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Alpamayo Expedition Update From Base Camp

Update from lead guide, Esteban “Topo” Mena for the Alpenglow expedition team on Alpamayo: “We are in Base Camp, tomorrow we carry on to Moraine Camp. All is good.”

Day 5: Today the team continued trekking past the Santa Cruz Lakes and turned up into the hanging valley that sits beneath Alpamayo. They established Base Camp at treeline, approximately 13,500′ /4,115 m. Tomorrow the team will carry equipment to Moraine Camp (16,000 feet/4,877 meters), at the edge of the glacier. After stashing their gear they will return to Base Camp for one of Alfredo’s famous feasts.

Follow along on our social channels (Instagram and…

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Rock Climbing on Donner Summit

Donner Summit (located near Truckee, California) has some of the best climbing that California has to offer! There is an incredible range of options and challenges for all levels of climbers. Alpenglow offers full day and half day private rock climbing. The best part about booking a private day of climbing is that you choose your group, your location, and your dates.

We also guide private rock climbing in the High Sierra (off hwy 395 near Bishop) as well as Lover’s Leap (off hwy 50 near South Lake Tahoe), which are also great locations but not…

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Alpamayo & Quitaraju expedition updates

Text & Photos: Esteban “Topo” Mena

“Day 2: Yesterday we went to Antacocha, climbed a 5 pitch 5.10-route called Noches de Adrenalina (13,451′ / 4100m) First summit of the trip!

We are having second breakfast at Cafe California. The plan is to leave Huaraz today, 3hr drive to the trailhead (Cashapampa), and tonight we sleep in Llamacorral.

Day 3: We got to Llamacorral in 4hr from Cashapampa. Team is feeling good. Tomorrow base camp! Yesss!”

 

For more information on our Alpamayo and Quitaraju expedition, or any of our other international expeditions check out our website. For any questions call our office…

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Updates From Moscow

Text & Photos: Ben Mitchell

“Day 2: Fun day here. Went on a tour of the city this morning. Focused on the Kremlin and Red Square then drove around looking at greater Moscow. This city is amazing for the history, excellent infrastructure, and beautiful modern section as well. We have been blown away at every turn by what Moscow has to offer.

 

 

 

 

 

We sampled the metro by traveling across town in an effort to get tickets to the confederations cup soccer match, only to end up watching in a local bar. However, I…

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Successful Summits in South America

Earlier this week our Ecuador Climbing School had a fun acclimatization hike on Rucu Pinchincha (15,700′ / 4785m). The team rode a teleférico from the city of Quito, they hiked for two hours to the rock ridge, and then climbed the ridge to the summit. This climb is a proud peak on its own and it is also important for acclimatization before the other peaks on this expedition.

Today was a successful summit on Cayambe (18,996′ / 5790m) for our Ecuador Climbing School team members, Daniel and Alex. After a midnight wake-up call, they began their climb. Most of the climb was…

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Successful Climb and Summit of Everest

Their patience paid off! Both teams had a successful climb and summit of Everest during an almost perfect weather window.

The summit push really began when the teams left Camp 3 (27,390′ / 8300m). The #EverestNoFilter team (Adrian Ballinger, Cory Richards, “Topo” Esteban Mena, Mingma, Palden, and Pasang-Rinji) left C3 at 11:30pm on Friday May 26, Cory and Mingma left at 1:30am Saturday May 27.

Our Mount Everest North Side Rapid Ascent expedition team (Brooks Entwistle, Zeb Blais, Chad Peele, PaNuru, Dorji, Phurba, Nawang) left Camp 3 (27,390′ / 8300m) at 12:30am Saturday May 27 for their final summit push!

SUMMIT  at 5:43am on May 27…

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SUMMIT PUSH is happening!

The teams have been watching weather all month, and on May 21 the #EverestNoFilter team left Base Camp (17,000′ / 5200m) to begin their summit push!! Next stop was ABC (21,300′ / 6400m). Adrian and Cory were able to join the Alpenglow Rapid Ascent expedition team and celebrate Brooks Entwistle’s 50th birthday with him in ABC on May 22.

The teams are making good progress on their summit push! They left Advanced Base Camp yesterday (May 23) and arrived at North Col camp today, May 24.

“This is all that’s left. Climb. We leave ABC tomorrow. 24th…

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The jewel of the Khumbu

 

My original reason for climbing Ama Dablam was very simple: It was the most beautiful mountain I had ever laid eyes on. From the first moment I saw a photo of the peak I was hooked. The way she rises from the valley, its snowcapped flanks glimmer like a jewel high above the Khumbu valley. The name Ama Dablam actually means “mother’s necklace”.  The two main ridges visible from the valley resemble outstretched arms of a mother (Ama), and the iconic hanging glacier (the Dablam) is named for the traditional pendant worn by Sherpa women. The journey to…

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A snapshot of Ecuador, Part 2

 

 

Dawn found us high on the mountain. The last several hours had been filled with the rhythmic crunching of crampons, interspersed with stories of past adventures and thoughts of the route to come. The angle of the ice and snow demands good crampon technique, and my team is showing me that they were paying attention during the training the day before.

 

 

 

 

By the time the sun hits us, we were at the base of the summit headwall. The morning light rejuvenated the team, along with some hot tea and snacks. The challenge…

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A snapshot of Ecuador, Part 1

While I have climbed and guided all over the world, I had never visited the high mountain world of Ecuador. Even before the wheels of the airplane touched down, I had an idea of what was to come. The lush, green valleys of the Quito area are surrounded by multiple massive peaks, cloaked in thick blankets of ice and snow. The flight was quick and easy, with no significant time change from the west coast.

My friend and our senior guide in South America, Jaime Avila, met me at the airport and soon we were cruising towards downtown Quito and…

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