The Route Up Lenin Peak (7134 m, 5A)     

      This is a very long route that is quite difficult because of the high altitude and the very real danger of slides, avalanches and extremely variable weather conditions.
      From the base camp, go up the entire green plateau until you reach the beginning of the mud and ice path that climbs up towards Puteshestvennikov Pass (4100 m). Then descent again via the stone and ice valley to the right where the climb up the Lenin glacier begins. The incline is not steep, but the altitude is already 4000 meters. Camp 1 (4200 m) is situated on the glacier moraine facing the impressive face of Lenin Peak (6-8 hours).
      Cross the flat glacier again and go right up the face until you are at 4800 m. The face may have a lot of crevasses and there is often permanent rope there. Then the route proceeds to the southwest up to 5300 meters.
      Here you descent for a while and then climb up again for about 200 meters until you reach camp 2 (5200 m). In good weather conditions this part of route is often quite fatiguing because of the heat (6-8 hours).
      Camp 2 is close to a very steep snow rib that takes to you an altitude of 5800 meters on the ridge. Proceed along the ridge until you are facing Mt. Razdelnaya (6148 m). The climb up this mountain is risky because of the blocks of snow that break off from the slope, especially after snowfalls, which often occur even in summertime. Camp 3 (6100 m) is in the little col under Mt. Razdelnaya (6 hours).
      The route continues up to the top (10 hours) along the western ridge of Lenin Peak, which is often subject to such strong winds that the climb is impossible to make. Some guides say it is best to bivouac at 6800 meters: often the return trip climbers are so tired that a stop at that altitude is necessary. The equipment needed consist of crampons, ski poles, an ice axe (which is often necessary between camp 3 and summit), and some rope for belaying if required when crossing over the crevasses. At the beginning of the season both going up and descending on skis is quite pleasant, as the descent along the glacier is really lovely and the skis will prevent you from sinking into deep snow during your return to camp 1.
      The descent takes two days. The first person to descent on skis was V. Suloev. In 1974 his feat was repeated by two Austrians, G. Ignaz and A. Schoen three Frenchmen, I. Moran, M. Berkheat and B. Germain, who were the first to ski down the entire northern face. Now with hang gliding and paragliders the descent of Lenin Peak is much briefer - 3500 m in only fifteen or twenty minutes!

Climbing map of Lenin Peak
Lenin Peak area map
back to K2 Adventures
back to Lenin Peak climbing fotoreport