Please take the time to read the entire Logistics section in full. If you have questions, feel free to call the Alpine Ascents office or email us.
Please return the requested paperwork, (application and flight itinerary) as soon as possible. This information assists us in procuring permits and making final hotel reservations.
⎕ Flight itinerary
⎕ Passport Copy
⎕ Two Passport Photos (scans are fine)
As there are many unforeseen circumstances that may occur during or leading up to the trip, we strongly recommend trip insurance for your expedition.
A variety of trip insurance options are available through different providers. We recommend Comprehensive Trip Insurance for your protection.
There are two basic policies: ‘standard trip insurance’ which can cover injuries or illness, or a ‘cancel for any reason’ addon which covers a wider variety of situations. Note – this addon is considerably more expensive, and if paid out only covers 75% of the trip fee. Please note this is just a summation of the policies available.
Please see complete specific policy information for our recommended policies..
Please note the arrival date in Islamabad on your day-to-day itinerary listed on your confirmation letter. Flight reservations for your expedition should be made as soon as possible.
Alpine Ascents highly recommends the services of Charles Mulvehill at Scan East West Travel: [email protected] when making flight arrangements. Please e-mail or mail a copy of your flight itinerary to our offices. We will review your itinerary to ensure you will arrive on time.
Getting to Islamabad, Pakistan
For those arriving early or departing after the scheduled itinerary, we are happy to make hotel and airport transfer arrangements. Please contact our office in advance of your departure if you would like us to make additional reservations for you.
Arrival: We will pick you up at the airport. Please look for an Alpine Ascents sign upon leaving the terminal in Islamabad. It is very rare that we miss a pick up.
Hotel In Islamabad
In Islamabad we will stay at the Roomy Hotel – a modern style hotel with traditional flair and food/shopping nearby
Other lodging will often be in simple lodges, some more upscale then others but chosen for access to mountain views.
Trekkers are expected to be in excellent physical condition. Being physically prepared for the rigors of the mountains is one of the
key aspects to an enjoyable, safe and rewarding experience for the entire team. Please read the training information on our website:
Please review the annotated gear list below. We certainly understand that you may have personal preferences and have tested gear and gear systems in the field, but encourage you to contact us with any significant variations from the gear list.
Our gear lists are updated regularly, but some brands and models do change. You are required to bring every item on the list. We are happy to work closely with you on finding the proper gear. Please note that we flying in small planes with limited space so please adhere to the gear list as much as possible.
Alpine Ascents does not require trekkers to bring any food. That said if you want to bring up to a 1lb plastic bag of your favorite power bars and drink mix, you are welcome to do so.
In The Field
Physiology Of Mountaineering
Dehydration, hypothermia, frostbite, and altitude illness are all important health conditions to be aware of while climbing. Please read our overview of these physical factors:
Food & Water
We are all aware of the potential monotony of expedition food and Alpine Ascents makes every effort to make expedition food as enjoyable as possible. We work hard to have a diverse menu but this can be limited by availability and remoteness of region. While we will have a variety of food in the larger towns – the food in villages will be simple and somewhat repetitive but such is life in rural Pakistan. Alpine Ascents will bring some supplementary food, should meals be limited and to accommodate different diets.
Most water will be bottled water but making every effort to reduce waste.
You may want to consult your physician for advice on treatments for gastrointestinal upsets that you may encounter on your trip. In the past, climbers have relied on antibiotics such as Ciprofloxacin. Your doctor may recommend medications such as Lomotil or Imodium to stop diarrhea, and Compazine to prevent nausea.
Leave No Trace
Alpine Ascents International practices Leave No Trace principles on all expeditions. We believe that given the proper information most people will do all they can to help protect and maintain the environment. Before your climb, please become familiar with Leave No Trace:
As guides, we spend time teaching the environmentally appropriate Leave No Trace principles and practices. There is nothing more rewarding than working hard to get high into the mountains, reaching a pristine campsite, witnessing incredible views, and having the feeling that no one has been there before.
Conversely, there is nothing more disheartening than working hard to climb a mountain, reaching a site and encountering trash, food waste, and toilet paper. Please read the seven LNT principles, and call the office if you have any questions about what you can do to plan ahead.
We can go a few days without wi-fi and some of the wi-fi is very limited in the smaller towns but we may get lucky. We suggest an Inreach text device for those who need daily communications. Sim cards are not readily available.
We plan on cybercasting your trek. We hope to have a report posted on the cybercast page of our website every 1-3 days. We encourage you to show family and friends who want to follow the climb. Let them know that the lack of a current cybercast does not indicate a problem with the team. Please let us know if you would not like to be listed in these posts.
Personal Expenses & Tipping
Tipping – Please plan on $75 for the driver and $150 – $200 for the local guide. An additional $50 for miscellaneous tips such as porters and other staff during the trek is recommended.
Alpine Ascents guides greatly appreciate tips, a suggested amount is 7-12% of the trip cost.
Trekkers can take $500 in cash and change money in Islamabad but much easier to access cash via ATM’s. If using ATM you can limit cash to $300 and then use ATM’s getting local currency as needed. We will advise on how much to take out at orientation meeting in Islamabad.
Please note that Covid protocols, both best practices and entry requirements, are changing frequently. While we cannot eliminate the risk of exposure to COVID-19, we do carry out a variety of measures designed to mitigate the risk of illness for climbers and staff. It is important we work together with the same team-oriented perspective we rely on in climbing, and we greatly appreciate your partnership. Please take a few moments to thoroughly read the information below and know that we look to improve our operation as additional information about the virus becomes available.
We expect that all trekkers will be vaccinated before joining our expedition. Please contact us if getting vaccinated prior to the expedition is problematic. Please bring your vaccination card.
Trekkers may be asked to wear proper facemasks in all public places while not on the mountain. This includes while in towns, while being transported and while in hotel premises or during meals.
All trekkers will need to arrive with a negative covid result completed 72 hours or less before departure to Pakistan. We will assist with obtaining tests before returning to the US (mandatory) before departing on homeward.
Based on recommendations and factors at time of departure we may opt to use multiple vehicles for transport to and from airport and to and from the mountain to maintain better social distancing.
Lodging will be in shared rooms and tents unless a single room is requested. Subject to change based on conditions.
If you experience fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea please immediately contact Alpine Ascents. Anyone experiencing these symptoms within 14 days of their trip date will be asked to reschedule their trip. All trekkers may be verbally screened for these symptoms on arrival in Pakistan.
Hand washing and hand sanitizing facilities are provided throughout the program, We encourage you to regularly clean or sanitize your hands while on this journey, especially after touching your face, sneezing, coughing, using the bathroom, eating, or drinking. Common areas, high-touch surfaces, and restrooms are sanitized regularly.
We are committed to keeping our environment clean for your protection as well as ours.
From India Trek: When Gordon announced an exploratory trip with trekking, I made the decision to participate. From beginning to end it was a dream come true. The sights, sounds, people, food, and majestic landscape were truly an incredible experience.