The 3 Day Rainier course was amazing. I’ve no experience with “mountaineering expeditions.” I had a vague notion of what was involved. This was THE most strenuous physical challenge of my life. The physical condition of each of the guides is incredible. Each of the guides brings competence and expertise to the table. I feel confident that each of the guides was capable to lead the group independently.
Each of the guides was in charge of different skill instruction which each executed well. We learned more about the details of the guides’ abilities via conversation. The technical skills of using crampons, rope ties, ice picks, etc was obvious when they practiced with us. The guides went out of their way to make a connection with us. On Saturday during our gear check, Matt stopped in to introduce himself and talk with us a little. Our van ride over was when the bonding started. Stopping for breakfast together enhances the conversation. I enjoyed each of the guides’ personalities. It was impressive that each of the guides cooked for us; such amazing hospitality.
The website is impressive and gives great explanations of what is expected. I like the way the information is rolled out: it is clear about how/when you will pay the full tuition, cancellation insurance. The packet that is sent out with diet, training, etc is vital. The gear rental email is easy to follow and I appreciate the discount. The Gear Department was super great in getting back to me with all my tedious questions. Dani and Mike were SUPER! It is better to have 2 people running the gear check, it would be too much for each individual. Dani ran most of the explanation and she was spot on about what to take, what to leave behind.
The organization of the program from registration to gear check at the end is very well organized which I appreciate. Price is appropriate. I felt my safety was well attended to by the guides. Thank you AAI for an amazing experience!!!!