Totally enjoyed the expedition. The logistics and process were well thought out and easy to deal with. It was a pleasure to follow Ben and Lakpa – easy to be part of the team. Very patient and happy to help me. All the staff were fabulous. Pretty hard to think of a way to improve it – really happy with each aspect of the trip.
Cho Oyu Testimonials
This was my first true expedition, other trips have been climbs but this was the first where we spend a lot of time traveling and acclimatizing on the mountain vs. just climbing (like Denali). Very good leaders and strong leaders (well respected). They did an excellent job of passing on knowledge. Presented their ideas and experiences but allowed others to make their own decisions. Very friendly and great group to work with and get to know.
Enjoy would be an understatement! It was an exceptional expedition and could not have been more streamlined. The experience could not have been better! The guides were outstanding. I had already climbed with Lakpa (which was why i joined this trip) and knew of his great leadership skills and Ben was equally as great a team leader-they worked perfectly together. Professional approaches from both and very clear and precise teachers. All were fantastic! The best crew ever! A delight to spend 5 weeks with all of them! From start to finish in organising the trip, all members of staff were super efficient and professional in all areas of correspondance. Outstanding camps and the choice of hotels on the drive in were of great standard, considering the area. Food was outstanding beyond belief (thank you Gopal!) and the daytime snacks and upper mountain food were well above standard. I don’t think there was much room for improvement. The whole Alpine Ascents experience (my first) way exceeded expectations in every aspect of the expedition.
I had an excellent time during the entire expedition. From the moment I met Jiban and our guides at the Yak & Yeti, and our Sherpas later on, I felt we had the best people for this adventure. Obviously, Ben and Lakpa had a thorough understanding and experience working together. They were a very effective and complementary team. Guides had an easy personality and were personable. Sherpas were amazing (“super” Sherpas!)… Great attitude, smiles, enthusiasm, very hard working yet fun crew, no matter the load or the circumstances. Overall outstanding performance and organization by AAI throughout! See you on Everest spring 2014!
Awesome trip! Extremely well organized. Culturally fascinating.
It was a perfect ’10’
The expedition was great! It was the best trip of many great trips that I have taken with Alpine Ascents. Off the charts in a positive direction. Between Dave, Lakpa, Kami and Tsering, we had 21 Everest Summits in the group, and it showed in the ability and professionalism of the group. Dave and Lakpa both had some hard decisions to make on this trip, particularly about deciding to go for the summit on a less than perfect day (weather-wise). Their judgment and experience proved to be right on the money. All of my individual goals were met and exceeded. For me personally, the summit was a bonus, and I was thrilled to get there. I think that all of the goals of the expedition were met and exceeded. Every team member made the summit. We summited together as a team. The team stayed together and coherent and happy through the entire trip, and we all left the mountain in good health and with no injuries. What more could you ask for? During the time that we were on Cho Oyu, we saw many other expeditions. One of these expeditions, in particular started with 6 strong climbers (we met them) and was on exactly the same itinerary as us. In the first 2 weeks on the mountain, this group dwindled from 6 climbers down to 2 almost entirely due to poor guiding decisions and poor group dynamics. In the end, only one paying climber made the summit. This group had food, logistics and climber strength/experience that was every bit as good (even better than ours). The only major difference was in our guides decision making and group dynamics. In comparing our two group outcomes, it became clear how important good guiding and group dynamics was to a successful experience. I also watched as we helped several climbers from other groups who had somehow been let down by their guiding firm. Our Alpine Ascents guides were the Eagles Scouts on the mountain! At this point, I plan to use Alpine Ascents for every trip I ever plan. I also know several climbers from Cho Oyu that started with other firms but will now use Alpine Ascents in the future.
From the time that we arrived at CBC until the time we left CBC after the climb, the experience was superb.
All in all this was a great expedition. Both had good leadership skills. Michael and open and direct communication style, gave clear instructions and tried hard to make the group work well as a team.
I can only say the best about the work of Michael and Lhakpa and the whole team. I became pretty sick during the expedition. But even with that weakness I could make it to the top, very much due to the help of Michael and Lhakpa. This is only possible with the perfect way of expedition-leading, what I have encountered only with Alpine Ascents. The only thing we were not happy about was the fact we could not go to Lhasa. But that was the decision of the Chinese embassy in Kathmandu. The sherpa team was great – they did much more than they were expected to do, making our ascent easier. Gopals cooking was great as usual.