It has often been named by climbers, magazines, and trekkers, “the most beautiful mountain in the world”. Alpamayo deserves these accolades. Summit day consists of 1,500 feet (457 meters) of perfect two-tooled ice and neve (styrofoam-like snow) climbing on a flawless fluted face. You know you are close to reaching the top when you begin to see light through the face from the other side. And on a good year, you can actually top out on the summit ridge, with one foot dangling down each of its almost vertical faces.
Getting to this point requires hard work and solid mountaineering and ice climbing skills. Before reaching the famed summit face we must approach over 15 miles (25 kilometers), place two lower camps, and carry heavy packs filled with climbing equipment and food over 4,000 feet (1,220 meters) of moraine, scree, and steep glaciated terrain. Alpamayo is the perfect place to integrate light alpine climbing techniques into your bag of tricks. It is ideal for combining previous high altitude climbing experience with steep ice climbing skills. When you leave Alpamayo you should feel ready to be a competent team-member on big alpine peaks around the world.
And there is an added bonus to this expedition. Alpamayo’s col camp is also an ideal high camp to attempt Quitaraju (19,820 feet/6,041 meters). Quitaraju’s North Face hosts another long alpine two-tool ice and neve route. While it is not quite as steep as Alpamayo, it is longer, boasting over 12 rope-lengths of ice climbing to its summit. After climbing Alpamayo, we should have the efficiency necessary to complete this long route in a single push.
Our Alpamayo and Quitaraju Expedition will be guided by one or more of Alpenglow’s AMGA certified lead guides. AMGA (American Mountain Guides Association) certification is the highest possible training available to guides, and only the most experienced and dedicated attain it. Our lead guides have also traveled and climbed extensively in South America and know the Peruvian Andes intimately. Their knowledge of Andean culture as well as the mountains, combined with their passion for teaching others to become competent mountaineers, guarantees that your experience will be one to remember!
We combine our guides’ experience with the local expertise of our close friend, expert Peruvian logistics operator, and incredible cook, Alfredo Ibarra. A highlight of your trip will be waking up each morning to Alfredo’s smile, hot coffee, and tasty pancakes. Our small team size and low ratio of climbers to guides (2:1) ensures that you stay healthy and strong, and are able to enjoy each component of your experience.