The Altai

Exploration in Southern Siberia, 9th-28th August 2012

Cragging at "Central Earth"

On a rest day in camp, we ventured up the slopes of Irbistu in search of some single pitch cragging. Most of the rock is pretty unsuitable for trad climbing, but part way up a boulder filled gully we came across a lovely little wall of corners and cracks and proceeded to put up three short routes. In anticipation of the future popularity of these Altai classics, we've put together a short Rockfax-style guide which you can download below:

Routes climbed:

Route Grade FA.
Karashah Corner HS 4b GC, CC
Karohshi Corner S 4a CC, ED, GC
Brunel's Choss VS 4c GC, CC

When storms arrived in basecamp, the water on the surface of the lake was whipped around in a turbulent frenzy of ever-changing directions. This, and our great distance from the coast in all possible directions, gave us the inspiration for the name of the crag. The route names were much easier, two taken from some of the few Russian words we knew, and one a homage to the great creator of Bristolian engineering, Isambard Kingdom Brunel.