Thursday, 3 May 2012

My Gear List

If you google 'mount elbrus gear list' you will find hundreds of websites, operators and randoms with many lists of items needed (or not?), but I would suggest that you speak to your guide directly - he/she has done the mountain and knows best.

As I froze on Kilimanjaro a couple of years back, I am completely anal about warmth...I can seriously see why not wearing the proper gear can cause your trip to fail miserably...and I don't intend on that happening this time around!  I've done extensive research, tried and tested and this is what I've come up with - remember that if you sign up for a trip with someone like Adventure Dynamics/Summit Ventures etc etc you will generally also get great discounts from stores like Drifters/Trappers etc.  We got 10% discount at Drifters and 15% off at Trappers!  When you are spending thousands, these discounts are massive!

Because I am a girl....colours and styles really do matter - who said you had to look dreary or frumpy whilst mountaineering...and I always get the hairy eye ball when I ask the shops about colour's etc...I can't help it - if it comes in pink I'll take it!  But to be serious, I've learnt to forego style and colour in many things - safety and comfort comes first.

My list is by no means exhaustive or to be taken as a bible...but it is what I will be taking/wearing after much research and information from climbers who have climbed Mount Elbrus in the past. I'm also including the cost (again, store prices differ as do exchange rates, please enquire if not sure) of the items I'm using so that you can get a rough idea of what you're in for...boy I wish I had a list like this when I was starting off...

  • Boots - double plastic:  La Sportiva Baruntse R5999 (ouch)
  • Crampons - Black Diamond Sabretooth R1650
  • Hiking boots - Asolo R2200
  • Down Jacket - Marmot Ama Dablam R1800 (USA)
  • Technical Shell Jacket (Goretex/similar) - Mountain Hardwear Nazca R1900 (USA)
  • Shell pants (Goretex/similar) - Mountain Hardwear Hestia Pants with braces R1800 (USA)
  • Mid-weight fleece jacket - Columbia R400
  • Light-weight fleece top - First Ascent R300
  • 2 Sets Thermal underwear - First Ascent R800
  • Fleece hiking pants - First Ascent R600
  • Convertible hiking pants - First Ascent R700
  • Summit socks - R200
  • Trekking socks - R140
  • 2 Trekking poles - Black Diamond R650
  • Ice Axe - Black Diamond R950
  • Down mitts - Black Diamond R1000
  • Liner gloves - Black Diamond R250
  • Medium weight gloves - First Ascent R400
  • Hooded Buff - Wind Stopper Buff R600
  • Beanie - Columbia R65
  • Duffel Bag Large - First Ascent Yak sak R1000
  • Duffel Bag Medium - Cape Union Mart R700
  • Sleeping Bag - Ice Nino (minus 5 degrees) *the reasoning behind this bag for me is that I am hardly over 1.5m tall so all the other bags were HUGE and it would negatively affect the warmth rating.  So the folk at First Ascent (and Trappers) suggested that I rather buy this smaller cut bag and then team it with a very good liner which can add 10-15 degrees worth of heat) R1800
  • Thermal Liner - Sea to Summit Extreme thermal liner - R750
  • Travel pillow - First Ascent R200
  • Mattress - Self Inflating air mattress R750
  • Head torch - Petzl R300
  • Small Back Pack - Vaud R800
  • Water holders - Nalgene wide mouth x2 R260
  • Bottle Insulators - Freezo x2 R255
  • Snow sunglasses - R800
  • Snow goggles - R950
  • Harness - Black diamond Alpine R550
  • Full gaiters - Extremities R500
I think I've covered all the gear, but I may have to do an update a bit closer to seems to be a never ending exercise...

If you already have good hiking boots and some of the gear it helps a lot.  I find that we seem to collect things as the years go by, and by buying good quality products they really can last forever.  So the plan is to just update what we have as we climb more technical/cold mountains!


  1. Great list. I will be packing almost the same thing.

  2. Thanks! Thats good to know!! Are you also doing acclimatisation hike to Mt Cheget?

  3. I assume so. I am heading there with an independent guide.

    Also, don't forget Ibuprofen and Diamox if needed. Don't forget snacks.