2001 Ararat Peace Climb
EverestNews.com readers !
flew to VAN from Istanbul yesterday. VAN is about
1,200km from Istanbul and is in eastern Turkey. The
eastern part of Turkey is on a highland and is mostly
dry and arid. From VAN, we drove 2 hours (150km) to
Dogubayazit which is 1,600m above sea level.
truly an amazing place. We are just less than 50km
from Iran to the east and to the north is Armenia. This
area has been in conflict until recently.
Dogubayazit, we saw Ararat for the first time. It is
such an awesome sight! The town is located at the foot
of the mountain and with no obstruction to the view,
the entire mountain is visible from the valley floor
to the summit. That is 3,600m of vertical rock !
Ararat simply dominates the skyline and she seems to
look down to the valley like a protective mother looking
after her child.
like a dream. Ararat has been on my list for many
years and finally, I am here up close and personal. I
don't think I fully comprehend how lucky I am. I am in
a place where it is mentioned in the Quran and the Bible,
where a significant event took place in the history of
mankind. And, I'll get a chance in a few days' time to
set foot on the holy mountain.
this is a sensitive place because of proximity to Iran
and Armenia and where PKK waged their guerilla war for
many years. Geographically, an earthquake and volcanic
area. And of course, historically, this is where
Noah's Ark rests.
a Noah's Ark site and museum today. It was so fascinating
and mind boggling. I felt as if I had been on a time
machine and was sent back thousands of years. I could
be well be looking at the Ark !!
probably comprehend all this a little more when I am
our arrival in Istanbul, there has been a string of
media events arranged by AKUT. We appeared on national
papers and TV. This expedition will be even more exciting
because the Minister of Sports of Turkey will be climbing
with us. He will join us 3 days from today.
far, there are only 3 of us from outside Turkey - David
Keaton (USA), Ricardo
(Mexico) and myself. Nasuh,
Tunc (the 2nd Turkish to climb
Everest 2 months ago) and AKUT staff have been hosting
us generously. The other climbers including the Columbians
and Canadian will be joining us in 2 days' time. It's
exciting to get to know everyone on the team and
exchange notes and views. It's such a small world when
we realize the number of other climbers we know around
is on the south side of Ararat. Tomorrow, we'll drive
around the mountain to Igdir on the north side where
our route is.
write or call again soon.
support this vision of peace, please make a donation, via
SHIVA charity. You can make a credit card donation by
more information on the Peace climb see here.
full list of updates on the 2001 Ararat Peace Climb