425.749.7421

Island Peak • Guided ascent of the South Ridge

Imja Valley approach • Everest Region

Details

Length:

21 days in Nepal

Climbing Season:

Spring & Fall

Climbing Grade:

Cost

$3700

Climbing Grade: Advanced

This climb requires a high level of climbing proficiency on steep, exposed and technical terrain above 8000 meters. Class 5.6 rock climbing is required. Excellent physical conditioning is requisite for this expedition. Climbers must provide climbing resume including high altitude experience.

Climbing Grade: Advanced Intermediate

This climb requires a high level of climbing proficiency on steep, exposed and technical terrain at high altitude. Class 4 ice or 5.8 rock climbing is required. Excellent physical conditioning is requisite for this expedition. Climbers must provide climbing resume including high altitude experience.

Climbing Grade: Intermediate

This climb requires snow and ice climbing skills with proficiency on steep and icy terrain. Strong backpacking and excellent physical conditioning is requisite for this expedition. Prior climbing experience is required. High altitude experience is beneficial.

Climbing Grade: Advanced Beginner

Prior climbing experience is beneficial. Basic snow and ice climbing skills are introduced during the program. Above average physical conditioning is requisite for this climb. No high altitude experience is required.

Climbing Grade: Beginner

No prior climbing experience is required. Strong hiking skills and good physical conditioning are requisite.

Trekking Grade: Easy

No experience required.

Trekking Grade: Moderate

This trek requires 4-6 hours of hiking per day with a small pack. Elevation gains of 1000-2000 feet per day. Strong hiking skills and good physical conditioning are requisite.

Trekking Grade: Strenuous

This trek requires 6-8 hours of hiking per day with a small pack. Elevation gains of 2000-3000 feet per day. Strong hiking skills and great physical conditioning are requisite.

If you have further questions about our climbing or trekking grades; or about your qualifications for a particular expedition, trek, climb or course, please contact us.

We offer various trekking options to Everest Base Camp and throughout Nepal. Mountain Gurus founder has guided trips to Nepal since 1993. He believes Nepal is one of the best places on Earth to walk in the mountains. Join our Expedition Trek and stay two nights at EBC during the spring season. Please read more about our Nepal treks.

Expedition Overview

Mountain Gurus climb of Island Peak provides an excellent introduction into the world of Himalayan mountaineering. The route while never technical is interesting and challenging and offers a truly spectacular expedition experience. Known by locals as “Imja Tse“ this trekking peak stands at the head of the Imja Khola Valley, a tributary of the mighty Khumbu Valley within the Everest Region.

Everest Base Camp and Island Peak Climb

This adventure combines a climb of Island Peak with a classic trek to Everest Base Camp. For most trekkers, the very thought of seeing Mount Everest from Kala Patar or standing at the base of the Khumbu Icefall is a dream come true. Our journey begins in the historic city of Kathmandu, known for its fascinating Nepalese culture and ancient temples. We soon fly to Lukla and trek along the Dudh Koshi River until arriving in legendary village of Namche Bazaar, the main trading center of the Sherpa people and gateway to the Khumbu Valley. Over the next few days we visit the Tengboche monastery and we’re continually rewarded with amazing views of the north face of Ama Dablam and upper Khumbu Valley. After reaching Everest Base Camp we turn our attention to Island Peak and approach the mountain via the Chhukung Valley. Base camp is situated on the edge of a glacial moraine amidst an icy world of massive rock walls and hanging glaciers. After crossing the glacier we climb a steep headwall secured by fixed rope that leads to the snowy exposed south ridge and on to the summit. The views of the surrounding 8000 meter giants Lhotse and Makalu are nothing less than astonishing. Island Peak is a great first Himalayan objective for new or veteran climbers seeking to expand their mountaineering or high altitude experience. Our expedition allows more time for acclimatization increasing your chance of completing the journey. During the spring climbing season our trek stays one night at Everest Base Camp.

Itinerary

Flight Schedule: USA – Bangkok (BKK) – Kathmandu (KTM)
Expedition begins and ends in Kathmandu, Nepal


Everest Base Camp and Island Peak

Day 1 • Arrive Kathmandu
Transfer airport to hotel. Our trek begins in the historic city of Kathmandu, known for its fascinating Nepalese culture and ancient temples. The Hotel Yak and Yeti is located near the popular Thamel district jammed with restaurants and shops selling Nepali handicrafts.

Day 2 • Kathmandu
After breakfast we begin our tour of Kathmandu’s world heritage sites. Among them we visit Durbar Square a complex of palaces, courtyards, Hindu temples and home of the Living Goddess, Kumari Ghar. Next we visit the always favorite Monkey Temple known as Swayambunath, situated on a small hill which offers panoramic views of the city and very curious monkeys. As time allows we’ll visit the temples of Pashupatinath and Boudhanath.

Day 3 • Phakding • 8,700ft
We transfer to Kathmandu’s domestic airport for our morning flight to Lukla. The views from the twin-engine Otter are nothing less than remarkable, providing amazing scenes of the terraced Nepalese hillside and Himalayan giants including the crown jewel Mount Everest towering in the distance. Once in Lukla we are welcomed with a cup of tea and meet our Sherpa staff. The trek into the Khumbu region begins with a few hour walk until we reach a long suspension bridge connecting the two sides of Phakding.

Day 4 • Namche Bazaar • 11,300ft
The trek continues along the banks of the Dudh Koshi crossing the “Milky River“ many times as we pass small Sherpa farming villages laden with prayer flags and carved prayer stones known as “Mani Stones“. We carry light packs as porters carry all of our heavy expedition gear. After entering Sagamatha National Park, the trail climbs steeply through the forest giving us a chance of seeing our first glimpse of Everest before arriving in Namche Bazaar the main trading center of the Sherpa people and gateway to the Khumbu Valley.

Day 5 • Namche Bazaar • 11,300ft
We begin our day with an acclimatization trek above Namche Bazaar to Sunrise Point and the Everest View Hotel. Here we’re rewarded with a spectacular view of Mount Everest rising above the massive Nuptse face with Lhotse and the distinctive Ama Dablam in sight. On the way down we explore the lively village of Namche with its interesting trekking shops and street merchants selling an assortment of Tibetan wares. As we walk the stone paved streets one can’t resist stopping by the local bakery for a cup of coffee and slice of pie. We spend the rest of the day relaxing and enjoying the fresh mountain atmosphere. On Saturday mornings, a local market is held in the center of the village which allows for interesting people watching.

Day 6 • Tengboche Monastery • 12,850ft
As we leave Namche our trekking route follows the steep hillside high above the Imja Khola. Magnificent views of Ama Dablam, Kantega and Thamserku increase with every step. We descend to the river, crossing it and begin the steep climb to Tengboche, regarded by many as the hardest day of the approach trek. The afternoon is spent touring the historic monastery considered the spiritual heart of the Khumbu region and residence of the famous Rinpoche revered by Buddhist’s. The route drops to Deboche a quite village situated among conifer and rhododendron forest where we spend the night.

Day 7 • Pheriche • 13,950ft
The next morning we continue trekking through rhododendron forest until crossing another suspension bridge high above the Imja Khola. The route climbs the sheer valley to Pangboche traditionally known as the last year round settlement in the Khumbu Valley. Our uphill trek enters the alpine climate zone and our route forks to Pheriche. Upon reaching the village of Pheriche, we visit the Himalayan Rescue Association’s Trekkers Aid Post.

Day 8 • Pheriche • 13,950ft
Rest and acclimatization day. In the morning we can climb the ridge above Dingboche to 17,000ft for views of Makalu, the world’s fifth highest peak.

Day 9 • Lobuche • 16,100ft
We leave Pheriche following the river while passing yak herding grounds. Following the lateral moraine, we cross a glacial stream of the Khumbu glacier and ascend to Dughla. The trail climbs the terminal moraine of the Khumbu glacier and passes stone memorials for climbers who have perished on nearby summits. We follow the trail to Lobuche with remarkable views of Nuptse and Pumori as well as other surrounding peaks coming into view.

Day 10 • Gorak Shep • 17,000ft – Kala Patar • 18,192ft
We trek out of Lobuche following the moraine of the Khumbu glacier. The route enters dry glacier and meanders glacial ice and debris until we reach the final outpost of Gorak Shep. In the afternoon we trek up Kala Patar, merely a high point on a ridge leading to Pumori. This vantage point allows for amazing views of Mount Everest. We’ll wait for the alpine glow to descend on the peak making for remarkable photographs of the world’s highest mountain and descend by headlamp. Everest, known by the Sherpa as Sagamartha meaning “Head of the Sky“ or the Tibetans as Chomolungma “Mother Goddess of the Universe“.

Day 11 • Everest Base Camp • 17,600ft
In the event of bad weather, we have the opportunity for a second chance to climb Kala Patar. Today we continue our trek to Everest base camp, located at the foot of the Khumbu Icefall. We trek across the glacier passing yak trains carrying supplies for Everest climbing expeditions. During the spring climbing season Everest base camp is crammed with activity as a small village of expedition tents arises at the edge Khumbu Icefall. While at Base Camp we can hike to the base of the icefall to get a closer view of the climbing route that weaves its way through the enormous jumbled seracs.

Day 12 • Dingboche • 14,250ft
We head down the glacier and enter the lush and beautiful Khumbu Valley, surrounded by spectacular snow capped peaks. From here the views of Lhotse, Island Peak, and the north face of Ama Dablam are superb.

Day 13 • Island Peak Base Camp • 15,520ft
We leave the main Khumbu Valley and trek northeast uphill via the Imja Khola Valley also known as Chhukung Valley. A short trek leads us to Chhukung a small outpost situated below the massive Lhotse, Nuptse wall. After lunch we continue up the valley to Island Peak base camp. Basecamp is situated on the edge of a glacial moraine amidst an icy world of massive rock walls and hanging glaciers.

Day 14 • Island Peak High Camp • 18,000ft
Today we climb to high camp. We prepare for our summit day.

Day 15 • Summit Day • Imja Tse • 20,305ft
The day starts early. Once out of camp we climb rocky open slopes to a flat area occasionally used as an advanced base camp. We continue up a rock gully before traversing right and climbing a series of rolling benches. The route crosses a technically easy but exposed ridge before coming to the base of the glacier. Here we rope up and continue climbing the glacier until we reach the base of a steep snow and ice headwall. The headwall secured by fixed rope leads to the snowy exposed south ridge and on to the summit. The views of the surrounding 8000 meter giants Lhotse (27,890ft) and Makalu (27,805ft) are nothing less than astonishing. Ama Dablam (22,493ft) and Baruntse (25,328ft) as well as a sea of Himalayan peaks lay in the distance. We descend the route to Chhukung.

Day 16 – 18 • Namche Bazaar • Lukla
Over the next three days we descend to Kenjoma, Monjo and Lukla.

Day 19 • Kathmandu 
After saying farewell to our Sherpa staff we depart to Kathmandu on an early morning flight.

Day 20 • Kathmandu

Spend the day exploring the Thamel District. (B)

Day 21 • Depart

Transport to Tribhuvan International Airport for flights home. (B)


Island Peak Climb

Day 1 • Arrive Kathmandu
Transfer airport to hotel. Our trek begins in the historic city of Kathmandu, known for its fascinating Nepalese culture and ancient temples. The Hotel Yak and Yeti is located near the popular Thamel district jammed with restaurants and shops selling Nepali handicrafts.

Day 2 • Kathmandu
After breakfast we begin our tour of Kathmandu’s world heritage sites. Among them we visit Durbar Square a complex of palaces, courtyards, Hindu temples and home of the Living Goddess, Kumari Ghar. Next we visit the always favorite Monkey Temple known as Swayambunath, situated on a small hill which offers panoramic views of the city and very curious monkeys. As time allows we’ll visit the temples of Pashupatinath and Boudhanath. In the late afternoon we will have a trek orientation and equipment check.

Day 3 • Phakding • 8,700ft
We transfer to Kathmandu’s domestic airport for our morning flight to Lukla. The views from the twin-engine Otter are nothing less than remarkable, providing amazing scenes of the terraced Nepalese hillside and Himalayan giants including the crown jewel Mount Everest towering in the distance. Once in Lukla we are welcomed with a cup of tea and meet our Sherpa staff. The trek into the Khumbu region begins with a few hour walk until we reach a long suspension bridge connecting the two sides of Phakding.

Day 4 • Namche Bazaar • 11,300ft
The trek continues along the banks of the Dudh Koshi crossing the “Milky River“ many times as we pass small Sherpa farming villages laden with prayer flags and carved prayer stones known as “Mani Stones“. We carry light packs as porters carry all of our heavy expedition gear. After entering Sagamatha National Park, the trail climbs steeply through the forest giving us a chance of seeing our first glimpse of Everest before arriving in Namche Bazaar the main trading center of the Sherpa people and gateway to the Khumbu Valley.

Day 5 • Namche Bazaar • 11,300ft
We begin our day with an acclimatization trek above Namche Bazaar to Sunrise Point and the Everest View Hotel. Here we’re rewarded with a spectacular view of Mount Everest rising above the massive Nuptse face with Lhotse and the distinctive Ama Dablam in sight. On the way down we explore the lively village of Namche with its interesting trekking shops and street merchants selling an assortment of Tibetan wares. As we walk the stone paved streets one can’t resist stopping by the local bakery for a cup of coffee and slice of pie. We spend the rest of the day relaxing and enjoying the fresh mountain atmosphere. On Saturday mornings, a local market is held in the center of the village which allows for interesting people watching.

Day 6 • Tengboche Monastery • 12,850ft
As we leave Namche our trekking route follows the steep hillside high above the Imja Khola. Magnificent views of Ama Dablam, Kantega and Thamserku increase with every step. We descend to the river, crossing it and begin the steep climb to Tengboche, regarded by many as the hardest day of the approach trek. The afternoon is spent touring the historic monastery considered the spiritual heart of the Khumbu region and residence of the famous Rinpoche revered by Buddhist’s. The route drops to Deboche a quite village situated among conifer and rhododendron forest where we spend the night.

Day 7 • Dingboche • 14,250ft
The route drops to Deboche a quite village situated among conifer and rhododendron forest. We cross another suspension bridge on the Imja Khola and climb to Pangboche traditionally the last year round settlement in the Khumbu Valley. Our uphill trek enters the alpine climate zone and our route forks to Dingboche. From here the views of Lhotse, Island Peak, and the north face of Ama Dablam are superb.

Day 8 • Chhukung • 15,000ft
We leave the main Khumbu Valley and trek northeast uphill via the Imja Khola Valley also known as Chhukung Valley. A short trek leads us to Chhukung a small outpost situated below the massive Lhotse, Nuptse wall. During the afternoon we take an acclimatization hike up 18,300ft Chhukung Ri.

Day 9 • Island Peak Base Camp • 15,520ft
After breakfast we continue up the valley to Island Peak base camp. Basecamp is situated on the edge of a glacial moraine amidst an icy world of massive rock walls and hanging glaciers.

Day 10 • Island Peak High Camp • 18,000ft
Today we climb to high camp. We prepare for our summit day.

Day 11 • Summit Day • Imja Tse • 20,305ft
The day starts early. Once out of camp we climb rocky open slopes to a flat area occasionally used as an advanced base camp. We continue up a rock gully before traversing right and climbing a series of rolling benches. The route crosses a technically easy but exposed ridge before coming to the base of the glacier. Here we rope up and continue climbing the glacier until we reach the base of a steep snow and ice headwall. The headwall secured by fixed rope leads to the snowy exposed south ridge and on to the summit. The views of the surrounding 8000 meter giants Lhotse (27,890ft) and Makalu (27,805ft) are nothing less than astonishing. Ama Dablam (22,493ft) and Baruntse (25,328ft) as well as a sea of Himalayan peaks lay in the distance. We descend the route to Chhukung.

Day 12-14 • Dingboche • Namche Bazaar • Lukla
Over the next three days we descend to Dingboche, Namche and Lukla.

Day 15 • Kathmandu 
After saying farewell to our Sherpa staff we depart to Kathmandu on an early morning flight.

Day 16 • Kathmandu

Spend the day exploring the Thamel District. (B)

Day 17 • Depart

Transport to Tribhuvan International Airport for flights home. (B)


Itinerary Notes: Mountain Gurus makes every effort to uphold the scheduled itinerary, although our guides are given discretion to adapt the itinerary for reasons beyond our control or due to the particular needs of the group. Please request a detailed itinerary for a list of scheduled and non-scheduled meals.

Details

Land Cost

21-day Island Peak and Everest Base Camp Trek: $3700

Single Supplement: $300


Deposit and Payments
$700 deposit includes reservation fee, due with application.
Balance due 90 days prior to departure


Services included
Sagamartha NP entrance fee
Trekking peak climbing permit and fees
Domestic airfare – Kathmandu – Lukla
All scheduled land transportation in Nepal
4 nights hotel accommodations in Thamel, Kathmandu
Tea House Lodge and tented accommodations
Scheduled meals in Kathmandu and during the expedition
Professional guide
Porter service
All group equipment for the expedition (including tents, stoves, group climbing gear, fixed ropes)


Services not included
International airfare and meals during travel – USA – Kathmandu
Non-scheduled meals
Snack food during the trek
Personal gear
Trip cancellation insurance
Medical and evacuation coverage
Staff gratuities

Gear List

Trekking Peaks • Nepal

Head and Face:
• Warm Synthetic/ Wool hat: One that covers the ears.
• Heavyweight Balaclava
• Sun Hat or Baseball cap
• Sunglasses: Essential eye protection at altitude.
• Sunscreen: SPF 40 or more.
• Lip Balm: SPF 20 or more.
• Bandanas: Tied around neck they give good sun protection.
• Climbing Headlamp: Bring plenty of batteries.

Upper Body:
• Upper Body Layers: We recommend you have three warm layers for the upper body.
Items must be made of synthetic or pile. Make sure all layers fit comfortably
over each other and supply good insulation. A good combination is a long
underwear top, a sweater, and a pile jacket. Cotton items do not provide
adequate insulation and are completely useless when damp.
• Synthetic Fleece Jacket and/or Pullover: Medium weight
• Shirts: Two synthetic shirts are best for trekking. Two cotton shirts for camp and lodges.
One synthetic long sleeve shirts for climbing.
• Hard Shell Jacket w/ hood: Snow and high wind can be common.
• Down Jacket with insulated hood: 700+ fill down
• Wind Shirt: A nylon wind shell (not waterproof)

Handwear:
• Heavyweight Synthetic gloves: One pair
• Expedition Gloves w/ wrist straps: One pair

Lower Body:
• Quick Dry Hiking Shorts: One pair. Good for hiking at lower elevations in the mountains.
• Long Underwear Bottoms: One pair. Synthetic, no cotton
• Pile/Fleece Pants: One pair that fit loosely and comfortable. These are
essential to be worn over the long underwear bottoms. (full side zips)
• Hard Shell Pants: Bring a good pair of rain/wind pants.
• Trekking/Climbing Pants: Synthetic, comfortable to climb in and provide good
warmth on cool misty days, dry fast and prevent sunburn.
• Gaiters: One pair of high gaiters to keep dirt and snow out of boots.
• Undergarments: Enough for the duration of the program.

Footwear:
• Double Plastic Climbing Boots w/ high altitude liners
• Lightweight Socks: Two pair of synthetic liner socks to wear under heavy socks.
• Trekking Socks: Three pair synthetic medium weight
• Heavyweight Socks: One pair of synthetic socks to wear for warmth with climbing boots.
• Hiking Boots or Trekking Shoes: One pair medium weight hiking boots/shoes large enough
to be comfortable with one liner sock and one heavy synthetic sock.
• Sport Sandals: These are to wear in camp or lodges.

Sleeping:
• Sleeping Bag: Mountain temperatures can get below zero degrees Fahrenheit
so bring a warm bag (rated to 0 to -10 degrees Fahrenheit).
• Sleeping Pad: One closed-cell foam pad or an inflatable THERMA-REST© pad.

Packing and Backpack:
• Backpack: One lightweight medium size (3500 cubic inches) comfortable pack with some
support, adequate to carry personal gear. The pack should fit properly and have a
good waist belt. Carry gear between 15 and 30 pounds.
• Trekking Backpack: optional for trek.
• Duffle/zip Bag: One large size, transporting gear via yaks or porters.
• Duffle/zip Bag: One medium size, store non-mountain gear during the expedition.
• Travel locks, nametags, and contact information written directly on the duffels.
• Bags: (2) large plastic bags (2) large Ziploc bags (2) stuff sacks
• Passport with three extra photos (photo for the Nepal Entry Visa)

Climbing Gear:
• Trekking poles: adjustable and collapsible, optional
• Ice axe w/Leash: 70cm recommended
• Crampons
• Climbing Helmet
• Alpine Climbing Harness w/ adjustable leg loops
• Carabiners Non-locking: Two lightweight (BD Hotwire)
• Carabiners Locking: Two large pear-shaped, screw gate
• Ascender: Left or right handed
• Prussik Cord: 20 feet, 6mm perlon
• Climbing Slings: Two slings
• Rappel/Delay device: BD, ATC recommended

Drinking:
• Water Bottle: Two, one liter wide-mouth plastic bottles. NALGENE©
• Water Treatment: We recommend you bring one bottle of iodine in a bottle, to treat drinking water.
• Water Flavoring: Lemonade, Tang, Gatoraid, etc.

Personal Health and First Aid
• Small personal first-aid kit and medications
• Personal Items

Gear: A complete clothing and equipment list specific to your program will be sent to you in the pre-departure packet upon reservation. For your safety and comfort, it is extremely important that you adhere strictly to the equipment list.

Travel

International Programs • Nepal

Program start time & location: begins and ends in Kathmandu

Visa/Entry Information: A passport and visa are required. American citizens may obtain a visa prior to travel or purchase 15 day multiple-entry visa ($25), 30 day multiple-entry visa ($40), or 90 day multiple-entry visa ($100) upon arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu.

Health & Immunizations: Immunizations are not required for entry into Nepal.

Flight Travel Information: USA – Bangkok (BKK) – Kathmandu (KTM)

International Departures: Our itineraries reflect the date and time you’ll need to arrive in country for a particular program. Mountain Gurus programs begin and end in the countries, destination city. When booking your flight you’ll need to account for travel time and crossing the international dateline if needed. It’s easiest to give your booking agent the day and time you’ll need to arrive.

Meals and Food: All meals are provided as per meal schedule. (see itinerary for meal schedule)

Gear: A complete clothing and equipment list specific to your program will be sent to you in the pre-departure packet upon reservation. For your safety and comfort it is extremely important that you adhere strictly to the equipment list.

Frequently Asked Questions

Even the most experienced climbers have questions and if this is your first time on an Expedition, Trek or Northwest Climb you’re sure to have them. We provide information about such things as travel dates, itineraries and required equipment throughout our website. However, if you can’t find the answers you seek anywhere else, we try to provide them here!

Travel & Insurance

When do I need to arrive and depart?

International Departures: Our itineraries reflect the date and time you’ll need to arrive in country for a particular program. Mountain Gurus programs begin and end in the countries, destination city. When booking your flight you’ll need to account for travel time and crossing the international dateline if needed. It’s easiest to give your booking agent the day and time you’ll need to arrive.

Domestic Departures: Regarding Northwest programs our itineraries reflect the date and time the program begins at a particular start location (North Cascades NP, Olympic NP, etc.). When flying to Washington State you’ll likely need to arrive the day before the climb begins in order to meet the group at the program start location. In regards to your departure flight, our return time to the program start location is often unpredictable. We suggest a hotel reservation for the night of the last day and plan to return home the day after the end of the program.

What if I want to arrive early or depart later than the program? Mountain Gurus can assist in arranging accommodations before or after the program. Our Operations Director can recommend things to do if you desire.

Will a Mountain Gurus agent greet me at the airport? For International programs depending on your arrival time, we coordinate ground transportation. We either greet you at the airport or arrange transportation to your hotel. In most cases the program formally begins the morning after arrival day.

Do you recommend trip cancellation insurance? Mountain Gurus highly recommends purchasing of trip cancellation and travel insurance. This comprehensive travel insurance provides coverage for trip cancellation and interruption, travel delays, loss of baggage and travel documents, baggage delays, medical expenses and emergency assistance.

Do I need any other insurance? Make sure you provide yourself adequate traveler’s medical and evacuation insurance for coverage should you have a problem during the trip.

Should I have concerns when traveling internationally? We recommend registering with the United States Department of State when traveling anywhere internationally. Registration is voluntary and is your sole responsibility. Also, the United States Department of State maintains a travel Warning/Alerts list for most countries around the world. www.travel.state.gov

Experience and Fitness

What are climbing and trekking grades? Mountain Gurus provides climbing and trekking grades to help our client choose which programs are best suited for their experience level, knowledge of climbing and overall physical conditioning. Mountain travel can be extremely challenging yet profoundly rewarding. We offer programs of various skill levels and difficulty. Regardless which program you choose we expect our clients to be physically and mentally prepared for the demands of the journey.

Can anyone participate on your MG programs? We feel that anyone in reasonably good physical fitness should be able to join us on many of our programs. Mountain Gurus guides will introduce basic trekking and climbing skills needed during the course of the program. Remember your ability to participate in the program is largely dependent upon your overall health and fitness. An expedition, trek or climb shouldn’t be taken lightly and we encourage you to prepare for it by physically conditioning yourself for the strenuous aspects of the program. We strongly advise anyone who is considering a climb with Mountain Gurus, who may have a medical condition or medical history that may affect their performance, first consult with their physician. If you have further questions or concerns please contact us and our Operations Director can discuss which program is best suited for you.

Domestic & International Programs

How can I find out about necessary visas or entry requirements for the country I am visiting? Mountain Gurus will send you all necessary visa information contained within our pre-departure package. In most case American citizens can obtain a visa upon arrival. It is your responsibility to send in all pre-required visa applications and associated fees. In addition most countries maintain websites that provide all necessary information and application forms.

How can I find about necessary immunizations for the area where I am traveling? As part of your itinerary, we’ll provide you with current recommended/required immunizations for the country where you are traveling. You can always consult the Center for Disease Control at www.cdc.gov

Can I hire an additional porter? On International programs Mountain Gurus can arrange hire of a personal porter if desired for an additional cost. Please notify MG in advance if you’re considering a personal porter.

Can additional gear or clothing be stored during the program duration? In most cases additional items can be stored at the hotel or with our ground operator.

What type of accommodations can I expect?

Hotels: During our stay in international destination cities you can expect to stay in high quality hotels. When available we opt to stay in smaller boutique style hotels that provide a friendly atmosphere and high quality experience.

Camping or Lodges: When camping we provide our clients with high quality mountaineering tents. Depending on the expedition or climb clients participate in setting up tents and help in establishing camp as well as participate in cooking. On Treks and Tours, Mountain Gurus provides our clients with a fully supported experience, your tent will be set up and waiting when you arrive in camp and you’ll be greeted with hot water and a cup of tea. Destinations like Nepal we often opt to stay in high quality lodges (also known as Tea Houses) as an alternative to camping. Due to our local knowledge we choose from the finest lodges available which provide great food and a friendly warm environment.

Do you provide single accommodations? International programs that include hotels, a single room supplement is available for an additional cost if desired. For those traveling alone who do not wish to pay an additional cost for a single room, we will pair you in a room with another same-sex team member. In the event another team member of the same sex is not available for room pairings, you will be assigned a single room. During Northwest climbs single tent accommodations are not available.

How heavy a pack do I need to carry?

On Northwest programs you will be required to carry a portion of the group gear and food, in addition to your personal gear. This should be taken into consideration when deciding what you should bring. Be prepared to carry between 40-65 lbs. depending on the length of the program and group size.

For International programs pack weight varies greatly depending on the type of program. On our fully supported Treks and Tours you will only be expected to carry a small to medium sized day pack with each trekking day’s necessary clothing and essentials. 15-30 lbs. Expeditions will be required to carry a portion of the group gear and food in addition to your personal gear. 40-65 lbs. On fully supported Expeditions we utilize high altitude climbing porters which greatly minimizes the need to carry group gear. 35-50 lbs.

Private and Custom Programs

I have a group of family/friends/colleagues and we have specific dates we would like to climb. Can you customize a program for us? All of our programs can be run on a private basis. The beauty of a private program is you climb what you want, with who you want, when you want. We’ll take care of the entire program. We are also able to provide you with a custom itinerary depending on your interests. We may require a $100 non-refundable deposit for custom program planning which will be applied towards your program cost at the time of reservation.

Equipment

Does Mountain Gurus rent equipment? We do provide limited rental gear on our Northwest programs. All rental gear is limited and needs to be reserved and paid in advance. See Northwest Climbs and Courses for details. Currently we do not rent any equipment for international programs. Also, many local climbing and outdoors stores rent gear for reasonable rates.

Rental items include: Ice Axe, Crampons, Harness, Helmet

Where should I buy equipment? We can help you find a local climbing and outdoor shop where you can purchase the equipment you’ll need.

General

Is it customary to tip your support staff or mountain guide? On international programs where we utilize support staff (porters, cooks, kitchen staff, etc.); it is Mountain Gurus practice to take a group tip and divide it among the support staff. Tipping of Mountain Guides for a job well done is always appreciated.

How can my family get in contact with me when I’m on a on a Mountain Gurus program? After your application and deposit are accepted; you will be provided with a detailed itinerary which will include hotel and ground outfitter contact information for your program. Due to the nature of the wilderness areas we travel it is likely you will be out of contact during the duration of the program. Telephone and internet access is available in some destinations at you own expense.

What if my spouse, family or friends don’t climb; can they still join me on safari? We would be delighted to make arrangements for non-trekking family and friends to join you after the climb. We suggest you extend your safari a few days to take advantage of Tanzania’s remarkable wildlife parks and diverse landscape.

Can my son or daughter join me on the program? What’s the minimum age requirement? Possibly, we would prefer to talk with you about the program you’re interested in and see if it’s an appropriate choice for someone under the age of 18. We accept participants 16 years or older on our regularly scheduled trips, accompanied by a legal guardian.