Mt. Elbrus is the highest mountain in the European continent. It is located in the Caucases mountain range in Russia near its border with Georgia in between the Black and Caspian Seas. We begin the trip by flying in to St. Petersburg where we will spend two days here sampling as much of this beautiful city as we can while we adjust to the time change. Highlights include Peter the Great’s summer palace and the Hermitage Museum. This museum is famous for housing some of the most precious art in the world. We then fly to Mineralnye Vody where land transportation will be waiting to bring us to the Baksan Valley. This area was once a vacation spot for the Soviet elite. We will stay in a lodge at 7000 feet and spend several days taking hikes acclimatizing ourselves to the high altitude we will soon be climbing in. We will then move higher to a hut that puts us within a days climb from the summit.
The climbing is over glaciated terrain and will require us to use ice axes and crampons while being roped up. Upon finishing our climb we return to Mineralnye Vody and take a flight to Moscow where we spend two days at a hotel across the street from the Kremlin. There are opportunities here to tour parts of Moscow. We take a morning departure from Moscow to Istanbul or for those not continuing on with us they will fly back to the United States.