Kamchatka – The unspoilt volcanic wilderness.

Kamchatka – The unspoilt volcanic wilderness.

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Date(s) - 22/07/2018 - 04/08/2018
All Day


Our trip:

The route of the expedition will go through the places of new volcano eruptions.

Our trip will guide you amongst the active volcanoes during the day, and to admire the glow of the lava caves at night.

The continuous activity of the Klyuchevskaya group of volcanoes includes lava caves, cinder cones, walking over recently-cooled lava flows and more.

Note, this photo and all others on this page are from our co-organizers’ (Russian Travel Geek) trip to Kamchatka in 2017 and show exactly the places we aim to visit on this trip.

We start in the classic mixed forest, and as we progress this is replaced by passes, passes are replaced by alpine meadows, followed by lava canyons which in turn give way to high-mountain wastelands. There are 12 volcanoes in the park, 4 of which are active, and around 200 thermal water outlets (which we will make good use of in the evenings.)

In addition to bathing in the thermal pools we’ll have fireside lectures and, if we have clear skies, the opportunity for stargazing and astrophotography in one of the best places for this in the world (stars and lava in one photo!) – we’ll help you with setting your camera to do this right.

Our route is designed so that in the evening of the 3rd August we should return to the city.

The 4th and 5th of August are a reserve, in case of bad weather conditions or other problems (major eruption?) that delay us from completing our hike.

Assuming everything goes well, these last two days are your free time in the city. You can spend it on visiting fish markets and souvenir shops, or go on additional one-day tours. You can choose:

  • Pacific Ocean yacht tour with ocean fishing and a visit to the bird colonies of the island of Starichkov (10 marine bird species including the red-faced cormorant and the murrelet) – approx $200US per person.
  • Helicopter excursion to the Valley of the Geysers – approx $800US per person
  • An ATV excursion to the Avacha volcano – price to be confirmed.
  • Pacific wave surfing – price to be confirmed.

Important: Additional one-day trips are paid separately and each trip will require a minimum number of participants.

Physical readiness:

The participants must be in a good physical shape because almost all the time we will be hiking carrying backpacks with everything that we need.

You will be hiking around 120km during the trip (in some cases up to 30km a day), carrying ALL your supplies, so this trip is not suitable for everyone.

Do not underestimate the psychological endurance needed to undertake such a trip – remember once you start you can’t turn back.

If this sounds scary, it should be! We cannot overstate how demanding this trip will be. You will have to prepare and TRAIN to get ready for this trip. This isn’t the same as running a marathon, but you should think about the training you need to get ready in a similar way.

All prospective candidates will be sent a simple self-assessment health score-sheet for you to complete at home. Your score will determine suitability for the trip. Please note you do NOT return the completed sheets to us – you only need to tell us what score you get, the score will help us determine whether we can accept you on our trip.


During our trip we will be mostly sleeping in tents. You can use your own tents or you can rent one from us – but remember either way you have to carry it with you every day!

On some days we will be camping next to volcanologists’ huts which will give us the opportunity to use their kitchen and recharge camera batteries.

There will also be some places where we will be camping that have charging facilities.

We will be staying in hostels when we are in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky.




From Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky we will have a seven-hour bus drive until we run out of road, at which point we will transfer to Kamaz off-road trucks (see below) which will take us for another five hours on dirt tracks until we get to the start of our hiking route. Don’t expect high levels, or indeed any levels, of comfort in these transports!


We will be cooking for ourselves on campfires. We have to take all our food with us so it will be fairly basic rations (food supplies will be provided by us) but we are sure you will be pleasantly surprised at the creative variety of meals we will have.


The list of all needed equipment will be sent to the participants (it will include backpack, hiking shoes, raincoat, warm sleeping bag, hiking sticks, warm jumper and coat, sunglasses etc)


Do not expect good cell phone coverage, but we should have an opportunity in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky to get a local sim-card, so if you want to have a working phone for at least parts of the journey make sure you bring an unlocked international-capable GSM phone with you.


You will want to take a camera. You will hate yourself every day if you take a big heavy camera and multiple lenses.  Be smart, pack light.  But also, make sure you have the right equipment for the trip. You may want to rent a suitable camera/lens from a rental agency such as lensrentals.com (USA) or hieracamera.com (UK) if you don’t have something suitable yourself.  We will include full camera suggestions with the equipment list we send out.


The trip will give us the opportunity to collect some of the rare fumarolic minerals, for example: Euchlorine, Johillerite, Calciojohillerite, Berzeliite, Badalovite, Chalcocyanite, Tenorite, Langbeinite, Piypite and Dolerophanite. We can’t of course guarantee that you’ll find all of the above, but our expert guides will take you to the exact spots where the best material has been found before.

Getting Minerals out of the country:

Russia has very strict laws about the export of mineral specimens, and no specimens (even those purchased in gift shops) can be legally exported without proper papers and permits to prove that no items of cultural significance are being lost from the country. In order to comply with this all specimens collected will be taken back to Moscow by the organizers and the proper papers will then be obtained.

You will NOT be able to take your specimens with you personally when you leave Russia.

There will be a fee for this service of  $275USD for the first 5kg plus an additional $100 for each additional 5kg up to a maximum of 20kg per person,which includes all permits and permissions and shipping world-wide. If you prefer you can arrange to collect your specimens in person at the Munich Show in October 2018.

This system worked very well for all participants in our Kola trip of Summer 2017 with only one specimen (radioactive) failing permissions for export. As we aren’t expecting to find radioactive specimens in Kamchatka we should be fine.


Kamchatka is one of the world’s great natural wildlife areas, expect to encounter brown bears, foxes, hares, sable, mink, elk and more.

Bears can be a nuisance (trying to steal food from tents) but are generally not dangerous.


Please note this information is general guidance only and should not replace professional medical advice – please discuss your specific needs for vaccinations with your Doctor as soon as possible as some vaccination programmes must be started several months before travel.

You should make sure you are up-to-date on your routine vaccinations such as measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine, and your yearly flu shot.

You should also be vaccinated against Hepatitis A.

There are no reports of ticks or tick-borne diseases in Kamchatka (it’s too cold).

Although the risk of Rabies is low it cannot be ruled out entirely, so you may wish to consider vaccination against this.


Most foreign nationals will need a visa to enter Russia. Please check the website for the Russian Embassy in your country for the visa rules. We will provide a tourist invitation for your visa application. You are responsible for your own visa and all costs associated with this.



The cost of flights is NOT included in this trip and it is up to you to arrange these:

Aim to arrive on July 22nd at Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky (Yelizovo Airport, PKC).  Depending on your route this may take you via either Moscow or Vladivostok. Remember that some long flights (eg LAX – PKC) may have TWO overnight components, so check your ARRIVAL date!

You can leave at any time on August 6th from PKC to make your way home.

Please note that if your flight is delayed at any point and you miss our departure from

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky early on the 23rd July then it may be very difficult and very expensive for you to catch up with us. There are possibilities of getting a helicopter trip to our base camp of course at additional cost for you.

Alternatively you may prefer to arrive a day early into Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky in which case we can help with booking the same accommodation for you, but of course you will need to pay extra for the additional night.


What’s included:

The fee includes all hostel accommodation, bus/truck transfer to the starting point of the hike trail, fees for entries to the natural park, rental of houses, food on the hike and return transfer to civilization after the hike.

Meals in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky are NOT included but accommodation is included.


Day by day schedule:

Please note that this schedule is very likely to change subject to weather conditions etc at the time, but this is a good guideline as to what we should be visiting:


22nd of July:

Arrival at Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky (Yelizovo Airport, PKC). Hotel check-in. Visit to the Khalaktyrsky beach with black sand and beautiful view of the volcanoes.

We will all check our backpacks and food items will be distributed.


23rd of July:

7 hours bus ride from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky to Kozyrevsk and 5 hours KAMAZ truck ride from Kozyrevsk to the camping site Kleshnya.

24th of July:

Hike to the northern part of the large-fractured Tolbachik eruption cones.

25th of July:

Climb to the Plosky Tolbachik volcano, the study of lava fields and caves.




26th of July:

Hike through the Tolud pass to the reindeer herders camp.


27th of July:

Hike through Tolbachik pass. Camping at the Jupiter crater.

28th of July:

Hike to Polennitsa mountain (Columnar Basalt “woodpile”)

29th of July:

Hiking through the Bezymyannyi pass. Staying overnight at the Volcanologists camping site.

30th of July:

Climbing the Bezymyannyi Volcano



31st of July:

Hike to the Edelweiss valley and Lamb rocks – The picturesque mountain landscape was formed as a result of the active influence of water and atmospheric phenomena, leading to the formation of unique forms resembling low-lowered sheep’s foreheads with looming horns twirled.

Camping at the Kopyto mountain.


1st of August:

Another long KAMAZ Drive from Kopyto mountain to the town of Esso – the ethnographic centre of Kamchatka.


2nd of August:

We discover the town of Esso, visit the ethnographic museum, swim in thermal pools.

rd of August:

Drive from Esso to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky

th of August:

Excursion to the Mutnovsky Volcano


5th of August:

Optional activities (see above) or self-guided town tour.

6th of August:

Fly home


The base price is $2,500USD per person (based on current RUB to USD exchange rate of 0.018, we reserve the right to adjust this price if the exchange rate changes significantly)

Deposit of $1,000USD is required to secure your place. We will require your deposit by 22nd March 2018.





This event is fully booked.