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Stories: Rapid Ascent

Mountain adventures create the best stories, and we want to share some of ours with you. Dive into Alpenglow Stories to stay up to date on expeditions in the field, read blogs, and get tips and tricks from guides.

Route Overview: Climbing Peak Lenin

Peak Lenin, standing at 23,406’/7,134m, offers climbers the chance to test their skills on a truly big mountain landscape in a unique and remote range of the world. Along the climbing route, strategically positioned camps offer essential rest and acclimatization points for those venturing to the summit.
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Tents at Camp 1 on Everest's North Side during an expedition with Alpenglow Expeditions.

Everest North Side: A Climbers’ Guide

After four years of COVID closures, the north side of Everest is finally open this season to foreign expeditions. Among the limited number of teams granted a climbing permit is Alpenglow Expeditions, led by American climber and skier Adrian Ballinger, who couldn’t be happier to be back on what he considers the safest side of Everest by far.
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China reopens Mount Everest access to foreigners

China reopens Mount Everest access to foreigners

For the first time since the pandemic, China is allowing foreign climbers to access Mount Everest via Tibet. Adrian Ballinger, who has summited Everest eight times, is one of the Western guides who prefers the Tibet route to the top of the world’s tallest mountain (from the north), as opposed to the more well-known Nepal route (from the south). This year, he will lead a group of climbers through his company, Alpenglow Expeditions.
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How to Climb Mt. Everest Sustainably and Ethically

KQED talks to Adrian Ballinger about what draws hundreds of climbers to attempt to summit Mt. Everest every year, how to climb ethically and sustainably as ever more visitors descend on the mountain and what it feels like to be on top of the tallest peak in the world.
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Esteban 'Topo' Mena coiling a rope while guiding a Cotopaxi Expedition with Alpenglow Expeditions.

“Give Yourself the Time”: Graduating from Trekking to Climbing with Topo Mena

While ‘walking’ may sound trivial, a number of big mountains involve a lot of walking, albeit in extreme places. To talk about the journey, we connected with IFMGA-certified Alpenglow guide Esteban ‘Topo’ Mena about graduating from trekking to climbing. For beginners, he had this advice to offer: “At first, it’s important to give yourself the time to walk in the mountains and appreciate the land and the opportunity to just be there.”
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Five Expeditions Before Climbing Everest with Topo Mena

Now that Everest season is in full swing, this week we connected with IFMGA-certified Alpenglow guide Esteban ‘Topo’ Mena to talk about five expeditions that are perfect for building the experience necessary to climb the tallest mountain in the world.
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Climbers stand on the summit crater after climbing Cotopaxi.

Cotopaxi is OPEN!

Cotopaxi, the legendary stratovolcano in Ecuador, is now open for climbing once again, and Alpenglow Expeditions is ready to lead the way!
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Climb Cotopaxi in just 5 days with Alpenglow Expeditions' Rapid Ascent program.

Five Essential Questions for Climbing Cotopaxi

If you’re considering tackling Cotopaxi, you likely have some burning questions. Fear not! We’ve compiled the top five questions about climbing Cotopaxi from Google and provided comprehensive answers to ensure you’re well-prepared for your expedition.
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An overview of the Northwest Ridge on the Tibetan Side of Cho Oyu.

The Northwest Ridge on Cho Oyu

As the sixth highest peak in the world, Cho Oyu offers an array of climbing routes on the ‘easiest’ 8000er, each presenting distinct challenges and rewards. Among these, the Northwest Ridge route from Tibet stands out as the most straightforward and least hazardous route to the summit. In this blog, we take a deep dive into the route up Cho Oyu via the Northwest Ridge.
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Cho Oyu v. Manaslu

Deep in the Himalayas, Cho Oyu and Manaslu stand as two of the 14 tallest mountains in the world. As the sixth and eighth highest, respectively, these majestic peaks present formidable challenges to hopeful climbers. In this blog, we detail the unique characteristics, allure, and differences between Cho Oyu and Manaslu.
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