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Adventure News - Newsletter of Adventure Consultants September 2014

The seasons seem to slip by so fast one has to be quick to get those seasonal adventures in before it’s too late.  We’re counting down the last couple of weeks for any reasonable ice climbing at lower elevations and the snow on the ski resorts is getting distinctly spring-like on the warmer aspects. I’m not complaining, spring will bring longer days and good ski touring conditions so we’re looking forward to that too. Here’s a quick update on what’s been going on and what’s coming up soon so you have time to tell the boss you’re off on an expedition!

Alpamayo Success

Victor Saunders Our July expedition members all summited on Alpamayo this season after making an acclimatisation ascent of Vallunaraju a few days prior. AC guide, Victor Saunders, who ran the trip, described the ascent of Alpamayo as an amazing 8 pitch route, never too hard but a great day out on the ice. Some of the team were to go on to tackle Huascaran but weather and conditions weren’t favourable for the climb to continue.

Read their dispatches here.

Elbrus Season

 Elbrus 2014 Private - at summit  Stefan Sporli Mike Roberts and Stefan Sporli ran our Elbrus expeditions this season with good success as all three teams enjoyed fine weather on their summit days. Read their dispatches here.

Aaron had this to say about his Elbrus trip;

“The expedition organisation as a whole was excellent and what I expected.  This was done at a high level of comfort and ease considering the local travel and logistical challenges. To be honest I think you have this trip as close to dialled to how it should run.“

Europe Summer Climbing Season

Paolo Pieroni We’ve enjoyed an active season in Europe this year with successful ascents of many of the major peaks. The Alps experienced a mixed bag of weather that was sometimes favourable with good successes, and sometimes challenging, where alternative climbing objectives were chosen. With access in the Alps being so easy, it is a common perception to think we can get our climbs done quickly, but it’s well worth planning some extra time for acclimatisation and weather delays in your climbing plans. And hey, if you do finish early you can go climbing in other areas or even hit the crags for some enjoyment of climbing on warm rock.

NEW TRIP – starting next summer we are running `Around Mt Blanc’ trekking trips! Or rather 'Tour du Mont Blanc'. Imagine wandering through fields of lovely alpine flowers with iconic peaks all around, then hiking over a small mountain pass on well-formed trails, stopping each night to stay at beautiful alpine chalets that are comfortable and fully catered with a real bed to sleep in. As you watch the alpenglow bathe the mountains in delicate evening light you can sip a glass or two of fine local wine and ponder the days ahead and marvels you will see. Read about this exciting new trip Tour du Mont Blanc and start planning your 2015 summer vacation.

Look out for our Summer Haute Route also where we will be traversing the classic high trekking route through the Alps from Chamonix to Zermatt.

Post Monsoon Season in the Himalaya

Now that we're in September we’re excited to announce the commencement of our post monsoon season in Nepal. All our expeditions are being run by people who are not only great personalities, leaders and guides, but have IFMGA guide international credentials to prove it. Our standards are very high for our staffing, and the contribution these guides make to the outcome of the trip is what makes the difference between our expeditions and those being run on a shoestring to enable the trip leaders to claim their own summits.

Cho Oyu

Matt Chessor Cho Oyu is still the best choice as the safest and most accessible 8k peak to climb. AC guides, Steve Moffat and Matty Chessor are guiding our 2014 expedition to this excellent 8000m mountain and we look forward to watching the trip unfold by checking in on the daily progress through the dispatches.

Sign up here to live vicariously through the exploits of the team off on their big adventure to the world’s sixth highest peak on the Cho Oyu dispatch page.

Ama Dablam

Approaching Grey Tower on Ama Dablam, Nepal Guy Cotter Tim Robertson and Andrew Yasso are running the Adventure Consultants Ama Dablam SW Ridge Expedition this season;  the SW ridge being the ultimate route on one of the most iconic mountains on earth.  Technical, exposed and very exciting, the SW ridge is quite achievable for fit climbers with a desire for an ascent that is not a snow plod. The trip begins on Oct 15 through to Nov 11. There is still opportunity to join this expedition for the last couple of spaces. There’s no time like now to pick up the phone and commit to this great adventure!

Island Peak

 Climbing Island Peak, with views to the North Ridge of Ama Dablam in the background.  Paul Rogers As a first time journey to Nepal this trip is probably the best trip you can do. Visit Everest base camp, cross some high passes and when you are fit and acclimatised, finish up by climbing the accessible 6189m Island Peak. You can also share the journey with non-climbing friends who can partake in the Khumbu Trek that runs alongside until you climb Island Peak. At that time the trekkers take some interesting and picturesque hikes around the Imja Tse valley and enjoy the nice lodges there. This expedition is being led by AC Guide Stefan Sporli.

Seven Summits - Carstensz Pyramid Nov 1 - 15

 Trekking towards Carstensz Basecamp  Dean Staples (archive) Possibly the most intriguing of the world’s seven summits due to dense jungles and natives living a primitive existence, climbing Carstensz is one big adventure! We fly in by helicopter to the base camp and trek out through the jungles after the climb. Mike Roberts is returning once again to lead this trip which may well see him complete his 3rd round of the Seven Summits, so he’s not a newbe to this! Still a couple of spaces available if you want to take advantage of this opportunity!


 Aconcagua, "The Sentinel of Stone", is the highest peak outside of the Himalaya. Located in Western Argentina - the heart of the Central Andes, it’s South America's highest peak and one of the much sought after "Seven Summits". As the highest summit outside of the Himalaya, Aconcagua presents an ominous challenge for all those who try to climb to the top of South America to 6992m. The AC expeditions have high success rates and quality logistics that make the expedition just that much more enjoyable. Whether you are aiming for Aconcagua to be the pinnacle of your high altitude trekking, training for climbing up to 7000m or the climb is part of your Seven Summits quest then with the Adenture Consultants Aconcagua programmes you will get only the best logistics and guiding and the best advice and support for climbing at high altitude. We operate three expeditions over the summer season, with the first starting on November 29.

Europe Winter Climbing and Skiing

It’s time to start planning your winter trip to the European Alps to enjoy some of the best ski terrain this world has on offer. We operate the famous multi day ‘Haute Route’ in late winter that takes in some of the best of the high glaciers with comfortable hut accommodation that is fully catered.

Due to increased demand we have added some NEW TRIPS to our program because they are just so good! We will have full information on these trips in the next few weeks to look out for on our website.

Ski Tour Week – daily ski touring out of Chamonix so you can revel in the powder stashes known to our local guides by using lifts and ski touring for access, then each night you return to your hotel to immerse yourself in Chamonix’s cultural nirvana with a myriad of restaurants and nightlife to enjoy.

Europe ice climbing courses - The Alps are undisputedly recognised as one of the world’s ice climbing mecca’s. In addition to our Guided Ice Climbing options we will be launching courses with set dates so you can enjoy the best rates and meet other keen ice mongers.

Adrian Camm The `Chamonix  3 day Ice Climbing Course’ will operate over weekends with a focus on introduction to ice climbing while the 5 day Ice Climbing will be initially based in Chamonix but then move on to Cogne in Italy for multi pitch classics. You will stay in hotels each night and enjoy the best on offer each day on the ice crags. Very civilised!

Of course you can still climb with a private guide on dates and durations to suit you or bring some of your mates and experience an introductory course or high grade ascents together.

Goodbye Paolo

It is not often we see a guide officially retire but our dear friend and seasoned Italian guide Paolo Pieroni has decided to move to the UK with his family to operate their family camping ground and holiday park north of London.

We are sorry to see Paolo go as he’s been instrumental in the Adventure Consultants European Alps climbing operation as guide to many of our climbing guests and held in high regard as a professional and extremely amicable person (he is Italian after all!) We at AC HQ will miss him and we wish him all the best for his move to England and hope he doesn’t find the weather too depressing there :)

New Zealand Winter – ICC’s over, Remarkables Ice and Mixed Festival

 The Adventure Consultants Chicks n Picks 2 day Ice Climbing clinic, part of the Remarkables Ice and Mixed Climbing Festival 2014. Adventure Consultants again sponsored the Remarkables Ice and Mixed Festival with the `Chick’s with Picks’ programme where AC guides Jane Morris and Lydia Bradey ran the 2 day ice climbing program designed to introduce women to ice climbing. This was the third Remarkables Ice and Mixed Climbing Festival and is the biggest meeting of climbers in New Zealand each year with 140 attendants.

With a warm start to the winter the ice climbing season actually turned out to be a pretty good season for our Ice Climbing Courses on the ice formations at Wye Creek, Queenstown. Check out all the action on our Winter 2014 Facebook photo album.

New Zealand Summer

 Mt Aspiring-Tititea, 3033m, the 'Matterhorn of the South'  Guy Cotter The New Zealand summer climbing season is booking up very quickly so please get in touch very soon to book your favourite guide for ascents of one of our amazing mountains or to join one of our popular instruction courses.

Popular courses and ascents - 7 day Mountaineering Instruction Course 
7 day Aspiring Course and Ascent
10 day Alpine Climbing Course

Kilimanjaro Jan 4 -16 2015 spaces available! $4,400 + $1990 safari

Guy Cotter We operate (what we believe to be) the highest quality trips to Kilimanjaro with a very high level of service, incredible food with clean and delicious locally prepared food. Kilimanjaro is accessible to most people with a reasonable level of fitness and is therefore suitable for the whole family. The safari afterwards provides just reward for the effort on the big mountain (that is there in the background) as you mix it up face-to-face with lions, elephants, cheetahs, giraffe’s, hyena’s etc. Climbing Kili followed by a wildlife safari is an amazing combo that you really must do! While you are there we can help arrange other adventures such as a relaxing holiday on Zanzibar, the spice islands off the coast of Tanzania.

Luxury Kilimanjaro Trek and Wildlife Safari

Suze Kelly We frequently operate private luxury trips to Kilimanjaro for groups with quality at the forefront. On Kilimanjaro we provide walk-in tents, heated dining tents, additional private toilets and showers and much more. These trips operate from 5 star luxury hotels and lodges set in relaxing in coffee plantations and we will tailor the trip to match your duration and ambitions. These trips are led by our seasoned Everest guides with superb support from our local staff. Contact us to discuss how we can make you extremely popular with your friends or family by showing them how caring you are by arranging what could be one of the best experiences of their lives!

Charity Climbs - Brain Challenge Mont Blanc

This month (Sept 2014) an Australian team of four climbers will mount an assault on the summit of Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in Western Europe. Their climb will symbolise the hidden mountains that those with a brain injury and their carers and families must climb each day. You can learn more about them and donate to their cause at


Latest News

Ama Dablam 2014 - In the mountains...

Ama Dablam Team Nearing Namche
20 October 2014
18 October 2014

19 Oct - Today we woke up well rested after our hike up the Namche hill...


Island Peak 2014 - In Namche Bazaar

Island Peak Team in Namche
20 October 2014
18 October 2014

18 Oct - After an early start, the team enjoyed a picturesque walk to Namche...


Cho Oyu 2014 - Successful summits for all!

Cho Oyu 2014 - Summit Steve, Matty, Chris and Spencer
03 October 2014
30 September 2014

7 Oct - Congrats to the AC team who reached the summit at 10am on the 30th of September. Another successful adventure has come to an end...


European Alps Winter - taking bookings now

Ski Chamonix
06 July 2014

13 Oct - Choose between our Haute Route Ski Tour, Guided Ski Touring, Chamonix or our new Ice Climbing Courses based from Chamonix.

Book now

New Zealand summer...filling up quickly!

 A group of friends share a miracle moment.  © Mark Sedon
Alpine Expedition Course
© Mark Sedon

A group of friends share a miracle moment.

02 July 2014

13 Oct - Don't wait too long to book your climb, trek or mountaineering course, the New Zealand summer season is filling up fast

Book now




    Can you go from armchair alpinist to 4,000-metre summiteer in under a week? Or is that too much of a climb? Damian Hall joined us last September for the Mont Blanc Course and Ascent.  Check out his article which appeared in the June 2013 Issue of Outdoor Fitness

    17 June, 2013 - Join Michael Usher 5500 metres above sea level at Everest Base Camp where mountaineers launch their quest for the summit.

    Even the most experienced climbers can develop deadly altitude sickness and they end up in the world's highest hospital. They call it "Everest ER" - a tiny tent where volunteer doctors try to rebuild broken bodies, and shattered dreams.

    10 June, 2013 - AC 2013 Everest Expedition member, Cason Crane, blogs about his reasoning for climbing Everest and the world's Seven Summits.

    "...Since I began my Seven Summits quest and my Rainbow Summits Project 18 months ago, I have often been asked to explain the connection between achieving this mountaineering objective and raising awareness and funds to support LGBTQ youth. The answer lies in the challenge. Mountaineering is never the easy path, and unanticipated obstacles are constantly encountered. It can be unforgiving and risky. It can be cold. And it is often a lonely pursuit..."

    7 June 2013 - Great article by Dave Tach about AC Everest 2013 team member Dean Hall and what led him to his goal of climbing the world's highest mountain.

    29 May, 2013 - TVOne's Breakfast featured an interview of AC's Guy Cotter to commemorate the 60th Anniversary of Hillary's summit of Everest and to get his views on the proposed ladder on the Hillary Step.

    27 May, 2013 - TV3 News interviews AC CEO Guy Cotter from Namche, Nepal while on his way back to Kathmandu from Everest/Lhotse.

    22 May 2013 - AC Lead Everest Guide,  Dean Staples', reached the summit of the world's highest peak for the ninth time this May, a record number of ascents for a kiwi.

    21 May, 2013 - Wanaka climber and Adventure Consultants director Guy Cotter was on a high before he even left Everest Base Camp last week after meeting one of his idols, Reinhold Messner, who is considered by many to be the greatest climber in history...

    28 April, 2013 - Hall is one of eight people from around the globe making the ascent as part of the Adventure Consultants expedition from Wanaka.  His father, Otago Regional Council emergency management co-ordinator Graeme Hall, travelled with him as far as Base Camp and returned to Dunedin this week after seeing his son off on his perilous trek...

    5 January, 2013 - 6 AC guides profiled as the highest number of Everest ascents outside of Nepal concentrated in one town, per capita!