Next Date: 09. July - 30. July 2022
PIK LENINA 7134M
Coaching & Preparation Weekend
An optimal preparation is the base of a safe and efficient ascent. However, training and planning can be complicated and time-consuming. Because we care about our participants’ physical, technical, and mental preparation, we offer coaching and support free of charge. At the beginning of February, we will provide you with concise information about the preparation of the Pik Lenin expedition in a PDF document. This includes the following topics:
- Training recommendation and training planning
- Technical preparation (incl. tour recommendations)
- Expedition-related preparations (e.g., bivouac training/emergency simulations)
- Mental preparation
- Nutrition and food
- Various templates (e.g., training journal)
We would like to invite all interested participants to a preparation weekend and get to know each other. Invitation to download:
SaryVenture – Invitation Preperation Weekend
Duration: 2 Days
Date: 21./22. May 2022
Location: Alpstein, Zwinglipasshütte SAC
- Getting to know each other
- High altitude medicine & behavior at altitude (including acclimatization)
- Rescue techniques & first aid (including improvised evacuation, basics of crevasse rescue & rope handling)
- Crisis & emergency management (including behavior in storm & emergencies, setting up emergency bivouacs, communication, SaryVenture emergency management on Pik Lenin)
- Risk management (including decision-making for individual situations)
- Climate & objective hazards in the Pamirs
- Basic material knowledge
- Tips & tricks for preparation during the last weeks
The ride from Osh to Sarytash (approximately four hours) takes us through a diverse landscape. We will cross two mountain passes during the journey: the 3600m high Taldyk Pass. From Sarytash we will reach the Achik Tash base camp after another 2 hours on a bumpy road.
We have our base camp directly at Camp 1, which offers several advantages: The approach to the mountain is shorter, acclimatization is better, and the goal remains in sight. The ascent from Achik Tash Base Camp (3600m) to Camp 1 (4400m) takes around 6-7h.
We will cross large glacier areas for the ascent to Camp 2, also called Lentil Camp. This section has tricky crossings of crevasses. Therefore we will start the ascent or descent early in the morning (warming during the day).
During the ascent to Camp 3, we overcome wide firn slopes and some steeper uphills. Camp 3 is located below Razdelnaja (6200m) and offers spectacular views of the surrounding mountains. The optional ascent of Razdelnaja marks the first highlight on the journey to Pik Lenina.
Early in the morning, we start the ascent to the summit. With 1000m of ascent, this day is demanding and requires high motivation and perseverance from the summit aspirants. We will reach the first summit plateau over a broad ridge. There is time to enjoy the impressive view of the highest peaks of the Pamirs (e.g., Pik Ismoil Somoni) and the Hindu Kush range. After the notorious sickle’s crux, we reach a preliminary summit via less steep flanks. From here, a mental bite is needed again because it takes another 30 minutes until we reach the main summit of Pik Lenina. Now, for the first time, there is time to enjoy the unbelievable view… and some oxygen (not from the bottle, of course).
Pik Lenin - or Pik Lenina?
Originally called Pik Kaufmann, it is the fifth highest peak in the world-famous Pamir Mountains. Let us look at the name in Russian: Пик Ленина, means something like Pik Lenina in German translation. So why Lenin Peak? Did Russia even have a different view of Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov? We do not pursue this question in detail on our journey to the south of Kyrgyzstan. However, Lenina sounds nice and, from now on, shapes our journey and your first steps into the (sorry, we are honest) hard reality of high-altitude mountaineering. You will climb an impressive and heavily glaciated 7000m peak during the three-week trip.
Kyrgyzstan - a diversified country in Central Asia
The Pik Lenina is part of the Trans-Alai mountain range and lies on the Kyrgyz-Tajik border. Technically, the climb is technically not difficult and is part of the Soviet Snow Leopard Challenge. This involves climbing five different 7000m peaks in the area of the former USSR. Kyrgyzstan is located in the heart of Central Asia and has a relatively low population of 6.5 million. The region is characterized by its mountains, deserts, peoples, and cultures. Hundreds of years ago, caravans and nomads roamed the vast expanses of Central Asia and ensured a flourishing cultural exchange through their interaction with the more settled people. Traveling to Central Asia remains an adventure for itself: impressive mountains, dry plateaus, and friendly people who offer tourists the drink “Kumis” (challenges our tastes).
Scheduled flight via Istanbul or Moscow to Bishkek (capital of Kyrgyzstan). A domestic flight will bring you to Osh, the capital of the southern part of the country. It is possible to fly directly to Osh from Moscow.
You arrive in Osh early in the morning. After the transfer to a hotel near the center, you can relax from the journey. In the afternoon, we will visit the city together and immerse ourselves in the hustle and bustle of Osh. After a local dinner, we will fall tired into bed—an excellent time to let the first impressions of Central Asia affect you.
The scenic Pamir Highway takes us over two passes to the Alay plateau. On the way we visit the museum of the Kyrgyz national heroe Kurmanjan Datka in Gulcha. As the empress of the Alai territories, she succeeded in protecting the region from external enemies for a long time. In Sarytash we stay at the SarySoul Mountainlodge. Here we enjoy the evening view over the Gora Kurumdy and our objective, the Pik Lenina. Although we do not recommend alcohol in preparation, we can enjoy a beer to toast our arrival in the mountains.
Solid acclimatisation is the basis of a successful and safe expedition. Starting from the SarySoul Mountainlodge, we will undertake a hike up to 3800m altitude.
Early in the morning, we drive over the hill and dale to Achik Tash Base Camp. By foot, we follow the old tracks and soon reach the “onion meadow” (the grasses effectively smell of onions). A steep path leads up to a saddle, from which we get an impressive view of the northern flank of Pik Lenina. The trail continues along steep flanks to a river, which we cross by balancing stones. Shortly afterward, we reach Camp 1 (4400m), our home for the next 12 days.
We have a total of 12 days to climb Pik Lenina. The weather conditions are crucial for a successful ascent. We will provide you with a daily weather report to keep you informed about the weather.
Often the question arises about the proper acclimatization. The literature offers many guidelines in this regard. We have made the experience that acclimatization is very individual and varies greatly depending on the person. We recommend climbing the 5100m Yuchin Peak for better acclimatization if the weather is fine.
Furthermore, going back and forth between SaryVenture Base Camp and Camp 3 is essential to ensure solid acclimatization.
Summit ascent: under the section “Discover the route,” you will find a rough description of the ascent route. Please note that the descent from Pik Lenina to our base camp is exhausting and long. Schedule enough time for it; an extra night at Camp 3 might be necessary.
After a last night in the tent, we will leave Pik Lenina and descend to Achik Tash base camp. The vehicles await us here, on which we start the journey back to Sarytash. In the evening, we enjoy the first accurate shower at the SarySoul Mountainlodge and toast the summit.
We leave the mountains and drive along the Pamir Highway back to Osh. Soon we find ourselves in the busy life of the trading city Osh and enjoy the benefits of civilization. We finish our expedition with a fine dinner.
Transfer to the airport and return flight home. Scheduled flights directly to Moscow usually depart early in the morning. There are several flights to Bishkek per day. Participants flying home in the evening can enjoy another day in Osh. It is good to visit the lively bazaar and the Rabat Abdul Khan Mosque. The SaryVenture tour guide is at your disposal and can organize the activities.
Please go through the check below and assess yourself. This check will indicate whether you have the required experience, technical skills, and fitness.
The requirements check provides you with a basis for the preparation of the expedition. If you barely meet the requirements, please contact us. We will help you with training, material planning, and technical preparation. This allows you to work on your “weaknesses” during the preparation period and be ready in time to start the Pik Lenina adventure.
The expedition to Pik Lenina is ideal for fit mountaineers who have experience climbing in the Western Alps. The ascent has no technical difficulties, so no climbing skills are required. During the ascent, glaciated passages with steep flanks of up to 40° are passed. This requires confident walking on crampons, even with a heavy backpack and at high altitudes. Expedition experience is not required for Pik Lenina but is an advantage.
If you can answer most of the questions with yes, you fulfill the requirements:
- Do you have several years of experience in mountaineering in the Western Alps?
- Are you familiar with crampon and ice axe techniques, even under challenging conditions and with heavy packs?
- Are you experienced in crevasse rescue, behavior on the glacier, and walking on a short rope?
- Do you have the endurance for multi-day ascents of 1000 to 1900 meters in altitude at high altitude and with luggage?
- Daily ascents of 4 to 9 hours are possible for you on summit day up to 15 hours?
- Are you in good physical and health condition?
- Do you have bivouac/camping experience in the high mountains?
- Are you flexible, able to work in a team, and willing to put your own needs aside if necessary? We demand friendship and mutual help from every participant.
- You know that an expedition means giving up comfort and embarking on an adventure?
- Are you culturally curious and looking forward to getting to know a new country and new people?
- We are looking forward to meeting you.
- The participants are on their own on the mountain and form independent teams. We expect that you can move independently and safely in combined and glaciated terrain (snow, ice, rock) and that you have the corresponding technical experience. The guides, or SaryVenture, do NOT provide personal guidance on the mountain but are always on the move with the group and are on hand to offer tips and tricks and help where necessary.
- We highly value comradeship and mutual help. Active assistance on the mountain is essential and expected.
- An expedition in a group requires a high degree of tolerance and mutual understanding. We are in a small space, in a harsh landscape, and isolated from civilization. You may have to put your personal needs behind those of the group in certain situations.
- The expedition requires a high level of physical and mental fitness from the participants. Tours at this altitude and in the high mountains are related to risks that cannot be completely ruled out. Appropriate handling and awareness of risks and dangers on the mountain are necessary.
- Climbing a 7000m peak can be easier or more difficult. The altitude has different effects on the participants. Therefore, everyone must be aware of their limits on the mountain and be prepared to turn back if necessary.
- The weather and conditions on the mountain are decisive for the expedition’s success and the summit. Improvisations and adjustments to the program may be necessary.
- The expedition is done at the participant’s responsibility. The guide is responsible for the overall management of the group during the expedition but not for the personal guidance of the individual participants. Decisions are always made in the group’s interest, which must follow the guide’s instructions.
- SaryVenture accepts no liability for accidents, damage, or loss of equipment.
- The leader is authorized to exclude participants from the expedition if there is a risk to the company or the group or if the participants are not meeting the requirements. Any additional costs are to be paid by the excluded participants themselves.
- Organization of the entire expedition
- All transfers from Osh airport and back
- Summit and borderpermit
- Entire board from and to Osh, incl. in base camp (ABC camp I) and camp II
- All drinks during meals
- Dry food for the high camps above camp II (have to be prepared by yourself)
- All hotel nights in double rooms (number according to itinerary)
- Group tent, toilet tent, and shower tent at base camp
- One tent per 2 participants at SaryVenture base camp
- One tent per 2 participants for the high camps
- High rack for group equipment (tents, cookers, etc.)
- Fixed ropes and firn anchors on the mountain
- Daily updated weather forecast
- Lighting in the base camp tent
- Electricity at base camp, for charging personal electronic devices (limited capacity)
- Transport of all luggage to base camp (max. weight per participant: 25kg)
- All tips
- For the whole group: Expedition first aid kit for base camp and high camp
- Flights to Osh (Kyrgyzstan) and back
- Domestic flights Bishkek – Osh if traveling via Bishkek (SaryVenture will organize domestic flights from Bishkek to Osh if required).
- Individual drinks outside meals
- Sleeping mats for the base camps and high camps
- Sleeping bags
- High altitude cookers and cookware for the high camps
- Individual food (e.g., energy bars) for the ascents on the mountain
- Personal medication
- Additional costs that might arise due to a change in the itinerary
- High altitude porters for personal equipment
Your Team on Site
INFORMATION AND PREPARATION FOR THE TRIP
Pik Lenina is located in the northernmost part of the Pamirs, in the Trans-Alai Mountains. At its feet is the Alai Valley, which separates the Pamir from the Alai Mountains. The Pamir is a young mountain range that is still growing. The rock at Pik Lenina consists primarily of Cretaceous sediments. Various geomorphological phenomena can be seen along the ascent route, including an impressive moraine landscape. The Pamirs have a continental climate, which is cold, harsh, and dry.
In Osh, we stay in a good and centrally located hotel. Standard rooms are booked for two persons. If desired, a single room can be booked for an extra charge (please indicate when registering).
In Sarytash, we spend the nights at the SarySoul Mountainlodge. This small hostel is part of our company and is operated by Shamurat Matiev and Anargul Omorbekova. The accommodation offers four 2-bed rooms and two 4-bed rooms. Due to limited space, we cannot offer single rooms.
We spend the nights at SaryVenture Base Camp (ABC) in fixed 2-person tents. The group has its spacious group tent, a small shower tent, and a toilet tent.
We spend the nights on the mountain in 2-person tents used in Camp 2 and Camp 3. In Camp 2 we also have a small group tent where meals can be taken in a cozy atmosphere.
In Osh, we enjoy meals in local and good restaurants. In the city, the cuisine is Uzbek; we will try dishes like Lagman and those with buckwheat. Why Uzbek? The population in Osh originally comes from the Uzbek part, which is why this cuisine prevailed in the Fergana Valley.
In Sarytash and at base camp, we serve simple dishes. As Kyrgyzstan is traditionally nomadic, many animal products are still consumed today. At SaryVenture, we keep the consumption of animal products low, which is why we serve mainly vegetarian dishes. Please indicate this directly in the registration form if you eat exclusively vegetarian. Unfortunately, we cannot yet offer completely vegan meals.
Thanks to our small group tent in Camp 2, we also prepare simple noodles and rice dishes. Therefore, we only use exceptional dry food from Camp 3 onwards. We recommend that you try such dry foods beforehand (not all people tolerate these products equally well).
The flight booking to Kyrgyzstan has to be done by the participants themselves. Aerflot offers direct scheduled flights to Osh (via Moscow). Those wishing to travel via Bishkek will find connections with Aeroflot (via Moscow), Turkish Airlines, and Pegasus (via Istanbul).
If the journey takes place via Bishkek, a domestic flight to Osh is necessary (around $ 30-40 per person). SaryVenture will organize this flight.
No visa is required for visits up to 60 days for all European countries. A passport is required for entering Kyrgyzstan. It must be valid for at least six months beyond the return date.
For detailed information on Kyrgyzstan, see the FDFA’s travel advice. The general situation is safe. Nevertheless, poverty and social tensions are challenges for the country. In our experience, criminality in Kyrgyzstan is low, especially compared to other countries. Due to disagreements over border demarcation, the border regions with Tajikistan and Uzbekistan often show armed conflicts.
Optional Material Test by Modular Mountain Tech GmbH
Modular Mountain Tech GmbH develops ultra-light, robust modular mountaineering equipment for alpinists. The current range includes lightweight ice axes for high-altitude mountaineering.
For interested participants, SaryVenture offers the opportunity to test material from Modular Mountain Tech GmbH free of charge. If the materials are convincing, they can be purchased for a discount at the end of the expedition.
We are happy to advise you on any material related questions. Contact SaryVenture without any obligation.
- Travel backpack or travel bag (80-110 L, water-resistant)
- High altitude backpack (50-60 L, water-resistant)
- Rain cover for high altitude touring backpack
- Trekking poles
- Lightweight alpine touring harness (e.g., Petzl Altitude)
- Lightweight, high alpine touring ice axe (e.g., Petzl Gully)
- Crampons (with anti-slide plates)
- 3x clip carabiner
- 3x HMS carabiner
- 1x abseiling device (Reverso)
- 1x sling (120 cm)
- 1x 5m rope (Ø 5mm)
- 2x ice screw (19 cm)
- 1x helmet
- 1-2x drinking bottles (e.g., Nalgene, with large opening)
- 1x thermos bottle
- 1x plate/eating bowl and 1x drinking cup for the high camps (e.g., Sea to Summit)
- Light cutlery for the high camps
- 1x headlamp (incl. spare batteries)
- 1x spare headlamp (small)
- Down sleeping bag (comfort range min. -20°C)
- Isolation mat (e.g., from Thermarest, high isolation value)
- Tip: pillowcase (filled with down jacket -> pillow)
- Warm down jacket (suitable for expeditions)
- Gore-Tex jacket
- Softshell jacket
- Fleece pullover/fleece jacket
- Mountain trousers for high altitude tours
- Gore-Tex trousers
- Trekking trousers (light and long)
- Short trousers
- Thermal / functional shirt (long-sleeved)
- Thermal / functional trousers (long)
- Several T-shirts
- Comfortable shoes for base camp and town (e.g., running shoes)
- Trekking shoes
- Expedition mountaineering boots (preferably a model for 7000m)
- Mountain socks (warm)
- Trekking socks
- Expedition down gloves (mittens)
- Finger gloves (warm)
- Under gloves (thin)
- Sunglasses (highest UV protection)
- Ski goggles with high UV protection (against the wind)
- Cap (very warm, must fit under helmet)
- Balaclava or face mask
- Sun cream (protection factor 50)
- Lip protection (protection factor 50)
- Credit card (Mastercard or Visa)
- Cash for personal use (can be obtained locally from EC machines)
- Photocopy of passport (additionally stored digitally in the cloud)
- 1x passport photo
- First-aid kit (personal medication)
- Nécessaire and personal hygiene articles
- Towel (e.g., microfibre towel)
- Several cloth masks (Covid-19)
- Hand disinfection gel (50 ml)
- Covid certificate or PCR test for entry
- Handkerchiefs, wet wipes
- Photo equipment with charger (Attention: consider securing the photos)
- Mobile phone and charger
- Pocket knife
- Lighter with flint
- A personal altimeter or appropriate watch (e.g., Garmin or Suunto)
- Tip: Thermopads for hands and feet
SaryVenture supports you on the way to your personal alpinism goal – from the planning to the logistics on the mountain.