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On the summit of Dykh-Tau!

Congratulations to our Dykh-Tau team on their 100% success reaching the summit of Europe’s second highest peak! Here’s, expedition leader, Garrett Madison from Russia:

Hello, this Garrett calling in for the Madison Mountaineering Dykh-Tau expedition team. Today is Friday, September 17th and yesterday our team summited Dykh-Tau, beautiful route up to the second tallest peak in Europe and second tallest peak in Russia as well.

We are now back safely in our Bezengi base area here, a little mountain village and very happy that we had a successful climb, it was a tough four days and three nights up on the mountain climbing alpine style, with heavy packs. We had a little bit of weather on summit day-some fresh snow.

Everyone did great! We got up to the summit and down safely and we really enjoyed the experience. It was a wonderful trip here in Russia, between climbing Elbrus and then climbing Dykh-Tau! We were very lucky with good weather on both mountains.

Happy to be back safe!

In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions.  Just say, “Alexa, play my Madison Mountaineering flash briefing.

Instagram:

– our Garmin inReach Mini powered real-time tracking map:

Chase M. and Garrett on the summit of Europe's highest peak, Mount Elbrus!

With a beautiful summit day, our team topped out on Europe’s highest peak, Mount Elbrus, this morning.  Here is Garrett Madison with a recap of this quick climb:

Hello, this is Garrett calling in for the Madison Mountaineering Mount Elbrus climb. Today is Friday, September 10th and we had a perfect summit day on Mount Elbrus.

We were blessed with beautiful conditions, couldn’t have been a better day. No winds, no clouds in the sky and good route conditions. Chase and I got up to the summit with our Russian guide, George around 7:00am and had it all to ourselves for a little while. We took some photos and admired the views and made it back down to our high camp and then descended all the way back down to Terskol and Cheget, where we had a celebration dinner with our group and another group that we summited with today.

It’s been a great climb here on Mount Elbrus, a very quick climb.  Normally we spend a few days here, acclimatizing here at the Terskol/Cheget area and also up on Elbrus at the high camp.  But due to the weather, we knew today was the good day, and we had to go for it. So, we took advantage of the good weather and did a quick climb and got lucky with a beautiful summit.

So, we’re going to rest here a couple of days, do some fun activities and then head off to our next mountain, Dykh-Tau in the Bezengi base area, not to far from here.

The view of Mount Elbrus's twin peaks from the high huts

The view of Mount Elbrus’s twin peaks from the high huts

Sunrise on Russia's Mount Elbrus, Europe's highest mountain

Sunrise on Russia’s Mount Elbrus, Europe’s highest mountain

Perfect summit day on Mount Elbrus!

Perfect summit day on Mount Elbrus!

At the Mount Elbrus summit with Chase and our Russian guide George

At the Mount Elbrus summit with Chase and our Russian guide George


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions.  Just say, “Alexa, play my Madison Mountaineering flash briefing.

Instagram:

– our Garmin inReach Mini powered real-time tracking map:

View from our camp at 3,800m on Mount Elbrus

Our 2021 Russian adventure is in full swing.  Garrett Madison and team member Chase M. are in position for their summit attempt on Europe’s highest peak, Mount Elbrus starting in just 11 hours:

Hello!  This is Garrett calling in from Mount Elbrus, Russia – highest mountain in Europe!

Chase and I arrived here on Mount Elbrus and we’re up here at the mountain huts at 3800m.  Looks like the weather is going to be great tomorrow.  And then after that, a few days of snow and high wind – some stormy weather.  So, we are going to go for our summit push tomorrow morning.  Just a short trip up here, hopefully good weather.  If we can’t get up tomorrow, we’ll rest a few days, let the storm pass, and then go for the summit next week.

At the moment, it looks like good weather tonight and tomorrow, so we’re going to go for it – fingers crossed for calm winds.  We are looking forward getting up to the highest point in Europe (5685m / 18,650ft).

We will check-in soon!

The view of the Baksan Valley from the slopes of Mount Elbrus

The view of the Baksan Valley from the slopes of Mount Elbrus

The twin peaks of Europe's highest point, Mount Elbrus in Russia.

The twin peaks of Europe’s highest point, Mount Elbrus in Russia.

Enjoying the high camp huts on Mount Elbrus

Enjoying the high camp huts on Mount Elbrus


In addition to these expedition dispatches, you can also follow our teams as they make their attempts on the world’s most formidable mountains on:

Amazon Alexa devices with the Madison Mountaineering Flash Briefing skill:

  • Enable the skill and add to your flash briefing to hear Garrett Madison’s daily audio expedition updates on select expeditions.  Just say, “Alexa, play my Madison Mountaineering flash briefing.

Instagram:

– our Garmin inReach Mini powered real-time tracking map:

Straight from head guide, Mark Tucker, here is the full recap of summit day on Mt. Elbrus:

We got pretty lucky with the weather — except for it trying to blow us off the summit ridge! And then after we descended the fixed lines (that are installed annually to protect against a fall on the steep terrain) we hit some white-out conditions, but just for a bit. Aside from that, I guess you could call it a beautiful day on the mountain!!! Which it was.

We started with a bit of help from a snow-cat at 02:00 AM moving up the lower part of the climb.

After a few hours of climbing, we were welcomed by a beautiful warming sunrise. We were fortunate to witness the very unique sight of the mountain’s shadow being cast on the horizon by the rising Sun. The beautiful hues of pinks, blues, and greys were enough to take your breath away. Or was it because were were working so hard at 17,000’? 🙂

The team did a fantastic job taking care of themselves and climbing strong. On the last bit to the top, the wind was blowing so hard that the team gathered even more strength to crawl to the summit! We hunkered down for a quick couple of photos.

Everyone did an awesome job heading down safe, healthy and yes, a bit tired!

Just in, tons of photos from the Mt. Elbrus summit day, enjoy…

Exciting news of the Elbrus Summit in this quick text-only update from Lead guide Mark Tucker. More details and PHOTOS to follow:

  • 16 of us left high camp at 2am
  • 16 of us literary crawled to the tallest point in Europe due to high winds
  • 16 of us are now in the forest of Cheget 7000’

I call it a nice day!!

Congratulations to the entire team for 100% success on reaching the top of Europe – Mt. Elbrus (5,642 m / 18,510 ft) and descending safely to the lush valley below.

Seven Summit: Mt. Elbrus

Lead guide Mark Tucker just provided this expedition update via phone from the comfortable LEAPrus huts on Mt. Elbrus:

The team is in bed for some final rest before the summit push in about four hours! Weather is looking good with just some clouds down below in the valley. Everyone is fired up for the summit climb and ready for the alpine start. We will check in again soon.

LEAPrus huts

Life is good here at 3,900 m / 12,800 ft! We made an easy departure from our hotel with a great breakfast filling our stomachs! After the short transfer to the lift system and following the same drill as yesterday, but this time loaded with lots more gear for our stay at the luxurious LEAPrus huts. At the top of the lifts, a snow-cat was waiting to take us up several more meters to the wonderful accommodations that are shaped like a giant barrel on it’s side.

After a nice lunch, we were off for another training hike. Just a little over 4,267 m / 14,000 ft. we turned back towards the huts while continuing our training and briefings to prepare for the summit day ahead.

Weather was perfect and the team is in top shape!!

It was a nice day in the mountains! After breakfast, the few missing pieces needed to form complete climbing kits for some of our team members were tracked down. In Terskol, nice equipment is available for hire and the next thing you know it is getting put to use!

We took the day to make a dry run for tomorrow’s training program. Three ski lifts up and you are at 3,658 m / 12,000 ft. and it’s acclimatize on! Hey, never walk when you can ride! Top of this chain of lifts puts you right on the lower flank of the upper mountain, a perfect place for a few hours of snow school. The team is in fine shape with a nice introduction to snow travel and well trained for tomorrow’s move up. It’s really nice to run through the drill and tighten up the process and techniques to make for an easier day going up – knowledge is power!

The old adage of climb high, sleep low could not have been done better. The team is in good shape and spirits are high!!

[ small sized pictures of big sized adventure! ]

The 2018.07 Elbrus expedition team today had a timely and smooth flight from Moscow to Mineralnye Vody, grabbed some supplies at a local grocery, and hit the road via bus for Terskol – at the base of Mt. Elbrus.

Along the way they enjoyed fresh made chicken sandwiches (Wolfgang Tuck style!) while avoiding herds of milk cows roaming down the middle of highway!

Cleaning up before dinner was quite the experience! There was no hot water!! Flooding in the valley knocked out the natural gas supply. All was forgotten as the team shared a wonderful farm to table dinner. The stunning alpine glow at sunset highlighted the amazing view of the Caucasus mountain range.