Georgia

Taking advantage of a week off between school semesters at the end of May, I embarked on a short trip to the country of Georgia in the Caucasus region. The region has a fascinating history, sitting at the intersection of Europe and Asia. I wish I had read more about it before arriving, but such is the nature of Master’s studies.

For this trip I joined my friend Tereza, who is spending a month in the country between her Master’s and PhD work. We spent most of our time in the north of Georgia, to the east of South Ossetia, and very close to the border with Russia. Beyond a significant presence of (seemingly unarmed) Georgian border guards, I didn’t see any signs of the 2008 conflict with Russia.

Georgian is a tricky language with it’s own alphabet, though many people in the country speak Russian as well. Unfortunately I didn’t pick up enough Russian in Sochi to be of much use to me. This language situation, and the terrifying road safety situation made travelling in Georgia a bit trickier than I am used to. However, I found most Georgians to be very friendly and welcoming towards visitors which made the trip a pleasure.

Though conditions were still far from summery, with lots of snow in the mountains, I hoped to spend as much time in them as possible. The lowlands and capital Tbilisi, were also very interesting, but unfortunately I neglected to take any pictures there!

 

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Starting off at the side of the highway.

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St. George is very popular in Georgia. 

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Climbing towards the village of Juta. 

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One of the most spectacular place I have ever camped. 

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An arid valley above Juta.

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Spectacular mountains around the Chauki Pass. 

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Climbing higher. 

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Don’t forget your sunscreen!

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Safely across the Chauki Pass, having avoided the cornices at the left of the picture.

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Another spectacular place to camp.

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Morning brew (still no coffee for me!)

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The Roshka stones.

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Unfortunately I have absolutely no idea of the meaning of these.

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In the village of Roshka.

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Filling up with beautifully clear water. 

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Approaching the Gergeti glacier.

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Coming back down to a beautiful view of the Gergeti monastery.

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Last morning in Kazbegi. 

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Unfortunately, there was indeed lots of litter in Georgia.

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Overground gas lines, what could possibly go wrong…

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Another beautiful trip comes to an end.

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