All about Damavand Skiing
Although Iran is not famous for its mountain skiing destinations, there are many places where adventurers can enjoy this sport with Damavand being the highlight of them all. Are you interested in experiencing 5610 meters of altitude? Then Damavand is your destination. What makes it even more appealing is the fact that compared to other mountains with the same height, your travel would be much more economic since Iran is rather low-priced. Here is how skiing in Damavand would go on.
Step by Step to Damavand
First, you must reach Polour or Rineh. Here, you find a mountaineering lodge administered by the mountaineering federation of Iran. You can have a night of rest here to adjust your body to an altitude of 2300 meters. Rineh and Polour are close to one another and both give the same services. You can read more about them here. Then, its time to head to Gosfandsara. There are 4×4 vehicles to take the mountaineers to Gosfandsara. You can arrange for one to pick you up at the lodge. However, in winter, the roads are snowy. Therefore, the cars can not get to Gosfandsara. You must ride as close as possible and then ascend the rest yourself.
About Weather: Note that precise weather report is possible only couple of days to the program. Therefore, you have to check the weather to see if the weather is stable on your summit day. We advice you to have couple of spare days. That will make your schedual flexible and you can spend the spare days skiing in Doberar area. Traditionaly, Doberar ski touring happens at the beginning and as a acclimatization for Damavand. However, it can be moved to the beginning or at the end of the program depending on the weather. Naturally, if forwarded to the end of the program, proper acclimatization is due.
With all that being said, we move forward with the program. The next step after getting off the 4x4s is to reach Bargah Sevom shelter. As mentioned, the cars will take us part way and then our ascend with ski begins. It will take an average of 5 hours to get there.
About Guided Tours: If you have a guided tour, then the guide will prepare all the meals. The mountaineering lodge and the Bargah Sevom shelter both have cooking area and dining section. Arranging for transfers including 4x4s and city transfers, arranging for the shelter and lodge reservation, arranging means of carrying load, weather analysis, choosing the best rout, decision making in case of injuries and accompanying the injured and so on are part of the guides responsiblity.
The next day, its time for acclimatization. We ascend a couple of hundred meters and then descend back to shelter. Finally, the summit days arrives and we head to the highest mountain in Iran. The summit begins pretty early, however you have to consider the wind and weather stability and then decide the ascend time. It is pretty long and icy on the path so you must be prepared. It will take an average of 7 hours.
On the way back we have two options. We can go back to shelter and rest there, or we can come down to where we got off the 4x4s and ride back to lodge. It totally depends on the group’s strength and capabilities, but consider that it takes around 2 hours in the first option and 4 hours in the second one. Whichever you chose, in the end, you will get to Polour or Rineh to drive back to Tehran or your next destination. Then, don’t miss the hot water springs of the area, soaking in hot water after days of physical activity is really enjoyable.
To see the Damavand ski touring packages click here.