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Kazbek via Karmadon valley

South Caucasus. Russia. Climbing Kazbek (5033 m). Classic climb of East Summit (5033 m) the route via Karmadon valley

Altitude: 5033 m
Program category: Mountain Climbing

Duration: 8 days
Season: June - September
First climb:
Douglas Freshfeald, 1887
Program price from: 650 Euro

  • 12.08.22 - 20.08.22Minigroup 3-4 participants 65000 RUR booking

Classic climbs of Caucasus - Climbing Kazbek (5033 m) from Russia via Karmadon valley 

Program "Climbing Kazbek from Russia via Karmadon valley" is available on the reservation at least 90 day prior the trip - special permission needed for entering the border area.

Climbing Mount Kazbek - is one of the classic mountaineering programs of MCS AlexClimb Mountain Climbing School. The Mount Kazbek normal route goes via the territory of Georgia - here you can see the overview of the Standard Kazbek program. But due to the certain reasons it is not always convenient or interesting to do the ascent of Mount Kazbek by the normal route. There is another version of the Kazbek climbing program which, in case if you start it from the Russian side, is not connected with the crossing of the Russian-Georgian border and additional bureaucratic difficulties. This route is quite popular in Russia and well known as a variation of the Kazbek climbing route via Karmadon Gorge (North Ossetia).

Mount Kazbek is located in the eastern part of the Main Caucasian Range, on the border of the Russian Federation (North Ossetia-Alania) and Georgia. Although traditional routes to this peak go from Georgia, but there is also the possibility of an ascent from Russia. The option of climbing to the summit of Mount Kazbek from the north side (Karmadon Gorge) differs from the classical route only at the lower part of the route - at the level of 4300 m, the routes from Russia and Georgia merge together, and further climbing continues along a standard path through the saddle between the Main and Eastern Summits of Kazbek.

The following advantages of the Mount Kazbek climbing route via Karmadon gorge can be distinguished like follows:

  • If you are climbing Mount Kazbek from Russia, there is no need to cross the Russia-Georgia border, which is often associated with an unpredictably long wait at the Verkhny Lars checkpoint.
  • The length of the route is more than 20 km, with a total altitude gain of 3750 m - compared with the “classical”, Georgian version of the ascent, the way via Karmadon is longer, with a more smooth altitude gain and the possibility of gradual adaptation to the high altitude conditions.
  • The location and number of the high camps is more optimal - the summit push is carried out from a camp 4200 m, that significantly increases the chances of a successful ascent, even in case of lack of acclimatization or poor physical shape of the participants.

Another feature of this route roots in the name of the gorge, along which we climb to the ice dome of Mount Kazbek. The name Karmadon is translated from Ossetian language as “Warm water” - on the way to Mount Kazbek from Russian side via Karmadon, climbers have the opportunity to relax on the natural thermal springs with a water temperature of more than 50 ° C - this unique natural attraction attracts not only climbers to the Karmadon region, but also many lovers of warm natural baths from Vladikavkaz and neighboring regions of the North Caucasus.

This 8-day program "Climbing Kazbek from Russia" was developed for people who have no prior experience in mountain climbing and who want to try themselves at mountain climbing. Climbing route of Kazbek is not very hard physically, does not require to overcome any technically difficult parts nor stay long at high altitude conditions. Regardless your climbing experience, we recommend the Course of general physical preparation and passing MCS AlexClimb Course of Mountain Technique (advanced level) before participating in this program.

The First Principle of MCS AlexClimb
The First Rule, by which we are guided in the development of our mountain programs - is safety. Professional Guides lead the group, the highest quality certificated equipment and the most modern navigation equipment are used. This guarantees the highest possible level of your safety in the mountains, which is the most important side of our work. As for Kamchatka programs - in addition to our climbing safety issues, the armed ranger accompanies the group to protect participants from too close contact with the wild life.

Program Schedule

The AlexClimb South Caucasus climbing schedule (Climbing Kazbek 2020 via Karmadon valley Russia)

Guided ascent of Kazbek (5947 m) by the route via Karmadon valley
Easy Climb, Basic level

Day 1 - Arrival, meeting at the Minvody airport, transfer to the beginning of the route - Karmadon village (4 hours / 232 km). Overnight in a private house.
Day 2 - Introductory briefing, checking of the equipment, starting to the trail. Walking up to the camp 2300 m at the radon hot springs. Breakfast in a private house, lunch and dinner - ration. Overnight in tents on the grass.
Day 3 - Walking up to the camp 3500 m, breakfast, lunch and dinner - ration. Overnight in tents on the rocks.
Day 4 - Walking up and setting the camp 4200 m, breakfast, lunch and dinner - ration, overnight in the tents in the snow
Day 5 - Climbing the summit of Mount Kazbek 5033 m, descent and return to the camp 3500 m. Breakfast, lunch, dinner - ration, overnight in tents on the rocks
Day 6 - Spare day, breakfast, lunch and dinner - ration, overnight in tents in the snow
Day 7 - Descent to the camp 2300 m, breakfast, lunch and dinner - ration. Overnight in tents on the grass.
Day 8 - Descent to the Karmadon village, departure. Breakfast - ration

Prices and conditions

The price of the "Climbing Kazbek 2024 - the route from North via Karmadon valley":

650 Euro - mini-group 3-4 participants
2200 Euro - private program for 1-2 participants

You have to be ready for: 

  • 5-7 days of camping life in the field conditions;
  • Cooking your meals by yourself while climbing mountains;
  • Carrying a 20-25 kg backpack;
  • Air temperature can be down to -20°C on the altitude higher than 3000 m;

Conditions: passing of the acclimatization module and  Brief AlexClimb course of mountain technique is recommended before the trip.
The price includes: Professional mountain guide services, rent of the communal equipment (ropes, belaying and navigation equipment, cooking gear), hotel accommodation, transfers from the point of the beginning of the program to its end (Nalchik), using the
communal basic medical kit, local registering and climbing permits, food for outdoor part of the program.
The cost does not include: Russian visa charges*, International and domestic flight expenses** to and from the point of the beginning of the program (Nalchik),
one day in Moscow if you have long transfer***, obligatory climbing insurance, rent of the personal equipment, food and drinks while being in cities, using the satellite phone.
Group capacity: 10
Guides: 2

*AlexClimb Mountain Climbing School can provide Russian Visa support for you. More information on request.
**AlexClimb Mountain Climbing School can book the flights for you.
***AlexClimb Mountain Climbing School can book hotel for you in Moscow and organize, transfers sightseeing and recreations according to your preferences - basic Moscow package cost is 270 Euro wich inclides pick up and drop off in the airport and one night in the Hotel 3*.

Detailed conditions and limitations on the program "Russia. Climbing Kazbek via Karmadon valley" can be read in the Offer section

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Our Principles

AlexClimb Rule #1 - Safety First

From the very beginning of our activity, here nearly 16 years, the first Principle of work of School of mountaineering and rock-climbing of MCS AlexClimb is the Safety Priority. On the basis of this Principle all process of training is based, all programs and rounds are developed and carried out only within this main principle. We consider that at professional approach to development of programs, at personal discipline and correctly put motivation - occupations by mountaineering and rock-climbing are COMPLETELY safe. And from the return - all troubles and accidents in our sport come from nonprofessionalism, from ignorance or neglect by elementary standards of safety, from irrational motivation, from revaluation of own forces and opportunities. All these prerequisites we COMPLETELY EXCLUDE in our work - ours Rock-climbing, Ice climbing and Mountaineering are based on one Principle - the Safety Priority. In rock-climbing, mountaineering and ice climbing, the Priority of Safety of MCS AlexClimb-is your personal security and comfort irrespective of, than we are engaged - we train muscles and we work technology of the movement in the sports hall and on the rock climbing wall, we make the way through snowstorm to top or we relax on golden sand of the Caribbean beach after hot day of trainings on rocks. The Safety priority - the main credo of School of mountaineering and rock-climbing of MCS AlexClimb.

AlexClimb Rule #2 - Leave No Trace

Closely interacting with Nature, working with the active programs in mountains, woods, lakes and rivers, we perfectly understand the importance of carefull and respectfull bahavior towards the Nature, for its resources. From the very beginning of our outdoor-activity we adopted rules of  Leave No Trace technique - the standard of behavior of the person accepted in all the civilized world in relation to environment and especially - to the wild nature. After all on the relation of people to the nature near which they exist, itself can draw dalekoidushchy conclusions on the relation of these people to... Where and as we didn't travel - we don't reserve any garbage, we try to reduce whenever possible our influence on environment to a minimum. We clear earlier zagryazyonny tourist parking of the left garbage, we take out and we take out to utilization places that to us other people left there. We consider that only thus, at personal individual consciousness of each citizen, each tourist, climber or autotraveller, we will be able to keep the nature surrounding us in its state, natural, suitable for life, - in it pledge of the healthy future for ourselves and our children.

AlexClimb Rule #3 - Sober Concious

The position of AlexClimb Mountain and rockclimbing School regarding healthy lifestyle is quite clear - we consider that only sober consciousness is capable to fill sincere emotions,  to sympathize, to enjoy life in all its variety. Bright various enjoyable life is possible only on condition of keeping the absolute sobriety and purity of consciousness. Any way of obscuring our perception of reality is intended to do harm to our consciousness and bring harm to our physical health, to replace the true values by false ones, to destroy us physically - to turn us into flabby, weak, senseless, gray herd with empty hazy eyes. We don't force anybody to our point of view, everyone has a God's gift of making his own choice and to destroy himself if that is what he wants... But in AlexCilimb Mountain Climbing School we accept quite certain and very simple set of rules: neither alcohol, nor drugs.