Descending from Lenin Peak

Lenin Peak Ascent

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Tough +
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Trip code: 
TXK
Way to Travel:
Guided Group
Activity:
Walking & Trekking
Min age:
18
Group size:
5–12

Ascend to the top of Lenin Peak's 7,134m in the Pamir Mountains.

Rising high over Central Asia, the Pamir Mountains link the Tien Shan Mountains to the north with the Hindu Kush to the south and are some of the highest in the world. It is here that we find a number of summits over 7,000m including Lenin Peak, the 3rd tallest peak in the former USSR at 7,134m. One of the big appeals of Lenin Peak is that whilst being a real challenge due to the high altitude and steep ascents, it is not a technical climb. In order to put the best chances of a successful ascent, there is full porterage up to Camp 3, a 4th advanced camp at 6,400m to allow for a shorter summit day and extra reserve days in case of bad weather.

This is an expedition for anyone wanting to challenge themselves and reach 7,000m whilst exploring the beautiful Pamir Mountains, the Roof of the World.

Highlights

  • The splendour of the Pamir Mountains
  • One of the most accessible 7,000+ peaks
  • 4 camps above basecamp (making summit day shorter) and spare days for summit attempts
  • Led by Valerie Parkinson (in 2018)
  • Extra porterage above Base Camp
  • Meals prepared for you at all camps

Key information

  • 23 days land only / 24 days flight inclusive
  • 20 days expedition Base Camp to Base Camp
  • Altitude maximum 7,134m, average 4,513m
  • 20 days camping; 2 days standard hotels
  • All meals on the mountain, breakfasts in Osh

What's included

  • All accommodation
  • All meals on trek, breakfast in Osh
  • London flights (if booking incl. flights)

What's not included

  • Travel Insurance
  • Single supplement available throughout the trip apart from at Camp 4
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Lenin Peak summit

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Arrive Osh

    The group flights are scheduled to arrive in Osh early this morning. Those on the group transfer will be met upon arrival and driven to the hotel. Land only passengers can arrive at any time today. The day is free to relax after the flight or to explore Osh.

    There will be a briefing and a gear check today.   

    Hotel Sunrise or similar 

  • Day 2

    To Achik Tash (Base Camp)

    We drive for approximately 6hrs to Base Camp in Achik Tash (3,600m). The transfer is done in a 4WD minibus as about 2hrs of the journey is on bad dirt roads.

    Base Camp is located in in the high Pamir Alay Valley in a clearing by a mountain river with great views of Lenin Peak itself. The camp consists of two-bed ‘hangar’ type tents along with a dining tent and traditional Kyrgyz yurt which can be used for briefings. Showers are also available as well as a sauna (extra charge for the sauna) and it is possible to buy drinks here.

    Upon arrival, we settle in for the start of the expedition part of the trip.

    Base Camp

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Days 3-4

    Around Base Camp, acclimatisation hikes to a nearby waterfall and Petrosvskogo Peak ridge

    Two days spent acclimatising and hiking around Base Camp. The acclimatisation walks we end up doing could vary but we may take a walk to a nearby waterfall (about 5kms, 1-2hrs, total ascent 200m, total descent 200m) one morning.

    The next morning we may go a little further afield by climbing to the ridge of nearby Petrosvskogo Peak at 4,000m (2kms, 8hrs, total ascent 1,100, total descent 1,100) from where there are spectacular views of the valley below and the Achik Tash tract.

    In the afternoons we check our high altitude equipment and prepare and pack for our climb up to Camp 1.

    Base Camp

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Days 5-7

    Ascend to Camp 1 and acclimatisation time at and around Camp 1

    Our trek up to Camp 1 (4,400m) takes us through alpine meadows and across the Puteshestvennikov Pass (Hunter’s Pass) at 4,100m. From here we follow the path down a moraine where Lenin Glacier starts and continue towards our camp. There is a river crossing just before the camp. After 10am the river is often very deep and we may have to pay the horsemen $5 per person to help us cross. At camp there are spacious sleeping tents along with a dining room and kitchen. There is also a sauna available here (at extra cost). Distance: 12km, 100m ascent, 200m descent, 5-7 hours.

    We spend the next two days acclimatizing and doing local walks. Depending on the group we may climb up Domashniy Peak (4,700m) to Yukshin Peak (5,100m).

    We also take some time to practice trekking on the ice, going through various rules for movement on the glacier, working in a rope-team, climbing and descending a fixed rope, self-rescue skills and crevasse rescue skills. We also have some time to prepare for the next part of the climb up to Camp 2.

    Camp 1

     

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    Climb across the glacier to Camp 2 (5,300m)

    Leaving at 4 am this morning we ascend along Lenin Glacier. From today we will be wearing our climbing boots. It is approximately 1.5 hours to crampon point, where we will put crampons on. We then walked roped up for a while as there are numerous crevasses. The route starts off fairly flat though it does get very steep later along the climb (35-40' incline) where we will use a fixed rope. Just below Camp 2, there is an area of avalanche danger which we must cross as quickly as possible. Eventually, we arrive at Camp 2 at 5,300m (after about 7-9hrs), which has great views of the summit. Camp 2 is nicknamed the Frying Pan as temperatures can reach 35C although at night it can drop to minus 5C or lower.

    Distance: 5km, 1000m ascent, 200m descent.

    Camp 2

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 9

    Continue our ascent towards Camp 3 (6,100m)

    A tough day today as we climb to over 6,000m. Very quickly after leaving Camp 2 we ascend steeply towards a ridge at about 5,600m, which is snowy and is usually very windy. This will take around 50 minutes. We then move along the ridge and start climbing towards Camp 3, which is just below (15mins away) Razdelnaya Peak (6,250m). The ridge is called the Endless ridge as it seems to go on forever with many false summits. We descend to the ridge below Razdelnaya Peak where Camp 3 is located (6,100m). The climb takes 4-6hrs. Distance: 3km, 850m ascent, 0m descent.

    Camp 3

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Days 10-12

    Descend to Base Camp, rest and prepare for summit attempt

    We retrace our steps all the way back to Base Camp stopping for lunch at Camp 1 on the way.

    The next couple days are spent at Base Camp resting and preparing for the final push to the summit of Lenin Peak. This is a good time recharge batteries (literally and figuratively) and make use of the sauna.

    Base Camp

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Days 13-15

    Return to Camps 1, 2 and 3

    Over the next three days, we follow the same route up via Lenin Glacier and Razdelnaya Peak as we make our way to Camps 1, 2 and 3. Our pace should be faster as we’re better acclimatised.

    Camps 1, 2 and 3

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 16

    Climb to Camp 4 (6,400m)

    In order to maximise our chances of getting to the summit, we include a 4th advanced camp reducing the distance needed to reach the summit of Lenin Peak on the final push. The trail up to Camp 4 takes us along a broad ridge a from where we descend to a plateau (where we need to watch out for crevasses) and then climb back up to Camp 4. It should take 3-4hrs. We then rest in anticipation of our final push to the summit. Distance: 1.5km, 400m ascent, 150m descent.

    Camp 4

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Days 17-19

    Summit Lenin Peak (7,134m) (and reserve days)

    Today is the big push to the summit. Leaving early, we start by climbing easily to a plateau from where we have a steep climb to a razor-sharp edge known as the ‘knife’ at 6,700m using fixed ropes. We then climb a steep slope (45/50’) to reach a plateau called Troopers Plateau at about 6,900m, as it is very long. The last push is called the Endless Plateau and will take us around 2 hours as it can be very windy and there are at least 4 false summits! Finally, we reach the summit, where we are greeted by a bust of Lenin himself, put there in 2010.

    We then descend all the way back down to Camp 3. It should take about 6hrs to the summit and a further 5-6hrs back down to Camp 3. Distance: 10km, 750 m ascent, 750m descent.

    We have built in two reserve days into the itinerary to maximise our chances of reaching the summit depending on local conditions.

    Camp 3 or 4

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Days 20-21

    Descend to Camp 1 and Base Camp

    Head back down the mountain, eventually returning to Camp 1 and Base Camp for a well-deserved drink, shower and sauna!

    The exact day we descend will, of course, depend on when we summit Lenin Peak.

    Base Camp

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 22

    Transfer back to Osh, free afternoon

    We leave the mountain behind as we drive the 6hrs or so back to Osh. We check-in to our hotel and have the rest of the day free to explore the town a bit or relax with a cold beer.

    Hotel Sunrise or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 23

    End Osh

    Those on the group flights (or joining the group transfer) will be taken to the airport this morning. Otherwise, the land portion of the trip ends after breakfast.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Kyrgyzstan

British, most European and most other nationalities, including Australians, New Zealanders, Americans and Canadians do not require visas for visits of under 60 days. All other nationalities should contact the nearest Kyrgyzstan Embassy if in doubt.

Vaccinations

Kyrgyzstan

No vaccinations are compulsory, but vaccination against typhoid, polio, tetanus, hepatitis A and diphtheria are recommended. The risk of Malaria is slight but you may wish to consult your GP or Travel Clinic for advice.

Eating and Drinking

All meals are included whilst on the mountain but only breakfast is included in Osh.

Meals are prepared for us and normally are made using local produce. This does mean, however, that over the course of the expedition the meals can end up being quite similar as there isn’t much diversity. The food provided at the higher camps (above Camp 1) is high altitude dehydrated food.

We recommend you bring your own snacks and energy bars with you from home.

On the expedition, all water will be boiled. 

Is this trip for you?

This is a very demanding expedition graded 9 'Tough+' though it is far tougher than other Grade 9 peaks such as Mera and Island Peaks, due to the altitude. It is a 20-day expedition style trip with 14+ days walking and acclimatisation. The maximum altitude is 7,134m, average 4,513m though considerable time is spent at higher altitudes whilst acclimatising and eventually summiting. Lenin Peak is considered non-technical, however, it is a serious climb and does require high levels of fitness and stamina as well as experience in trekking and mountaineering at very high altitudes, ideally over 6,000m (such as Mera or Island Peaks or the North Col of Everest). Despite the low technical difficulty, Lenin Peak is a serious undertaking with some long, tough days at high altitude. There is some avalanche danger between Camps 1 and 2 and there are crevasses and there can be ladders across crevasses.

It is also essential to prepare yourself mentally for the constant ascending and descending along the same trails whilst acclimatising along with spending rest days. The weather conditions can also be severe with extreme cold and high winds.

We have planned some spare days as well as a fourth advanced camp at 6400m to maximise the chances of getting to the summit.

It is essential that you have plenty of experience of walking in double boots with crampons and using an ice axe. Walking roped up and use of a jumar on a fixed rope and an abseil device is also essential. Sections of the trek cross glaciers, including areas with many crevasses and you will be walking in rope teams as well as using fixed ropes for the steep sections.

You should have some experience of camping on snow and ice in very cold temperatures. Mountaineering experience to Alpine grade PD/Scottish Grade 2 is essential.

On booking, you will be required to fill in a medical questionnaire and a trekking/climbing experience questionnaire.

Please note that day-to-day itinerary is there as an indication only and may vary depending on the local conditions.

The altitude can have a significant effect on your physical state - please refer to the 'altitude warning' within the Trip Notes. It is important that you take heed of the leader's advice and decisions at all times. 

You may find our Fitness Training Guide a useful reference.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Camping

Base Camp is made up of ‘hangar’ style tents for 2 people with mattresses inside. Showers are available as is a sauna tent (there is an extra cost to use the sauna tent). There is also dining tent, a yurt tent that can be used as a lounge/briefing area and a kitchen tent. Hot drinks and snacks and all food is included. Cold and alcoholic drinks are available to buy here and it is possible to charge equipment.

Camp 1 also has spacious tents and a dining tent. A sauna tent is available (again at extra cost) and there is a charging point.

Camps 2, 3 and 4 are more basic, no bathroom facilities are available and there are no charging points. Camps 2 and 3 are permanent during the season but Camp 4 is not.

You will need to bring a sleeping mat and sleeping bag (recommended to be at least up to -25’c).

Meals will be prepared for us at all camps (including those on the mountain - Camps 2, 3 and 4).

In Osh we stay in 3-star hotels with en suite bathrooms.

Single supplement is available (not valid at Camps 2, 3 and 4)

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

Embracing a healthy lifestyle can be a challenge, but if you’re going to keep it up there’s got to be more to it than

  • Reviewed September 2018
    Richard Christie

    Effort brings reward

    The Peak Lenin Expedition (Lenin Peak Ascent) is certainly the hardest trip I have been on with exodus. Long steep snow ascents that seemed to go on for ever in temperatures ranging from freezing cold to boiling hot, with a couple of interesting ladder crossings thrown in for good measure. But what a fantastic trip where effort does bring reward - stunning views both low down and once you were higher up - with a very real sense of achievement despite the weather thwarting the team from reaching the final summit. I will definitely have fond memories of this trip for a long time.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Arriving at Camp 3 at 6000m after a long, long slog up steep snow and being rewarded with stunning views in every direction, not least the view back down to see the Lenin Glacier snaking away into the distance. Then the afternoon 'excursion' to Razdelnaya Peak (6150m) floating between the clouds below and the pure white of Peak Lenin above surrounded by a halo of brilliant blue sky.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    As usual Valerie Parkinson was excellent doing her upmost to encourage and support everyone to get the most out of the expedition. She was ably supported by a very hard working team led by our Russian Guide Roman.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    The Lenin Peak Ascent is most definitely an expedition and not a trek. I believe that the trip notes make this clear however the trip is graded ‘9 Tough +’ the same as say the Island or Mera Peak trips. I think exodus have got this wrong, Peak Lenin demands a higher grading of 12 due to the long ascents - which have to be done twice – and temperatures, both hot and cold. You have to be fit for this trip and able to do more for yourself than on trips in Nepal or Ladakh for example. The climbing culture is different in Kyrgyzstan, the Guides are there to ensure you are safe and have the necessary equipment – it is up to you to be able to put the equipment on. That said - if you make sure you read and follow the trip notes, make sure you are fit enough and are determined enough you will be rewarded with a fantastic experience, superb views and a great sense of achievement.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Make sure your equipment fits, particularly your boots and crampons, and that you are proficient in using it before you leave home. If you have appropriate equipment take it with you rather than hiring, it is worth spending your money on extra baggage allowance on the flights rather than paying hire charges. If you do need to hire equipment make sure you advise exodus before you leave home. Whilst the food at Basecamp and Camp 1 was good (as long as you are a meat eater) the food at higher camps was not particularly interesting due to the difficulty in cooking at higher altitude. Rehydrated mashed potato has a limited appeal so make sure you take some favourite snacks with you, note chocolate bars like Mars and Snickers are readily available once you are on the trip.

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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