TURKEY CLIMBING SPORTS

TURKEY OTHER TOURISM GUIDE info@turkeytourism.com



MOUNTAINEERING AND TOURISM

 

Turkey presents mountains lovers with an incredible variety of interesting climbing opportunities that are sure to satisfy the most demanding hikers, climbers, and winter sports fans. In Turkey, mountains come in all sizes, geo-morphological and tectonic structures and boast abundant wildlife and forests teeming with diverse flora and fauna. Every year thousands of tourists from all over the world come to Turkey for winter sports (especially skiing), mountains climbing and hiking.

Mountains Types in Turkey

Turkey, which becomes more arid the further south one goes, is presently hemmed in on every side by mountain ranges: The Northern Anatolian Mountain Range, the Interior Anatolian Massif Range, the Southern Anatolian Mountain Range and the Southeastern Anatolian Mountain Range. Important mountains in the Northern Anatolian Mountain Range are Istıranca (Yıldız) Mt. (1000 m), Bursa Uludağ Mt. (2543 m) , Bolu Köpoğlu Mt. (2400 m), Ilgaz Mt. (2587) and the Karagöl Mts. (3100m). In the Central Anatolian Massif Range, there are volcanic mountains such as, Erciyes Mt. (3917m), Hasan Mt. (3263m), Greater Mt. Ararat (5137m), Tendürek Mt. (3533m), Süphan Mt. (4058m) and Nemrut Mt. (3050m). In the folded Taurus Mountain range, there are the Beydağlar Mts. (3086m) and Bolkar Mts. (3524m), and in the Southeastern Anatolian Mountain Range there are the, Hakkari Cilo (Buzul), Sat (4136m) and Nur (Amanos) Mountains.

Mountains formed by folding or breaking Western Taurus

-Beydağları Central Taurus
-Bolkar Dağları -Aladağlar Munzur Mountains Cilo
-Sat Mountains Kaçkar Mountains
-Western Group (Verşembek)
-Kavran Group
-Eastern Group (Altıparmak)

Volcanic Mountains

-Mount Ararat and Lesser Ararat
-Mount Süphan
-Mount Tendürek
-Mount Nemrut
-Mount Hasan
-Mount Erciyes

 

A glance at a topographical map of Turkey immediately reveals that this is a country of mountains. Rising from all four directions mountains encircle the peninsula of Anatolia. A part of the Alpine-Himalayan mountain range, Turkey has mountainous regions of different geological formations. The North Anatolian range skirts the Mediterranean shore.

Turkey's magnificent mountains and forests are mostly undeveloped, existing as wonderful natural preserves for an extraordinary variety of wildlife, flora and fauna. Two of Turkey's most famous peaks are volcanos, both inactive, Mt. Erciyes in Kayseri in Central Anatolia (3917 m) and Mt. Agri (Mt. Ararat 5137 m) in the east. Other well-known mountain ranges are the Rize- Kackar (3932 m) in the eastern Black Sea region, Nigde-Aladag (3756 m) in the Central Taurus range, and the Cilo and Sat mountains (4136 m) near Hakkari in the Eastern Taurus.

The mountainous nature of the country has influenced its cultural evolution. For centuries, nomads and semi-nomadic peoples have migrated annually to the fresh pastures of the higher elevations in the summer. These alpine meadows, called yayla, still represent a firm tie to traditional culture.

For climbers and those interested in the geography of mountains, Turkey offers a wealth of exploration. Glaciers, volcanos, and peculiar geological formations such as karst prove irresistible to researchers and students of geology. The challenging terrain offers great opportunities to aficionados of outdoor sports who find interesting experiences on the mountains of eastern, central and southern Turkey. A list of resource organizations to aid an expedition, at whatever level, is found at the end of this guide.

 

MOUNT ARARAT (5137 M.)

Rising at the common borders of Turkey and Iran, Mount Agri (Ararat), an inactive volcano capped year round with ice and snow, reaches 5137 meters. The Old Testament records that it was on this mountain that Noah's Ark came to rest after the great flood. Southwest of the mountain, the Little Mount Agri (Ararat) reaches up to 3896 meters. The Serdarbulak lava plateau (2600 m) stretches out between the two pinnacles. Whatever your motivation for visiting this region and exploring the mountain range, climbing the spectacular Agri (Ararat) is a challenging and rewarding experience.

In the summer, the weather in the area and on Mount Agri (Ararat) itself is sunny, warm and dry. However, in the winter and spring cold and harsh conditions prevail, and mountain climbers occasionally face blizzards and turbulent weather. July, August and September are the months when most world mountain climbers come to the area and when the climb up Agri (Ararat) is most enjoyable. Despite the usual sunny and clear weather at that time of year, high altitude mountain weather prevails above 3000 meters. The southern face of the mountain offers the easiest and safest ascent to the summit with the best routes and communication, transportation and safety considerations. It is not advised to climb Mount Agri (Ararat) alone and without a guide.

Getting there:
The Trabzon-Erzurum-Tehran international transit highway, an excellent asphalt road, skirts the western and southern flanks of Agri (Ararat) before leading on into Iran. Dogubayazit, 270 km from Erzurum, and nearby Igdir, the two closest towns to the mountain, lie on this route. Daily planes, trains, and buses connect Erzurum with Ankara.

Regional attractions:
The area surrounding Agri has retained its natural beauty and the local population still engages in the traditional lifestyle. In the summer months whole villages move to the yayla, the summer pasture, to find fresh grazing for their herds of sheep, goats, cattle and horses. Women continue to weave carpets and kilims in time-honored designs; Ortulu village is particularly renowned as a center of beautiful handicrafts. Other nearby tourist attractions include the Ishak Pasa Palace, a fabulous 17th century castle of a local potentate, and a meteor crater near the Iranian border.

THE CILO-SAT MOUNTAIN RANGE (4136 m.)

The Cilo-Sat Mountains, within the southeastern Hakkari province, are the eastern extension of the Toros (Taurus) Mountain chain which stretches from west to east along Turkey's southern boundaries. This range of mountains in fact forms the westem- most section of the Himalayan Mountain belt. At 4136 meters, the Uludoruk (Resko) summit is the highest in the Cilo Mountains; Catalkaya (Samdi), which rises to 3794 meters crowns the Sat mountains.

Resembling the Alps in both general appearance and glacier topography, the Cilo-Sat Mountains are the areas in Turkey most affected by glaciers. The high altitudes of these mountains testify to the effects of glacial formation and water erosion. Of the ten variously shaped glaciers, the largest, lzbirak, measures five kilometers in length, 500-600 meters in width and reaches up to 100 meters in depth. A wide and expanse stretches across the southern bases of the mountain range. The highlands, in contrast, receive plentiful precipitation during the winter months. In between crests and summits, green and fertile valleys dotted with rural settlements, enjoy a temperate climate that makes them ideal for vine and fruit agriculture.

Above the low valleys alpine meadows blanket the mountain slopes at altitudes between 2000 and 3100 meters. Herds of domestic animals, the raising of which makes up the primary. economic activity of the region, graze on these pastures.

Trips and climbs:
Arduous and elevated summits, high glaciers, glacial rivers and fast moving streams combine to make the Cilo-Sat Mountains both a fascinating geographic and geological site of worldwide importance. The best time for summer excursions is during June, July, August and September. For winter climbing February and March are the most suitable months.

Getting there:
To reach the Cilo-Sat Mountains travel to Van from Ankara by road, rail or air and then follow the 245 km long highway to Hakkari. Serpil village offers one route for an ascent of Uludoruk; another route is Dezkoy.

Regional attractions:
A vast yayla culture has evolved on the Cilo and Sat Mountains, and the summer migration of the colorfully clad local population to the high grazing pastures is a wonderful sight. Mountain glaciers, swiftly running rivers alive with fish and beautiful glacial lakes are a few of the area's natural wonders.

THE KACKAR MOUNTAINS (3932 M.) In the rainy and lush landscapes of northeastern Turkey, the Kackar Mountains form the northern section of the Anatolian mountain chain. The Kackar- Kavron summit, at an altitude of 3932 meters, is the highest point in the range. Extensive glacier and water erosion have given these mountains their craggy, rugged look, and they are known for the complexity and power of the streams and rivers which rush down to the lower altitudes. In fact, this range is the third most important glacial region in Turkey following the Agri (Ararat) and Cilo-Sat Mountains. The geological and mountaineering aspects of the Kackars contribute to their importance in Turkey's economy and tourism.

The region enjoys an almost sub-tropical climate of temperate yet rainy weather with an average temperature of 147 C,C. The lowest temperature, 7 C, falls in the month of January while August sees the hottest days reaching a maximum recorded temperature of 22.6 C. The Kackars rise between the shores of the Black Sea to the north and the Coruh river valley to the south. On the northern flank an immense variety of vegetation flourishes in the rainy climate. Up to 500 meters above sea level, tea plantations and citrus orchards cover the hillsides. Chestnut, hornbeam, beech and other large-leafed trees forest the slopes to 750 meters. Between elevations of 750-1500 meters, pines mix in with the large-leafed trees until gradually they remain the only species of tree from 1500-2000 meters. Alpine meadows and other grassy vegetation covers the ground above 2100 meters. On the southern faces of the Kackars which receive strong sunshine and less precipitation, the agriculture is based on the cultivation of fruit and vines. On the northern side, in the higher elevations, meadows of wild flowers and grasses blanket the slopes up to elevations of 2300 meters.

Trips and Climbs:
The Altiparmak, Kavron and Varsamba (Vergenik) mountains are the principal peaks of the Kackars Both the north and south faces of the Altiparmak and Kavron can be scaled but Varsamba should only be attempted from the north face. It is imperative to use a local guide when climbing the Kackars

THE TOROS (TAURUS) MOUNTAINS (3756 M.) The Toros (Taurus) Mountains are the westernmost branch of the great mountain chain that stretches across all of Asia the Himalayan mountain belt. The Turkish section of this massive mountain range follows the southern border of Anatolia and is itself made up of four major sections, the Western, Central, Southern and Southeastern Toros (Taurus) ranges. The highest peaks rise out of the Central and Southeastern branches, a stretch of mountains which are rugged, magnificent and arduous to climb.

The Toros Ala Mountains

Forming part of the Central Toros (Taurus) range, the Aladaglar range runs from the southwest to the northeast for approximately 50 kilometers and boasts the region's highest peak, Demirkazik which stretches to 3756 meters. Other high summits include Kizilkaya in the center (3725 m), a peak that reaches 3688 meters in the south, and Mount Vayvay in the east (3565 m). This long range, situated in the provinces of Nigde, Kayseri and Adana, rises between Lake Ecemis and the Zamanti River.

The geology of the area is responsible for the interesting rock formations and waterfalls. The erosion of limestone has created a fascinating karstic topography and hydrography, especially in the Yedigoller valley, where karstic underground rivers and caverns collect the surface water. Both the Mediterranean and Anatolian weather systems influence the climate of the Aladaslar bringing warm summers and cool winters to the mountains.

Trips and climbs:
The best season to climb the mountains is during May, June, July and August when the alpine meadows of the higher elevations are rich in vegetation.

Researchers and mountaineers ascending the Aladaglar usually begin their climb from either Camardi or Cukurbas villages. Those attempting to climb the Demirkazik summit depart from Demirkazik village. Both of these villages lie 65 km from Nigde and can be reached by asphalt road.

Regional attractions
The yaylas of the Toros (Taurus) Aladag are the summer homes of entire villages and the summer grazing of herds of animals. Be sure to see the rounding up of all the animals for milking. Traditionally women of these encampments have produced some of Turkey's most beautiful carpets and kilims, and it is often possible to see a carpet still in progress.

MOUNT ERCIYES (3917 M.) One of Turkey's most important mountaineering and winter sports centers, Mount Erciyes rises from the south of the Kayseri valley. The Sultan Marshes lie to its west and to the south falls the Develi Valley. Its summit always covered in snow and ice, Mt. Erciyes ranks as central Anatolia's tallest volcano. Approximately 18 kilometers in diameter and covering an area of 1000 square kilometers, the mountain's stratification and geology make it a fascinating geographical formation. The region's climate, influenced by that of the Anatolian plateau, is considered typical of steppe geography. Certainly the winter brings considerable snowfall to the higher elevations. The northern side of the mountain enjoys a somewhat more temperate climate encouraging the cultivation of vast areas of vine and fruit orchards between 1100 and 1600 meters. Above that altitude, vast meadows stretch far into the distance. The higher elevations display typical alpine vegetation. Herds of animals graze year round on the east, north and west slopes of the mountain.

Trips and climbs:
Mountaineers attempt Mt. Erciyes either on the northwestern flank or from the south and find the best climbing in June, July, August, and September.

Regional attractions
Tourists visiting the area should also see the fantastic rock formations, underground cities and fabulous frescoes in rock carved churches in neighboring Cappadocia. The Sultan Marshes, a habitat for many different species of birds, has fortunately been designated a National Park and wildlife preserve.

THE BEY MOUNTAINS (3086 M.) The western branch of the Toros (Taurus) Mountains, the Bey range, is located in the province of Antalya. The crest of the range parallels the north-south line of the western shore of the Gulf of Antalya. With altitudes ranging between 600 and 3086 meters, these mountains offer geologists and geographers many peculiar morphological characteristics. Tekedorugu, Bakirlidag, Tahtalidag and Kizlarsivrisi summits are particularly remarkable. The highest point in the mountains is Mt. Kizlarsivrisi (3086 m), and climbers reach it through the cedar forested Camqukuru valley. The best approach to the valley is by road inland from Antalya to Elmali, Antalya, of course, can be reached from lzmir, Istanbul and Ankara by land, air and sea routes.

Tahtali Mountain, west of Kerner, offers another interesting ascent. Rising to an elevation of 2360 meters, pine and deciduous forests cover the slopes up to an altitude of 2000 m. Bare meadows stretch to the summit.

The climb up Mt. Tahtali begins at Sogukpinar, a short drive from Kerner. From there a combination of walking and climbing brings you to a place to make camp. The final ascent is car ried out on the flank facing the coast and offers a spectacular and ever-changing view. Although it is possible to organize trips to the Bey Mountains all year round, April, May, and June offer both a temperate climate and a chance to experience the richest vegetation.

THE BOLKAR MOUNTAINS (3524 m.) Continuing the line of summits in a southeasterly direction, the Bolkar Mountains are bounded by the Goksu River to the west and the Pozanti River to the east. The northern part of the mountains lies in Nigde province while 'he southern peaks rise in Mersin province.

These mountains exhibit interesting geological characteristics. Made of sedimentary material such as limestone and dolomites, the range reveals excellent examples of nappes, or folds in the layers of rocks. There are vast formations of karst as well as landscapes that reveal the effects of glacier and water erosion. Despite this erosion, no real water network has developed on the mountains. Because of the sedimentary nature of the rocks, water is absorbed creating large areas of karst, such as Pozanti and Sekerpinari.

The highest peaks of the Bolkar are: Medetsiz (3524 m), Kesifdagi (3475 m), Koyunasagi (3426 m), Tahtakaya (3372 m) and Egerkaya (3347 m). The northern flank receives the most exposure to snow and glacier formation; it is nevertheless the best route for an ascent to the highest summits of the Bolkar.

THE MERCAN (MUNZUR) MOUNTAINS (3462 m.)

The northeastern extension of the Central Toros (Taurus) range, the Mercan range, straddles both the Tunceli and Erzincan provinces. Mt. Akbaba, at 3462 meters, is the highest summit in the Mercandagi range. The limestone geology of these mountains creates their very rugged profile.

Erzincan, a major city north of the mountain range and accessible by air, rail and road, is the base from which to attempt an ascent on the north face.

Those wishing to climb the mountain from the south begin their trek at Ovacik in the middle of the Munzur Mountains. Climbers entering from this point can reach the highest summits of the Munzur. Ovacik lies 70 kilometers from Erzincan and is accessible by a road which follows the banks of the Munzur valley. The Munzur River, which rushes through a Marianal Park, tempts tourists with superb fresh fish and beautiful mountain scenery.

MT. NEMRUT (3050 M.) Turkey can in fact, boast of two peaks called Nemrut. The one near Adiyaman in the southeast is primarily of historical and archeological interest, home for over 2000 years to the colossal stone heads of King Antlochus I and a number of classical dieties. The other Mt. Nemrut in eastern Anatolia is well-known for its geological formations, and for mountaineering purposes is the more interesting of the two peaks.

This Tatvan Mt. Nemrut, within the province of Bitlis, is an extinct volcano which ascends to 3050 m. It rises from the southwestern shore of Lake Van and enters the county of Ahlat to the north. Mt. Nemrut is the southernmost and youngest of the chain of volcanos in eastern Anatolia. This strato- type volcano began erupting during the fourth geological era and continued to be active until 1441 A.D. As a result of the volcanic eruptions of Mt. Nemrut the single Van-Mus river basin was divided into two separate basins.

Trips and climbs:
Treks up Mt. Nemrut begin on the mountain's southeastern flank at Tatvan. Climbers reach the south or southeastern side of the crater after an easy hike of 4-5 hours. Those who reach this point have the rare chance to see the wondrous crater of this inactive volcano. For those who find the climb up to the crater too strenuous, four-wheel drive vehicles can reach the summit from either Ahlat or Tatvan. Mt. Nemrut is bare of vegetation except in the south which has groves of oak and birch trees. Summer (June-September) is the best season for expeditions up Mt. Nemrut. Hikers who climb to the crater and summit from the southeast or eastern face of the mountain are rewarded with wonderful views of Lake Van.

SUPHAN MOUNTAIN (4058 M.)

Suphan Mountain, a magnificent dormant volcano rises from the northwest shores of Lake Van. Throughout the winter, snowfalls on Suphan reach a depth of three to four meters. The mountain's steeply inclined slopes and snow blanket combine to make it a good location for "Heli-skiing" - using helicopters to drop you off on the slopes for an adventure of high mountain skiing.

Trips and climbs:
The easily accessible southern and eastern flanks of Suphan both offering spectacular views, are the preferred faces for ascending the mountain. To climb from the eastern flank take the coastal road that circles Lake Van. In the stretch between Adilcevaz and Ercis, turn north to Aydinlar village. From there you continue on to Kicgilli village where you can engage a guide to lead you in your ascent. The climb from the south begins at the village of Harmantepe.

MOUNTAINEERING AND TOURISM SPELUNKING Turkey presents mountains lovers with an incredible variety of interesting climbing opportunities that are sure to satisfy the most demanding hikers, climbers, and winter sports fans. In Turkey, mountains come in all sizes, geo-morphological and tectonic structures and boast abundant wildlife and forests teeming with diverse flora and fauna. Every year thousands of tourists from all over the world come to Turkey for winter sports (especially skiing), mountains climbing and hiking.

Mountains Types in Turkey

Turkey, which becomes more arid the further south one goes, is presently hemmed in on every side by mountain ranges: The Northern Anatolian Mountain Range, the Interior Anatolian Massif Range, the Southern Anatolian Mountain Range and the Southeastern Anatolian Mountain Range. Important mountains in the Northern Anatolian Mountain Range are Istıranca (Yıldız) Mt. (1000 m), Bursa Uludağ Mt. (2543 m) , Bolu Köpoğlu Mt. (2400 m), Ilgaz Mt. (2587) and the Karagöl Mts. (3100m). In the Central Anatolian Massif Range, there are volcanic mountains such as, Erciyes Mt. (3917m), Hasan Mt. (3263m), Greater Mt. Ararat (5137m), Tendürek Mt. (3533m), Süphan Mt. (4058m) and Nemrut Mt. (3050m). In the folded Taurus Mountain range, there are the Beydağlar Mts. (3086m) and Bolkar Mts. (3524m), and in the Southeastern Anatolian Mountain Range there are the, Hakkari Cilo (Buzul), Sat (4136m) and Nur (Amanos) Mountains.

Mountains formed by folding or breaking Western Taurus

-Beydağları Central Taurus
-Bolkar Dağları -Aladağlar Munzur Mountains Cilo
-Sat Mountains Kaçkar Mountains
-Western Group (Verşembek)
-Kavran Group
-Eastern Group (Altıparmak)

Volcanic Mountains

-Mount Ararat and Lesser Ararat
-Mount Süphan
-Mount Tendürek
-Mount Nemrut
-Mount Hasan
-Mount Erciyes

Important mountains in Turkey (Ranked according to height)

Name of the Mountain

Height (meters)

Mt. Ararat

5137 

Süphan

4434

Gelyansın (Reşko Tepesi, Cilo - Sat)

4134

Kaçkar (Kaçkarlar)

3932

Mt. Erciyes

3916

Lesser Ararat

3896

Handeyade (Cilo - Sat)

3794

Greater Demirkazık (Aladağlar)

3756

Kısara (Cilo - Sat)

3752

Kızılkaya (Aladağlar)

3725

Mazanı (Cilo - Sat)

3725

Emler (Aladağlar)

3723

Verçenik (Kaçkarlar)

3711

Kaldı (Aladağlar)

3688

Mırhamza ( Cilo - Sat)

3670

Kızılyar (Aladağlar)

3654

Gürtepe (Aladağlar)

3630

Sematepe (Aladağlar)

3623

Çağalın Başı (Aladağlar)

3612

Torasan (Aladağlar)

3584

Alaca (Lorut)(Aladağlar)

3582

Vayvay (Aladağlar)

3563

Bulut (Kaçkarlar)

3562

Boruklu (Aladağlar)

3548

Gevaruk (Cilo - Sat)

3540

Çandır Dağı (Van Gölü)

3537

Güngörmez (Kaçkarlar)

3536

Sulağankaya (Aladağlar)

3530

Soğanlı Dağ (Kaçkarlar)

3527

Medetsiz (Bolkarlar)

3524

Direktaş (Aladağlar)

3510

Orta Dağ (Aladağlar)

3500

Karataş (Kaçkarlar)

3495

Keşif (Bolkarlar)

3475

Cebelbaşı (Aladağlar)

3474

Liblin Tepe (Kaçkarlar)

3472

Karasay (Aladağlar)

3472

Güzeller (Aladağlar)

3461

Sıyırmalık (Aladağlar)

3426

Tearzin (Cilo - Sat)

3415

Lesser Demirkazık (Aladağlar)

3400

Tahtakaya (Bolkarlar)

3372

Didvake (Kaçkarlar)

3350

Büyük Dağ Tepe (Kaçkarlar)

3328

Sat Başı (Cilo - Sat)

3302

Altıparmak (Kaçkarlar)

3301

Marsis (Kaçkarlar)

3300

Kardal (Cilo - Sat)

3300

Kızlar Sivrisi (Beydağları)

3069

Mt. Nemrut

 

 

3050

Uludağ

2543

Popular Climbing Sites

Kaçkar Mt. Range (The Black Sea)
Antalya-Beydağlar (Mediterranean)
Mt. Erciyes (Central Anatolia)
Niğde Aladağlar (Central Anatolia)
Mt. Ararat (Eastern Anatolia)
Mt. Süphan (Eastern Anatolia)
Bolkar Mountains (Mediterranean)
Mercan (Munzur) Mountains (Easter Anatolia)

Ağrı - Mount Ararat

Turkey's highest mountain, Ararat, has a legendary status due to its geologic location and the fact that it is believed to have been the final resting place of Noah’s Ark. This peak, mentioned in the Bible, has several names in different languages, the main ones being Ararat, Kuh - i Nuh and Cebel ul Haristir.

Prof. Frederick Von Parat successfully reached its summit, which Marco Polo said no-one would ever climb, on 9 October 1829. The former president of the Mountaineering Federation, Dr. Bozkurt Ergor on 21 February 1970 made the second ascent. Thousands of visitors came in 1980, and ten years later climbing was banded but this was lifted in 1998 when the Mountaineering Federation gave permission to a group of climbers.

Height: 5165 m.

Location: Eastern Anatolia, near the border with Iran and Georgia, between the Aras and Murat Rivers.

Best Time for Climbing: July to September. Winter climbing is very difficult but extremely rewarding.

Characteristics: Mount Ararat (5165m) is the highest peak in Turkey and Europe. It is a volcanic mountain made up of basalt, which changes to andesite lava around 4000 m. At the summit there is a glacier, and on the eastern slope is the Serdarbulak ridge, with Kucuk (Little) Ararat at 3896m. The height of Mount Ararat, along with its glaciers, geological formations, people, and mountain meadows covered snow has an alluring, almost magical appearance.

Transportation and Accommodations: The Trabzon-Erzurum-Tehran International Highway winds around the foothills of Mt. Ararat and leads to Iran. There are regular air, rail and bus connections between Ankara and Erzurum. Dogubeyazit is the closest city to the mountain, easily accessible from Mt. Ararat and Erzurum. There are a number of restaurants and lodging places in the city and the surrounding area.

Climbing Equipments: Crampons, rope (11mm), an ice pick and safety gear such as an ice-auger and climbing tape.

Summer Ascents: Sleeping bags made for temperatures of -5, -10 ºC, anorak, wind jacket, other camping gear and important supplies.
In order to climb Mount Ararat and/or Little Ararat, permission is required and it is mandatory that climbers begin their journey from the following points.

* Ascents of Mt. Ararat can only be attempted on the portion of the face that is within the district boundaries Dogubeyazit, and must follow the Dogubeyazit - Topcatan village - Eli Ciftligi route.

* Ascents up Little Ararat may only be made along the northwest face. The easiest route in terms of communication and accessibility, and the most commonly followed one, is the southern route.

* Climbers staying at Dogubeyazit can make their final preparations for climbing here and continue by car to the village of Eli. After getting water here, the first campsite, which is at 2800 m, takes 7-8 hours to reach. On the second day, after a 4-6 hour climb, one can expect to reach the next campsite at around 4200 m. It is obligatory for climbers to be equipped with crampons, rope and ice-picks. It takes about 8-10 hours to reach the peak and to return to the first campsite at 2800 m.

Antalya - Beydağları ( Mediterranean )

The Beydaglar Mountains, the western extension of the Taurus Mountains, lie to the west of the Bay of Antalya and run parallel a north-south direction. The most important peaks are Teke, Mt. Bakirdagi, Mt. Tahtali Dag and Kizlar Sivrisi. The tallest of these is Kizlar Sivrisi, 3069ms.

This mountain, which enjoys 300 days of sunshine a year, can be climbed in one day and the view of the sea and Antalya is well worth the effort. The sunrise form the peak, for those willing to sacrifice some sleep, is dazzling.

Parachuting is possible here with a good wind, and has stunning views. Besides an important climbing and hiking centre, Beydaglar Mountains also offer superb winter sports.

Height: 3069 m.

Location: These mountains make up the western portion of the Taurus Mountains, located in the province of Antalya. They run north-south, parallel to the Mediterranean coast. Climbing and hiking are possible year-round, with the best months between April and June.

Characteristics: These mostly limestone mountains exhibit a wide range of flora, and there are quite a number of peaks in this range.

Transportation: The best starting point for climbers is Antalya, Kemer and Elmali, and there is a good choice of transport by road, air and sea from Istanbul and Izmir, and air or road from Ankara.

Climbing: The highest peak in the region, Kizlar Sivrisi, (3069 m.) can be reached from Elmali. From here, one may go by car to the Camcukuru highlands, which are covered with cedar forests. Climbers camping at Camcukuru can reach the summit and return to camp in one day. The most interesting hike or climb in the region is Mt. Tahtali (2360 m), which has many different species of plant life up to 2000 meters, and above the tree line is mountain pastures. To climb Mt. Tahtali, take a car from Kemer to Sogukpinar (Sogucaksu) on the mountain's northern slope, in order to set up camp. The view during the climb is one of ever-changing beauty.

Mersin - Bolkar Mountains

The Bolkar mountains, which form the Turkish extension of the Alps, begin in Resadiye in the southwest and run along the southern coast of Turkey until they connect to the Zaganos Mountains in Iran.

There are many peaks over 3000m in this range. Medeksiz (3524 m.) is the highest peak in the range, and Meydan has a very good campsite. About 45 minutes southwest of Meydan is Karagol (2650m), another good camping spot, and in June the lake is surrounded on all sides by beautiful wild-flowers. The nomadic Yoruk people, who originate from Central Asia, still live in this area with traditions and roots unchanged for thousands of years.

Height: 3524 m.

Location: An extension of the Central Taurus Mountains, in the provinces of Mersin and Nigde. The best time for summer climbs are between 15 May -15 August, and for winter climbs between the end of December and early March.

Characteristics: In this range made up mostly of limestone, it is possible to see scattered snow banks even in the summer. It has a wide variety of forest and meadow plants.

Transport: Climbing Medeksiz, the highest peak, can be done from either Ulukisla - Ciftehan or Pozanti - Camalan, both of which are on the highway between Ankara and Adana.

Climbing: Medeksiz should be started from the village of Maden via Ciftehan. During the summer months, it is recommended to camp at the Meydan plateau, which is accessible by jeep or other off-road vehicle. If Camalan is the chosen starting point, you can get as far as Elmalipinari by car. From here, every climber can choose an ascent that fits his skill level.

 

 

 

Important mountains in Turkey (Ranked according to height)

 

Name of the Mountain Height (meters)
Mt. Ararat 5137 
Süphan 4434
Gelyansın (Reşko Tepesi, Cilo - Sat) 4134
Kaçkar (Kaçkarlar) 3932
Mt. Erciyes 3916
Lesser Ararat 3896
Handeyade (Cilo - Sat) 3794
Greater Demirkazık (Aladağlar) 3756
Kısara (Cilo - Sat) 3752
Kızılkaya (Aladağlar) 3725
Mazanı (Cilo - Sat) 3725
Emler (Aladağlar) 3723
Verçenik (Kaçkarlar) 3711
Kaldı (Aladağlar) 3688
Mırhamza ( Cilo - Sat) 3670
Kızılyar (Aladağlar) 3654
Gürtepe (Aladağlar) 3630
Sematepe (Aladağlar) 3623
Çağalın Başı (Aladağlar) 3612
Torasan (Aladağlar)  3584
Alaca (Lorut)(Aladağlar) 3582
Vayvay (Aladağlar) 3563
Bulut (Kaçkarlar)  3562
Boruklu (Aladağlar) 3548
 

POPULER CLIMBING CITIES

Kackar Mt. Range (The Black Sea)
Antalya-Beydaglar (Mediterranean)
Mt. Erciyes (Central Anatolia)
Niğde Aladağlar (Central Anatolia)
Mt. Ararat (Eastern Anatolia)
Mt. Süphan (Eastern Anatolia)
Bolkar Mountains (Mediterranean)
Mercan (Munzur) Mountains (Easter Anatolia)

Ağrı - Mount Ararat

Turkey's highest mountain, Ararat, has a legendary status due to its geologic location and the fact that it is believed to have been the final resting place of Noah’s Ark. This peak, mentioned in the Bible, has several names in different languages, the main ones being Ararat, Kuh - i Nuh and Cebel ul Haristir.

Prof. Frederick Von Parat successfully reached its summit, which Marco Polo said no-one would ever climb, on 9 October 1829. The former president of the Mountaineering Federation, Dr. Bozkurt Ergor on 21 February 1970 made the second ascent. Thousands of visitors came in 1980, and ten years later climbing was banded but this was lifted in 1998 when the Mountaineering Federation gave permission to a group of climbers.

Height: 5165 m.

Location: Eastern Anatolia, near the border with Iran and Georgia, between the Aras and Murat Rivers.

Best Time for Climbing: July to September. Winter climbing is very difficult but extremely rewarding.

Characteristics: Mount Ararat (5165m) is the highest peak in Turkey and Europe. It is a volcanic mountain made up of basalt, which changes to andesite lava around 4000 m. At the summit there is a glacier, and on the eastern slope is the Serdarbulak ridge, with Kucuk (Little) Ararat at 3896m. The height of Mount Ararat, along with its glaciers, geological formations, people, and mountain meadows covered snow has an alluring, almost magical appearance.

Transportation and Accommodations: The Trabzon-Erzurum-Tehran International Highway winds around the foothills of Mt. Ararat and leads to Iran. There are regular air, rail and bus connections between Ankara and Erzurum. Dogubeyazit is the closest city to the mountain, easily accessible from Mt. Ararat and Erzurum. There are a number of restaurants and lodging places in the city and the surrounding area.

Climbing Equipments: Crampons, rope (11mm), an ice pick and safety gear such as an ice-auger and climbing tape.

Summer Ascents: Sleeping bags made for temperatures of -5, -10 ºC, anorak, wind jacket, other camping gear and important supplies.
In order to climb Mount Ararat and/or Little Ararat, permission is required and it is mandatory that climbers begin their journey from the following points.

* Ascents of Mt. Ararat can only be attempted on the portion of the face that is within the district boundaries Dogubeyazit, and must follow the Dogubeyazit - Topcatan village - Eli Ciftligi route.

* Ascents up Little Ararat may only be made along the northwest face. The easiest route in terms of communication and accessibility, and the most commonly followed one, is the southern route.

* Climbers staying at Dogubeyazit can make their final preparations for climbing here and continue by car to the village of Eli. After getting water here, the first campsite, which is at 2800 m, takes 7-8 hours to reach. On the second day, after a 4-6 hour climb, one can expect to reach the next campsite at around 4200 m. It is obligatory for climbers to be equipped with crampons, rope and ice-picks. It takes about 8-10 hours to reach the peak and to return to the first campsite at 2800 m.

Antalya - Beydağları ( Mediterranean )

The Beydaglar Mountains, the western extension of the Taurus Mountains, lie to the west of the Bay of Antalya and run parallel a north-south direction. The most important peaks are Teke, Mt. Bakirdagi, Mt. Tahtali Dag and Kizlar Sivrisi. The tallest of these is Kizlar Sivrisi, 3069ms.

This mountain, which enjoys 300 days of sunshine a year, can be climbed in one day and the view of the sea and Antalya is well worth the effort. The sunrise form the peak, for those willing to sacrifice some sleep, is dazzling.

Parachuting is possible here with a good wind, and has stunning views. Besides an important climbing and hiking centre, Beydaglar Mountains also offer superb winter sports.

Height: 3069 m.

Location: These mountains make up the western portion of the Taurus Mountains, located in the province of Antalya. They run north-south, parallel to the Mediterranean coast. Climbing and hiking are possible year-round, with the best months between April and June.

Characteristics: These mostly limestone mountains exhibit a wide range of flora, and there are quite a number of peaks in this range.

Transportation: The best starting point for climbers is Antalya, Kemer and Elmali, and there is a good choice of transport by road, air and sea from Istanbul and Izmir, and air or road from Ankara.

Climbing: The highest peak in the region, Kizlar Sivrisi, (3069 m.) can be reached from Elmali. From here, one may go by car to the Camcukuru highlands, which are covered with cedar forests. Climbers camping at Camcukuru can reach the summit and return to camp in one day. The most interesting hike or climb in the region is Mt. Tahtali (2360 m), which has many different species of plant life up to 2000 meters, and above the tree line is mountain pastures. To climb Mt. Tahtali, take a car from Kemer to Sogukpinar (Sogucaksu) on the mountain's northern slope, in order to set up camp. The view during the climb is one of ever-changing beauty.

Mersin - Bolkar Mountains

The Bolkar mountains, which form the Turkish extension of the Alps, begin in Resadiye in the southwest and run along the southern coast of Turkey until they connect to the Zaganos Mountains in Iran.

There are many peaks over 3000m in this range. Medeksiz (3524 m.) is the highest peak in the range, and Meydan has a very good campsite. About 45 minutes southwest of Meydan is Karagol (2650m), another good camping spot, and in June the lake is surrounded on all sides by beautiful wild-flowers. The nomadic Yoruk people, who originate from Central Asia, still live in this area with traditions and roots unchanged for thousands of years.

Height: 3524 m.

Location: An extension of the Central Taurus Mountains, in the provinces of Mersin and Nigde. The best time for summer climbs are between 15 May -15 August, and for winter climbs between the end of December and early March.

Characteristics: In this range made up mostly of limestone, it is possible to see scattered snow banks even in the summer. It has a wide variety of forest and meadow plants.

Transport: Climbing Medeksiz, the highest peak, can be done from either Ulukisla - Ciftehan or Pozanti - Camalan, both of which are on the highway between Ankara and Adana.

Climbing: Medeksiz should be started from the village of Maden via Ciftehan. During the summer months, it is recommended to camp at the Meydan plateau, which is accessible by jeep or other off-road vehicle. If Camalan is the chosen starting point, you can get as far as Elmalipinari by car. From here, every climber can choose an ascent that fits his skill level.

 

POPULER TOURISM CENTERS

 

ISTANBUL ANTALYA ANKARA BODRUM
ALANYA KUSADASI FETHIYE IZMIR
KEMER CESME MARMARIS DALAMAN