Walking Grades and Fitness
Grading is a somewhat difficult topic as much depends on the individuals own perception of his or her abilities. The following is intended as a general guide to our grading system. The levels of difficulty are divided into categories B/C/D. Although the trekking is not at great altitude, it occasionally traverses rough terrain and involves some long days and steep climbs.
Grade B walks (Moderate): are for those of any fitness level who are able to traverse moderately hilly terrain. Walking is limited to day excursions from a central location to which you will be transported. These day hikes are normally no more than 6 hours in duration and all walking may be done with no backpack or with a light day pack.
Grade C walks (Strenuous): are for the more serious hill walker and a higher level of physical fitness is required. However, no special physical preparations should be needed. Walking days are normally 6-8 hrs and may involve up to 900m of ascent and descent. You should be prepared for several consecutive days of walking, sometimes at higher altitudes, so stamina is important. However, occasionally rest days in the course of the trek will be included.
Grade D walks (Tough): require that you are very fit and previous trekking experience is strongly recommended. Grade D includes long walks with steep uphill and downhill gradients. There will be some hiking at high altitudes (up to 4000m) and corresponding cold weather conditions. These treks will also involve several long days (up to 8-9 hours) of trekking continuously without a rest day.
#404. Discover Kamchatka for yourself.
th - September 15th
Group size - up to 16 pax. SEASON: July 15
See all the majesty of Kamchatka for yourself in this easy-paced comprehensive two week trip; see ethnic culture, go heli-sightseeing, take a hike inside an active volcano crater (optional), bathe in hot springs, stay in a Reindeer herders Yurta, view wildlife and go fishing on Avacha Bay, and much more.
This journey is a unique opportunity for people of different ages to discover and explore the highlights of Kamchatka and learn about the lifestyles of the people who live here. Anyone can enjoy this trip as there's no need for strenuous physical activity. You'll visit some of Kamchatka's indigenous people, the Evens. You will also enjoy a breathtaking helicopter flight skimming over Kamchatka's spine of towering volcanoes to emerge at the UNESCO World Heritage-Listed 'Valley of Geysers' - a vast bowl of steam fields, spouting geysers and heaving mud pools that is the peninsula's geothermal centerpiece and a naturally climate-controlled haven for bears, eagles and many unique examples of Kamchatkan wildlife. You will have an opportunity to experience first-hand the thundering power of the active Mutnovsky Volcano - a cantankerous, belching 7200ft behemoth. Stand atop its colossal, craggy crater rim and drink in the vistas of a surreal blue crater lake wreathed in an ethereal cloak of mist, while all around there is the deafening roar of volcanic madness and sulphur-encrusted fumaroles dispensing jets of steam. Awe-inspiring and otherworldly.
Finally, there's the chance to slide regally out to sea on an excursion around expansive Avacha Bay, Petropavlovsk's long-time gateway to the world. Try your hand at fishing, sample the famous Ukha (fish soup), visit islands teeming with sea bird and seal colonies and gape in awe at Petropavlovsk's environs, crowded with giant snowcapped volcano cones.
Day 1. Arrive in PKC. Accommodation in hotel. Welcome lunch in a restaurant. Free time. Prepare for the trip.
Day 2. Optional excursion by MI-8 helicopter to the Valley of Geysers and Uzon volcano caldera with lunch in the Valley (8-9 hours in total). See over twenty geysers and numerous mud pots. Water-and-steam fountains amaze with their beauty and strength. Return to PKC.
Day 3. Drive to Mutnovsky Volcano plateau by 6WD bus. Bathing in Verkhne-Paratunskie thermal springs (optional). Drive to Viluchinsky Volcano (0.5 hour). Rest near Viluchinsky waterfall. Further drive to Mutnovsky volcano plateau (1 hour). Distance between PKC and Mutnovsky is 150 km. Evening excursion on a plateau of alive with volcanic activity. Overnight in tents.
Day 4. Day trip to the active crater of Mutnovsky Volcano. Snack lunch in the crater. Moving along the narrow canyon to the crater. Steep walls surround the vast and deep crater cavity with its glittering glaciers split by cracks and torches of fumaroles. The outing lasts 6-7 hours. This does require a climb up to the crater. Overnight in tents.
Day 5. Optional day trip to ascend Gorely Volcano (1829m). A chain of 11 craters across it's peak make for a unique sight. Travel to Paratunka resort (1.5 hours). Accommodation in a guest house. Bathe in an alfresco pool with thermal hot water. Rest. Visit a local farmer Sasha Yastrebov, for a folk concert in a Yurta. A party sampling various seafood dishes and drinking Russian vodka and homemade balsam.
Day 6. Travel by passenger bus to the old Cossack settlement of Milkovo (6 hours/306km with stops). Stay in the Dolina or Vostok Hotel.
Day 7. Drive to the Esso settlement (5 hours/240km with stops). Accommodation in a hotel with its own thermal pool. Welcome dinner and a private Even folk concert.
Day 8. Take a helicopter MI-8 flight to find the nomadic camp of the Even reindeer herd (1hour/200km). Spend a day at the reindeer camp experiencing this time-honored way of life. Stay overnight in a Yurta, the Even version of a Sioux teepee, or in tents. Note that this experience is dependant on the family we visit and how far the reindeer herd has wandered in its search for grazing.
Day 9. Spend another day at the reindeer camp with the Evens and hike to visit the surrounding scenic highlights.
Day 10. Return by helicopter to Esso settlement. Stay in the family hotel and refresh yourself in the thermal pool. Visit the local museum where you'll learn more about the various indigenous tribes of Kamchatka.
Day 11. Drive to Petropavlovsk by bus. Stay in hotel.
Day 12. Excursion around Avacha bay by boat with fishing and Ukha (fish soup). Visit Starichkov Island to view sea birds and mammals (6 hours in total). This tour is a unique opportunity to see the fascinating surroundings of Petropavlovsk from the sea, to explore the shores of the Avachinskaya bay, and to watch colonies of seabirds in their natural habitats.
Day 13. Guided city tour and a visit to the Ethnographic museum, central market, art gallery and local workshop. The museum's displays are devoted to the history of the region, its flora and fauna, the native peoples of Kamchatka and their ancient culture. You will learn about the ancient tribes that lived in Kamchatka thousands of years ago, about the discovery of this beautiful land by Russian explorers, the heroic history of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. There are interesting exhibits on Kamchatka's nature: the Kronotsky Nature Reserve, Kamchatka's volcanoes, its wildlife and natural resources. You will see an exhibition of handicrafts by local artists.
Day 14. Departure.
Price EUR 3900.00 per person.
- Full board
- Double accommodation in hotels in city and Paratunka resort
- English-speaking rep at the arrival and departure in the PKC airport
- Transfers by coach, 6WD bus and helicopters MI-8
- City tour and museum entrances
- Guide, interpreter and cook services
- Concerts in Esso and PKC
- Avacha Bay boat excursion
- Invitation letter and visa registration
Questions? Interested in booking a trip? See here for answers to frequently asked questions and here for more Kamchatka pictures, click here for booking details or ask your questions here.