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Review of Mount Ararat

Mount Ararat
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Owner description: Mount Ararat is in eastern Turkey. Its summit is 5137m and is snow-cover all year. Climbing permits and a licensed guide are required to climb. The standard trek is 3 nights on Ararat, including acclimatization. The climbing season is June-September. June can be rainy. July and August are best. Spring skiing is in March and April. For more details visit MountAraratTrek.
Reviewed June 8, 2014

I went on top of this mountain. the landrover was standing between the hills with the tent and avreything ready for our coming back. My friend Bayram stayed there to do the cooking. We had an appointment that when we did not return before 20.00 Hr he should go to the karakol to speak with the police.... We (Aydin and I) went with the rifle and the munition climbing the slope.... but at a certain moment I reallized ( like when I was on top of the Etna in Sicily) that the mountain gave a shadow over tha lower land... while we were still inj the sunlight.


Thank Robbert d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 7, 2014

I really enjoyed visiting Dogubayazit and the Mount Ararat area wıth a very professional guide that I recommend warmly:
Sefer Tokdemir from Climbing Ararat:
Email: climbtoararat@hotmail.com
phone: +90 545 610 46 40
Dogubayazit/ Turkey

He also organises trekking and ski touring around Ararat and climbing to the summit.

Guillaume from France

4  Thank Guillaume B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 3, 2013

I did a tour in Turkey which finished with a climb of Ararat. You are mini-bused in from Dogubeyazit to the start point which takes about an hour and along some very bumpy and uncomfortable roads and tracks. At the start point the local crew meets you and the bags are loaded onto donkeys to be carried up to base camp.
Within an hour of setting off a storm the likes of which I had never experienced broke over head and lasted for about 4 hours and ended just in time for us too reach base camp. The donkeys and the drivers did not have any tarps for covering the bags and so everyones kit had been to varying degrees, water logged. Base camp covers a large area and space is at a premium especially if climbing in the summer when the camp is very busy. Each group has its own mess tent but share the toilets, of which there only 1 for each sex. The view from camp up to the summit are good though.
The climb up from base camp to high camp is not fun in any degree and is mainly a steep slog up through boulder fields and scree and takes roughly 5 or 6 hours depending on the group`s fitness. Ararat could never be described as a pretty mountain to climb.
High camp is a bit of a shock, it sits on a narrow ridge about 1000 metres below the summit. Space is even at more of a premium up here but by far the biggest and most disgusting problem with high camp is that in all senses of the meaning a "s**t hole". As there are no toilets, there is human waste everywhere and you have to be very careful when walking about not to step in and drag it in to your tent. This is something everyone seemed to be very unhappy about and it needs to sorted out before Ararat becomes even more popular and the situation gets worse.
We arrived at high camp around 2.30pm and the plan was to leave for the summit the following morning around 3am. However, around 8pm another huge storm hit the mountain and at this height the rain falls as a mixture of hail and snow. Because of the storm we were delayed leaving camp and set off around 4am in the dark. The first part of the climb is a steep boulder field which is also very icy. Because of the storm the night before the snow line (usually just 200m below the summit in Summer) was around 600m below the summit and after the boulder field you continue up in deep snow. The summit is always visible off to the right but it is very hard going but the views are simply amazing. Little Ararat is visible for a good part of the climb and the views down to the surrounding plains are breath taking. There is a small reprieve as you reach the plateau before the final push up the summit cone. This is pretty much solid ice and you will need crampons for this section. Practice as much as you can putting them on with gloves in the lower camps as putting them on for the first time at 5000m in very cold conditions is no fun at all, its even worse if you have to take your gloves off because you cant feel the straps through them.
The walk up the ice is hard going and I was reduced to a very slow pace, managing 10 steps before having a little rest. The summit is marked by a ski buried in the snow and after the obligatory photo op you have a little time to take in the views. At the summit it is very very cold especially if the wind is up and standing around you start to realise just how cold (approx -25 on our summit day). The walk back down is much more fun and you can slide down some of the massive snow slopes on your backside but do take care as you can get out of control and speed off into the boulders strewn around.
We made it back to high camp around midday and decided as a group to walk off the mountain and get back to Dogubeyazit that night. Usually, groups walk back to base camp and spend the night there. This meant a total of about 15 hours walking through massive temperature changes (-25 on the summit and about 30 on the lower slopes) so take a varying degree of clothes. The 2 storms that had broke while we were on the mountain had literally washed away the roads and there were just 6 feet deep channels where the roads used to be which meant a further hours walk to meet the mini-buses.
Overall Ararat is challenge for any walker but don`t expect a interesting climb with different fauna and flora like you would find on Kilimanjaro. Most of it is a slog and a boring slog at that but the views are worth it. The crew who look after you should also be listened to, if they say there will be no summit attempt due to adverse weather conditions then listen to them. After experiencing 2 huge storms lower down I really wouldn`t want to be caught in one high on the mountain, it would probably be a death sentence as there is nowhere to shelter.
The crews are also very friendly and even though I speak no Turkish you can still have some banter with them (especially over football) and the food is also of a good standard.

12  Thank jamo1978
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 9, 2012

It was excellent choice to go to Hotel Ararat and to climb Mount Ararat with Tamzara in Dogubeyazit (Director of Dogubeyazit office is Mustafa Arsin) The whole staffs are really nice and very experienced professionals. I really appreciate their wonderful hospitality and innocent warmheartedness, great service and helps whenever I needed something on the mountain always. I want to go back to the Mount Ararat someday again soon with Tamzara Agency in Dogubeyazit!! It was the best dream team! During on the Ararat and after climbing the Ararat, the service was great.

7  Thank ararattraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed September 26, 2012

We were in Dogubeyzit at Hotel Ararat for our Mt. Ararat Tour. We used Tamzara Tours for coordination and guides. What an amazing time! We were treated like honored guests. Hopefully we will return someday!

5  Thank Margaret J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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