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Entries from Elbrus Southside

Mt. Elbrus: Grom & Team Settle in to Mountain Hut

We woke to clear skies and beautiful weather today. We had breakfast in the hotel and then loaded up all our climbing gear and drove to the base of the ski resort where we rode not one, but two gondolas, a single chair lift and then a short snowcat ride to reach our new home on Mt. Elbrus for the next few days.  It’s rather comfortable up here, as our outfitter has taken a few shipping containers and converted them into simple bunk rooms some for sleeping and some set up as dinning rooms.
Once we got settled into our new home we headed uphill on another acclimatizing hike and reached just over 14,000’ before returning to camp where our wonderful cook Dasha had a nice hot lunch waiting for us. 
We spent the remaining of the afternoon doing a little training for our climb. The weather forecast has been a little up and down, so are just staying prepared.  Everyone is doing great and enjoying the views of the Caucasus mountain range which are pretty amazing since we are camped out at just over 12,000’.
Dasha has once again had filled our bellies full of delicious Russian food and so the team is off to bed now.

RMI Guide Casey Grom and crew

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Awesome pictures! Looks like a great time. Have fun as you both get closer to the summit.


Posted by: Wayne Kelly Sr. on 7/26/2017 at 1:02 pm

Looks like fun!

Posted by: Brinkley Pound on 7/26/2017 at 12:52 pm

Mt. Elbrus: Gorum & Team Tour St. Petersburg

The team made it to St. Petersburg yesterday. We went out to a nice team dinner, and a few folks left early this morning to get back home. The rest of the group spent the day touring the wonderful city of St. Petersburg. The cathedrals and palaces here are ornate beyond measure. We spent the afternoon cruising through the canals on our own private boat, and finished the evening with an excellent dinner at the historic Astoria Hotel, complete with a celebrity appearance.
Most of the team leaves early tomorrow morning for the U.S. It’s been a great trip all around. Thanks to all of the team, and to everybody following along.

RMI Guide JM Gorum

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Mt. Elbrus: Grom & Team Acclimatize in Cheget

All is well here in the Baksan Valley, at the base of Elbrus where we’ve settled into our comfortable hotel. We made the most of the local ski lifts, (to save our knees of course) and hiked up the neighboring peak to start our acclimatization. It started off a little cloudy today, but eventually cleared for some decent views of Elbrus. After our ascent we headed back down to town for a nice lunch and headed over to the local climbing shop to pick up a few last minute things. We spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing, getting our bags packed and just wrapped up another enjoyable Russian dinner with some wonderful Georgian soup.
All is well here and we’ll check in again tomorrow!

RMI Guide Casey Grom and crew

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Mt. Elbrus: Grom & Team Arrive in the Mountains

Здравствуйте (hello) from Russia!

We had an early start to the day as we left Moscow this morning and have traveled via plane and bus to the beautiful Caucus mountains. Our flight took us to southern Russia not too far from the Black Sea to a place called Mineralnye Vody, which simply translates to Mineral Water.
This part of the country is predominately rural and is responsible for much of the agriculture that the larger cities depends on. We were meet by our trustworthy guide Yuri, whom I’ve climbed with many times. Then hopped in our van for the 3 hour drive up the Baksan Valley to the base Mt. Elbrus.
Things went pretty smooth minus a few little traffic jams with cars, motorcycles and cows all humorously trying to use the road.

The small town we are in is called Cheget, and it doubles as a ski town in winter and converts to climbing town in the summer. We didn’t do a ton of exploring this afternoon due to the adjustment of the time that we are all still feeling and having started so early. However, tomorrow we will do our first acclimatizing hike and do a little exploring too.

All is well here as we are looking forward to a little exercise tomorrow.

RMI Guide Casey Grom and crew

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Mt.Elbrus: Grom & Team Meet in Moscow and Explore the Sites

Hello everyone - 
The team arrived yesterday after a tiring day of travel. As most of the team is still adjusting to the nearly 12 hour time change we kept things simple with a little round of introductions and a brief overview of the days ahead. We then took a short walk to get dinner at a nearby restaurant before turning in for the night.
Today we meet with our local tour guide, Victoria, and had a wonderful tour of the nearby Red Square and the Kremlin.  We visited several churches including the iconic St. Basil’s, plus a brief stop at the famous GUM, which is a high end shopping mall that sits across the Red Square from the Kremlin.
We’ve just returned from dinner and are getting packed up for tomorrow’s flight to the south which will get us closer to Mt. Elbrus.
Everyone is doing great and looking forward to heading to the mountains tomorrow.

That’s all for now.
RMI Guide Casey Grom and crew

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Glad the trip is going so well. Richard Cost, you make a nice blonde.

Posted by: Stacey Cost on 7/25/2017 at 8:31 pm

Have a wonderful time and thanks for letting us enjoy the adventure from afar!

Posted by: Brinkley Pound on 7/24/2017 at 12:16 pm

Mt. Elbrus: Gorum & Team Ready for Summit Bid

After a windy night, the team awoke to blue skies and a relatively calm breeze. We spent the first half of the day reviewing skills like rope travel and self arrest. The remainder of the day has been spent relaxing, prepping gear for our summit attempt of Mt. Elbrus tomorrow morning, and watching some very acrobatic birds fly around camp. We are pretty much ready to go, now we just wait and hope for good weather. You’ll hear from us tomorrow!

RMI Guide JM Gorum

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Wishing Ray, Nikolai and Aleksandr a fun and successful climb to the summit tomorrow. We’re all looking forward to the stories and picture back here at USC. Good luck!! Angela

Posted by: Angela Walker on 7/21/2017 at 7:16 am

Mt.Elbrus: Gorum & Team Acclimatize and Enjoy the Mountain

Well well well, another good day up here on Mt. Elbrus. Most of the team woke with the sunrise, which is around 4am. Breakfast wasn’t until 8, so we had some time to kill. Jazzersize (I don’t actually know how to spell that) kept a few folks busy, while others took part in more traditional activities, such as taking photos and wandering aimlessly about the ridge. After breakfast we had a race to see who could get ready the fastest. Everyone tied for first place. This is the dream team, no doubt.

We set off on our journey to the top of Pastahkov rocks at 9:00am. After an hour, we could hear thunder in the distance, and dragged our feet thinking we were going to retreat. Thunder is no match for this team, however, and after some intense positive energy output the clouds dissipated and we continued upwards. Two hundred feet shy of our target, the clouds started to look ominous again. It is hard work trying to change the weather, and we’re going to need that energy for summit day. The best call was to turn around and head back to the hut. We made it to 15,300 feet today, which is perfectly in line with our acclimatization goals. We made it back to the huts ten minutes before it started raining, which is perfectly in line with our goal of not getting wet. Excellent job by everyone today. Rest day coming up tomorrow.

The team sends their best to all back at home!
RMI Guide JM Gorum

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Mt. Elbrus: Gorum & Team Move Into the Garabashi Hut

The team sends their greetings from 12,500ft. We all made it up to the Garabashi Hut in good style today. Everyone got moved in, and then went for a nice jaunt in perfect weather. We got a little training in on our new snowy surface, and then headed back to the huts for a nice lunch. Nobody is going hungry just yet.
The heat of the day lead to some building clouds, precipitation, and eventually some light thunderstorms in the distance. People spent the afternoon reading, writing, and napping. We’re settling in quite nicely up here. Check in tomorrow.

RMI Guide JM Gorum

On The Map

Leave a Comment For the Team (2)

Charlie, Nikolai and Aleksandr (My Stevens Boys)- Looks Amazing!  I wish I were there.  Sending you lots of love and positive energy.  Godspeed!

Posted by: Vivian M. Urena-Stevens on 7/19/2017 at 6:35 pm

Craig and Carol, Sending lots of love ( and not a little envy!) and blessings for a great climb. You guys rock! Armen and Vicky

Posted by: vicky hanjian on 7/19/2017 at 11:57 am

Mt. Elbrus: Grom & Team Finish Their Time in Russia Touring St. Petersburg

Our final night in St. Petersburg!
The team had a great last day here in Russia, with a visit to a beautiful church full of mosaics. We then visited the very famous Hermitage Museum, where we saw paintings and sculptures by many well-known artists including Rembrandt, Michelangelo and even Da Vinci.
We took a small break and wrapped up the day with a fantastic evening boat cruise to see this amazing city by water.
It’s been a wonderful adventure here in Russia, but it’s time to say our goodbyes and return to family and loved ones.
Thanks for following.

RMI Guide Casey Grom and crew

Leave a Comment For the Team (1)

To my dearest Steve Pastor, I’m so proud of you!!  You are amazing!  I feel absolutely honored that I received a phone call to find you made the summit.  Mt. Elbrus summit!!!  Great job to my crazy mountain climbing bestie and congratulations!!  Love and Hugs, Andy

Thank you Mr. Grom for the wonderful experience you provided all these fantastic people!  Congratulations to you and everyone with you!!

Posted by: Andrea Houts on 7/18/2017 at 4:38 pm

Mt. Elbrus: Gorum & Team Acclimatization Hike in Cheget

We had our first day up above ten thousand feet, and it couldn’t have been much better. The weather was perfect, and the views were just as good. The wildflowers here are blooming, and with the breeze we had today, their smell filled the air. So we walked with postcard views and air that smelled like flowers, not bad.
We reached a nice spot around eleven thousand feet, took some photos, and made some new friends. We got our first good view of the route, and I would say folks have it just about memorized now. If the team fell short in any aspect today, it was in our ability to take a group photo. It’s the thought that counts I suppose.
After a nice lunch back in town, we went through our gear, and packed everything in preparation for heading uphill. We are mountain bound tomorrow morning. Досвидания!

RMI Guide JM Gorum

On The Map

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