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Stories

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.

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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The conical peak of Nevado Sajama.

“More Than Just a Climbing Trip”: Mike Pond on the Mountains of Bolivia

In November 2023, Alpenglow guide Mike Pond returned to Bolivia for the fifth time for a private climbing trip. Moreover, it reminded us of our responsibility as climbers to listen to the mountains. As much as we may think of ourselves as mountain guides, it is equally as important to remember that the mountains guide us as well.
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Avalanche gear practice including a beacon, probe, and shovel in Palisades Tahoe.

Mastering Avalanche Rescue: Why Practice Makes Perfect

Perhaps you’ve taken an AIARE 1 Avalanche Safety course or maybe you’ve had the opportunity to take an AIARE Avalanche Rescue course (an entire 8 hour course dedicated to efficient avalanche rescue) where you’ve learned rescue skills and put them into action.
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The North Side of Mount Everest

A Guide’s Perspective: Roberto ‘Tico’ Morales Looks Ahead to Everest’s North Col

For Tico, this opportunity is more than just another expedition; it’s a rendezvous with the world’s highest peak. Mincing no words, he muses: “Everest is Everest.” It hardly needs further explanation. Despite not aiming for the summit, he recognizes the significance of the North Col.
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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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the 1966 Vinson Massif team stands in front of their plane

A Brief History of Vinson Massif

In 1966, a team of American mountaineers, led by Nicholas Clinch, achieved the first recorded ascent of Vinson Massif via the Western Ridge. This historic achievement marked a significant milestone in Antarctic exploration and opened the door to future expeditions.
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A climber ascending Vinson Massif.

The Top of the Bottom: Climb Vinson Massif

At 16,050’/4,892m, Vinson is the shortest but arguably one of the most memorable of the world’s coveted peaks. While altitude is not as much of a problem, however, the harsh and unforgiving conditions of the southernmost place on the planet present a unique array of challenges for hopeful climbers.
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Two climbers scale an expansive white snowfield high above the alpine plains of Ecuador.

February ’24 Ecuador Climbing School Recap

A few days ago, I was fortunate to connect with Ignacio ‘Nacho’ Espinosa, Lead Guide from our February ‘24 Ecuador Climbing School, to recap our most recent trip to the volcanoes of Ecuador.
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