To the Shkhelda Gorge

The Registration certificate of the tour

1. Region of the journey Elbrus region
2. From of tourism Mountain-hiking
3. Category of complexity
4. Kind of the tour Radial
5. Duration of the tour 7 or 8 hours
6. Number of kilometers 13 kilometers

The necessary equipment

The person equipment The group equipment
1. The tourist boots 1. The first-aid set
2. The weatherproof suit 2. One rucksack for the camp breakfast for every five person
3. Goggles
4. The head-dress



The plan of the tour (the diagram of motion).

Sections of the tour Time Way of motion Rest places Basic excursions objects
1. The furcation of the road in the Adyl-Su Gorge -the bridge near the climbing camp “Shkhelda” 2 hours hiking Near the climbing cemetery The climbing camps, the ranges: the Greater Caucasian, Yusengi
2. The bridge-the upper reaches of the Shkhelda Gorge 3 hours hiking The summits: Shkhelda, Bjeduch, Caucasus Peak, the Shkhelda Glacier
3. The upper reaches of the Shkhelda Gorge-the bridge 2 hours hiking Near the farmyard
4. The bridge-the furcation of the road in the Adyl-Su Gorge 1 hour hiking Near the climbing cemetery

The brief description of the tour

The main part of the route begins from the roads furcation by the turning to the Adyl-Su Gorge. Then go along the highway to the climbers’ camp “Shkhelda” leaving the climbers’ cemetery and climbers’ centre “Adyl-Su”. There is the place for the short rest. On the right of the motion direction there are the slopes of the Yusengi Range, and to the left – the slopes of the Kurmy Range. Directly you can see the gorges of the Great Caucasian Range. Reaching the climbers’ centre “Shkhelda” go round it on the left and then go to the path to the Shkhelda Gorge.

Directly to the south the Shkhelda Massive closes the gorge. It is a rock and an ice wall with some summits.

The path goes along the left bank of the gorge above the Shkhelda River. The path has a furcation after the crossing of the big gully at the distance of 3 kilometres from the climbers’ camp “Shkhelda”. The further route lies on the lower path that comes to the obstructions of the final moraine of the retreating glacier. There is the finish point of the route. Its altitude is 2,250 meters. In the south you can see the final point of the glacier which is 8-sq. kilometres length.

The descent way is the same as the ascent way.

A little further the Adyl-su river has received the short but impetuous river Shkhelda with its source in the Shkhelda glacier. The Adyl-su and Shkhelda Gorges are well known to climbers beyond the boundaries of our country. Along this gorges lie the routes to the more difficult ascents: Shkhelda, Ushba, Shchurovsky peak, Chatyn-Tau, Free Spain peak and Bzhedukh. Ushba peak (4,700 meters), one of the most taxing ascents in the Caucasus, is highly popular with mountaineers.

On the course of the route we observe also one of the largest glaciers of the Elbrus region – the Shkhelda glacier and admire the summit that is very popular for the climbers.
Passing by the tourist base “Shkhelda” not turning to the paths leading down to the river it is necessary to move hill up to the glade. Among the trees there is the snow summit with black a cuminate rocky needles now comes up and disappears – the peak “Kavkaz”.

Soon we leave the forest to the alpine meadows. In front of them is well seen the tongue of the Shkhelda glacier and in the depth of its glade are the rocky towers Shkheldatau.
Behind the left bank of the Shkhelda river- the path is splitted by the spring of Geologists. The upper one goes on the moraines ridge to the glacier, the lower – to the last pine island, where by the tongue of the glacier and the lake, there is the end of the route.Altitude 2250 m. The length of glacier Shkelda 9 km, and 8 The returning to vil. Elbrus takes 1,5 hour.

The plan scheme of the tour ” To the Shkhelda Gorge”

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