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Vinson Massif Expedition

15 Days in Antarctica / (Skill level: Intermediate)

Price per person

$52,000

About this trip

2022/2023 DATES TBD: This unique expedition offers an incredible adventure to the remote interior of Antarctica to climb the tallest peak in Antarctica and one of the storied “7-Summits”. 

Overview

  • skill level

    Intermediate

  • Duration

    15 Days

Towering above the Antarctic Plain at 16,067’, 4,897m, Mount Vinson is the tallest peak in Antarctica and the most remote of the 7 summits. For many, an Antarctic expedition to Vinson is one of the most memorable experiences in their mountaineering careers. Climbing in Antarctica is nothing short of an adventure, combining an incredible mountain, challenging conditions, and an inevitable feeling of exploration as you venture into the most desolate continent on planet Earth.

Route + Itinerary Summary

After several days of prepping and traveling, our expedition will start at the Vinson Massif Base Camp on the Branscomb Glacier. Sitting at 7,021’, 2,130m, we’ll spend two days acclimatizing and preparing to start moving up the mountain. The first day of climbing will take us across gently rising snow slopes to Low Camp. We’ll be carrying approx. 50lbs that we’ll drop at Low Camp. The next day we’ll make an acclimatization hike to the fixed lines and do some skills work before spending another night in low camp.

Weather permitting, the next day we’ll make our way up to high camp. This is a tough day of climbing, ascending fixed ropes up a steep snow slope until we reach more gradual slopes that will take us the rest of the way to high camp. The day will see us climb <3,000’. After a day of rest in high camp, we’ll make our summit bid.

An alpine start will see us work our way to the summit pyramid before ascending steep snow and ice to reach the West Ridge of the peak. We’ll then take the ridge to the summit where we will celebrate standing atop the highest peak in Antarctica before descending the less technical Eastern Ridge and making our way down to high camp. One final descent will take us back at base camp and looking up at the spectacular mountain we just climbed.

Quality Logistics

Alpenglow Expeditions has partnered with Antarctic Logistics and Expeditions (ALE) to provide the highest quality logistics possible. Climbing in Antarctica is a very logistically complicated endeavor, and together we handle everything for you, from the voyage across the Drake Passage to the base camp and mountain infrastructure. All that you need to focus on is putting one foot in front of the other as you take in the incredible views and experience of climbing the tallest peak in Antarctica.

The Alpenglow Difference

Qualified Guides

All guides are IFMGA qualified or aspirants working towards finishing their certification. We guarantee our guides are the best in the business, drawing upon years spent guiding in the mountains to give you the best mountaineering experience possible.

High-quality food 

Imported and local foods of the highest quality, combined with a Western-trained cook staff; Alpenglow has the best food on the mountain, ensuring your strength and health throughout the expedition.

Swiss weather forecasts

Having a quality forecast for Vinson maximizes both our safety and our summit success. These weather forecasts were originally developed for aircraft traveling at the altitudes that we climb at.

Expedition doctor on call 

Dr. Monica Piris, has been on fourteen 8,000-meter peak expeditions. She is in daily communication with our teams during the entirety of the expedition and is available for client consultation at any time.

Preparation

  • Physical Fitness

    Climbers must be in excellent physical shape to join this expedition. This is perhaps the most important aspect of high altitude climbing, and cannot be stressed enough. Regular, challenging exercise for many months in advance of departure is the only way to gain the necessary level of fitness that is needed on big peaks. We highly recommend a structured training regime with a gym or personal trainer to assist you in preparing for climbing at altitude. Please contact us for more information on physical training.

  • Technical Experience

    Vinson requires proficiency in basic mountaineering skills such as: Cramponing, walking on snow, crevasse rescue, self-arrest, glacier travel and rope skills, and winter camping experience. It is also important for clients to have experience carrying a heavy pack on glaciated terrain.

    Climbers should have experience climbing on several glaciated peaks prior to Vinson, and show an aptitude for dealing with difficult conditions and extreme cold.

    Vinson is a challenging peak, the more experience you bring to the mountain, the better. All climbers will be be screened by our team to ensure that we are building a strong and qualified team.

  • Altitude Experience

    While altitude experience is required, having prior experience at altitude is certainly helpful.

    • Day 0 — Arrive

      Arrive in Punta Arenas, Chile.

    • Day 1 — Gear Prep

      We’ll spend the day prepping gear as we get squared away to fly to Antarctica. After an expedition brief and re-checking our gear, we’ll be ready to head to Antarctica the following morning.

    • Day 2 — Fly to Union Glacier

      Weather permitting, today we’ll be flying to Antarctica. A 4 ½ flight will see us cross the Drake Passage before following the west side of the Antarctic Peninsula to the Union Glacier where a blue-ice runway will serve as our landing strip on the southernmost continent on the planet.

    • Day 3 — Fly to Base Camp

      Today we’ll take another flight to the Vinson Massif Base Camp. Situated at 7,021’, 2,130m on the Branscomb Glacier, this stunning camp will serve as a home base as we make our attempt to climb the tallest peak in Antarctica. After arriving at base camp we’ll make a short acclimatization hike to help us get acquainted with the Antarctic environment.

    • Day 4 — Acclimatize/Prep

      We'll spend the day acclimatizing, packing, and preparing to start our climb up the Vinson Massif.

    • Day 5 — Climb to Low Camp

      Today marks the beginning of our journey to the summit, as we leave base camp for Low Camp. Sitting 2,150’, 650m above at 9,121’, 2,780m, it will take us 4-6 hours to reach Low Camp. The climb today will see us cover a gentle snow slope as we carry roughly 50lbs loads between our packs and sleds. We’ll be traveling in rope teams throughout our climb due to crevasse hazard, and this day will help get us into the swing of glacier travel.

    • Day 6 — Acclimatization Hike/Skills Work

      After our climb to Low camp, we’ll spend the day making another short acclimatization hike to the lower section of the fixed lines to do some skills work and familiarization before we continue onto the upper mountain tomorrow. If the team is strong and stoked, we might make an ascent of Knutzen Peak, a 11,066’, 3,373m sub-peak that takes 5-6 hours round trip.

    • Day 7 — Climb to High Camp

      Weather permitting, we’ll leave our sleds behind at Low Camp and start working our way towards the upper mountain with the remainder of our gear on our backs. The climb between Low and High Camp is long and difficult, climbing 3,200’, 1000m of elevation gain over a 6-8 hour period. The climb to High Camp (12,402’, 3,780m) will see us ascend fixed ropes on steep snow slopes up to 45 degrees before finishing the ascent on the gradual slopes of the summit glacier.

    • Day 8 — Acclimatization/Rest

      We’ll spend the day acclimatizing and resting as we prepare for our summit bid.

    • Day 9 — Summit Bid

      Today we’ll make our bid for the summit of the tallest peak in Antarctica. An alpine start will see us start up the Vinson summit valley, working our way up the gradual slopes towards the summit pyramid. After a short and steep snow/ice section, we’ll find ourselves on the exposed Western Ridge that will take us to the summit of Vinson. Standing on the summit, we’ll be greeted with incredible views of Mount Gardner, Epperly, Shinn, and Tyree. Gazing down upon the white, frozen landscape of Antarctica, the magnificence and remoteness of the summit will settle in. You’re standing on the highest point on the world's most desolate continent - if you were looking for an adventure, you found it.

      After a short celebration atop the summit, we’ll descend the Eastern Ridge back down to the summit valley and to High Camp. The day will see us climb 3,670’, 1,120m over a distance of 9 miles, and will typically take us 10-12 hours.

    • Day 10 — Descend to Base Camp

      Today we’ll retrace our steps and descend to the Vinson Massif Base Camp.

    • Day 11-12 — Extra Days

      Extra days to use for weather delays, acclimatization, etc

    • Day 13 — Fly Union Glacier

      After a successful summit of the Vinson Massif, we’ll take a ski-plane back to the Union Glacier Camp.

    • Day 14 — Return to Chile

      Weather permitting, we’ll once again fly across the Drake Passage on our way back to Chile, marking the end of our Antarctic adventure.

    • Day 15 — Fly Home

      Today we’ll depart Chile for home.

      • Headwear and Eyewear

      • Blue 5-Panel AEX Hat

        The perfect hat for warm days on the move. This hat is a lightweight construction and provides ample ventilation to keep your head cool and your face shaded. Leather patch on the front with our classic Alpenglow Expeditions logo. Simple and stylish. Our summer guide's favorite piece of headwear!

        $25.00
      • Beanie

        A comfortable, warm well-fitting hat that covers your ears. Make sure that one of your hats fits under a helmet. Recommended: Eddie Bauer First Slouch Beanie

      • Neck Gaiter (Buff)

        A multi purpose neck gator that can also be worn under your hat. Make sure that it covers as much skin as possible and yet is still comfy. Recommended: Alpenglow Expeditions Buff

      • Balaclava

        We recommend a tight-fitting balaclava that is worn under your hat. Make sure that it covers as much skin as possible, but is comfortable enough to wear for hours. Recommended: Patagonia Balaclava

      • Sunglasses

        Must have dark lenses. Minimal light should come in below, above, or around the sides of the lenses.“Wrap” style is best. Ventilation is important and a retainer strap is very useful (Chums or Croakies). Recommended: Julbo Shield

      • Goggles

        These will be worn on stormy or windy days. Make sure you are getting a snug fit with lenses for bright sun. Ventilation and anti-fog features are desired. Recommended: Smith I/O MAG

      • Hands and Feet

      • Liner Gloves

        These gloves keep the inside of your mitts or other gloves from accumulating sweat on the inside and turning inside out when you take them off, as well as provide additional insulation. Recommended: Black Diamond Lightweight WoolTech Gloves

      • Lightweight Gloves

        All-around gloves for mountaineering, backcountry skiing, and hiking. These gloves (and similar options) are warm, wind-resistant, durable and have a sure grip. You will rarely take these gloves off. They should be snug-fitting, and have some sort of reinforced palm. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Mountain Glove

      • Midweight Gloves

        These gloves should be full GORE-TEX®, and insulated. These will be your main glove for the trip until summit days, or when it gets especially cold. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Guide Glove

      • Heavyweight Gloves

        These gloves should be full GORE-TEX®, with a removable fleece liner (so you can take the liner out and dry it at night). These gloves are used at higher altitude and are need to keep your hands dry, and warm. Over the cuff style is desired. Recommended: Black Diamond Guide Glove

      • Big Mountain Mittens

        These mittens should be warm and worn over either a liner glove or windstopper glove. Down mittens are not required. You should choose a pair that allows you to still operate locking carabiners. Recommended: Black Diamond Absolute Mitt

      • Liner Socks (optional)

        A super-thin wicking sock that repels moisture. Liner socks help to reduce the likelihood of blisters. The socks should be thin wool, nylon, or Capilene®. NO COTTON. Recommended: Ice Breaker Hike Liner Crew

      • Hiking Socks

        Your everyday sock, good for day hikes, trekking, and in- town. NO COTTON. Recommended: Patagonia Lightweight Merino Performance Crew Socks

      • Warm Socks

        A wool synthetic blend. Pure rag wool socks are not nearly as effective in wicking moisture or retaining their shape and reducing blisters. NO COTTON. Recommended: Smartwool Mountaineering Extra Heavy Crew Socks

      • Heated Socks

        These are optional, but highly recommended. Bring 2 sets of batteries. Hotronics boot heaters are another option instead of heated socks, but socks are preferred by our guides. Recommended: Sidas Sock Set V2 Uni S-1200

      • Mountaineering Boots (6,000m - 7,000m)

        Should be double boots that have a stiff sole and accept a step-in crampon. The boots should be comfortable, have adequate wiggle room for your toes, and your heel should not lift more than 1/8th of an inch when walking. Recommended: La Sportiva G2 Evo Boots

      • Down Booties (optional)

        You’ll love having a warm, comfortable shoe to slip into when tent-bound. Recommended: Western Mountaineering Flash Down Booties

      • Waterproof Gaiters

        GORE-TEX® or Schoeller® calf- high gaiters, insulated supergaiters recommended. *Gaiters not needed if your pants and/or boots have built-in gaiters. Recommended: Outdoor Research Expedition Crocodile Gaiters (required if your boots do not have integrated gaiters)

      • Upper Body

      • Lightweight Top

        Ultra-light base layer that effectively wicks moisture away from your body and is breathable. Quick-dry is important as well. One light colored shirt is recommended for extremely sunny days. The new wool blends are also an option. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Resolution Short-Sleeve T-Shirt

      • Long Sleeve Base Layer

        A poly-pro mid-layer that you will never take off. Fitted, light- weight and quick drying. Make sure it is long enough to tuck-in and we recommend zipper collars for more ventilation. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Midweight FreeDry® Merino Hybrid Baselayer 1/4-Zip

      • Warm Layer

        A polarguard or fleece jacket. This is your mid layer that will be worn over your baselayer most of the trip. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Cloud Layer Pro 1/4 Zip or Patagonia R1 Jacket

      • Synthetic Top

        A simple, lightweight synthetic jacket. This item is good for layering systems and the Primaloft keeps you warm when wet. Recommended: Eddie Bauer IgniteLite Stretch Reversible

      • Soft Shell Jacket

        While this item isn’t required, we know that those who don’t have one wish they did! More breathable than Gore-tex, these jackets block wind and light precipitation. A windshirt is an option for this layer. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Sandstone

      • Hard Shell Jacket

        A lightweight, waterproof and breathable jacket WITH A HOOD that can withstand extreme weather conditions. Make sure you have pit-zips and if you are using an old jacket, re-waterproof it. Recommended: Eddie Bauer BC Freshline Jacket

      • Down Parka (6-8,000 Meter Peaks)

        A puffy jacket with a hood that will keep you warm during the coldest of conditions. The higher the quality down, the better (800-fill is best). However, be sure the jacket is still lightweight. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Peak XV Down Jacket

      • Lower Body

      • Base Layer Bottoms

        Fitted and quick drying. This piece will be a base-layer that will get you through a wide range of temperatures. Recommended: SmartwoolMen's Intraknit™ Merino 250 Thermal Bottom

      • Expedition-weight Bottoms

        Fitted, light-weight and quick drying. The mid-weight will be a base- layer that will get you through a wide range of temperatures. Bring multiple changes of layers. Recommended:Eddie Bauer Heavyweight Grid Fleece Baselayer Pants

      • Trekking Pants

        You will spend most of your days in these pants. Choose a breathable and water resistant pant. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Guide Pro

      • Quick Dry Shorts

        Throw these on under other layers for when the sun begins to beat, or you have a sudden urge to jump in a glacial lake. Lightweight, durable and comfortable. NO COTTON. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Guide Pro Short

      • Soft Shell Pants

        You will spend most of your days in these pants. Choose Schoeller® or a soft-shell equivalent. Breathable + water-resistant. These pants should have an ankle zip so they will accommodate your mountain boot. Recommended:Eddie Bauer Guide Pro Alpine Pants

      • Hard Shell Pants

        Your waterproof bottom layer for extreme weather days. Make sure you have water-resistant zippers, crampon patches + good pockets. Recommended:Eddie Bauer BC Duraweave Alpine Pants

      • Insulated Pants

        Full-length side zippers are recommended, for throwing on top of all of your layers. This layer is required. Recommended: Black Diamond Stance Belay Pants

      • Technical Equipment

      • General Mountaineering Axe

        One non-technical climbing axe. The tool should be approx. 55cm- 65cm long and comfortable to hold. *Ice axes are also available to rent (for our introductory climbing courses) at no charge from Alpenglow expeditions on a first come, first serve basis. Recommended: Petzl Summit

      • Accessory Cord

        25’ of 6mm nylon accessory cord. This will be used to make prusiks and cordalettes. Recommended: Sterling Ropes

      • Mountaineering Crampons

        Steel crampons with anti-balling plates are required (so that snow does not build-up in the base of your foot). Make sure that crampons have a heel bail. Crampons are available to rent (for our introductory climbing courses) at no charge from Alpenglow Expeditions on a first come, first serve basis. Recommended: Black Diamond Sabretooth Crampons

      • Harness

        Must have belay loop, gear loops and adjustable leg loops so that you can layer up underneath it. Easy to pack, lightweight + comfortable. *Harnesses are also available to rent (for our introductory climbing courses) at no charge from Alpenglow expeditions on a first come, first serve basis. Recommended: Petzl Altitude

      • Helmet

        Easily adjustable lightweight helmet that fits with hat and Balaclava. Make sure this is a climbing-specific helmet. *Climbing helmets are also available to rent (for our introductory climbing courses) at no charge from Alpenglow Expeditions on a first come, first serve basis. Recommended: Petzl Meteor Helmet

      • Locking carabiner (4)

        Lightweight pear-shaped locking carabiner Recommended: Petzl Attache

      • Non-Locking Carabiner (2)

        Lightweight small carabiners are best, wire-gates are fine. Recommended: Petzl Spirit

      • Trekking Pole(s)

        Make sure that they are durable, lightweight + easily adjustable. Recommended:Black Diamond Trailback Trekking Poles

      • Ascender

        Should have large opening for gloved hands, and an easy thumb trigger. Recommended: Petzl Ascension

      • Expedition Equipment

      • Sleeping Bag (-30°)

        Rated to -30º F to -40º F. Choose an 800+ Fill Premium Goose Down bag. Make certain that the sleeping bag is the right length. DON’T FORGET A COMPRESSION SACK FOR THE SLEEPING BAG. Many climbers also like a silk liner. Granite Gear Compression Sack is desired. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Kara Koram with Compression Sack

      • Foam Sleeping Pad

        A foam pad will help protect the inflatable pad from puncture. Recommended: Therm-a-Rest Z-lite

      • Inflatable Sleeping Pad

        72 inch long inflatable pad required. Make sure you also purchase and bring a repair kit + bag for the sleeping pad. Recommended: NeoAir Xtherm

      • Expedition Backpack

        A 75-100 liter climbing pack designed with climber-specific features and an internal frame. The volume you choose can vary depending on your experience packing and gear quality. If opting for a pack smaller than 100 liters, practice packing to be sure you can efficiently use a smaller sized pack. Recommended: AMG™ 105 Backpack

      • Two 1L Nalgene Bottles

        Two 1 Liter Wide Mouth Nalgene bottles. Recommended: Nalgene 1 L wide mouth

      • Hydration System (optional)

        Should carry 70-100 ounces. Must be durable and have a reliable closure system. Recommended: MSR Dromlite 2L with Hydration Tube

      • Thermos

        A fully insulated thermos is recommended for warm drinks that help with comfort, hydration, and safety on cold days in the mountains.   Recommended: Thermos STAINLESS KING™ DRINK BOTTLE 24OZ

      • Duffle Bags

        2 Duffle Bags - At least one bag should be extremely durable, waterproof, and big - between 90L and 120L. You should feel comfortable leaving it in a puddle for several hours. Remember dry clothes are hot commodities in the mountains! Large enough to fit everything you own, plus what you anticipate buying. Two duffel bags are necessary to fit all your equipment for travel (we don't recommend checking your backpack, best is to put all gear and backpack into your duffle). Once in country, you can consolidate your gear into one duffel and your backpack. It's common to leave the second duffel with city clothes and other non-necessary items behind in a locked and secure location that your guide will arrange for you. Recommended: Eddie Bauer Maximus Duffel

      • Compressible 1-1.5L Bottle

        Wide mouth compressible 1-1.5 liter bottle. Recommended: Nalgene Flexible Cantene

      • Plastic Bowl, Mug and Spoon

        A lightweight and compact cookware setup. You'll want a plastic bowl, mug and spoon. Recommended Kit: MSR 2 Person Mess Kit

      • Lighters

        2 BIC Lighters

      • Coffee

        While Alpenglow provides hot drink options every morning, it can be nice to have your own on hand any time you need a boost. With hot water always readily available, having instant coffee packets can give you the energy you need after a long day in the mountains! Recommended: Alpine Start Original Blend Instant Coffee

      • Miscellaneous Items

      • Miscellaneous Items

        -Passport (with visa, if necessary) -2 luggage locks (TSA compliant) -Non-cotton underwear -Wag bags, 1 per night camping as to leave no trace -Heavy duty garbage bags (at least 4) -Stuffsacks: assorted sizes, for organizing your clothes and gear -Sunscreen: SPF 30 (or higher) -Lip balm with SPF 15 (or higher) -Personal first-aid kit (Band-aids, Ibuprofen, Cough Drops, Moleskin, Pepto-bismol, Imodium, Personal Medications) -Toiletries -3-4lbs of Snack food (a variety of snack food, some whole food, some bars, some gels) -Hand Warmers -Face Mask -Hand Sanitizer -Knife

      • Optional Items

        - External Battery Packs for phones, and other electronics. Recommended: Anker PowerCore Speed 10000.

        - Travel wallet pouch (waist or neck)

        - Leatherman/ Swiss Army Knife (Recommended: Leatherman Juice C2)

        - Zip lock bags (large size, for organizing small items and waterproofing)

        - Pee Funnel (optional for women) One popular model is the Freshette.

        - Ear Plugs

        - Journal/Cards/Games for personal entertainment

        - Language Phrase Book

        - Camera - Full size DSLRs not recommended as your summit camera.  Sony RX100 is a guide’s favorite. Remember extra SD cards and batteries.

        - Compact Binoculars

        - Sandals (Flip-Flops, Chacos or Tevas)

    • What level of fitness is required?

      Climbers must be in excellent physical shape to join this expedition. This is perhaps the most important aspect of high altitude climbing, and cannot be stressed enough. Regular, challenging exercise for many months in advance of departure is the only way to gain the necessary level of fitness that is needed on big peaks. We highly recommend a structured training regime with a gym or personal trainer to assist you in preparing for climbing at altitude. Please contact us for more information on physical training.

    • What sort of experience is required to climb Vinson?

      Vinson is a difficult mountain that required excellent fitness and technical mountaineering skills. Climbers will need to show adequate skill and experience to join the expedition, including having a firm foundation in cramponing, fixed rope work, glacier travel systems, and winter camping. At the very minimum, climbers should have completed a mountaineering clinic or course and made 1-2 successful summits of other peaks prior to joining the expedition. All climbers will be screened by the Alpenglow team. We built strong teams to help maximize our safety and success on the mountain.

    • Do I really need to purchase trip and rescue insurance?

      We require trip and rescue insurance on all expeditions. Trip insurance covers issues that would cause you to cancel your trip in advance. Rescue insurance can help cover costs in the event that you decide to end your expedition early. We recommend Global Rescue for both types of insurance.

Adrian Ballinger

Adrian Ballinger is one of the USA’s premier high-altitude mountain guides, and the only American guide to have both AMGA/IFMGA guide’s certification (one of roughly 150 in the USA) and more than a fifteen summits of 8,000 meter peaks (17 total, including 8 summits of Mt. Everest, 1 without supplemental oxygen, as well as an ascent of K2 without supplemental oxygen). As founder of Alpenglow Expeditions, Adrian has been guiding full-time for over twenty years and has led over 130 international climbing expeditions on 6 continents.

In 2011 he, along with 2 Sherpa partners, became the first people to summit three 8,000 meter peaks in only 3 weeks (Everest twice and Lhotse once). He is also the first person to ski Manaslu (the 8th tallest mountain in the world) from its summit, and the first American to successfully ski two 8,000-meter peaks. These personal successes are combined with Adrian’s passion for guiding and teaching others. Adrian has successfully led more than 100 clients to the summits of Everest, Lhotse (the 4th tallest mountain in world), Cho Oyu (6th tallest) and Manaslu (8th tallest).

Whether on skis, in rock shoes, or mountain boots, Adrian thrives on sharing the big mountains with friends and clients, and helping them to build their skills and experience to be successful on the world’s most beautiful mountains. In the coming seasons, Adrian plans on continuing to enjoy big-mountain skiing, climbing, and guiding in the Himalaya, South America, Europe, and of course closer to home in Squaw Valley, CA. Adrian is a sponsored athlete for Eddie Bauer, La Sportiva, Blizzard, Tecnica, Hiball Energy, and Favre Leuba.

Learn more about Adrian at adrianballinger.com

Guide Certifications
  • AMGA - American Mountain Guide
  • IVBV IFMGA UIAGM - Mountain Guide

Logan Talbott

co-owner / chief guide

Logan has been guiding professionally for over a decade in the disciplines of Rock, Alpine and Ski Mountaineering. When not out guiding, Logan spends time in the office helping the team with the day-to-day operations of the business. From one day ascents of El Capitan to big Alpine climbs in the Himalaya, from ski descents on Denali to backyard ski tours in Lake Tahoe, he can’t help but smile when out running around the hills. Logan is an AMGA/IFMGA mountain guide, an Avalanche course leader with AIARE, as well as a wilderness EMT. In addition to guiding, Logan has extensive experience in mountain rescue, having worked for rescue teams in both Yosemite and Denali National Parks, and volunteering locally for Tahoe Nordic SAR. When not out in the hills, he lives in Truckee, CA with his lovely wife Lynette and daughter Maggie.

Guide Certifications
  • AMGA - American Mountain Guide
  • IVBV IFMGA UIAGM - Mountain Guide

Carla Perez

Carla has been on the pursuit of her climbing dreams for most of her life, she started climbing as a teenager and her love to the mountains took her to the french Alps, where she studied geology and got a masters degree on geochemistry. In 2007 she decided to become a full time climber, which also put her the path of becoming a mountain guide. Carla has trained with and is pursuing UIAGM/IFMGA certification with the ASEGUIM (the Ecuadorian mountain guides association).

Carla has made multiple successful summits of Everest, including an ascent without the use of supplemental oxygen in 2016. She was the sixth women in history to accomplish this feat and the first Latin American woman to do so. She was also the first woman from the Americas to summit K2 without supplemental oxygen in 2019, and was the first woman to summit Everest and K2 in the same year..

In 2008 she did a biking trip from Ecuador to Argentina and had the opportunity to understand and learn more about her home: the Andes.

Today she splits her time between speaking about her climbing experiences all around the world, chasing new missions with her parter “Topo” and guiding big mountains.

Guide Certifications
  • ASEGUIM

Esteban “Topo” Mena

Topo’s formal name is Esteban Mena, but he goes by his nickname. Esteban Topo Mena is 28 years old and began his guiding career at 19, when he climbed Aconcagua’s South Face and became the youngest person to accomplish this difficult climb. Topo began guiding in Ecuador and Peru. In 2012, Topo summited Manaslu and in 2013, he summited Everest – both without using supplementary oxygen. Topo again summited Everest in 2016 while supporting his wonderful partner Carla as she successfully summited without supplemental oxygen. In 2018 Topo summited both Cho Oyu and Everest with clients in under 30 days. An incredible achievement that only the best guides in the word could attempt. He also has climbed challenging new routes in Kyrgyzstan and China and one of his climbs (Kyzyl Asker) has been nominated for the Piolet d’Or (as part of an Ecuadorian team).

Guide Certifications
  • ASEGUIM
  • IVBV IFMGA UIAGM - Mountain Guide

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    Vinson Massif Expedition

Vinson Massif Expedition

2022/2023 DATES TBD: This unique expedition offers an incredible adventure to the remote interior of Antarctica to climb the tallest peak in Antarctica and one of the storied “7-Summits”.