This tour was conducted in 2021. In the tour program for 2022, we have a similar tour, check it out -
Climbing Klyuchevskaya Sopka in 2022 with an experienced mountain guide
In June, on the home volcanoes of Kamchatka - Avachinsky, Mutnovsky, Gorely, Vilyuchinsky, it is not the season yet - there is too much snow, it’s hard, often almost impossible to reach, only by helicopter. But in the area of the Klyuchevsky cluster of volcanoes, in the Tolbachinsky dol, the climate is completely continental and there the season already begins in June, but there are practically no people - everyone wants to combine Tolbachik and home volcanoes, therefore they travel in late July - in August, when in Kamchatka literally not crowding around with tourists - the tourist camps are packed in large groups, everything is busy in the houses and under the sheds, and you just have to wait 2-3 hours to just cook food on a fire or eat under the roof. That is why we plan our trip in June, when only we and ... virgin, wild, but pure and literally stunning nature with its scale and beauty will be in the vast Tolbachinsky Dol.
The program of this trip includes climbing the Ostry and Flat Tolbachik volcanoes, (optionally Bezymyanny if there is strength and good weather) and, to the highest, one of the most active volcanoes in Russia and in the world - Klyuchevskaya Sopka, as well as a difficult trip along the Tolbachinsky Dol. We will reach the dead forest, on the way going to the Zvezda crater, as well as to the Northern Breakthrough cones, explore the huge lava field and the 2012–203 breakthrough cones, climb Ostry and Plosky Tolbachiks, and then go around Flat Tolbachik on foot the valley near the volcanoes of Bolshaya Udina and Oval Zimina, we will go through the Tolbachinsky pass, make a stop at the foot of the Bezymyanny volcano, we may climb to its peak, and then we will approach the main goal of our trip - the foot of the Klyuchevskaya volcano. Climbing this volcano requires good weather, so we take 3 days to complete, which may have to be spent on a cold plateau blown by northerly winds in anticipation of good weather (all equipment should be like for a winter hike!). Climbing to the top of Klyuchevskaya is difficult and rather dangerous (!), a descent, then a long and difficult transition to the village of Klyuchi, and return to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky.
It will be a very, very difficult journey, which only experienced and strong-willed travelers and climbers can do, but it’s worth it, believe me! Even if you were already at seven- and eight-thousanders, Klyuchevskaya Sopka will occupy a worthy place in your collection of personal victories. Above yourself.
If you really want to go to Kamchatka, but are not ready for the difficulties described here, we have for you a simple auto tour Active Volcanoes and Thermal Springs of Kamchatka from July 1 to July 15, 2020, traveling around the peninsula by a special off-road truck (KAMAZ-vahtovka) and only with radial hikes is suitable for people with almost any level of physical and moral fitness.
Just for your motivation: The New York Times about Kamchatka and our short visual film about Kamchatka:
Route day by day
Arrival in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. Transfer to the city, we are accommodated in a hotel, get to know the city, try the famous Kamchatka delicacies - red fish, caviar, crabs.
Early wake up, at 8 in the morning we take the bus and go through the whole Kamchatka to the village of Kozyrevsk. The road takes about 12 hours, and part of it does not pass on asphalt, so the day will be lazy, inactive, but not very easy. We spend the night in a hotel in Kozyrevsk.
In the morning, after breakfast, we take off-road truck and drive about 5 hours to the mystical Dead Forest, next to which we set up a camp in an impromptu camp, inspect the Dead Forest - covered with volcanic ash and representing an eerie, but very interesting sight. After a light walk, we go to the Zvezda crater (about 3.5 km one way), and in the evening we celebrate the start of the trip with a delicious dinner and travel stories.
Camping breakfast, gathering the camp and moving towards the volcanoes Ostry and Flat Tolbachik. Today we have to walk about 15 kilometers, but on the road we are waiting for stops and small radial hikes light for sightseeing. And the most important of them are the cones of the Northern Breakthrough, whence an eruption came from 1975-76, the forest that fell asleep with volcanic slag, which became Dead. Here, to this day, small volcanic activity continues - gases and steam come out, stones in some places are so hot that from their heat you can light small sticks or boil eggs.
In the evening we arrive at the Rangers Lodge of National Park, near which the base camp of the Ostry and Flat Tolbachik volcanoes is located, where we spend the night almost in comfort - a spring with crystal clear water, booths, toilets and even a dining room-kitchen under the roof are at our service.
Very early wake up, climbing the volcanoes Ostry and Flat Tolbachik. First we go to Ostry Tolbachik (altitude 3682 m.), then we descend part of the path, go on the way to Flat Tolbachik and go to the edge of its crater at an altitude of 2800 meters.
There can be a lot of snow along the climb path and we will have to trail, falling to the waist, be prepared for this. But then the delight of the peak, as always compensates for all the difficulties of the path.
The Ostry Tolbachik volcano is dead, today it’s just a mountain, but from it, in good weather, panoramas open to the volcanoes of the Klyuchevskaya group and to the lifeless spaces of the Tolbachinsky dol with numerous cones and lava flows. Volcano Flat Tolbachik is active. Its crater is quite large - about 2 km in diameter and up to 500 m deep, with walls breaking off inward. And although there is no activity in the crater itself today, it amazes the imagination with its scale and power.
On the way back, we will walk along the lava field of the Tolbachinsky fissure eruption of 2012-2013, rise and look into several red volcanic cones, take a walk on the hot lava so far, and also explore several caves in the lava field. All this is very exciting and allows you to take pictures that are simply fantastic in their unreality (see our photo gallery).
We have breakfast, collect the camp and move forward to Klyuchevskaya Sopka. However, today we will not reach it, but confine ourselves to a modest 17-18 km hike by the standards of our campaign, having set up camp on a plateau between the volcanoes Flat Tolbachik, Bolshaya Udina and Oval Zimina. The plateau is cut by ravines along which flowing streams and small rivers flow from volcanoes, partly covered with snowfields, partly with grass cover abundantly strewn with flowers this time of year, including yellow rhododendron. We set up camp, relax and enjoy the views of these natural wonders.
Another trekking passage through the plateau, as well as the Tolbachinsky pass, from which in good weather (let's hope that we are lucky with it) offers a three-dimensional panoramic view of all the volcanoes of the Klyuchevsky cluster and the huge Mars valley of large and small craters covered with delicate greenery, then , after 2.5 km. descending from the pass, we will stop for a rest and a snack at the Mars Field tourist camp, next to which there is a waterfall with very tasty water, and after that we will make the last jerk and, passing the famous Polenitsa (a mountain that looks like a woodpile in terms of stone structure) and through we’ll pass a small pass to Plotin’s house - the old house of volcanologists, which now serves as a shelter for tourists - you can spend the night inside the house in case of bad weather, and for good weather there is a beautiful even glade under the tents.
If someone has the strength and the weather will be favorable for us, right after coming to the camp, taking into account the longest days at the end of June, we can manage to climb the Bezymyanny volcano. Technically, it is not complicated and not very long, but you still have to puff. The volcano itself is very active, consists of a crater inside which rises a new nonus that has grown over the years after the last eruption, on top of which there is another crater. The lower crater is densely covered with fumaroles, the consus is covered in smoke from abundant gas escaping to the surface, and the upper crater is completely hidden from the eyes by thick smoke. In order to rise to the very top, you need a respirator - the gases are quite toxic and cause coughing attacks that do not go away for several days. However, we will decide on the spot to climb to the very top or not, as the activity of the volcano increases or decreases, and everything will depend on the current situation. But the views even from the edge of the lower crater are amazing, especially at sunset, which we will come to, and its activity is amazing, so get ready for very interesting and unusual sensations!
We get ready and go to the main goal of our trip - Klyuchevskoy volcano. We overcome a fairly large section of the stone desert with numerous cones and lava flows, which even an experienced hiker will not turn out to call easy and embark on an even more difficult path - into the realm of winds, snow and eternal ice. In the area of Klyuchevskoy volcano there is a rather high plateau - 2600 meters above sea level and the landscape at this altitude is almost arctic, and in bad weather, even apocalyptic, but memorable for life - guaranteed!
On this day we will go to the foot of the volcano and camp there. The night will be one of the coldest on this journey, but if we are lucky, we will see an incomparable sight - the Klyuchevskoy volcano eruption (which occurs almost constantly with a greater or lesser share of intensity), accompanied by emissions of red-hot lava, which is especially beautiful and spectacular it is at night.
Climbing the Klyuchevskoy volcano. The climb itself requires one day, but only in good weather, so we lay three days, one of which, in actual weather, will be the day of the climb and two spare days. If a miracle happens and we can climb the volcano on the first day (or the second), we will leave earlier in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and spend one or two days on the Pacific coast, on the famous Khalaktyr beach, where you can surf, or just wander on the black sand and enjoy the riot of the natural elements and its scale, which here, on the ocean, are felt to the same extent as near the great Kamchatka volcanoes.
Participants must be mentally prepared for the fact that the climb will not succeed. This may be due to a long period of bad weather - low clouds, fog, rain and snow that do not allow climbing on the allotted days for this, as well as to the high activity of the volcano by the time of our arrival - emissions from the lava crater and a large number of volcanic bombs that makes climbing too dangerous.
After walking half a day through the lifeless Arctic desert, in the afternoon we will approach the edge of the plateau, from which we will begin our descent down to the forest zone, to the village of Klyuchi and with a fantastic beauty view of the active and very active Sheveluch volcano in recent years.
Having reached the forest, we will set up camp and enjoy the warmth of the evening fire, the dinner prepared on it and the feeling that all the most difficult is behind us!
Another day trip to the village of Klyuchi. We go through the forest, teeming with mosquitoes and bears, so that the thrill is provided, especially from mosquitoes. And this is not a joke - bears are just plush toys compared to Kamchatka mosquitoes, get ready!
We spend the night in a hotel in the village of Klyuchi (booking a hotel is problematic, since we do not know exactly how many days we will need to climb and what day we will be in the village) or, if there are no places in the hotel, in tents near the village.
In the morning we board the bus and drive to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky all day. Last overnight at the hotel.
Transfer to the airport and flight home. Goodbye Kamchatka!
Mountain guide and instructor Evgeny Androsov:
Mountain guide Igor Vaskan:
Euro 800 per person
What is included in the price
- all transfers, buses and cars in Kamchatka,
- hotel accommodation in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Kozyrevsk and Klyuchi villages,
- three meals a day - hot breakfasts and dinners, as well as snacks (dry rations) as lunch,
- general camping equipment (tents, bowlers, burners, gas), as well as a large first-aid kit, protection from bears and mosquitoes,
- registration of passes and permits to the Kamchatka Volcanoes National Park and to the closed zone (Klyuchi village), environmental fees for the use of recreational resources,
- guide and instructors work,
- group and individual photographs of each participant taken during the entire trip to professional photo equipment and provided in electronic form.
What is NOT included
- air tickets to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and back,
- meals in cafes and restaurants,
- medical insurance,
- consular fee and other expenses for obtaining a Russian visa,
- participants clothing and personal equipment (sleeping bags, rugs, trekking poles, personal dishes, flashlights, etc.),
- souvenirs and other personal expenses of participants,
- other expenses not indicated in the section are included in the price
What is the difficulty of the trip? Will I be able to withstand these loads? What are the limitations?
This is a tour of very high difficulty! You needs serious physical and moral training, good personal hiking clothes and equipment, experience in adventures, or at least categorical mountain or sports trips, is desirable.
On the day we will go from 15 to 28 km. with backpacks, the weight of which for men is 22-27 kg, for women - 15-18 kg. Almost all overnight stays in tents, often in the rain and strong winds, and near Klyuchevskoy volcano, on ice and / or on snow. Part of the path near the Klyuchevskoy is along the glacier, so you have to go in climbing harnesses, get ready!
Keep in mind that climbing Klyuchevskoy volcano is a more difficult and much more dangerous task than climbing Mount Elbrus! Climbing the Klyuchevskoy is associated with a risk to life: rockfalls, small snow avalanches, volcanic bomb vents, eruption of lava and poisonous gases are possible. The climb organizers will make every effort to ensure the safety of the participants, but cannot guarantee 100% security, since we are intruding on an unpredictable and uncontrollable natural element. Going on this journey, you must understand that you are taking a risk and accept for yourself the possible consequences of this risk! This is your decision and your responsibility for your life!
Clothing and equipment recommendations
For this tour you need to bring along a set of clothes and equipment for climbing six- and seven- thousanders mountains: puffers, warm hiking pants (preferably also downy ones), climbing boots or boots for crampons, climbing crampons, ice axes, harness, respirator, as well as for hiking: a membrane jacket, waterproof hiking pants, trekking boots, two sets of thermal underwear, as well as a hat, gloves, warm socks, flisk, sunscreen and sunglasses (for climbing volcanoes) are required. In addition, you will definitely need a backpack with 65 - 90 liters, waterproof case for a backpack, a headlamp, a thermos, a mosquito net, a warm sleeping bag (-10 degrees comfort, no less!), a good sleeping mat, rubbers slippers like crox for transition wade rivers and streams. A full list will be provided to you by the instructor when concluding a tour contract. It is possible to provide you with part of the equipment for use during the tour on a free basis - the capabilities and list of equipment are negotiated and agreed in advance. Also, the instructor will definitely advise you that you DO NOT need to take so as not to carry excess weight.
Important Additional Information
For foreign citizens, you need to obtain a special permission from the Federal Security Service of Russia to visit the village of Klyuchi (closed military zone), which requires at least a month. If you plan to take this trip, please submit your application in advance!
How to participate
- If you are interested in this tour, leave a request through the form below or call the indicated phones, me, Evgeni Androsov or my assistants will tell you in detail about the route and answer all your questions.
- To reserve a place, you must pay an advance payment of 30% of the cost of a hike / tour if it is more than 45 days before the start and 50% of the cost if before the start less than 45 days. The prepayment is refundable for 45 days or more before the start of the trekking tour and unfortunately, less than 45 days before the start of the tour / tour, if the refund is related to your refusal to participate (for any reason). If the hike / tour does not take place due to our fault, due to an unformed group or due to force majeure circumstances, prepayment will be guaranteed to you in any case.
- In the hike the group moves with the speed of the last participant, the participants are trained by the instructor to prepare the food and install the tents.
- The instructor reserves the right to refuse participation in any person if he sees that a person is physically or mentally not ready for a trip. On the route the instructor has the right to interrupt the movement of the group and to stop the trip in case of danger of further advancement, as well as due to the state of health of one or several participants. These circumstances are for force majeure, there is no provision for money for the campaign and other financial compensation.
- If you change your mind / lost the opportunity to participate in the campaign, please, inform us about this as soon as possible, because transport and products for the whole trip are purchased, calculated and distributed for each participant of the trip.
Enroll in this tour
The cost of participation is Euro 800 per person
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