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Entries from Elbrus Southside

Mt. Elbrus: Nugent & Team Explore St. Petersburg to End Trip

Well, we wrapped up our trip today touring the beautiful city of St. Petersburg complete with visits to cathedrals (of course), art museums, and even a boat tour on the Neva River and smaller canals. Our team had a ton of fun despite a little drizzle and enjoyed one last team dinner in the evening. I can honestly say I’m sad to say goodbye to such a great group. Thanks guys for making this trip and awesome climb and such a fun adventure. I hope to see all of you again someday in the mountains or otherwise. Also, thanks to everyone reading this for following along. Now a groggy 3:30 am ride to the airport is looming…

RMI Guide Billy Nugent

Mt. Elbrus: Nugent & Team Travel to St. Petersburg

We had an early rise after our celebratory dinner (and some dancing) in Cheget for our transfer back to Mineralnye Vody. It was a little painful but not too bad as we had a nice, spacious Sprinter van to stretch out in. We caught a flight to Moscow and another to St. Pete’s and then checked into our lovely hotel. Travel days always seem to tire you out even though you’re mostly sitting around all day. Anyway, more sightseeing in the morning before the journey home!

RMI Guide Billy Nugent

Mt. Elbrus: Nugent & Team Celebrate in Cheget After Climb


We are down from the heights after a truly amazing day up on Mt. Elbrus. Our summit day started off with a bit of breeze and some chilly temps but after a couple hours of walking turned into one of the most calm and beautiful days in the mountains that I’ve had. Our team was strong and we made short work of the climb, celebrated on top with some hugs, high-5’s, and photos, and had a smooth descent. A few of us even made a side excursion to the summit of the east peak and enjoyed even more sweeping views of the Caucasus range. All in all it was an epic day.

Today we spent relaxing and recovering, shopping for souvenirs, etc. And we ultimately had a great team dinner complete with kebobs and (of course) libations. Good times with great people! Tomorrow we’re off to St. Petersburg for a day of culture before returning home to the states.

RMI Guide Billy Nugent

On The Map

Mt. Elbrus: Nugent & Team Summit!

We are back safely at the Barrels after 100% of our climbers reached the Mt. Elbrus summit! Three of us even summited both peaks. Perfect weather!

RMI Guide Billy Nugent

RMI Guide Billy Nugent calls in from the Mt. Elbrus summit.

Mt. Elbrus: Nugent & Team Prepare for Summit Bid

Hello all,

Just checking in from our camp at over 12,000ft in the barrels here on Elbrus. We had a mellow day resting up before our summit attempt tomorrow morning that we used to brush up on some crampon techniques and run through an ice axe arrest refresher. The weather has been funky for the last 24 hours with everything from snow and rain, thunder and lightning, to sunshine and blue sky. The forecast for tomorrow is good so our fingers are crossed. Not much else to report, headed to bed early for our early wake up.

RMI Guide Billy Nugent

On The Map

Hi Sue & Team!
  Hoping for good weather on your climb to the summit tomorrow! Have fun!
  Laura & the gang back home!

Posted by: Laura Thompson on 8/11/2016 at 3:34 pm

Mt. Elbrus: Nugent & Team Acclimate to 15,000’

We woke this morning to sunshine and French toast for breakfast… and coffee of course. Not a bad way to wake up. After our leisurely breakfast we geared up and headed out on another acclimatization hike this time to nearly 15,000’. We were on the trail for around 3 1/2 hours and over the course of the hike the weather gradually deteriorated. We felt a little bit of hail on our way back to camp but nothing terrible. Still, there are signs of the snow forecasted for tonight and tomorrow starting to show up. We won’t mind a little weather on our last training/rest day before heading on our summit push Friday. Friday’s forecast is looking good so we have our fingers crossed that it won’t change. After our hike the gang went down to the cafe at the top of the gondola and hung out a bit… Good times over here in Russia.

Til tomorrow!

RMI Guide Billy Nugent

Mt. Elbrus: Nugent & Team Camping in the Barrels

We got up this morning, had a nice breakfast, and departed from Cheget to begin our climb. A quick ten or so minute drive brought us up to Azau, which apparently means something along the lines of “end of the road,” where we schlepped all of our gear onto the tram system which eventually brought us up to our home for the next few days. Our camp up here at “The Barrels” is cozy but nice and we’ve been enjoying the great food from our two Russian cooks Masha and Dasha. Even in the midst of today’s shuffle we were able to sneak in a nice hike for a couple hours that brought us up to nearly 14,000’. The weather is looking promising and we’re looking forward to another acclimatization tomorrow that should take us even higher on the mountain.

RMI Guide Billy Nugent

On The Map

Way to go, Brian (Parky) and the whole team. Looking happy and strong.

Posted by: Judi Sarafin on 8/9/2016 at 2:50 pm

Hi James,
It has been great to follow daily and see photos of you and team looking good.
Good-luck and safe climbing to the summit! Love, mom & dad

Posted by: Soonja Choo on 8/9/2016 at 12:31 pm

Mt. Elbrus: Billy Nugent & Team Acclimate in Cheget

After a quick chairlift bump up from the valley we went for a great training/acclimatization hike today up to over 11,000’. Last night was full of thunder, lightning, and steady rain and had me worrying in bed that today would be a drencher. But low and behold, the skies eased off and we enjoyed high overcast skies with some beautiful views of the mountains around us and near perfect hiking temps. The team moved well and even handled some light rock scrambling with ease. Cap it off with a nice lunch and I’d chalk it up as a success. Now we’re spending the afternoon handling last minute details before we head up on the mountain tomorrow.

Talk tomorrow,

RMI Guide Billy Nugent & Team

Super fond of Don Cash and proud to be his wife!!Good luck to Jeff and Joe as well!  Summit #3! Mo

Posted by: monette on 8/9/2016 at 3:59 am

Beautiful pictures!! We’re following you with amazement Sue!! Have fun & have a great climb!

Posted by: Laura Thompson on 8/8/2016 at 9:20 pm

Mt. Elbrus: Billy Nugent and Team Arrive in Cheget


Long day of traveling today. We assembled at 5:30 am in the hotel lobby and were picked up by our driver who helped us beat the Moscow traffic on our transfer over to the airport. It was a beautiful morning for navigating Aeroflot’s complicated check in process but we were able to get it all done relatively quickly making time to grab some breakfast at an airport cafe before heading through security. Our flight itself was smooth, and our ride from Mineralnye Vody to Cheget went smoothly as well despite hot temps and many cows in the road. The team is relaxing after our dinner and hoping to catch up on a little sleep. Sometimes days where you just sit in on vehicle and then another can be the most tiring.

RMI Guide Billy Nugent & Team

Sue Mamer.  I enjoy the blog to keep up with your trip .Also the the photo. Good Climbing and have fun !!!!!  Dad

Posted by: Dan Griswold on 8/8/2016 at 12:18 pm

Mt. Elbrus: Nugent & Team See the Sites of Moscow

Greetings from Moscow!

Today was our first full day as a team and we spent it touring some of the famous spots in Moscow. The day kicked off with a viewing of Lenin in his tomb. It’s not everyday you get to see a revolutionary embalmed and behind glass… We also visited many churches and buildings in and around Red Square including the Kremlin and the iconic St. Basil’s Cathedral (of Tetris fame). After a while the heat and crowds were getting to us so we made a run for lunch and enjoyed a nice meal at a French bistro. Some of us walked back to the hotel while others Übered but we all got a few hours off before reconvening for a team dinner. Tomorrow it’s off to Mineralnye Vody early in the morning and by evening we should make it to the Caucasus.

Прощай (goodbye), for now,

RMI Guide Billy Nugent

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