In the upper end of Shkhelda valley, on the left side of Ushba icefall towers huge black pyramid of Peak Shurovskogo. Named after famous Russian mountaineer, this mountain was very popular because of its technical routes, getting to which was quite easy from very developed and accessible Adyl-Su valley (Russia)
Until the new Russian border regulation it was one of the interesting climbing objects located very close to famous Ushba. From Russian side it is correct rock pyramid with its rocky west face very attractive for climbing. The summit of Peak Shurovskogo is the best view point from which one can get the unbelievable panorama of the Crown of Caucasus - Ushba, Chatyn, Khokhra (Small Ushba). But now this mountain is closed and forbidden for climbing from its most convenient and logical (in approach aspect) side. New Russian border regulations prohibit approaching to the border line closer than 5 km. That makes many significant mountaineering attractions of the North Caucasus closed for climbers who want to do it from Russia. At the same moment, Georgia doesn't make any obstacles for sportive climbing in the border regions and in many aspects helps to develop tourist infrastructure.
Peak Shurovskogo now can be climbed only from Ushba plateau (Russian 2A) approach from Georgia, climbing West Face violates Russian border regulations. Even if put aside political reasons, it is not possible to approach to the mountain from Russian side via Ushba icefall as the upper part of it recently collapsed.
Peak Shurovskogo by South East ridge from Ushba plateau, Russian 2A (S. Golubev, P. Panutin, Y. Frolov) August, 21, 1915
Peak Shurovskogo by North West Face, Russian 5B (V. Abalakov, A. Borovikov, I. Leonov, V. Cheredova) August, 10, 1947
I do not recommend trying the mountain from Russian side, it can come to very big problems. Although the access to the base of North West Face is still much more convenient from Russian side.
If you go from Georgian side the approach is the same as to North Ushba. From Tbilisi by car or regular bus 400 km to Mestia by a bad road 8-10 hours.
Take a taxi from Mestia to Maseri village, then by a good marked trail which trekkers use to go to the waterfalls, climb to the Ushba glacier. the last place for bivouac is "Hunting place" 3200m. From this bivouac look for the passing between the crevasses and via the Ushba Pass climb to the upper Ushba plateau.
No fees, no restrictions, no permits. Please respect the virgin purity of this mountains and leave no trace of your visit behind you.
Camping is allowed everywhere.
Information on the organized commercial tours and technical climbs in Caucasus (Elbrus, Kazbek, Ushba, Layla, Shkhara, Koshtan, Tetnuld and Dykh-Tau) you can find here
Fresh photos from the recent AlexClimb Caucasus expedition here