I have to say the program is expertly crafted and put together to maximize climber success in the mountains. Each day seems carefully chosen in terms of accommodations and altitude to help acclimatization. All of the accommodations are absolutely beautiful! Jose Luis is an extremely great guy and an excellent guide. He was conservative, as a good mountain guide should be, and very knowledgeable and I really learned a lot. This trip has met and exceeded the high expectations that I hold Alpine Ascents to and I thank you guys for doing what you’re doing.
Volcanoes of Ecuador Testimonials
I thoroughly enjoyed the expedition. Every member of the A.A.I. team and all independent associates were professional, courteous, and friendly. All planned activities were entertaining and relevant toward expanding my knowledge of Ecuador. The acclimatization process was very effective. Photo opps. were abundant, lodging and meals were outstanding.
Jose Luis has outstanding leadership skills. From our initial acclimatization hike up Rucu Pichincha, He established a professional, conservative approach to mountaineering. For example, ordering gear changes, then backing off the summit attempt due to deteriorating weather. These actions provided a crucial foundation of trust as we negotiated the crevasse fields during our successful summit bid up Antisana. Jose Luis thoroughly reviewed all the fundamentals that were learned during the 3 day Muir climb. He reinforced our knowledge of leave no trace principals and pressure breathing. Later in the expedition, we learned glacier travel for alpine mountaineering, how to make a Prusik harness, and crevasse self arrest and rescue. Jose Luis and all the Ecuador staff were very patient and easy going. In addition to mountain guide, Jose Luis has a encyclopedic knowledge of all things Ecuador.
All interaction that I’ve had with A.A.I. staff has been personable and pleasant. Never had the impression that I was merely a customer, or received an impersonal response to any question. I normally do a lot of research and shopping before making a product or travel purchase, I haven’t found an alpine travel company that can compete with A.A.I. The quality of lodging was first rate. Beginning with our stay at the beautiful Hotel Quito, through our visits to historic and lovely haciendas, I simply couldn’t have asked for a more rewarding experience.
The camps where we pitched our tents were set in photogenic and remote areas. Manolo Vegas’ cooking made them home. All the equipment was of superior quality, either new or well maintained. The food was fresh and nutritious, presented in a clean manner. Including participation in the 3 day Muir climb, I have purchased nearly all of my own gear in accordance with the gear list. This has made for a simple and streamlined expedition.
My idea of a good time is being in a rough alpine environment, successfully, or very nearly, achieving ones objectives, then returning exhausted to be spoiled in a luxurious place. If you are faced with the choice of compromising this experience or raising prices, raise prices. I’d pay.
You know you are climbing with the right guide when other guides refer to your guide as “Sensei”. Sensei is referred to teachers or beings that have achieved a certain level of mastery in a skill or art. Being a mountain guide is a job, being a good guide is an art. Not only did Jose Luis become my true friend but he is a multifaceted person that is a pleasure to be around. Intelligent in the most subtle and elegant ways, not a in your face kind of snob.
Doing a private creates a tempo and rhythm that is only defined by one person, the client. This allowed Jose Luis to be very thorough of the lessons and knowledge present. Not only was everything related to the alpine but he is a world of knowledge related to the person, the country, the soul, and the body. Not everyone can hang out for 10 days with the person and be completely able to continue the journey.
Gordon is a true professional and fantastic to correspond with. It feels amazing to be able to ask many questions to the experts without feeling annoying. Volcanoes of Ecuador is luxury climbing. The ease of approaches gave me a new perspective on climbing.
I would not change a thing about this trip. Had the adventure of a lifetime.
Every element of the expedition – climbing, logistics, leadership, accommodations – was excellent. My sense is that the entire expedition revolved around the best interests the clients rather than the convenience and interests of the company. Of note, in particular the quality of accommodations and meals exceeded my expectations, as this is an area that other guiding companies seem to leverage as a way to control costs.
Although I have participated in many domestic and international expeditions with other guide companies, this was the first time I have climbed with Alpine Ascents. Based on my experience, I would recommend Alpine Ascents without reservation.
To put our comments into perspective, my wife and I have also had the opportunity to climb Kilimanjaro, Rainier, Aconcagua and some local mountains around Calgary, but all with different guiding companies. In summary we were tremendously pleased and satisfied with every aspect of our holiday and climbs. Alpine Ascents truly exceeded our expectations. In particular we were most impressed with your lead guide Jose Luis Peralvo. In addition to being an excellent guide and always being concerned for our safety, was a wonderful a most gracious host to us. My first mountain trip where I did not lose weight. The travel logistics, hotels and lodges etc, were all superb. We will certainly climb with Alpine Ascents again and won’t hesitate to recommend your company.
My experience with Alpine Ascents in Ecuador was truly great. To explain why is almost impossible because so many things made it a good experience. All the climbers in our group were grateful for the attention to safety. Having fun during the trip was another thing that was emphasized. The trip wasn’t just about hustling up some mountain. I sincerely look forward to climbing with Alpine Ascents in the future.
Based on my experiences with other guides services and speaking with other climbers, Alpine Ascents International is the only guide service I would use again. Our guides were nothing short of outstanding.
I’ve been exposed to a number of guide services and it would be hard for me to believe that I could find a better mountain guide than Willi.
It was truly an outstanding and personally rewarding experience. Ecuador is a beautiful and interesting country to explore.
Willi is without a doubt, the finest guide I have ever been associated with. He made this trip totally interesting and a real educational experience from a mountaineering standpoint.