The logistics of the trip were well-organized. The Sherpa support was fantastic - food was clean, tents/equipment carried and assembled, friendly. The route selected is the classic Everest trek, and you will see all the big peaks - Everest, Lhotse, Nuptse, Makalu, Ama Dablam etc. Itinerary built in enough time to acclimate well. High summit day success rate - while observing safety The Alpine Ascents group was, by far, the most upscale group in the Khumbu. Endurance is the key to succeeding, regardless of who you ultimately choose. I recommend Alpine Ascents (with whom I had climbed with on Kilimanjaro and in their 6 day training course) because they handle everything so I can focus on the beautiful scenery, friendships with the group, and the cultural exploration. I highly recommend Alpine Ascents for this, or any other climb. Chuck P. >>Read More
Why Island Peak?
Island Peak is perhaps the best (and only) opportunity for advanced beginner/intermediate climbers to take on a challenging glacier climb above 20,000 in the heart of the Everest Himalayas. En route, participants also get to walk the famed Trek to Everest Base Camp.
It is no surprise that Himalayan peaks have drawn adventurers, climbers and cultural enthusiasts for nearly 200 years. The stark and rugged terrain, so entwined with the culture of local Sherpa people, offers such powerful experiences that Himalayan travel stands in a class by itself. While many think of travel to the Himalayas as only high-altitude climbing or trekking, this expedition offers climbers and trekkers an exciting opportunity to enter the world of the mighty Himalayas. See details of the trek.
In order to acclimatize prior to climbing Island Peak (20,305 ft./6,189m), we trek through the Himalayan Khumbu. Team members will have the opportunity (weather permitting) to summit Kala Pattar (18,187 ft./5,545m), a wonderful location to view and photograph Mt. Everest, then we head for a visit to Everest Base Camp. The area in and around Island Base Camp is a stunning and truly wild terrain, far from any villages.
The route to Kala Pattar takes us along the path to Everest Base Camp. We travel through the renowned village of Namche Bazaar and the revered monastic community of Tengboche. From the summit of Kala Pattar, we can snap excellent photographs of Everest, Lhotse and Nuptse. The Kala Pattar trek serves as an introduction to the warmth of the Sherpa community and as an acclimatization period preceding the ascent of the great pyramid, Island Peak.
The trek to Island Peak also walks us through the countryside, where we immerse in centuries-old Nepalese and Tibetan cultures. The journey offers some of the most striking scenery in the Khumbu via the enchanting village of Dingboche. Filled with Buddhist shrines, this village of stone charms our path to the mountain. The summit of Island Peak stands adjacent to the South Face of Lhotse, one of the world's largest ice walls, and offers stunning views of beautiful Ama Dablam and Makalu. It is an excellent opportunity to participate in and fully experience a Himalayan mountain-climbing expedition.
With the assistance of Alpine Ascents' guides, a fit and enthusiastic advanced beginner with basic climbing skills can successfully reach the spectacular summits of Kala Pattar and Island Peak. The climbs are considered physically challenging, but not technically difficult. Porters and yaks are used to help carry gear, food and supplies. We encourage you to review the detailed itinerary and we would be delighted to put you in touch with veteran trekkers to share their experiences.
Climbers hike to Island peak via the famed Khumbu region trek to Everest base camp. Please visit our Everest Base Camp Trek page for more details on the trek.
Climbing Skill Level
Climbers should have successfully completed a minimum of our 3-Day Mount Rainier or Mount Baker Climb (or have similar experience). Climbers must be mentally prepared to deal with strenuous situations at high altitudes. The requirements are also based on our desire to have similarly skilled team members.
In the best interest of personal safety, success and team compatibility, adequate training and excellent physical condition are required. Climbers must be able to carry an average of 20lbs or more and be physically and mentally prepared to deal with strenuous situations at high altitudes. Climbers need to be in excellent physical condition for both personal enjoyment and to be an integral team member. We encourage you to contact us so that we may assist you in developing a training program that meets your particular needs. Comprehensive training information can be found here.
Lodging & The Khumbu Region
We lodge in Sherpa village tea houses, many of them remote, giving us a rare look into both traditional and monastic communities. We access these villages through our long time Sherpa friends with the belief that a sharing of cultures is paramount in our understanding of the world. While the environs are often primitive by western standards, they are balanced by the warmth and tremendous support of the Sherpa people. Our nights before the climb will be in a fully stocked camp tent at Island Peak Base Camp.
*Please note that while we hand pick the lodges, the Khumbu is a remote area and accommodations are very basic. We work hard to have a diverse menu but this can be limited by availability and remoteness of region.
Alpine Ascents is deeply committed to maintaining ecosystems at home and around the world. With each expedition, trek and course, we not only attempt to leave the environment as we found it, but strive to assist the local population in protecting the land and people indigenous to that region. Alpine Ascents reaches for the highest ethical business practices at home and abroad. Each staff member is dedicated to environmentally sound alpine ascents.
Environmental stewardship remains one of our core values, and we take Leave No Trace ethics and practices seriously. The mountains are our home and we are unwilling to sacrifice their preservation for human objectives. On every one of our courses and climbs, we teach and follow the environmentally appropriate Leave No Trace principles and practices.
Our commitment to environmental stewardship can be seen on our programs around the world. Over the years, with the assistance of our Sherpa teams, we have stepped up efforts to clean Mt. Everest. Our Wag Bag® program made a pioneering step in human waste management for the National Park System and Forest Service in the North Cascades. On Aconcagua, we pioneered a waste removal system on our climbs, utilizing the WAG Bag® system. And we continue our maintenance and minimal impact plans wherever we guide. We believe that given the proper information, most people will do all they can to help protect and maintain the environment.
Alpine Ascents is committed to developing safe, self-reliant and environmentally conscious mountaineers.
We regularly organize private climbs for individuals, corporate groups, families and friends. We encourage you to book these climbs early, to help us be better able to fit these climbs to group-specific desires. Contact us to further discuss the benefits of private courses.