Ushba Area

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Ushba Map
Shkhelda Valley
Shkhelda Accommodation

Ushba and Shchurovski Peak in foreground

Ushba Diagrams
From North
From South
From North West

Ushba from the south

Ushba, 4710m
The twin peaks of Ushba are possibly the greatest attraction to mountaineers visitng the Caucasus. Few tackle them and fewer manage to climb them. Difficult access coupled with the need for several bivouacs and quite technical and serious mountaineering problems make this a major undertaking.

The North East Ridge to the North Peak, 4694m, is popular, grade 4A. From the German Bivouac it takes a day to reach the Ushba Plateau up the very serious Ushba Icefall. Here there are good bivouac sites. Now easy slopes lead over the bolster (good bivouac site) to the main ridge which is followed over several steepenings to the summit (the ridge can be heavily corniced, 7-10 hours from the Ushba Plateau).

The traverse from the North Peak to the South takes at least a further day and retreat from the ridge in the event of bad weather can be quite horrific. Grade 5A.

The South Peak is generally approached from the Gul Bivouac in Georgia and the ascent takes at least two days by any route. The routes are hard and prone to stone and ice fall. In good conditions they are mainly rock climbs. The easiest is 5A, the safest 5B.

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ALW 5/06/13