Karymsky is one of the most beautiful volcanoes of Kamchatka. It is a stratovolcano located in the center of a caldera 5km in diameter. The rim of this caldera rises up to 50-150m above its floor. The nearby lake Karymskoe covers the crater of Akademiya Nauk volcano. Karymsky's main crater is 200m in diameter and greater than 30m in depth, and it is still actively erupting ash - in fact Karymsky is the most active volcano of Kamchatka's eastern volcanic zone. The latest strong activities of Karymsky including lava flows occurred from 1970 to 1973 and then again in 1976, and another eruption started in 1996 also involving the volcano Academya Nauk.
Karymsky lies close to Kronozky Zapovednik, the largest nature protection zone of Kamchatka and Nalychevo Nature Park, a nature conservation area close to Petropavlovsk.
There are no roads leading to Karymsky Volcano. The easiest way to access the mountain is by helicopter. Regular scenic flights to Maly Semiachik and Karymsky can provide an opportunity for drop-offs or pick-ups. Arrangements can be made with several tour operators in Petropavlovsk.
Alternatively, Karymsky can be accessed during a wonderful wilderness hike from Petropavlovsk through the Nalychevo Nature Park. It is also worth while to do a hike from Karymsky to the Uzon Caldera and Valley of Geysers within the Kronozky Zapovednik.
A visa for Russia is required, it has to be registered within three days of arrival on Kamchatka. Registration can be done either at OVIR or at some hotels (e.g. Hotel Edelweiss in Petropavlovsk).
No special permit is required to access/climb Karymsky.
However, if you decide to hike through Nalychevo Nature Park, a permit is required which can be picked up at the Park Headquarter in Petropavlosk (Karl-Marx-Prospect 2, Office 305, Petropavlovsk).
Hiking in Kronozky Zapovednik is only possible with a ranger as 'guide'. Permits can be organized in the Zapovednik Heaquarter in Elizovo. It is not so easy to obtain a permit for Kronozky Zapovednik as an individual - prepared for a lot of burocracy, or have a tour operator help out with this...
When To Climb
Karmysky can be accessed all year round. A very beautiful time is in late summer and autumn (nice colors, no mosquitos!). However, many smaller streams are dry in late summer and autumn - finding drinking water can be a bit tricky if you are doing longer hikes in the surrounding of Karymsky and its lake.
CampingCamping is possible anywhere, very beautiful camping spots can be found in the alpine tundra. There is a volcanologists station a the base of Karymsky, but it is not a service station for mountaineers.
Wihtin the nature conservation areas (Nalychevo Park and Kronozky Zapovednik) denoted campgrounds and huts have to be used.
Karymsky is an active volcano. Be alert - since 1996 its repeated ash eruptions were very active at times, and climbing may not be considered as safe.
Miscellaneous InfoGeneral information about self-organized traveling in Kamchatka can be found here:
Another nice website with some photographs of lake Karymskoe:
Photographs near Karymsky