Ski touring in the snow circus and peak of Deda Ena Mt.
Loop routes, Steep Skiing, Day trip
The closest route to Gudauri. An area of accumulation and preservation of huge reserves of excellent snow. With a northeast exposure, the circus is protected by sidewalls from external winds. The absence of ski lifts and a variety of descent options allow for the enjoyment of awesome powder, even a month and a half after a snowfall.
AD: Somewhat difficult (Assez difficile)
Duration of skinning up ⇡
S4 : Slopes up to 45°, if exposure is low (between 30 and 40° if it is high or the passage is narrow). Very good skiing abilities are required.
Very remote: Little chance of being seen or helped in case of an accident.
Medium Exposure (E2): As well as the slope itself, there are some obstacles (such as rock outcrops) which could aggravate injury.
Deda Ena is the name of an impressive peak west of the Gudauri Ski Resort, well-marked as a classic isosceles triangle. “Deda Ena” is translated from Georgian as "mother of the alphabet"; thus, the peak is named after the Georgian alphabet. The ski tour to the circus under the peak of Deda Ena is one of the most beautiful routes near the resort. The main mission - climbing the peak of Deda Ena (3,500 meters) - can only be accomplished by experienced athletes with the use of additional mountain equipment (ice axe, crampons) and a harness. But even the descent from 3000 meters, without ascent to the ridge and peak, has the possibility to be the best descent you experience during your holiday in this region.
From almost all points of the Gudauri Ski Resort, the peak looks seriously difficult for ski touring; from the highest point of the resort, the top station of the Sadzele lift, in the west, the whole large circus is very clearly seen, and the terrain and the majority of the route are viewed.
The optimum line of ascent passes along very interesting terrain with different steepness of slopes. In general, though, it is possible to distinguish only two steep and more complex areas: the first one starts 30 minutes after the beginning of the ascent. For those who decide not to stop and ascend to the peak itself, during climbing the ridge, you will find the second area at the very end. The rest of the route passes along rather flat (up to 20º) slopes.
Distinctive details of the route
Heading to this route is possible only in conditions of good visibility with a favorable forecast. In conditions of poor visibility ("white out weather") on the diverse terrain of this circus, you can easily lose visual landmarks and get into an avalanche area or into a rocky drop.
It is necessary to pass steep and avalanche areas at a distance from each other. Before the first steep ascent to the ridge, located to the left of the central cirque crest, further transforming into a flat plateau, it is necessary to perform snow tests (avalanche pit). You’ll need to do this in order to assess the degree of avalanche danger, to decide on the further continuation of ascent, and to select a descent line.
Check the level of avalanche danger before setting off for the route! Daily updated information on the level of avalanche danger can be found in the Gudauri Travel Bar (www.gudauri.bar).
Skins, Ski Crampons, Standard avalanche equipment (beeper, probe, shovel)
Mobile communication is on the itinerary
Is the route accessible when the Cross Pass is closed?
January, February, March, April
Recommended maps for this region
Trekking Map # 4: Khevi, Stephantsminda, Gudauri, Truso. Skale 1 : 50 000.
You can find information regarding the level of avalanche danger in the region, buy maps of the route, join an organized group, or order a professional mountain guide on this route in the Gudauri Travel Bar (www.gudauri.bar).
Rescue service: +995 790 211 100
Fire service, police, medical assistance: 112
Helicopters: +995 32 2243 503, +995 595 350 900, +995 595 404 606
Copying any fragment of this guidebook is acceptable with active link to the source www.gudauri.travel.