We walked up a path and stairs in the forest to reach the base lifts and shortly after us the military arrived with their big guns to go up-they patrol the borders constantly(Georgia is right on the mountain border).
We sneaked a few pics pretending to snap each other!
The chairlifts were amazing, hold pack on front camera dangling precariously and jump on as it comes around! Oh my word-the views!!! I was in awe from the get go! The most awesome mountains, ELBRUS and so much more-all sitting in a chairlift or two going up to 3000m plus!! I got amazing pics from my chair, I was so grateful for being able to experience this!!
Once off the lifts we started the hike-it's mainly loose scree, boulders and rocks with some patches of ice/ snow. You need to concentrate as you can fall quite easily if you don't!
We got amazing pics and saw the barrels - our Elbrus base camp - from across the valley for the first time!
The hike down was a different route, mostly scree and the boys managed a snowball throwing competition as well!
The first part of the hike was strenuous on the calves but not a tough day at all!
Back onto chairlifts-two stations and walk out of forest. We went straight to small cafe where our lunch was waiting! HUGE chicken breasts, fresh tomatoes, coleslaw and bread!
After lunch Joe, doc Nick and I hit the stalls again, souvenir shopping at its best! After the retail therapy we found a small bar/cafe place and had some coffees and drinks before heading back to our hotel to shower/repack bags for the mountain and have some dinner, check and send mails/blogs/tweets and rest well before our trip to our mountain!!