Georgia: Ski Touring and Freeride in the Caucasus Region of Eurasia
A proposition of ski touring and freeride in the heart of the Causasus Mountains, a trip featuring cold powder in a magical land where time stands still.
This ski touring trip of 11 days has been thought up to provide an unforgettable and unique experience. The feeling of arriving on top of these mountains, breathing the cold, fresh air and getting lost in the countless possibilities of an awesome descent is insurmountable. These Georgian mountains offer a very diverse playing field for all levels of skiers. The ski stations such as Gudauri and Tetnuldi are modern and are constantly evolving, particularly on the occidental side of the country. In some places there is also Heli Skiing for backcountry and ski touring, which provides access to the infinite blank spaces otherwise just out of reach.
When? Our proposition is to leave during the Italian week of Carnevale, so 11 days from the 7th to the 17th of February 2019. The guide, being Italian, would leave from Bergamo in Italy on Thursday the 7th and the return would be on Sunday the 17th. Flights can be taken from anywhere, as long as the arrival at the destination corresponds with the arrival of the guide, essentially.
Why these 11 days? Eleven days is the perfect length of time to be able to explore the potential of Svaneti, sometimes using the lifts but mostly exploring the remote and enormous Caucasus mountains using seal skins for ascent. We chose the month of February because past records show the best and most powdery snow to be found, as well as stable weather conditions, also allowing for impeccable photos.
Where? The Svaneti Park is surrounded by 3000 to 5000 meter-high mountains and is considered the highest inhabited region in Europe. The climate of Svaneti is humid all year round because of the Black Sea air masses, allowing for large amounts of precipitation, usually varying between 1000 and 3200 millimeters per year, mostly concentrated in the Grand Caucasus zone during the winter. Georgia and the Caucasus mountains are rich in naturally beautiful landscapes that will make you feel alive. Right upon arrival you will sense the power of the nature you will be surrounded in and the warm hospitality of the inhabitants all while learning and improving your ski technique.
What kind of skiing? The kind of daily excursions which will happen are not of any particular difficulty technically speaking, but a good mastery of skis in both ascent and descent is necessary. The daily itineraries usually involve roughly 1000m of climbing in altitude, with intermediate technique required as there will be canals and ridges to ski.
With who? You will live this incredible adventure with the accompaniment of Matteo Calcamuggi, an official UIAGM Mountain Guide and ski/telemark instructor with over a decade of experience, who will always be accessible and available during the trip for advice, corrections and ski tips both in ascent and descent to facilitate technical improvements on skis, all with the goal of maximizing your enjoyment.
Importance of Safety: During the trip, there will be discussions and explanations on how to choose and plan an itinerary for following days, how to recognize and avoid risks and danger, how to use a transceiver along with the shovel and the probe in avalanche safety, how to use an airbag and other safety tools and precautions you may not know already regarding winter landscapes and sports. These discussions will make for an even more unique and interesting journey.
Like taking photos? Great! Your guide is also passionate about DSLR photography and has some valuable tricks up his sleeve on improving photography skills in winter terrain as well.
Need More Convincing? 8 Reasons to pack your bags and come along
- Our program is structured for the optimization of both the ski and trip experience for each and every participant. The program involves moving around and finding the best conditions of the snow and weather.
- Alongside, you will have a legitimate professional of all things mountainous and snowy with over ten years of experience who will know when and how to give suggestions, advice and help in various situations.
- We have the knowledge of the places you will be exploring thanks to our past experience there, and knowledge of how to get the most out of the snow and weather conditions.
- We know what skiers need and want, whether in ski touring or freeride. The best lines come with experience and know-how.
- This trip is not a fruit of improvisation; it is the fruit of years of development and dedication.
- We know how to guarantee a fun and exciting trip, not only involving skis but also culture and nature.
- Our objective is to go above and beyond for the people who decide to share this adventure with us.
- This tour is not like anything else. Our offer is really based on the inspiration we got from being in these mountains and we would be very pleased to share the amazing experience with you.
Difficulty: Good physical condition for ski touring and good skiing capabilities, also open to telemarkers and snowboarders with splitboards.
Climbs: We will be skinning uphill from 600 to 1100 meters per day
Transportation: We will rent a van for transport to different locations within the destination.
Accomodation: Hotel with double room and guesthouses with half board.
Cost*: There is a minimum of 4 participants required for the trip to take place. The cost per person is 1750 euros PLUS the flight.
*The cost per person for a group of 4 people is subject to slight change upon booking.
This trip has been organized in collaboration with the travel agency Snow&Feelings.
The cost includes:
- The accompaniment and assistance of the mountain guide for the entire duration of the trip
- 4 nights of half board in double room
- 4 nights at the guesthouse with breakfast in double room
- 1 night at Hotel Tblisi in double room
- Entrance to the Tbilisi Baths
- Van rental
- Shared material
- Transceiver (for who may not own one)
The cost does not include:
-Rental of personal equipment
Note: In the case of modifications to the itinerary due to uncontrollable circumstances regarding the organization such as bad weather or insufficient skiing capabilities of participants, extra costs will have to be covered by the participants.