Hi, I see you went with Pilgram tours up Elbrus. I just climbed Kili and plan Elbrus for July 2014. Pilgrim tours is much cheaper than RMI etc. This is a good thing but it also makes me nervous. Any thoughts? Thanks
I like Pilgrim. They are very professional. Food in local hotel & basecamp are good. Actually, I met the RMI team at basecamp (led by JJ Justman), they summitted one day before us., and we shared dining table at basecamp kitchen. Here is the comparison: Pilgrim and the RMI team I met, 1) use the same cook, so food no difference 2) live in similar barrel, no difference (everyone either lives in barrel or tent, barrel is the more comfortable one). 3) JJ is a great guy, based on our chatting impression. Pilgrim guides (mine was Sergey Baranov) are awesome too, they are all Russians, but speak fluently English. Though with heavy accent. Both have lots of and years of Elbrus guiding experience. 4) One thing to point out is, Pilgrim has a large and good presence in Elbrus, they have plenty staffs and guides up on the mountain and also in Terskol (the town at the foot of Mt.). When there's tragedy of other climbers going on, they send out their people to help right away. I trust their experience. And it was very pleasant with everyone of them I met. 5) Most Terskol people (restaurants, shops) don't speak English at all, like the restaurant menu has no English words, so it's very helpful to go out with my Russian guide to have him as translator...
I chose them because the price is reasonably affordable.
Hope it helps.
I chose them because the price is reasonably affordable in the first place. And it turns out that the experience was indeed pleasant and beyond my expectation.
Thank you so much for the information. I have sent them an e mail.
I found it enjoyable and efficient to write in the old-fashioned way: pen+notebook. Besides, if I really want to get something done, I MUST turn off computer and switch off WIFI ... ...