Mountain climbing (alpinism) is a kind of sports and active recreation, where the main purpose is climbing the mountains. The essence of climbing is to overcome the obstacles created by nature (complexity of the terrain, weather conditions, lack of oxygen at high altitudes) on the way to the peak. Usually the technical part of the route varies from hundreds of meters to several kilometers. Depending on the complexity and length of a trip climbing can last from several hours to several days, weeks and even months.

There are Alpine and Himalayan (Expedition) climbing styles. Alpine style is a climbing with carrying all the equipment needed. Himalayan style differs in the previous preparation of the route with hanging the protective ropes (railings), establishing the camps for stops, delivering the equipment and oxygen to these camps. So Himalayan climbing uses multiple trips between camps to carry supplies up to higher camps. This style is a kind of siege of the mountain that sometimes takes 2-3 months, but it was this tactic that allowed reaching the summit of Everest and other 8000 m-high mountains. There are eleven categories of tracks depending on their complexity: 1B, 2A, 2B, 3A, 3B, 4A, 4B, 5A, 5B, 6A, 6B.

In 1865 the British climbers conquered the Alpine summit of Matterhorn, making a climb along a technically complex route. This event is considered to be the beginning of sports climbing that is climbing along a difficult route with sports purposes. High-altitude mountaineering was established in 1907 by the Englishman Tom Longstaff who was the first person to climb a summit of over 7,000 meters in elevation - Trisul, in the Indian Himalaya.  In 1950, the members of French expedition Maurice Herzon and Louis Lachenal climbed another Himalayan summit of Annapurna, 8078 m high. The highest summit on Earth, the Qomolangma Mount (Everest, 8848 meters) was conquered in 1953 by Norgay Tenzing and Edmund Hillary, at the same time the peak was climbed by the British expedition led by John Hant.

The highest mountain of Ukraine is 2061 m high and all mountains are technically not difficult for climbing. That means that there are no places for mountaineering in Ukraine. However, there are various clubs where active and full of enthusiasm people get together, study the theoretical issues and gain the practical skills in climbing simulators and in the Ukrainian mountains preparing for climbing the summits of the Alps, the Caucasus, the Himalayas and other mountain ridges of the world.

Mountaineering is a kind of tourism that includes moving of the groups of people along a particular route, laid in the mountains. Although some elements of alpinism are used in mountaineering, it shouldn’t be taken for alpinism. The main difference is that the aim of an alpinist is climbing the summit of some category, and for mountain tourists it is overcoming the route of a certain complexity that includes multiple passes and/or peaks. The complexity of the route is determined mainly by the complexity (category) of the passes, which it includes. The routes of mountaineering run at altitudes of over 2500-3000 m above sea level, that’s why among the difficulties may also be a mountain sickness (AMS).