From the Old Persian Mythological legends to the classic epics and modern Persian novels, Damavand Mountain has existed to connote the iconic Iranian spirit of heroism, guardianship, and strength. Part of its heroic connotation refers back to the famous Persian epic, The Shahnameh, by Ferdowsi, who names Damavand as the prison for the evil king, Zahhak and his dragon. Damavand Mountain is the highest among the mountains in Iran, and in the Middle East is volcanic.
It is very tall and visible from three of Iran’s provinces, Tehran, Qom, and Varamin. Based on what the National Statistics has recorded, its height is about 5670 meters. Some of the cities that range along the Caspian Sea could note the majesty of Damavand Mountain. It does reflect the delicate weather of the North and offers a variety of wildlife as a bonus. Being volcanic in nature, it also has hot springs most important are Esq, Vane, and Larijan. They are easily reachable by those who live in Tehran as good choices for the weekends.
According to the data, Damavand is the 12th highest peak in the world. It comes as the 12th peak named after the high peaks like Everest, Kilimanjaro, Elbrus, and Mont Blanc in the Alps. Compared to other famous peaks, Damavand’s altitude is respectively higher. This fact reveals the importance of Damavand’s multitude of volcanic profusion. What adds to the beauty of Damavand Mountain, are the rivers that encircle it? They are in the north, south, east, and also in the west of the mountain naming Delchai, Haraz, and Tineh rivers. Several summits like Sesang, Mianrood, the Kaun, and the Yellow Flower are close to Damavand summit. This volcanic mountain was shaped during the fourth Holocene geological time which is almost young.
Presently, it is asleep but can be reactivated at any moment. Some years ago, it had some outflows like gases and fumes. Its crater is 400 meters long and is covered by a frozen lake with effusions of yellow fumes coming out around the edge of the crater. In addition to the central crater, there are older ones close to it. The weather is relatively so cold surprisingly being -4 in the heart of summer. However, the hill gets filled with red windflowers in the seasons when the temperature is higher. Normally, it is severely windy with a high speed due to its altitude. Annually, the rain average is about 1400 mm, and most often is it snowy.
What is significant about any mountain peak is its air pressure which is half of the sea degree about Mt. Damavand. On the upper part of Damavand Hill, there are also some glaciers most important of which is called Yakhar. Although the extension of such glaciers was much wider compared to the present time, they are the origin of some rivers that are enduringly flowing in Iran. The brown trout that exist in the rivers of Damavand Mountain is very famous and so delicious. As Damavand Mountain is situated in a very specific place quite facing the woods from the north side and from the south side in a close neighborhood of the desert, it is full of various creatures like boars, dogs, jackals, and foxes. A variety of birds also inhabit here ranging from partridges, quails, and rare golden eagles. Some bears also exist here but in the lower parts of the Mountain.
Historically speaking, climbing Damavand did exist during the past time of Iran. From what has been reflected in the body of scholarship on the subject of Damavand, it appears that some did experience mountaineering and got to the peak of Damavand in the past. There is reliable evidence mentioned in Naser Khosrow’s travel book where the author refers to a well that contains sulfur and ammonium chloride. Surprisingly speaking, during the 19th century, Europeans also tried climbing Damavand. It is worth mentioning that for the amateurs, the high hills of Damavand could be enough dangerous. While, good news is that, every strong and healthy individual can generally cope with it. During the summer season, it is the most suitable time for climbing Damavand.
Better not to climb Damavand Peak individually and try to get involved with a group. Although the best season for climbing to Damavand is summer, it is crucial to be fully equipped with a suitable mountaineering set like special pants, woolen socks, and gloves, together with the basic clothes. On the other side of the spectrum, the best season to ski is during winter time, sometime between November to May. On average, a relatively good slope would offer around 12 km of downhill skiing as Damavand Mountain is so close to the Caspian Sea that causes the possibility of good snow even in the autumn.
For the ease of the mountaineers, there are several camps accessible on Mt. Damavand’s climbing track. They are ready to provide the mountaineers with suitable accommodation and required utensils. Some of the camps we can name here are those located on different track sides. Takht e Fereydon, Panj Hezar Shelter, Chahar Hezar camp, Simorgh Park, Goosfandsara camp, and the sanctuary of Bargah-E-Sevom are great resting places for Mt. Damavand mountaineers.
Another attractive spot of the mountain.
Damavand is a beautiful waterfall that is surprisingly frozen. It is indeed singular in its unique type. What is amazing about this waterfall is the fact that it is like a floating ice bar always frozen. There is a ditch exactly above this waterfall always covered with snow throughout the year. Still more interesting are the seven famous glaciers that have made Mt. Damavand appear as a fictitious site that only exists in science fiction movies. These seven glaciers are Dareh Bokhar, Khor Tab Sar, Dobi Sel, Siole, the Western Glacier, the Northwestern Glacier, and Aroosak Ha.
Now, that we have seen how many wonderful spots Mt. Damavand hides in its seemingly silent grandeur, the “Strong Giant seems to be not the appropriate nickname for it, rather, it appears more as a majestic magician having many hidden wonders at hand.