Four-legged giant, if you know us Armenians, you also know that Mount Aragats is our triumphant pride. The highest point is the northern peak, which has a height of 4090.1 meters. Many cones are scattered near Aragats. As a result of volcanic eruptions, the mountain’s slopes are covered with lava over a vast area up to the lower skirts. I was afraid to even blink an eye; any careless movement could be ominous. There are several legends about Aragats, but I will share only one. Armenian mountains were once triumphant and giant brothers. Every day, waking up early in the morning, they tied their belts and greeted each other. Time passes. The brothers are getting old, and they start getting up later. Waking up one day, contrary to their habit, they forget to fasten their belts and greet each other. Seeing this, God gets angry and punishes the brothers. They become petrified and become mountains, the belts become green fields, and the tears of petrified brothers become immortal springs. Aragats is the fourth largest among those giants, after Mets Masis, Sebelan, and Sipan.
They say Khustup is considered a holy mountain, and the people named it hermit. According to one of the etymologies of the mountain’s name, it is based on the Khuri root khutu, which means prayer. The mountain has been a place of prayer and pilgrimage since ancient times. On the slope of Khustup, near the spring called Kozni, the remains of the Armenian general Garegin Nzhdeh are gathered. We reached the last hill only after 4 hours of starting from the foot of the mountain, after which it was left to overcome the top; the beauty of the peak opening before us was breathtaking. It wasn’t easy to look away from the glorious view, but moving toward the top was necessary. You will notice the uniqueness of the Syunyats mountains: brave and impregnable; in the distance, they form a line like warriors; they will follow you and your movements, proud and proud. What a huge and great stock of human stories they carry in themselves, how many like us they welcomed, listened to stories, and sent away with silence, devoid of arrogance.
The expression “to be blinded by beauty” can only be understood in Khustup. We were the guests of the mountain; it was hospitable, and it began to enchant and entice us; with various exclamations of admiration. And I understood that what I saw was not a vision but reality. The clouds surrounded us like cheerful children. The mental emotions were so vividly engraved on our faces that nature rejoiced with us. With silky softness, the white clouds came closer, and the field of view was covered with fiber. I don’t know how to convey a piece of the splendor of Khustup to you; I choose colors and shades in my mind repeatedly. , but to no avail. This is one of those places that are quietly talked about by feeling.
We move to Azhdahak, the highest peak of the Gegham mountain range. The height is 3597 meters. Next to the summit, on the northwest side, there is a crater filled with water. Here, most of the year is covered with snow, and you can also notice fog in August. During my time there, the mist came almost unnoticed. The warmth of the mountain slowly replaced the liveliness with itself; the scene was impressive.
The name Azhdahak is known in Armenian folklore as the name of a Mara king and a dragon. Azhdahak is the evil dragon of Iranian mythology, Azhi Dahak. Azhdahak, fearing the Armenian Tigran, sees his destruction in a dream and, in order to prevent it, becomes a betrothed to Tigran by marrying his sister, Tigranuh. Nevertheless, Azhdahak conspires against Tigran. The conspiracy is opened through Tigranuhi. Tigran and Azhdahak go to battle against each other with large armies. Tigran kills Azhdahak and frees his sister. When I reached the endpoint, the tension in my body completely disappeared. I began to enjoy the existence of small stones with red hues. I was amazed by the scene; I was standing in an imaginary straight line of happiness and difficulty.
In the 5th century, in one of his historical conversations, Movses Khorenatsi presented a story about a woman blinded by passion. The story about Ara the Beautiful and Shamiram is one of the beautiful myths written by Moveses Khorenatsi.
Shamiram was the queen of the most powerful state of Assyria at that time; she had heard about the legendary beauty of the Armenian king Ara. She fell in love, and naturally, she sought to possess him.
Shamiram tries to tempt Ara with gifts, mutually beneficial offers, and deals, but the latter refuses. Shamiram is surprised; men are always attracted by self-confident, mysterious, and passionate women. Enraged by lust, the queen attacks the Armenian land with a large army. The Armenian king dies on the battlefield. Blinded by passion, Shamiam orders Ara’s body to be placed in a high place and licks her wounds to revive her. However, nothing works, and the resourceful Shamiram dresses one of his lovers in Ara’s clothes and announces to everyone that the Armenian king has come back to life as if by God’s will.
According to the historian, during the battle against Queen Shamiram of Assyria, Ara deployed his army at the foot of Mount Ara. And the queen was positioned on the slope of Hatis. According to legend, Mount Ara is the body of Ara the Beautiful, who fell during the battle. From a distance, it really looks like a reclining person.
Among the mountain’s rocks, you will notice a cave called Kuys Varvara Cave or Tsaghkevank; there are also several depositions in this place.
The beautiful woman of the Aragatsotn region. Remains of the old stone age stations were discovered on Arteni. Locals also call them Artin and Areg. The height of the mountain is 2047 meters, but we start climbing from 1500 meters. From the top is a beautiful view of Aragats, Ararat, Geghama mountains, and the Armenian dance, in case of good weather, also Ani, the capital of a thousand and one churches.
Dimats mountain is one of the most visited places in recent years, even for people far from mountaineering. A scene where thousands of people visit to take photos. Dimats mountain is located in the Tavush marz, in the mountains of Ijevan. The height is 2378 meters. The view from the top of the mountain to the rocky walls of the Ijevan mountains is spectacular.
The top can also be reached by SUV.
We were going to start the ascent from the Ararat region. One moment you have nothing; the next, you have more than you can take. I had a similar feeling while climbing a mountain when the whole way was accompanied by beautiful scenery. In front is Masis, to the east are the Yerakhi mountains, to the west is the Voghjaberd mountain range, and below is the Azat reservoir.
Looking around from the top of Yeranos, I realized there is a misconception that man is the most powerful creature on the planet. Did we invent this myth ourselves, perhaps to satisfy our own selfishness? Nature is a mighty driving force. He can be an inspiration to anyone.
The other mountain where many people go to take photos again is Gutanasar. A dormant volcanic peak in the central part of the Kotayk region of Armenia. The height is 2299.6 m. People from almost all marzes gather here to take photos near the Black Wall. You can also get here by car and look for “black wall” on the map instead of Gutanasar… A little secret from me․
Mount Vartablur, better known as the Wolf’s Ears, is located in the Vayots Dzor Marz of Armenia. When you are looking at the mountain from a distance, the peak seems like Wolf’s ears; that’s why they call it that. The height of the mountain is 2455 meters. It is approximately 142 km from Yerevan if you start the ascent from the village of Zedea. There are roads that can be reached by car until the foot of the mountain. It’s a beautiful mountain trip; I’ve climbed both “ears” myself.
Ughtasar is a unique open-air museum. A place through which ancient Armenians’ customs, lifestyle, and life are revealed.
You have to get up early in the morning to climb the mountain. They informed us that ice fragments are on the pond in all seasons of the year, and the snow in this area never melts completely. My, Ughtasar discoveries were moved to June. Then it will be possible to see the carvings made with stone tools on black and gray volcanic stones, most of which are considered memoirs dedicated to the lives and heroic stories of the sleepers. The stones depict people in scenes of hunting, tillage, contests, battles, and dances. There are many images of animals: wild and domestic bison, goats, mouflons, gazelles, and deer.
We were on our way before I thought I would soon see many prehistoric petroglyphs 4000-7000 years old. The driver said in the middle of the road that the road leading to Ughtasar is closed.