About Alpenglow Expeditions
Alpenglow Expeditions was founded in 2004 by Adrian Ballinger after working for a decade as a guide and directing one of the largest international guide services in the USA. Adrian found that many guide services in the industry were more focused on tagging summits than teaching mountaineering skills. The groups were too big and the guides too inexperienced to allow for success, safety, and education in the big mountains. Our core values were created out of this experience, and they form the backbone of all of our expeditions and programs.
Rapid Ascent is a unique program developed by Alpenglow Expeditions that combines the relatively new application of hypoxic training with precise logistics and small team sizes to greatly increase the chances of success while reducing the overall time spent away from home on an international expedition. The Rapid Ascent system in partnership with Hypoxico tents also allows climbers to utilize masks while training aerobically to further simulate the stresses the body undergoes at altitude. Combine the hypoxic training at home with our new way of approaching these mountains and you’ll find that overall expedition times are shorter, you arrive at base camp healthier and ready to take full advantage of weather windows.
All of our international expeditions and climbs are led by AMGA and/or IFMGA certified guides. While this certification has long been essential for guides working in Europe, Canada, and New Zealand, Alpenglow is the first major guide service in the USA to require this certification from our lead guides. To earn AMGA certification in one or more disciplines, guides must spend years training and studying, after which they must pass a rigorous examination process. Guides that have passed exams in all three disciplines: rock, alpine, and ski mountaineering obtain the title of American Mountain Guide and IFMGA mountain guide. This achievement is the highest level of credential attainable by a mountain guide and takes many years of full-time guiding and climbing to attain. There are currently only approximately 115 IFMGA certified guides in the USA and they represent the pinnacle of American mountain guiding. We also have lead guides from Ecuador, and they too have passed rigorous exams to earn the title of IFMGA mountain guide. To learn more about the AMGA or IFMGA, click on their logos at the bottom of the page.
Our teams and client to guide ratios are kept small. This enables us to focus on each team member’s goals for the trip, while also maximizing success and safety. Conditions in the mountains are constantly changing. Small teams can adjust while big teams are often stuck within their fixed logistics. Small teams also enable the members and guides to have a much more personal experience with the environments they are in, with the local people, and amongst each other.
Our guide and office team have spent over a decade working in each of the locations we offer trips. Through this time we have made incredible friends and local partners, ensuring that our logistics are at the highest level offered in the industry. You will immediately notice the difference between our services and others teams’, whether by our food in basecamp, our local family-run hotel in town, or our friendly and knowledgeable local support staff. When climbing big mountains in foreign countries, the quality of these services is essential. It allows us to focus our strength and resources on climbing, knowing we have fantastic support.
Our expeditions and treks were created to combine our guides’ passion for climbing big mountains with their desire to teach others. Our expeditions challenge team members to expand their decision-making and leadership skills and become more efficient and competent in the mountains. Every one of our expeditions is run as a partnership between the guide and you, ensuring your maximum learning, enjoyment, safety, and success.
Alpenglow Consulting provides industry leading logistics, risk management, rigging and certified guides for your commercial project. Alpenglow has extensive international and domestic experience working on diverse projects in mountainous environments. Whether it is a remote, high altitude setting, or a roadside rock climbing shoot, Alpenglow Consulting will ensure a cost effective, safe and successful production.