Best trip ever. Scenery, nature and ‘culture shock’ (first time in Africa) contributed to a large extent. Eric was in control of the group and the support staff at all times, gave repeated updates on what to expect next etc. Excellent job. The strengths of the program are as advertised: strong western guide, excellent local staff (perhaps the highlight of this trip!), enough time to acclimate on the mountain etc.
Mount Kilimanjaro Testimonials
We both very much enjoyed the expedition. Logistics were seamless, high quality of the local staff and guides and Eric was outstanding. Would note that this is my third Kili summit with Alpine over the past 4 years and the consistency across the experiences has been remarkable. Unquestionably. We also had a large group of climbers – 17 in total – of various skills and also varying degrees of feeling unwell on the mountain. Eric was outstanding at managing the group, maintaining control and helping everyone get to the top. Eric was very good at passing along tips and techniques for dealing with the mountain – whether that be from pace to breathing to rest-stepping to self-care. Very useful, easily presented and easy to grasp.
Included in Outside Magazine’s “6 Iconic Hikes You Should Do Before You Die” 2017.
Yes. 3rd climb with Alpine and as usual, Alpine sets the gold standard! Tom Chambers was a good communicator and was very specific on what was going to occur each day. Excellent communication capabilities. Very good knowledge base. The Alpine staff is very well organized and responsive. Always polite and knowledgeable. Tough to find anything that was not perfect.
Thoroughly enjoyed the climb overall. Alpine Ascents conducted a first class operation!
Eric was fabulous! I would climb with him again anywhere. His patience, confident demeanor, quiet humor, obvious skill, depth of knowledge and concern for the welfare of climbers and staff was exemplary. Everyone respected him as our leader and felt comfortable with him in charge of the climb.
Everything was first rate. Eric handled all situations professionally. He explained in detail what was expected and what was going to happen. Everyone in our group reach the summit will little or no illness. We had several team meetings where Eric explain what was expected of us and what to watch out for. He was very accessible. This was one my highlights of my trip. I had special needs in getting my pace right to reach the summit. Also I needed quite a bit help getting down. I established a personally relationship with the guides. I will not forget soon how much help they were for me, plus able to converse and make friendship with them. Edward and African are the best! Strengths is the devotion to detail. Also to adapt to people from all walks of life.
For those of you who hate long reviews: stop looking, sign with this company now. You will be happy you did.
For those of you who want to know why, here are just some of the reasons.
I summited Mount Kilimanjaro February 12, 2017.
My American guides were Carol and Vernon Tejas.
Go to their guide page and read their accomplishments. You will just be in awe saying “Wow.” Besides their professional accomplishments, they are the most caring people you would want to climb with. I don’t know how they did it but they helped, guided, encouraged and supported each person during the entire climb. From always being available for both physical and emotional concerns to making sure you’re eating and drinking enough to checking your oxygen level with a pulse oximeter daily to teaching you breathing techniques, different step techniques to Vern playing his mini guitar, singing or playing the harmonica to keeping you entertained, focused and making the time pass faster. Truly amazing.
After signing up, Alpine Ascents will send you a comprehensive information packet. It will include anything and everything you would want to know about your trek. From how to get the visa, immunizations, logistics, training schedule and travel recommendations, it will be all there. And so will the people in the office. I don’t know how many times I talked to the people in the gear department and they went as far as going online to different companies to finding the gear at the best possible price to suit my needs.
It was evident from the minute you saw the interaction that Alpine not only has a professional, but also personal relationship with the African Staff. Their business ethics are impeccable. The African Staff has worked with them for many years, which speaks highly for both parties.
If you value the outdoors you will appreciate that their philosophy is “leave no trace behind”. Many companies say that, but they live it. Our team would carry our trash on the trail until we could properly dispose of it in camp. However, our guides and assistant guides carry bags with them and whenever they seen trash on the trail, they picked up trash that others discarded.
The meals and snacks are fantastic. If you think you might loose weight while climbing, think again. Every time you turn around there will be more food.
I will certainly sign up to go on another trek with Alpine Ascents.
Yes, everything was very well managed and on-schedule. Ben and the Tanzanian guides were all extremely helpful and knowledgeable that ensured everyone’s safety and enjoyment. Excellent, his advice was always good and stories from other climbs, both Kili and elsewhere, were informative. I think Ben was very good at answering everyone’s questions, managing their expectations, and concerns. All the guides and porter were wonderful—friendly, hard-working, helpful, and seemed to really enjoy what they were doing. All my correspondence with AAI have been professional and responsive. Preparation materials were also very useful. I feel I arrived in Arusha well equipped and prepared for the climb. The quality of everything was good. I felt it was a very well-organized and execute trip and will recommend it to others. I will also consider using AAI for additional treks/climbs.
This expedition far exceeded anything I could have imagined! We were given so much help and information prior to the trip that I found very helpful. There are not enough words to describe the great support and encouragement that was given to us by your Alpine Staff as well as in Africa. Every person from the guides to the porters were amazing. There was always someone there to give assistance and encouragement throughout the trek. All questions and concerns were answered and attended to as soon as they came up. I had difficulty coming down the mountain and the guides (US and African) were there right away.
Vern and Carole were amazing! I don’t think we could have had better guides for this expedition than these two. I was so happy to have a woman guide there who was experienced and knowledgeable as Carole. I’m not sure how they did it but they helped, encouraged, guided and supported each person during the week. They attended to personal concerns as well as physical and emotional ones. They were quick with a smile and their support was unending. They are both quite good leaders and made it easy to follow their directions and advice. Both guides were great when it came to showing us “the ropes” of climbing. I have done some hiking however their knowledge of the mountain and of climbing was superb. Not only did they help with the breathing but described why we needed to do breathe the way they taught us and why it was important to acclimate to the altitude. They gave briefings every day and told us what to expect, what to wear and answered any questions we had. Their concern for us made it easy to ask questions and know that there were no silly questions when it came to our safety and reaching the top of the mountain. They were great! As I stated before it was nice to have a woman guide along. They were both so helpful, easy to visit with and pleasant throughout the trip. I had no problem ever approaching either with a question or concern I had. They stayed with those that were having difficulty and encouraged each person daily.
I also would like to mention here that the African guides were also great. From Abel to the ones who guided us up the mountain and back down. They sang to us, they carried our packs when we were tired and they encouraged us every step of the way. Once again 100% rating goes to the guides from the US and Africa. I have never seen any group like them in my travels. I thought everything was done very well. All questions were answered thoroughly and promptly. Everything we were to order and bring to the expedition was used and all information on the travel, hotel transportation etc was 100%. Once again I cannot say enough good about the lodging, safari and guides. I had both John and Mohammad. They were so knowledgeable about the country and animals. They went slow so we could view the animals and told us the history of the parks there and the people. They both went out of their way to make sure everyone had an enjoyable time. We saw so much in all the parks and such a variety. They were good at getting us to the various airports on time as well. The lodges were so wonderful. I loved the yurt at the first place we stayed and found it perfect there. The people at the lodge made us all feel welcome and bent over backwards to help those that were having a difficult time.
The food was great too! I enjoyed every single minute of the safari, the people we met and our guides. You chose some amazing drivers and guides for this tour. As far as I’m concerned there is no way to improve. You have the best people working for you and that a real team that works together. I feel the strength you have is the unity and teamwork that is shown by both Alpine and Big Expeditions. Your guides could not have been better. The entire program you set up was amazing and one that changed many things in my life by signing up. There are many people who would never attempt something like we did and with the help of your team, we made it. This was one adventure I will never forget and will always be up in the top 3 of my travels.
The expedition was awesome. Everything from arrival and transport to/from the expedition to the expedition itself was very efficient and clear. Having a walking tour of the city of Arusha was a nice, unexpected surprise as were the offsite dinners. Yes, Ben was excellent in involving everyone, keeping everyone motivated and in the right mindset, and making sure we were informed of that day’s activities. Despite not being the guide on the safari, he also made sure to organize everyone for that as well as provide a few helpful tips and suggestions while on that part of the expedition. Very good, he was able to relate to all members of the group, which had a wide variety of both experience and personalities. He kept everyone engaged and greatly eased everyone’s stress levels. Dani and Chris were my two points of contact in the office. Both were very knowledgeable and helpful throughout the process of booking rental gear as well as answering logistical/billing questions. Responses were always prompt and they are both amazing assets to have. The extra day on the trail was an added benefit to acclimatization and something I would recommend to everyone. The support provided by both Ben and the local staff was incredible. Everything considered, the price of the program was a bargain given everything it included.