Caucasus mountains, mountain range, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and southwest Russia, considered a boundary between Europe and Asia. The Caucasian ridge extends for 1200 km from the East to the West, from the Black Sea to the Caspian Sea, and for 180 km from the South to the North. The mountain chain separates Russia from the Caucasian region. The Greater Caucasus is generally divided into three parts: West, Central and East Caucasus. The boundaries of these territories run along meridians that cross Mt Elbrus (5642 m) in the West and Mt Kazbek (5033 m)
Mountains are composed of granite and crystalline rock. Some volcanic formations and many glaciers are found throughout the range.
It is between these two giants that the major part of the most beautiful mountains lies. The central valley along which flows the river Baksan has many side valleys, leading to the most famous and beautiful peaks of the Caucasus, such as Donguz-Orun (4492), magnificent ridges of Shkhelda (4300m), Tchatyn (4368), the legendary Ushba (4710m) and of course Mt Elbrus (5642m), the highest summit of the Caucasus.
Access. Mineralnye Vody airport is the main point to start Caucasus trip. Good pavement road connects airport with Baksan valley. Usually it takes 3h30 to make this route which is 180km long.
Food. Mostly Balkarian people prefer simple food consists of meat, some vegetables, soupes. In the shops you can buy most of the food you will need on a climb like chocolate, cereals, tins with meat or fish, but do not expect to buy here special mountain food. You can also make stop in the towns on your way from airport to Baksan valley and buy some food there.
Accommodation. There are few big hotels in Baksan valley, but mostly they were built years ago and still awaiting for renovation. Also Baksan region posesses couple of private hotels, which are not so big but managed with better attention. As well you can rely on a wide choice of private houses and flats.
Money. The main currency is Russian Rouble, which is about 28 roubles per one Dollar or 34 Roubles per EURO. You can find money exchange office in Hotel «Terskol», Terskol village.