Welcome to the Guide to Climbing Taftan Peak in Iran. If you’re an adventurous soul seeking to conquer the heights of Iran’s majestic landscapes, Mount Taftan is an excellent choice. Located in the southeastern part of the country, this volcanic mountain offers a thrilling and unforgettable climbing experience.
In this comprehensive guide from Eligasht, we will provide you with all the essential information and tips you need to plan and embark on your journey to the summit of Taftan. From the best time to climb and the recommended routes to the necessary equipment and safety precautions, we’ve got you covered.
You will discover the optimal seasons for climbing Taftan, ensuring favorable weather conditions and maximizing your chances of a successful ascent. We’ll delve into the different routes available, highlighting the popular southwestern route that takes you through breathtaking valleys and rocky terrains.
Why should one climb to the summit of Mount Taftan?
– Taftan is the highest peak in Sistan and Baluchestan Province and is listed in the national project of Iran’s Simorgh Mountains.
– Taftan is the most important semi-active volcano in Iran, and the emission of sulfur gas from its volcanic vents is attractive and fascinating for climbers.
– The summit of Taftan Peak is covered in white ash, resembling snow from a distance. This has led people to believe that the mountain is always covered in snow.
– The sulfur springs and hot waters, along with the unique nature, are considered special attractions of Taftan Mountain.
– Taftan’s high peak is the third highest mountain in Iran’s Baluchestan region, compared to the surrounding lower areas up to 2,900 meters.
– Taftan is the tallest peak in southeastern Iran, and by climbing it, you can see beautiful landscapes of the surrounding areas, including Mount Bazman, if the weather permits.
– The Taftan Peak has a quality shelter near the summit and a suitable campsite at the starting point for climbers to stay and rest.
Where is Mount Taftan located?
Taftan Peak is the highest peak in Sistan and Baluchestan Province and the most important semi-active volcano in southeastern Iran. Taftan is approximately 100 kilometers south of Zahedan, but Khash is considered the closest city to Taftan. Sulfur gas always emanates from the three volcanic vents of this mountain. Due to the history of Taftan’s volcanic eruptions seven thousand years ago and the absence of molten materials since then, Taftan is classified as a semi-active volcano.
In the Balochi language, “Tapet” means heat, and it has been named “Taftan” after “Tapetan” and eventually this mountain.
the elevation of Mount Taftan from sea level and the base of the mountain
Mount Taftan has several main and subsidiary peaks. The elevation of Taftan was estimated to be 4,050 meters mistakenly over the years, but with new tools, this estimate has been corrected.
The most important peak of Mount Taftan is known as “Madar Kooh” (Mother Mountain), and its fame is due to the proximity of the volcanic vents emitting sulfur gas. The Madar Kooh Peak has an elevation of approximately 3,920 meters. On the eastern and northeastern sides of Madar Kooh, at a distance of 200 to 500 meters, two other peaks named “Sobh” and “Ziyarat” are located. They do not have a significant elevation difference compared to Madar Kooh, so they are not given much attention. According to measurements with GPS devices, the elevation of the Ziyarat peak is estimated to be between 3,930 and 3,940 meters. Therefore, Ziyarat Peak is the highest peak of Mount Taftan.
Taftan has two branches. The mentioned peaks are located on the southeastern branch. However, another prominent peak is located on the northwestern branch, at a significant distance of about 1.5 kilometers from Madar Kooh. This peak is climbed less and is called Narkooh. The Narkooh Peak also has an elevation of approximately 3,925 to 3,930 meters. It should be noted that the number displayed on the signboard of Mount Taftan is 3,941 meters, but GPS devices used by numerous climbers who have ascended Taftan have recorded lower numbers.
The starting point for the main route to climb Mount Taftan is the Gol Valley Campsite in the western part of Mount Taftan, which is located at an elevation of about 2,510 meters. Therefore, to climb Mount Taftan, you need to gain more than 1,400 meters in elevation.
The routes that are used to climb Mount Taftan
Some of the routes to climb Mount Taftan include the Tarshab Village route from the south, the Temin Village route from the north, and the Sangan Two-Way route in the northeast. However, the most popular and easiest route to climb Taftan is the main route from the western front, also known as the Shelter Route or Gol Valley Route. Access to this route is through Kusheh Village and the Gol Valley Campsite. Climbing Taftan from routes other than the western front is much longer and more strenuous as the villages are located far from the mountain, and you would have to cover a significant distance from the road to reach the base of the mountain. That’s why almost no one except locals climbs Mount Taftan using other routes.
The length of the main ascent route from the Gol Valley Campsite to the Madar Kooh peak on the western front of Taftan is approximately 9 kilometers. The Sabah Shelter is located halfway along the route at an elevation of 3,250 meters. There are two paths to hike from the Gol Valley Campsite to the Sabah Shelter. The first path involves scrambling and passes through a narrow gorge called Tang-e Goloo. The second path is slightly longer and circumvents Tang-e Geloo through a plain called Dasht-e Zoghal, which is a complete hiking route. The remaining ascent route to the summit also has suitable trail markings, but there are notable slopes in certain sections of the route.
climbing Taftan Peak in Iran
The most common climbing route for mountaineers is the southwestern route. To reach the starting point of the climb, climbers need to reach the village Darreh-e Gol in the western foothills of Taftan. This village is located near the city of Khash. The road to the village is asphalt but of low quality. It is worth noting that the village is approximately 170 kilometers away from Zahedan.
The altitude of Darreh-e Gol village is 2,500 meters above sea level. There is a recreational camp and a building for overnight accommodation for tourists and mountaineers. Additionally, it is possible to rent a house from the villagers for overnight stays.
From here, the ascent route follows the blue river flowing in the Gol Valley until reaching the source of the water. The main running water in this valley is not drinkable, but there is a spring halfway along the route known for its good water. From there, the route continues towards a gorge called “Tang-e Geloo,” with ups and downs on wooden planks. Occasionally, you will come across arrows and memorabilia along the route.
After passing through Tang-e Geloo, the route continues through a sandy and narrow valley until reaching a relatively flat area. Continuing uphill from the left side of the shelter, you can see the large Taftan Shelter or Sabah.
Underneath the Taftan Mountain Shelter, there is a small hot spring flowing with sulfur deposits. The shelter has two water sources that store fresh water.
The route from above the shelter to the summit is marked by a small cairn. Below the summit, on the volcanic rocks, this cairn disappears. Here, by ascending from the left side to the top of the rocks, the route continues from a relatively flat area towards the Taftan summit, where the emission of sulfur gas is evident, and eventually, you will reach the peak of Taftan.
difficulty level of climbing Mount Taftan
Climbing Mount Taftan from Tang-e Geloo involves scrambling. Apart from that, the ascent route is long and sometimes accompanied by heavy winds. Therefore, the difficulty level of the climb is classified as moderate to hard. The ascent program to Taftan is suitable for individuals with hiking experience in nature, covering distances of 18 to 22 kilometers on rugged terrain and routes with notable slopes.
The best season for climbing Mount Taftan
Generally, Mount Taftan is not covered in snow, but it experiences cold weather with heavy winds in winter and autumn. The 3-hour journey to the shelter takes around 8 hours during this time. In spring, the nights are relatively cold as well. However, the best time for climbing Taftan is from March and April until early May. Climbing in summer will be difficult due to the hot weather.
The necessary equipment and essentials for climbing Mount Taftan
– Suitable backpack
– Hiking or trekking boots with proper traction on the soles
– Sunglasses and a mask-covered hat for sunny days
– Warm clothing and winter gear for cold seasons
– Medications and personal items
– Water bottle
– Fruits, food, and snacks
– Wilderness first aid kit
– GPS with extra batteries or a power bank for your phone
– All necessary hiking tools such as a walking stick
To endure the sulfur gases near the summit, you can use a headscarf or a scarf to cover your mouth and nose.
In this article from Eligasht, we presented a guide to climbing Taftan Peak. Standing at an elevation of approximately 3941 meters, Taftan offers a unique challenge to mountaineers and nature enthusiasts. Reaching the peak of Taftan is a moment of triumph and accomplishment. The panoramic views from the summit are simply mesmerizing, with vast stretches of land spreading out before you. The sense of achievement and the feeling of being on top of the world make the arduous journey worthwhile.
It is important to remember that climbing Mount Taftan requires physical fitness, proper planning, and respect for nature. Adhering to safety guidelines, being mindful of your surroundings, and preserving the mountain’s pristine beauty are essential aspects of any successful ascent. Whether you are an experienced mountaineer or a passionate adventurer seeking new heights, conquering the summit of Mount Taftan will leave an indelible mark on your memory. It is a testament to the human spirit’s desire to explore and conquer the majestic wonders that the world has to offer.