An excellent pre-acclimatisation option

Cerro el Plomo

At 5,434m, Cerro el Plomo is an impressive mountain and the largest visible peak from the city of Santiago.

A Cerro el Plomo climb is a relatively short yet fun excursion into the Chilean Andes. It is an ideal introductory climb to altitude or as a pre-acclimatisation trip for those climbing Aconcagua.

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Difficulty Level Low ?
Fitness Level Medium ?
Duration 10 days
Elevation 5,424M / 17,795FT
Large view

Spectacular sunset views across the Andes - Spondylus

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Overnight camp at Piedra Numerada - Spondylus

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Celebrating on the summit - Jan Arnold

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Cerro el Plomo

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Ecstatic to reach the top - Jan Arnold

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Mules accompany the team ferrying equipment and food between camps - Spondylus

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Climbing on summit day - Spondylus

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Approaching the summit - Spondylus

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View across the Andes from Cerro el Plomo

From Nov 20 to Nov 29, 2018
Departs from Santiago, Chile
$3,200 USD $
1:1 Ratio: $5,200 USD $
From Dec 21 to Dec 30, 2018
Departs from Santiago, Chile
$3,200 USD $
1:1 Ratio: $5,200 USD $
From Jan 20 to Jan 29, 2019
Departs from Santiago, Chile
$3,200 USD $
1:1 Ratio: $5,200 USD $
  • Overview

    • A short climb to moderate altitude
    • An excellent first foray to altitude or pre-acclimatisation trip prior to Aconcagua


    Cerro el Plomo is a brilliant climb for a foray to five and a half thousand metres or as an acclimatisation trip prior to climbing Aconcagua. The climbing is straightforward although ice axe and crampons will be required.

    Cerro el Plomo also offers excellent views out to the high mountains of Central Chile and Argentina such as Aconcagua and Tupungato and you will pass by an ancient Inca burial site at 4,500m on the way to the summit.

  • Why AC?

    Adventure Consultants is renowned for the quality of its service and strategy applied to high altitude expedition climbing.

    Our reputation is attributed to meticulous planning and experienced logistics coordination.

    We have a philosophy of investing in every expedition to offer our climbers the best possible chance of success.

    We employ strong and specialised Expedition leaders and support staff, who are some of the most pre-eminent in the industry. We pride ourselves on operating with small teams, the best back-up and support available. This includes nutritious and ample quantities of food, comfortable base camp facilities, reliable communications systems and the necessary medical back up.

    Many of our expedition members come to us because they have seen us in action on a previous trip and decide to opt for our level of service and proven experience. Others return because they know we do our very best to make expeditions safe and successful.

  • Payment Conditions

    Inclusions

    The price of your trip includes the following:

    • Adventure Consultants qualified and experienced local guide/s
    • All expedition organisational requirements
    • Twin share hotel accommodation (3-4 star) in Santiago
    • Half day Santiago City Tour
    • All land transport within Chile ex Santiago
    • Camping accommodation (5-6 nights) while attempting the climb
    • All meals and snacks ex Santiago
    • Group equipment: radios, tents, stoves etc. and all supplies necessary to make a safe and strong bid for the summit

     

    Exclusions

     The price of your trip does not include:

    • Personal clothing and equipment
    • Personal Travel/Trip Cancellation/Medical Evacuation Insurance
    • Airport Transfers
    • Dinners in Santiago
    • Bottled Beverages
    • Personal expenses such as alcohol, gifts, laundry etc
    • Return flights and visas to Santiago, Chile
    • Onwards flights to Mendoza for those joining the Aconcagua Expedition
    • Excess equipment over the 20kg per person allowance
    • Any rescue costs
    • Government and airport taxes
    • Medical vaccinations
    • Any costs associated with early departure from the expedition
    • Gratuities

    Account Information

    All payments should be made by bank transfer to the following bank and account:

    Bank of New Zealand
    Offshore Branch
    1 Willis Street
    Wellington
    New Zealand

    for the account of Adventure Consultants Limited

    Account # 1000-594771-0000
    Account Type: US Dollars
    Swift Address: BKNZNZ22

    We can accept your deposit and balance payment by credit card – Visa, MasterCard orAMEX plus a 3% credit card transaction fee.

    Deposit & Balance Payments

    A non-refundable deposit of US$500 is payable to secure a place on the expedition and the balance of payment of US$3060 (1:1) or US$2300 (2+) is due 90 days prior to your expedition start date.

    Cancellation & Refund Policy

    Once you have paid your deposit your trip is confirmed, subject to payment of the balance of fees owing 90 days prior to your trip commencement date. A climber may then cancel his/her participation on the following basis:

    • Cancellations outside of 90 days will result in the loss of the trip deposit.
    • For cancellations made within 89-60 days of the trip commencement date we reserve the right to retain 50% of the balance fee.
    • For cancellations within 59 days of the departure date a cancellation fee of 100% of the full fee applies.

     

    We strongly recommend you take out trip cancellation insurance via your travel agent.

    Trip Cancellation Insurance

    Team members should take out private insurance if they wish to be covered against cancellation due to medical, personal or other reasons. This is called Trip Cancellation Insurance and can be obtained from your normal travel agent.

  • Trip Notes

    Cerro El PlomoThe Expedition Trip Notes provide detailed information and background for the Adventure Consultants Cerro el Plomo Expedition.

    You can view the trip notes online by clicking the image or download a pdf by clicking the following link:

    Cerro el Plomo Trip Notes

    Team Membership

    You will find the Adventure Consultants’ mountain guides companionable and strong expedition leaders with considerable power and willingness to see you achieve your goals. The number of guides is determined by the team size but the normal ratio of guides to members is 1:3 for climbing Ojos del Salado route.

    Our Guides

    Your expedition leader will be scheduled approximately six months out from the trip start. All of our trip leaders have extensive experience at high altitude and a proven record of safety, success and compatibility.

    Head Office Support Team

    Running successful journeys and expeditions is more about experience, knowledge and strategic management than any other factors. As an organisation, we place a substantial amount of time and resources into ensuring our trips are well planned and supported. You can be assured that the AC staff will provide you with friendly advice and knowledgeable support throughout the planning stages of your trip and we will be there to provide backup while the trip is running.

    Kelly MclarenKelly McLaren, Client Liaison 

    Kelly brings a vast knowledge of AC expeditioning to her role as 'Rest of the World' Client Liaison. Having worked for AC since 2004 Kelly oversees those trips outside of New Zealand, Europe or the Himalaya. 


     

    AC Team 2016 Landscape

    Your Health

    Expedition members will be provided with pre-trip medical advice and a medical questionnaire and asked to visit their family physician to receive a full medical examination. This information will be sighted only by the expedition leader and our medical adviser and treated with full confidentiality.

    Level of Experience Required

    To climb Cerro el Plomo you need to be physically fit, have strong mental stamina and be capable of strenuous exercise for several days’ duration. Expedition members need to be capable of carrying a moderate pack. 

    Climbing at altitude affects people differently; most climbers notice a lower performance rate than normal. Our climbing days are mostly short to accommodate this and vital rest days are usually welcomed! Our graduated acclimatisation program allows you to progressively consolidate your fitness. See our Fitness Training Programs for information on how we can help you prepare for the expedition.

    History

    The Incas climbed to El Plomo’s summit periodically in the 15th century and for many years after this, mountaineers and prospectors found traces of Incan presence on El Plomo. In 1896, this distinctive mountain was officially summited by Gustav Brandt and Rudolph Lucke. 1954 saw the discovery of a shrine and the body of a child that had been sacrificed by the Incas in honour of the Sun God, Inti.

    Food

    With the exception of the two days/nights in Santiago all meals during the expedition are provided. You will enjoy high quality ‘western’ food as well as popular local dishes. Please indicate any specific dietary requirements you may have on your application form.

    Clothing & Equipment

    Expedition members will be sent a list detailing all necessary individual clothing and personal equipment to be provided.

    Communication & Messages

    There is cell coverage throughout most of Chile and your guide is in contact cell phone coverage with our local agent. You will be able to contact friends and family back home from land line phones while in Santiago and you may have intermittent cell coverage for your personal phones. Internet services will be available in Santiago only.

  • Itinerary

    Day 1

     

    Arrive Santiago.

    2

     

    Sort equipment, expedition briefing, city tour and overnight Santiago hotel.

    3

     

    Drive to Valle Nevado and trek to Piedra Numerada. Camping overnight.

    4

     

    Acclimatise in Piedra Numerada. Camping overnight.

    5

     

    Trek to Base Camp Federaciones. Camping overnight.

    6

     

    Acclimatisation day, optional ascent of Mt Leonera (4,975m). Camping overnight.

    7

     

    Summit attempt. Camping overnight.

    8

     

    Contingency day. Camping overnight.

    9

     

    Return to Santiago, overnight hotel.

    10

     

    Fly to Mendoza (those continuing on to climb Aconcagua).

    The expedition begins and culminates in the Chilean capital city of Santiago, the fifth largest city in South America. With no shortage of cultural sights to see, neighbourhoods to explore and gastronomic delights to experience, this is a city that has a lot to offer.

    We spend a day in Santiago, allowing time to finalise our equipment, have a team briefing as well as a tour of the city. The following day, you can enjoy the Chilean scenery as you travel for a few hours with your guide as you make your way to the Valle Nevado. We load up the mules with your equipment, and the start of the trek towards Piedra Numerada (3,370m) where the team will camp overnight. This is our base for another day as you enjoy a day trek and gain valuable acclimatisation.

    It is then onwards to Base Camp located at Federaciones (4,000m) at the foot of El Plomo. From here, you can take in the magnificent views of the valley and its hanging glaciers. We spend another day acclimatising here, with an optional ascent of Mt Leonera (4975m). After which, it is up early for the summit attempt. En route to the summit you will get the opportunity to visit the site where preserved remains of an Incan mummy were discovered in 1954. Once on the summit, you will be rewarded with stunning views of the central Andes and on a clear day, you may be lucky enough to see Aconcagua to the north.

    Descend to Base Camp, and prepare for the final day’s travel back to Valle Nevado and Santiago.

  • Add Ons

    Cerro el Plomo is an ideal pre-acclimatisation climb for Aconcagua. Aconcagua, “The Sentinel of Stone”, is the highest peak outside of the Himalaya. Located in Western Argentina - the heart of the Central Andes, it is South America’s highest peak and one of the much sought after "Seven Summits".

    An ascent of this eminent Andean Peak is ideal for those wishing to experience high altitude expedition mountaineering and is often undertaken as a preparation climb for the big mountains in the Himalaya.

    View Trip

  • Travel & Rescue Insurance

    Adventure Consultants recommends the following travel insurance and rescue insurance options, although this is only just a start! Once you book on a trip with AC, your Client Liaison will help you by sending through advice on your options;

    • Travel insurance
    • Trip interruption
    • Trip cancellation
    • Medical Evacuation and Rescue Insurance

    RIPCORD RESCUE TRAVEL INSURANCE

    Ripcord Rescue Travel Insurance Logo webRipCord is the leading medical evacuation program offering elite evacuation and rescue services. With their new partnership with TravelEx, they can also now provide the benefits of a traditional travel insurance product with their just released, RipCord Rescue Travel Insurance™. This is specifically designed for the adventure enthusiast with unique trip cancellation/interruption, medical expense, sporting equipment and other coverage benefits to protect your financial investment.

    RipCord is powered by Redpoint Resolutions, an elite team of special operations veterans, Stanford Medicine affiliate physicians, paramedics, nurses, former intelligence officers and other medical/security experts comprising the most experienced team in the industry. They will rescue you from the field wherever your emergency occurs and evacuate you to your home country hospital of choice.

    RipCord rescues you from the field if you have an emergent medical condition that will result in significant permanent injury and/or death, but does not require hospitalisation.

    RipCord are proud to partner with Adventure Consultants to provide RipCord’s industry leading rescue, evacuation and travel insurance coverage to its clients.

    Adventure Consultants can also assist with purchasing polar cover for Antarctic expeditions and if interested in this, please contact RipCord directly for a specialised quote.

    GLOBAL RESCUE MEMBERSHIP SERVICES

    Global Rescue SnipAdventure Consultants also recommends the rescue evacuation and security membership/services provided by Global Rescue, which provides transport from the point of illness/injury back to your home countries hospital of your choice. TotalCare provides real-time access to medical information and coming soon, this includes urgent card and speciality consultations from some of the world’s health physicians at the Elite Medical Group and John Hopkins Medicine in Baltimore.

    Recently Global Rescue has released a new travel insurance product, the Signature Travel Insurance option. This has no height limitation and gives comprehensive cover for trip cancellation/interruption, medical and dental expenses, delays, lost luggage as well as optional add-ons to ‘cancel or interrupt for any reason. This is currently only available to US Residents.

    Click here to find out more about this insurance cover which covers climbing and is thus suitable for many of our expeditions.

  • FAQ

    • Expedition Documentation

      Please note you will be mailed a set of Team Reference Notes upon registration. This extensive booklet includes detailed information to assist in the planning of your trip; from travel and medical advice to equipment lists and photography tips.

      The following is to serve as a helpful guideline on our South American Expeditions. Please feel free to call or e-mail if you have any further questions. Our team is here to help!

    • Choosing a Provider

      How long has Adventure Consultants been in operation?
      Adventure Consultants started in 1990 and we have been guiding internationally ever since.

      A few outfitters ‘claim’ to have the same level of experience and prestige with that of Adventure Consultants. In this league, what makes you a first choice for your climbers?
      We are renowned for the quality of our service and strategy applied to our treks. Our reputation is attributed to our meticulous planning and logistics coordination done by our head office. Once on the ground in South America, our local agents and guides will ensure that the trip runs to the highest standard, so that you can relax and enjoy climbing through this amazing country.

    • Food, Accommodation & Facilities

      What showers and washing (clothes) will be available on the expedition?
      Showers will be available the city hotels that are utilised prior to and after your trek or climb. After your departure from town, please do not expect a shower each day but where possible, these will be offered. We advise people to bring wet-wipes for the impromptu wash in between available showers.

      Would you let us know what food will be available?
      If you have any special treat you like, we encourage you to bring some along. You’ll get breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as snacks, and ample hot and cold drinks. We can cater for vegetarians as well as many other special diets as long as we are informed of this prior to the trip. All of our expeditions provide excellent local and western food!

      What is the food like?
      When staying in the cities, expect a wide variety of options. Once on the trekking/climbing program, our well-trained cooks prepare high quality ‘western’ food as well as popular local dishes. Please indicate any specific dietary requirements you may have on your application form. We are happy to accommodate for those with specific diets.

      What are the hotels/lodges like? Can I have my own room?
      Through our local agents, we book centrally located mid-range hotels and tidy, clean, modern lodges. Once on your trek/climb program, you will be staying in tents which will be part of a larger camp. Our standard trips are based on shared rooms, usually twin share.

    • Travel

      Do I need to arrive the day before the trip starts? And when should I book my flight to leave?
      No, our trip programmes all have an arrival day and a departure day built into them. You are welcome, and encouraged, to arrive a bit earlier to explore your arrival and departure city if you have the time.

      My travel agent says I can just get an ‘e’ ticket (electronic ticket) and will not need to be actually issued a physical ticket.
      'E' tickets are the standard practice these days and are now acceptable in most locations. Do ensure you print your itinerary and have your booking number with you, as this allows our local agents to assist with changing your return flight plans if need be, while you are in the mountains.

      When should I book my ticket?
      Generally we ask you to wait until 90 days prior to your trip start date to ensure your trip has met the minimum numbers and will operate. If you see a good deal and want to book your flights then ensure you can make changes to your tickets or you run the risk of losing your ticket if we do have to cancel the trip. In such situations we are usually able to help you book on to an alternate departure, either with us or another operator.

      Can I get a cheap ticket online?
      The problem with these tickets is that you usually end up having to pay quite a lot more if you have to make any changes to your ticket. Some of the places we go to aren't straightforward, and we highly recommend using a travel agent for such travel as there are many intricacies that they can help you with. In the long run they save you money! We use professional travel agents for all our staff and guides' travel bookings to our expedition and trek destinations.

      Where do we meet? Will I be picked up?
      Our South American departures tend to fly into Santiago International airports and from there onwards to Lima in Peru, and Mendoza in Argentina. Where possible, an Adventure Consultants representative will be there to pick you up off your flight on the scheduled arrival date. If you are arriving before the scheduled trip start date, we can often make arrangements for a pick-up, though taking a taxi is generally the easiest form of transport before your trip starts.

      What if I am arriving early or departing late?
      Adventure Consultants can make reservations for you and can often make recommendations for attractions you can enjoy while waiting for your trip to begin. Please let our office know your specific plans as we love to pass on sightseeing tips.

      Do I need to get a visa to travel to Peru, Chile or Argentina?
      Most visitors to Argentina who stay for less than three months do not require a visitor’s visa, but you must check this with your local embassy or travel agent for updates. Australian, Canadian and US travellers should be aware that both Chile and Argentina charge a reciprocity fee, so please do check this prior to travelling.

    • Clothing & Equipment

      Do you have a recommended list of clothing we should bring?
      Yes, you will get be sent a personal clothing and equipment list once our office has received your trip registration form and deposit.

      Do I really need all the equipment on the equipment list?
      Yes, these lists have been carefully prepared so that you have clothing/equipment for all eventualities. Please bring everything on the list!

      How warm do we need our sleeping bags to be?
      This will be clearly stated in your recommended gear list. It will depend on where you are going, but in general you will need a sleeping bag warm enough for you in conditions that can be as cold as freezing. We suggest buying a sleeping bag big enough to allow you to wear some clothes in if it is especially cold. Sleeping in a warm hat can greatly improve a bag's warmth.

      Will an altitude tent be carried or available during the trek?
      On our Aconcagua departures, a PAC bag and oxygen are available at the Plaza Argentina Base Camp doctor's tent.

      What altitude medication will be available on the trek/climb? Do we need to take tablets before/ during the trek/climb?
      All our guides carry extensive medical kits on the treks. You need to bring any medications you regularly use (don’t forget to tell us about them) plus extra. Also bring a small first aid kit including a blister kit and mild headache medication for the normal altitude headaches.

      How much weight can we carry on the trek/climb?
      When on the trekking portion of your itinerary, you will carry your daypack with warm clothes, water, snacks, sun block, camera and whatever else you need for the day. Generally it will be light, 5 to 10kgs (10 to 20 pounds). When climbing the likes of Aconcagua and Alpamayo, your packs will be much heavier so do make sure that you are 'pack fit' prior to arriving onto the expedition.

    • Guides & Team Members

      Who goes on your trips?
      Our climbers come from a wide variety of backgrounds, interests, countries and skill levels. From those seeking skill development, to those seeking assistance with the world's highest mountains or purely adventure, we provide courses, expeditions, treks and guided ascents for all levels of outdoor enthusiasts.

      I would like to arrange a private trip, is this possible?
      We are happy to arrange a private group trip to the destination of your choice and we have run many successful private trips and expeditions including summits of 8000m peaks such as Manaslu and Kanchenjunga, all Seven Summits and remote destinations such as Antarctica. There is no specific group size, but obviously larger groups are more cost effective.

    • Health & Fitness

      What kind of physical condition should I be in for a trek/climb?
      We cannot recommend enough in regards to being fit prior to the expedition as this will make all the difference to your acclimatisation, and ultimately, your enjoyment. For our South American expeditions, you should be comfortable walking for 6-8 hours with a light pack. Walking a few hours each day, then 6-8 hours on the weekends is generally a good realistic training programme.

    • Communication & Electronic Devices

      Will there be any access to a satellite phone? If yes then what would be the charges for usage?
      Yes, most of our expedition guides take satellite phones and you are welcome to use these at US$3-$4 per minute depending on the region. Most often, your guide will post daily dispatches on the AC website in which your friends and family can follow your progress.

      I want to contact my friend or relative, who is on one of your trips, how can I reach them?
      Many of our treks and climbs send daily internet dispatches, and we receive updates from our guides while they are in the field. The best place to reach a loved one is through our office.

      Will there be any power source for charging batteries, etc. available throughout the trek? What voltage requirements?
      We take solar panels and sometimes battery power packs on our treks and expeditions. Our first priority is to charge our computers, satellite phones and expedition electrical equipment. There is usually enough power to then charge your personal electrical equipment. If your equipment has a cigarette lighter type car charger, bring that and you can plug it in to charge. We do NOT recommend bringing rechargeable digital cameras; they tend to run out when power is not available. Use cameras with replaceable batteries and we recommend lithium batteries. We can cater for special power requirements at an extra cost - please enquire with our office.

    • Insurance

      What insurance do I need to get?
      On all of our international treks there is a requirement for each trek member to have travel insurance covering medical evacuation and repatriation insurance for when trekking. This should cover you in the event that any mishap occurs whilst climbing, where an expensive evacuation is initiated. We do also highly recommend that you purchase a standard comprehensive policy that would likely include cover for trip cancellation cover (in the event of an injury or mishap prior to your trip start date), delayed flights, lost luggage and at times, medical evacuation and costs.

      Do I need evacuation insurance?
      Yes, it is very important. Many of our expeditions are in remote places with no roads and third world medical services. In the unlikely event you get sick, you want to get to good medical care ASAP.

      Who do you recommend for insurance?
      Coverage varies based on your nationality and the trip that you are taking with us. When you have booked on for a trip with us we will send you comprehensive information on various insurance options which will serve as a good starting point for obtaining the best coverage available for yourself.

      What is Trip Cancellation Insurance?
      Trip cancellation insurance is an option that may allow you to cancel your trip without losing the total cost of the trip. Adventure Consultants highly recommends cancellation insurance for all of our trips, including our courses. If circumstances cause us to cancel a trip (minimum numbers are not reached or travel to a country becomes too dangerous) then we refund your fees paid but trip cancellation insurance covers your airfare and any other costs you may have incurred.

    • Fees & Payments

      Can I pay by credit card?
      We can accept the trip deposit payment on credit card, and we add a 3% fee to accept the balance payment by credit card for your trip. Please contact our office or visit our secure credit card page to send us your credit card details - your card is not charged at the time as we process this here in our office and not via an online payment system.

      What is included in the cost of my trip? Does it include airfare?
      Each specific trip page on the website has a section as well as a downloadable pdf document with exactly what is and what is not included on the trip.

      Why are you sometimes more expensive than other operators?
      Many of our trips are very similar in price to our competitors. Some companies even wait for us to set our prices and use ours as a guideline!! Some of our main selling points, which sometimes do cost more, are; internationally qualified western guides, proven dependable local operators, small group sizes and safe client:guide ratios, quality equipment and high summit success rates, among other things. You do get what you pay for which is why we stand out from the rest. Many clients come to us after failing on one of our competitors ‘cheaper’ trips.

      How do I sign up for a trip?
      The best way to reserve your space on a trip is to call our offices or complete our online booking form. Return this with the trip deposit either through a telegraphic transfer (information is on our trip notes downloaded from the specific trip page) or by using our secure credit card page. Phone our New Zealand head office on +64 3 443 8711 (Monday - Friday, 9:00am - 5:30pm PST + 19 hours) or Freephone 1-866-757-8722 from North America.

    • Photography

      What is the best equipment for photography in Alpine environments?
      There is an extensive section in our reference notes, which are sent out on receipt of your trip registration form and deposit, explaining about photography in the mountains.

      Remember photos are wonderful records of your expedition but keep camera gear simple and light to best enjoy the trip you are on. Disposable and digital cameras are the lightest weight, but all cameras have maintenance issues that need to be carefully considered before bringing them to high elevations.

    • Employment

      I want to become a mountain guide, where do I start?
      Those with limited experience generally start by taking an alpine climbing course and then go out and climb for a few years. You generally should have at least 5 years of climbing and/or teaching/guiding experience. You need avalanche and medical training and then you can apply to do a NZ Mountain Guides Course or the equivalent in your country, aligned with the IFMGA. Check the New Zealand Mountain Guides Association web pages for a complete description.

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Elbrus Basil's Cathedral

I have traveled with three other providers on big expeditions over the last couple of years, ...you guys have the best pre-trip customer service of them all! Can't wait to hit the mountain.
Elbrus Expedition

Selina Dicker
UK
000036

Adventure Consultants provide a no fuss no worry service from the first enquiry to the expedition follow up.
Elbrus, 2012

Ginny Cross
Australia