Skyscanner (http://www.skyscanner.net). Return tickets at present from London Heathrow (LHR) cost in the region of £360 with Aeroflot (correct Sept 2017). This Icicle trip price includes the airport transfers to and from Mineralnye Vody airport to the Elbrus region on a shared transfer basis leaving on the first day at 14.30 and taking you back to the airport at 10.30 on the last day, different times are available at your cost (see section on exclusions below for private airport transfer costs).
Any further questions?
A key part of choosing a company is being able to come and talk about your plans with an experienced course advisor face to face. In an increasingly virtual world, we know our clients value speaking to real people, getting open and honest advice. The vast majority of our clients are British, and our office and outdoor store is based in Windermere in the English Lake District.



Get in contact to arrange a meeting, and come in for a coffee to discuss your course in person with a trip advisor.
 


 
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