Don Wargowsky

    Don Wargowsky

    Guide: Washington, Alaska, International

    Don began climbing in 2003 as a college student in Pittsburgh, PA. He cut his teeth on rock and ice climbs throughout the northeast, then went on to direct a mountain climbing school, and became a rock climbing guide in the New River Gorge, WV. He has first ascents on rock in Newfoundland and is one of only a handful of people who have ever climbed a floating iceberg.

    When he is not climbing, Don is a class V river guide and has worked on some of the United States and New Zealand’s most challenging rivers. During the off season you can find him ice climbing in Ouray, rafting the Grand Canyon, skiing in Utah, rock climbing in Thailand, or climbing mountains in the Himalayas. He has led expeditions across the world, including Alaska, Canada, Mexico, and Nepal.

    Guide For:


    Significant Ascents

    Manaslu, Nepal (without supplementary oxygen)
    Baruntse, Nepal
    Ama Dablam, Nepal
    Mera Peak, Nepal
    Denali, USA (5 expeditions)
    Island Peak, Nepal (2 expeditions)
    Kala Patthar, Nepal
    Chukkung Ri, Nepal
    Everest Base Camp trek, Nepal
    Iztaccihuatl, Mexico
    La Malinche, Mexico (2 climbs)
    Mount Whitney, USA (3 climbs, 2 in winter)
    Mount Rainier, USA (27 climbs via 4 routes, 1 in winter)
    Mount Shasta, USA
    Mount Russel, USA (winter ascent)
    Grand Teton, USA (2 climbs via 2 routes)
    Mount Athabasca, Canada
    Mount Baker, USA (13 climbs via 2 routes)
    Mount Shuksan, USA (2 climbs)
    Mount Adams, USA (2 climbs)
    Half Dome, USA Regular Northwest Face
    Mount Washington, USA (6 winter climbs via 4 routes)
    Katahdin, USA (2 winter climbs via 2 routes)
    Mount Colden, USA (2 winter climbs)
    Northern Patagonia, Chile
    First ascents on rock and Icebergs, Canada (2 expeditions)


    Wilderness First Responder/CPR
    Wilderness First Aid
    Leave No Trace Trainer
    PCGI Single Pitch Guide
    AIARE Level 1
    AIARE Level 2
    AIARE Pro 1
    AIARE Instructor Training Course

    Awards & Recognition

    2019 Denali Pro Pin
    2016 AAC Live Your Dream Grant
    2011 & 2017 ECP Mike Brown Expedition Grant

    Reason I always use Alpine is because I know I am going to get a professional guide service that will place my safety above all else on the mountain. Top quality in every aspect. I have climbed with Alpine on a number of occasions and I really appreciate the attention to detail. Honestly on this trip I cannot think of a single area to improve on.

    Denali BLOG

    • Dear Alpine Ascents: Insulating Ice Axe Handles?

      Hey Alpine, I’m headed up to Denali this May (!!!!) and I heard that climbers insulate their ice axes? Interesting… What’s the rationale and how do I do it? Thanks in advance and see you in Talkeetna! Sincerely, Seeking Toasty Mitts Hi Toast Mitts, Thanks for reaching out and stoked you’re headed up to the […]

    • Selecting Snowshoes for Expeditions

      If you are preparing to embark on a Denali Prep course or a Denali expedition with Alpine Ascents, you are also about to enter into the wonderful world of snowshoe travel. There are several reasons for our unilateral use of snowshoes over skis on these trips. First, the learning curve for snowshoeing is far less […]

    • Expedition Mindset: Adaptable & Resilient

      In a previous post, Maddie mentioned adaptability. Due to the exceptionally unpredictable nature of the mountain environment, it’s worth a deeper dive into this trait and its cousin, resiliency. Best Chance of Summits To maximize our chances in the mountains, we try to control every controllable factor. Things like fitness, the right gear, route knowledge, […]

    Partners & Accreditations

    Alpine Ascents International is an authorized mountain guide service of Denali National Park and Preserve and Mount Rainier National Park.
    © Copyright 2021 All Rights Reserved. Alpine Ascents International