A group of officers from the National Center for State Defense Control of the Russian Federation (NCSDC RF), in cooperation with the Russian Geographical Society, completed an expedition to Elbrus.
The idea to mark the 76th anniversary of the Soviet people’s Victory in the Great Patriotic War with the ascent belongs to the head of the NCSDC RF, Colonel-General Mikhail Mizintsev. The group of volunteers included 15 active officers, among whom only two had mountain hiking experience. For the rest, it was not just a debut, but a serious test of strength.
“Our expedition began on May 2,” said the head of the group, Major General Sergei Egorov. “Climbing the highest peak in Europe was preceded by several days of training. In particular, we traveled to the waterfall Devich'i Kosy (eng. Maiden’s Braids), to the Cheget mountain and the Pastukhov rocks. Staying overnight at the base camp at an altitude of 4100 meters wasn’t easy – no one slept a wink. Then it was turn for Elbrus. We were very unlucky with the weather – the temperature dropped below 25 degrees, there was a squally wind. The last tens of meters to the main summit turned out to be especially difficult. Nevertheless, we were enthusiastic, and I am proud that all members of our expedition showed will and conquered physical fatigue and circumstances.”
The team members reached their goal on May 8 and deployed two flags on Elbrus – one of the NCSDC RF and one of the Russian Geographical Society. It is possible that such joint expeditions of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation and the Russian Geographical Society dedicated to memorable dates and Days of Military Glory will become a good tradition.