Where in the world do you want to go?
Mountaineers range far and wide within North America, venturing East, North and South from our home territory. The Pacific Northwest may be home to many wonderful places, but the rest of the country sometimes offers that little something that we can’t find locally. We venture across the expanse of this great continent to find outdoor adventure.
Lukla, Nepal farewell dinner(Geoff Morgan)
But why stop at the continental shelf? Take your backpack, skis or kayak to distant shores with The Mountaineers and at rates which can rarely be beaten.
Global Adventures, led by experienced leaders, have included Nepal, Bhutan, Ireland, Scotland, England, Switzerland and France. They range from strenuous ski tours to treks to walking trails.
Information about both of these types of outings is provided below as well as in the Mountaineer magazine. Global Adventures are announced anywhere from eight months to a year in advance. You must be a Mountaineers member to participate and a deposit is required.
North American AdventuresBackpack the best of the Colorado Trail
Hike the Presidential Traverse
Climb Red Rocks, Nevada
Cross-Country Ski Sun Valley
Nordic Ski B.C. Resorts
International AdventuresThree weeks hiking in Italy’s Dolomites
Austria: Trek Zillertal hut to hut
Nepal: Trek Mustang, the Forbidden Kingdom
Backpack New Zealand’s Southern Alps and Fiordland
Trek the High Andes of Peru
Skiing or Winter Walking in Switzerland and Austria
Backpack the best of the Colorado Trail
August 16-29, 2013
Trip summary: The Colorado Trail is a 483-mile long high route along the crest of the Rocky Mountains from Denver to Durango, contiguous through much of its length with the Continental Divide trail. The 75-mile segment from San Luis Pass (north of Creede) to Molas Pass (north of Durango), containing the trail’s highest point (13,271’ Coney Summit), its longest stretch above treeline (32 miles), and immense wildflower fields and vistas, has been named a life-list trip and “best week ever” by Backpacker magazine, and one of Andrew Skurka’s ”Top-10 Long Trails” in National Geographic’s Adventure magazine. We will combine a backpack along the length of this stunning 75 miles, with a side-trip to explore the nearby Chicago Basin, a stunning hanging valley surrounded by four ‘14-ers’ and finish our trip with a ride on the historic Durango-Silverton Narrow Gauge train through the lovely Animas River Valley back to our starting point in Durango.
Itinerary: The group will meet in Durango, Colorado on Friday, August 16, for a group dinner and spend the night in comfortable three-star lodgings in town. After a fortifying breakfast at the hotel, a shuttle will arrive early the next morning to take us to our trailhead about 150 miles northeast of Durango, near Creede, where we will start our hike. Our route will trace the Continental Divide and Colorado Trails for about 75 miles from San Luis Pass to near Molas Pass, before diverging from the CT/CDT for a 15-mile side-trip into the Chicago Basin, a reknowned and stunning glacier-carved valley surrounded by four peaks over 14,000’, where we will take two days to explore out of a base camp. View satellite images and photos of the route. An on-trail resupply will be provided on Day 6, including the option of a trailside camp with hot showers and a deluxe dinner and breakfast.
We will end our trek on Wednesday, August 28, with a ride from the Needleton ‘whistle stop’ to Durango on the famous Durango-Silverton, Narrow-Gauge Railroad along the Animas River. We will walk from the train station to our comfortable Durango lodgings where we will enjoy a group dinner and breakfast the next morning, just before saying our goodbyes and travelling back to Seattle on Thursday, August 29.
The average trail day will be strenuous, ranging from 7 to 12 miles with daily elevation gains from 550 to 3700 feet and average elevation above 10,000’.
Logistics: Participants will be expected to supply and carry their own backpacking gear (tent, sleeping bag, the Ten Essentials), trail food and cooking gear for the trip. We will coordinate the sharing of some gear to reduce pack weight and will camp along the trail as we get and treat water from streams and lakes along the way. Dinners and breakfasts will be included with the rooms at the beginning and the end of the trip. A local outfitter will shuttle us to the trailhead and provide an on-trail resupply.
The trip will begin and end in Durango, Colorado, about 1,200 miles and 20 hours by car from Seattle. Transportation to and from Durango is on your own; convenient flights are available between Seattle and Durango on multiple airlines for about $400 round trip, though you may choose to drive and enjoy the lovely mountain country along the way.
Participant Qualifications: This is a physically demanding trip with some long days, significant elevation gain, high altitude and rough terrain. Participants must be in strong physical condition and have a recent history of strenuous hikes/backpacks (10+ miles/day, 2,500’ or more of elevation gain) and an ability to hike with a full pack for extended periods at 2 mph without frequent rest stops. Participants will be expected to have the gear and expertise to get their pack weight down to 35 lbs. or less, including six days of food and two liters of water. Participants must be comfortable moving with a full pack on rough trail with some steep, loose rock and boulders, and must be prepared for stream crossings, harsh weather and some route-finding. Before the trip we will discuss the effects of altitude and approaches to prevention of altitude illness.
About the leader: Cheryl Talbert has led several extended private backpack trips over the past five years in the mountain west, including the Wind River Range in Wyoming, the Washington PCT, Glacier National Park, the John Muir Trail in California, the San Juan and Maroon Bell mountains of Colorado, and the Wonderland trail around Mount Rainier. She has been a hike and backpack leader for the Mountaineers since 2009 and a global outings leader since 2011, has led multiple backpack trips with Mountaineers groups, many as dayhikes. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or 253-229-4018.
Trip price: $800 per person if the group chooses the optional on-trail catered camp with dinner, breakfast and showers; $650 without the catered camp. Price includes lodging, dinner and breakfast in Durango before and after the trip, trailhead shuttle, on-trail resupply, the catered camp midway along the trek, and a trip on the Durango-Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad from the end of the trail back to Durango. Price does not include gear, trail food or transport to and from Durango.
Registration: Please complete the enclosed application form and email it to the leader. After the leader’s approval, a deposit of $400 will be due by February 1, 2013. Final payment will be due June 1, 2013.
Cancellations: If you must cancel from the trip, you may receive a refund less expenses incurred and $100 administrative fee.
--The Colorado Trail guidebook, published by the Colorado Trail Foundation, November 1 2010
--The Colorado Trail Databook, published by the Colorado Mountain Club, May 9, 2009.
--The Colorado Trail home page
--Free waypoint downloads
Three weeks hiking in Italy’s Dolomites
August 22-September 12, 2013
The Dolomites of northern Italy, known as the “Pale Mounts” and renowned for their enrosadira sunsets with the mountains turning spectacular hues of pink and gold, encompass some of the most beautiful hiking areas in the world. Green alpine meadows--stretching between charming village-studded valleys and craggy, awe-inspiring karst mountains--provide visual feasts in every direction. Mountain walkers trod an extensive network of well-maintained and interconnecting footpaths, and visit interesting villages and well-placed rifugi (high altitude mountain huts).
Our three-week adventure begins with flights to Munich and land transport to the scenic village of Selva/Wolkenstein in the upper reaches of the Val Gardena, where we are housed in a flower-bedecked hotel. For our weeks in the Val Gardena, in the Pustertal/Val Pusteria, and near the Seiser Alm, we stay in double rooms in three- and four-star hotels, where we are served bountiful buffet breakfasts and delectable multi-course dinners.
Our hiking days are spent in areas devoted to protecting and preserving the unique alpine areas of the Sesto Dolomites, the Puez-Odle, and the Schlern/Sciliar, one of the largest upland alpine areas in Europe. Following our week hiking in the upper reaches of the Val Gardena/Grodnertal area, near the huge mountain massifs of the Sella and the Sassolungo/Sassopiatta, we move to the Sesto-Sexten area in the High Pustertal region between the Austrian border and Cortina. Our final four nights before returning to Munich find us housed in a village center under the massive wall of the Schlern/Sciliar on the edge of the alpine meadows of the Seiser Alm/l’Alpe di Suisi.
Most of our time will be spent in the South Tyrol, scene of vicious World War I mountaintop battles which preceded the formerly German-speaking area of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and ceded to Italy as the region of Trentino-Alto Adige. The German language survives as the area’s first language to this day, along with the ancient Romansch Ladin language and Italian.
Trip classification: Upper moderate to strenuous. Hiking days are long, usually 7-8 hours, and pace is moderate. Elevation gains can be 3,000 feet or more, although lifts and cable cars are used when practical to ascend or descend and to spend an abundance of time at altitude. Miles traveled are of no consequence in the Alps--only elevation and travel time from place to place is of concern. Participants must be physically able to handle the requirements of the trip and participation is subject to leader approval.
A valid passport is required. Lunches are generally eaten at private or Alpine Club high mountain huts (rifugi) or in simple farmers’ alm huts on summer alpine grazing pastures. During our stay, we will visit many popular and famous mountain refuges, including Rifugio Locatelli on the Tre Cime de Lavarado/Drei Zinnen circuit, as well as Rifugio Comici, Bolzano, and Firenze/Regensberger, to name a few.
Trip dates: Depart Seattle Thursday, August 22. We meet and spend the night in Munich on August 23, spend week of August 24-31 in the Val Gardena area, spend week of August 31 to September 7 in the region of the High Pustertal, spend September 7-11 in Castelrotto/Seiser Alm area, and return to Munich for one additional night on September 11. The group returns to Seattle on September 12.
Trip price: $3,750 Includes three full weeks with all nightly accommodations in three- and four-star hotels, generous buffet breakfasts and multi-course dinners nightly (except in Munich), all group ground transportation, maps, Mountaineer Foreign Outing and leader fee, administrative and other miscellaneous fees. Not included are lunches, beverages, two dinners in Munich, basic travel/evacuation insurance (required), airfare to/from Munich/Seattle (estimated at $1,200-$1,400), and any diversions from the group itinerary. A deposit of $2,000 is required to reserve a spot after obtaining leader approval. Priority for trip spots will be given to those on the 2012 trip wait list. Applications may be obtained by contacting leader as below. Final payment of $1,750 is due on March 15, 2013.
Sign up with the leaders, Shari Hogshead and Paul Gauthier, directly by calling 425-260-9316 or 425-957-4548, or by e-mail, email@example.com. Shari and Paul have resided a few hours from this area and have traveled extensively in the Dolomites. This is Shari’s 35th Mountaineers Global Adventure to Europe, including eight Mountaineers winter ski outings and three summer outings to the same areas of the Dolomiti/Sudtirol.
Hike the Presidential Traverse, New England
August 31-September 8 2013
Trip preview: www.youtube.com/watch?v=D7uSO4FoUSw&feature=youtu.be
You have hiked parts of the Pacific Crest Trail. Now hike nearly 25 miles of the famous trail of the east, the Appalachian Trail. This hike will traverse the summits of peaks named after eight U.S. presidents. All summits are above 4,000 ft., with the highest peak, Mt. Washington, at 6,289 ft.
Your pack will be light as the huts provide food and bedding. You will only need the items carried in a daypack and a sleeping sheet.
This strenuous hike will begin with a night of comfort at Joe Dodge Lodge, the visitors’ center for Mt. Washington. We will begin by hiking up the airline trail (weather permitting) to Madison Springs Hut, the newly renovated hut. After traversing Mt. Washington, we will look forward to Lakes of the Clouds Hut at 5,012 ft. on the upper flanks of Mt Washington. From this hut, the most popular one on the whole Appalachian Trail, you can watch the sun set over New Hampshire and the sunrise over the Atlantic Ocean.
Leaving Lakes of the Clouds hut, we will traverse the summits of Pierce, Eisenhower and Jackson before reaching Highland Center for hot showers and semi-private rooms. After a short transfer to the trailhead, the last peak, Mt.Garfield, will be traversed.
The last two nights will be at Cardigan Lodge in the Lakes District of southern New Hampshire where the granite mountains, Cardigan and Firescrew, will provide a great contrast to the presidential peaks.
Party limit: 9Price: $998 (Includes lodging, all meals, transfers from Portland, Maine, to trailheads and return, and shuttle transfers)
Leader: Patti Polinsky, MeanySports@me.com or 206-525-7464.
Austria: Trek the Zillertal hut to hut
September 7-22 2013
“Score classic Alps scenery, adventure, and hut culture without the classic crowds.” -- Backpacker magazine, March 2009
“The beauty of the Zillertal cannot be overstated, with its superb scenery and excellent huts.” -- Trekking in the Zillertal Alps
Summary: This outing combines spectacular Alpine scenery, European culture and great hiking. Our 50-mile, 9-day loop has it all: glaciated 11,000-foot mountains, high alpine passes, deep valleys, waterfalls, gemsbok mountain antelopes, alpine roses, and martagon lilies. The route requires no technical expertise, but expect long, strenuous days (despite the relatively short distance) and some scrambling with fixed cables and ladders. The European Alps have the most mountain huts in the world. These huts are large inns/guest houses where we will meet other international trekkers and climbers, hear foreign languages, share wholesome food family style, hear Mozart’s music, and sleep in dormitories. You carry only a daypack, because the eight different mountain huts have shoes, food, and bedding.
Itinerary: This is a wonderful time of year for the climate, fewer people, lower creek crossings, and no bugs. We will fly from the USA to Munich, charter bus to Mayrhofen, trek the Zillertal loop clockwise, train to Jenbach, train to Innsbruck, tour Innsbruck, train to Munich, tour Munich, then fly home. To help conserve the environment, the leader will clean the trails.
Lodging: Hotels in villages (double occupancy), mountain hut dormitories.
Food: Most meals are provided. They are a nutritious variety of European cuisine including Wiener schnitzel, Kaiserschmarren, and apfelstrudel!
Leader: Craig Miller has ski-mountaineered eight different European Alps traverses (including three in Austria), hiked the Alps, lived in Switzerland one year, and speaks some German (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Price: $3,000. The price includes all European transportation from Munich airport roundtrip (buses, trains, and cablecar), lodging, food, Austrian Alpine Club membership, rescue insurance, The Mountaineers administrative expense, and a portion of leader cost. The price excludes your international airfare (about $1,500), valid passport, some meals, and personal items.
Limit: Maximum 11 Mountaineers.
Registration: Please download and complete the application form, and then email it to the leader. After the leader’s approval, please telephone The Mountaineers Member Services at 206-521-6001 to provide your credit card number and $1,000 deposit by April 1. After your deposit is received, the leader will send you a series of many letters with information to help you prepare for this outing. Your balance is due May 1.
Cancellation: If you cancel because of an emergency, you may receive a refund less expenses incurred and $100 administrative fee.
Nepal: Trek Mustang, the Forbidden Kingdom
October 2-22 2013
“Mustang is one of the few places in the Himalayan region that has been able to retain its traditional Tibetan culture unmolested . . . authentic Tibetan culture now survives only in exile and a few places like Mustang, which have had long historical and cultural ties with Tibet.’ -- The Dalai Lama
Summary:This outing combines Tibetan Buddhist culture, a moderate trek with views of Himalayan giant peaks, mountaineering history, and spectacular airplane flights.
Nepal is a fascinating country with the world’s highest mountains, ancient culture, and friendly people. The Mustang region was an old Himalayan kingdom, opened to foreigners in 1992, is a restricted area, and requires a special permit. Upper Mustang’s geography, climate, and culture are similar to those of Tibet.
We will fly to Kathmandu, where we tour world-heritage sites. Then we fly to Pokhara and Jomsom, and begin our trek to Mustang. We hike along the Kali Gandaki, which is the deepest river gorge in the world, between Annapurna and Dhaulagiri. Annapurna is the tenth highest mountain at 26,545 feet, and was the first 8,000-meter peak climbed, in 1950 by the French. Dhaulagiri is the seventh highest mountain at 26,795 feet, and was first climbed in 1960 by a Swiss-Austrian team. We will trek to Lo Manthang, the ancient “capital” of Mustang. Inside the walled city of Lo Manthang are some of the largest Tibetan Buddhist monasteries in Nepal. This is a moderate hike with camping in tents; highest altitude is only 12,595 feet. Porters will haul your overnight gear, so you carry only a daypack.
Itinerary: This is a good time of year because there is usually excellent weather for views and photography. Fly from the USA to Kathmandu. One day (two nights) in Kathmandu to tour three world heritage sites. Fly from Kathmandu to Pokhara, view Machapuchare (Fishtail). Fly to Jomsom.
Trek eleven days, rated moderate, four layover days, highest altitude 12,595 feet. Trek up the Kali Gandaki, view Dhaulagiri and Annapurna, to Kagbeni, into Mustang, to Lo Manthang. To help conserve the environment, the leader will clean the trails.
Fly from Jomsom to Pokhara to Kathmandu. Free day on your own. Nepal cultural dinner with traditional live music and folk dancers. Optional extension to raft the Karnali River. Fly from Kathmandu to the USA.
See the daily itinerary.
Lodging: Hotels in Kathmandu and Pokhara. Camping tent on trek. Double occupancy, with optional single supplements.
Food: Most meals are provided. They are a nutritious variety of Himalayan and Western cuisine. In Kathmandu, some meals are on your own to give you the freedom to explore the delicious cuisines of Asia.
Limit: Minimum 5 Mountaineers, maximum 12 Mountaineers.
Leader: Craig Miller has led 14 different Himalayan treks for The Mountaineers (email@example.com).
Price: $3,500. The price includes airport transfers; Kathmandu and Pokhara hotels; four domestic airline flights; buses; Mustang $500 restricted area trek permit, Annapurna Conservation Area Project permit, Trekker Information Management System card, guide, sherpas, porters, food, tent, mattress pad; The Mountaineers service cost; and a portion of leader cost.
The price excludes your international airfare (about $1,500), medical immunizations, valid passport, Nepal visa (easy purchase on arrival in Katmandu for $40), insurance, some meals, personal items, and gratuities.
Registration: Please download and complete the application form, and then email it to the leader. After the leader’s approval, please mail a $1,000 deposit check to The Mountaineers by March 1. After your deposit is received, the leader will send you a series of many letters with information to help you prepare for this outing. Your balance is due June 1.
Cancellation: If you cancel because of an emergency, you may receive a refund less expenses incurred and $100 administrative fee.
Climb Red Rocks, Nevada
October 10-14, 2013
Enjoy sun and fun on moderate, sandstone, multi-pitch routes while overlooking Las Vegas. Close to the airport, lodging and meals, Red Rocks offers all the trad climbing one could want over three days.
Price: $375; $200 deposit due by Aug. 15; balance by Sept. 15. Includes: travel in Red Rocks, lodging and breakfast. Excludes: air travel, lunches, dinners.
Leaders: Loni Uchytil, John Rijoff.
Requirements: Must be a graduate of a Mountaineers crag course or an intermediate climbing course or comporable trad skills.
Cross-Country Ski Sun Valley
February 2-9, 2014
Cross-country ski glamorous Sun Valley, Idaho with your Nordic ski friends in winter 2014. Cross trails with movie stars, high-level politicians and big-name CEOs as you share the track with the rich and famous.
We lodge in Ketchum’s Best Western Kentwood Hotel, within walking distance of all the shops and restaurants in this trendy town. With nearly 200 kilometers of cross-country ski tracks, you will love the skiing, the scenery, and the fellowship. Evenings will be spent enjoying our resort amenities, such as the pool, gym, and hot tub, dining in the many excellent restaurants in Ketchum, and strolling through the town’s eclectic shops and galleries.
We will receive $5 toward any breakfast meal at our hotel’s adjacent restaurant, and each room is complete with two queen beds, a refrigerator, a coffee pot, and a microwave oven. Ski days will cover the Galena trails, the Sun Valley resort trails, the Wood River Valley trails and the Boulder ski race course (which takes place the weekend of our arrival), as well as ski trails over Galena Summit in the Sawtooth Valley.
Trip price, excluding transport to and from Sun Valley, is $975 per participant and includes seven nights accommodation at the lovely Kentwood Best Western Plus, 10 percent city and lodging tax, hotel tips, and all ski-trail passes for the cross-country tracks in the valley, Galena, and SV resort areas, as well as one day’s skiing in the Sawtooth Valley.
Trip price does not include meals (other than breakfast voucher as mentioned above), airfare or car rental. Participants may choose to either drive their own vehicle to Sun Valley, fly by discount carrier to Boise Airport and share a rental car from there, or fly via Horizon to Hailey/Ketchum Airport. Transport in Sun Valley will be by shared rental or private vehicle and/or Galena Express Shuttle service. Participants may opt to alpine (downhill) ski on some days; however, cost of Alpine pass is not covered.
Confirmation: Please check with the leader to secure a space on this trip and then pay a $300 deposit. Final payment is due November 1, 2013. Contact leader: Shari Hogshead, firstname.lastname@example.org, 541-389-9110 or 425-260-9316.
Cancellations: Cancellations made up to 60 days prior to arrival date will incur a trip cancellation charge of $50. Cancellations made within the 60-day prior-to-arrival period, will forfeit a minimum of $150. In the event that a cancellation causes a room to be occupied by a single person, canceling party will be responsible for the difference between cost for double and single occupancy. In event of cancellation, where an approved replacement participant is found at least 30 days prior to commencement of holiday, cancellation fee is reduced to $50.
Nordic Ski B.C. Resorts
February 15-22, 2014
The emphasis will be on Nordic skiing and skating, but downhill skiing and snowshoeing are readily available. Spend three nights in a large luxury home right on the Nordic trail in Silver Star and be in the village or at the downhill lifts in just a five-minute walk. We’ll cross-country ski the nearby Sovereign Lakes system as well (50 km of groomed trail). Then we will enjoy four nights in very nice ski-in, ski-out condos at Sun Peaks, taking advantage of their lift-served 30 km of groomed XC trails, snowshoe trails, and excellent downhill skiing. At both locations you can choose from cooking in our well-appointed kitchens, or eating out in nearby restaurants, after a post-ski hot tub soak! If interested, contact Cindy Hoover, email@example.com, 206-783-4032.
Backpack New Zealand’s Southern Alps and Fiordland
February 16-March 3, 2014 (plus two days in transit, US-NZ)
May calm be spread around you, may the sea glisten like greenstone and the shimmer of summer dance across your path. -- a Maori blessing
Informational meeting: An informational meeting will be held on April 25 from 6:30-9 p.m. at the Mercer Island Public Library, to share photos from our 2013 New Zealand backpack adventure and provide interested participants with more information about the 2014 trip.
New Zealand: vast alpine vistas, shimmering waterfalls, sheep-dotted hills overlooked by snowy crags, deep fiords carpeted with ancient podocarp and tree-fern forests, sweeping white-sand beaches with turquoise water, exotic native birds and sea life -- plus energetic, welcoming people, excellent services and logistics. February-March is a great time to see New Zealand. Though Fiordland can be rainy with cool nights, daytime temperatures are warm and the sun shines often in most areas.
Our 16-day main itinerary will explore the best of the South Island backcountry, from the striking alpine ridges, peaks and waterfalls of the Routeburn and Kepler “Great Walks,” to the waterfalls and sheer cliffs of the awesome Milford Sound, to the unique rock formations, southern ocean vistas and beaches of the Hump Ridge track (swim with dolphins!), not to mention the glaciers and towering peaks of Mount Cook National Park.
An optional pre-trip extension offers hut trekking along spectacular remote beaches on the Abel Tasman “Great Walk,” with options to kayak in a marine preserve and to sightsee and hike amidst the glaciers and pounding surf of the South Island”s west coast.
An optional post-trip extension on the North Island will circle through striking volcanic peaks, lakes and craters on another “Great Walk,” the Tongariro Northern Circuit. Through our trip we’ll learn firsthand about the unique ecology of the country and active conservation efforts with endemic wildlife.
Itinerary: The main itinerary will start in Queenstown and end in Christchurch, with easy air connections through Auckland. The pre-trip extension will start in Nelson and end in Queenstown, while the post-trip extension will start and end out of Auckland. Transport will be by charter and public buses, and possibly rental vans.
The main part of the trip will consist of 2-4-day tramps (Kiwi for backpacks) of 8-12 miles and 2000-3000 feet of elevation gain per day, along well-constructed trails between New Zealand’s excellent backcountry huts. The huts are basic dorm-style accommodations, typically shared with 10-20 other trampers. Because the huts have toilets and water as well as bunks with mattresses and gas cookers, we’ll carry only light sleeping bags, cooking and eating utensils, clothing and food. Between tramps we will stay in small towns in comfortable, three-star hotels (double occupancy, private or shared bath) where we can shower and wash clothes, connect to the internet, enjoy tasty local food, resupply and rest up for the next tramp. See itinerary here.
Trip Rating: Strenuous
Participant Requirements: Trip limit is a minimum of eight and a maximum of 14 Mountaineers (including the leader). Participants must be current Mountaineers members with an up-to-date waiver on file. Because participants must carry 20 pounds of gear and food for 3-4 days at a time on sometimes steep and rough trail, good conditioning, balance and recent multi-day backpacking experience are required along with the appropriate gear for variable, potentially extreme weather. The leader will provide information and personalized support to participants over the summer and fall to help everyone prepare for a successful trip.
Leader: Cheryl Talbert has been a Mountaineers hike and backpack leader since 2009, and a Global Adventures leader since 2011. She has led or co-led several extended backpacks in the western United States as well as successful trips and treks in Turkey, Spain, Italy, New Zealand, Australia, Belize, Patagonia and Nepal. This will be her fifth trip to New Zealand.
Trip Price: $3,000 for the 16-day main itinerary; $550 for the Abel Tasman/West coast pre-trip extension; and $500 for the North Island/Tongariro post-trip extension. A surcharge may be added to the price of the main itinerary if fewer than 12 people sign up or if exchange rates deteriorate significantly. Prices for pre- and post-extensions may be adjusted before final payment based on the final itinerary agreed upon by the participants.
Price Includes: Permits and hut reservations on all tracks; all lodging between the tramping segments; breakfasts and dinners in town and in transit (main itinerary only); and all transportation during the main itinerary and extensions; and a nature cruise in Milford Sound. Prices for the main itinerary and pre- and post-extensions include Mountaineers overhead expense and a portion of the leader’s costs.
Price Excludes: International airfare of $2,000; any domestic air travel needed between the main itinerary and pre- or post-extensions ($100 to $250); backpacking gear; backpacking food for the main itinerary ($200) and for the pre- and post-extensions ($100-125 each)--easily obtained in town as we go; lunches while on your own in town; drinks and snacks in town or on the road; any independent activities during free days; or any personal items. The leader will provide assistance with planning and purchasing of backpack food as needed.
Registration: To register, please complete the attached application form and email it to the leader at firstname.lastname@example.org. After the leader’s approval, please telephone The Mountaineers at 206-521-6001 to make the $1,000 deposit in order to hold your space on the trip. Registration will close on June 1, or earlier if space has filled up. A place on the roster can only be held with payment of the deposit. The balance of the trip price is due by August 1.
Cancellation: If you cancel because of an emergency, you may receive a refund less expenses incurred and a $100 administrative fee.
Skiing or Winter Walking in Switzerland and Austria
February 27-March 16, 2014
Skiing, winter walking, sun, snow, spectacular mountain peaks, gourmet dinners and quaint villages are all a part of this international holiday. After an overnight stay in Zurich, Switzerland and a short drive, we will visit Switzerland’s oldest city, Chur, in Graubunden canton. This 5,000-year-old city charms visitors with twisting alleys and historic buildings in its traffic free area.
On the guided city tour of Chur, history buffs can discover the past and hear gruesome stories from civil wars and amusing anecdotes from times of peace. Celts, Romans, Ostrogoths and Franks have all ruled Chur. After Chur we will stop in Landquart for lunch before leaving the valley to begin the climb to Klosters, Switzerland (3,868 ft.), our home for the first week. The history of this village dates to 1222. Time has stood still in Klosters. It is peaceful and quiet, has an appealing huddle of dark-wood chalets and a relaxing village atmosphere as compared to near-by Davos.
We will stay in a hotel built over 200 years ago where parts of the original structure have been preserved in many of the rooms. Jorg and Anja will welcome us to their centrally located hotel in Klosters. There is a sauna for after skiing relaxation. Great boot dryers are located in the ski room. Sign up early to be able to choose your room for the week from the picture gallery at this unique hotel.
Jorg, who was the head chef at a five-star restaurant, is now the creator of the gourmet meals, which you will also be able to enjoy after a day of skiing at Klosters-Davos, the largest ski area in Switzerland.
The range of skiing here is tremendous--over 185 miles of groomed piste with more than 30 percent being off-trail black and a reputation for marvelous opportunities for off-piste skiing. The top lift is at 9330 ft. with Klosters nestled down at 3935 ft., giving a healthy vertical drop. There are also some wonderfully long and varied trails, the greatest being the Weissfluhgipfel run down to Kublis, nearly eight miles long. This huge area also links to superb off-piste routes that go behind the ski area to Kublis and other hamlets in the area.
Davos-Klosters offers many options to enjoy the snow and sun. You can take an easy stroll or a fast walk along prepared snow footpaths and Nordic Walking paths through the snowy landscape. Davos has 111 km and Klosters 45 km of winter walking paths. Cross-country skiers will find 100 km of classic trails and 69 km of skating trails. Bring your snow shoes and explore several trails just meant for you!
After a great week in Klosters we will depart for our next week in Serfaus, Austria. With the high mountain passes still being closed by snow, our bus will drive onto a flat-bed train car and travel through a tunnel. We will stop in Samnaun, Switzerland for lunch. Samnaun (4,688 ft), is a small town located on a plateau in the upper Inn valley in Tyrol, Austria. In the 19th century, Samnaun could only be reached by road from Spiss in Austria. Thus, Samnaun was excluded from the Swiss customs territory, and retains a privileged 'duty-free' status, albeit not without controversy, in the twenty-first century.
The winter sports paradise, Serfaus-Fiss-Ladis with its three historical villages, is located on a sunny high plateau above the Tyrolean Inn Valley, framed by the mighty 3,000-meter Samnaun mountains and the Otztal Alps. Here winter sports fans have the choice of 185 km of ski runs, of which 135 km are at over 6,561 ft, 146 km of cross-country skiing trails--groomed daily and over 100 km of winter walking trails. There are more than 70 lifts. The highest lift reaches 9,251 ft.
Serfaus is a unique town. It has the smallest subway system in the world, the Dorfbahn Serfaus, 1,280 meters long, which transports skiers from their hotels to the hub of 4 ski lifts. Our welcoming hotel is located in the center of Serfaus just one-half level block from subway. There is a sauna to relax in after skiing. At this hotel you will meet guests from all of Europe in the dining room which overlooks the Otztal Alps.
After a final breakfast and goodbyes, the journey home starts, but not without one more visit to a beautiful mountain village with a small church prominently perched on a small hill of a meadow in the village of Seefeld, where the Olympic cross-country ski events were held. The Saturday market draws crafts people from nearby villages.
After lunch, the journey continues to Munich where we say our farewell to Europe.
Price: $2,960 based upon 12 participants and exchange rate of 1 Euro=$1.35 US; 1 Swiss Franc=$1.1 US.
Included: Lodging (with bountiful American buffet breakfasts and multi-course dinners), ground transportation with private bus, tips, guide fees in Chur, Mountaineer Global Adventure fee, leader fee.
Excluded: Airfare, local bus fare in Serfaus, items of a personal nature, beverages at dinner, dinner in Zurich and Munich, all lunches.
Contact Leader: For application or additional information, contact Patti Polinsky, Meanysports@me.com, 206-525-7464. The group limit is 12 to ensure a relaxing vacation for all.
Reservation and Deposit: With leader’s approval, a deposit of $1,500 is necessary to reserve a space. The balance of $1,460 is due on or before November 1, 2013.
Cancellations: For cancellation notices received prior to November 1, 2013, a full refund, less a $100 Global Adventure administration fee, plus any non-recoverable expenses, will be made. For cancellation notices received after November 1, 2013, there may be a cancellation fee charged for any non-recoverable expenses. Cancellation must be in writing and sent to trip leader via e-mail or post.
About the Leader: Patti has led 30 Mountaineers trips to Europe and has skied at most of the larger ski areas. She can assist with various side trips. Patti skis alpine, telemark, traditional Nordic and Nordic skate. She has skied all the areas on this year’s trip at least two different years. She is the director of The Mountaineers Meany Lodge Winter Sports program, which includes lessons for approximately 70-80 people each winter season. She is a graduate of the basic and intermediate climbing courses and was on their leader’s list. Patti remains current in remote medical first aid. Join her to enjoy a great skiing adventure in both German-speaking Austrian and Swiss cultures.
Trek the High Andes of Peru 2014
May 17-28 and May 30-June 11 2014
“Machu Picchu is an outstanding example of man’s interaction with his natural environment. Standing 2,430 m above sea level, in the midst of a tropical mountain forest in an extraordinarily beautiful setting, Machu Picchu was probably the most amazing urban creation of the Inca Empire at its height.”-- UNESCO
“The mountainous region of the Cordillera Blanca is where superlatives crash and burn in a brave attempt to capture the beauty of the place.”-- Lonely Planet Trekking in Peru
“The most beautiful mountain in the world.”-- German Alpine Club publication, Alpinismus,1966, referring to Cerro Alpamayo.
Summary: This outing combines a high level of physical challenge, the natural wonder of trekking among some of the highest mountains in the world, authentic high-Andes village culture and fabulous prehistoric Inca archaeological sites, all supplied within the highest standards of sustainable tourism. Participants can sign up for either or both of two linked 12-day trip segments. Preference for roster space will be given to people who sign up for both segments. See detailed itineraries here.
From a starting point in Cusco, Peru, the ancient capital of the Inca Empire, we will begin our first 12-day segment with day hikes to colorful markets and diverse, fascinating Inca ruins. To further our acclimatization, we’ll take an overnight trek through remote alpine country and over three high passes, featuring dramatic mountain vistas and villages where we’ll interact with local weavers and school kids, and learn about sustainable development initiatives in the area. This segment of our trip culminates with a five-day trek on a seldom-travelled, dramatic and challenging high-mountain route ending at the citadel of Machu Picchu. We’ll spend a day-and-a-half there to experience this famous site at sunrise, tour its wonders with a knowledgeable guide, and climb to the famous viewpoint of Huayna Picchu, before heading back to Cusco by train to catch flights back to Lima and beyond. Our high point on this segment is 16,236 ft.
Next comes the 12-day Alpamayo Northern Circuit segment, a deep-Andes trekking adventure circling one of the most beautiful mountains in the world, starting from the Andean adventure hub of Huaraz, Peru. After a day exploring this lively town at the foot of the Andes, we’ll be transported deep into the mountains for an acclimatization day hike to a high glacial lake before arriving at our camp near the tiny village of Vaqueria, the jumping-off point for an 11-day guided trekking circuit through the heart of the Cordillera Blanca. From there, our route will pass some of the highest peaks in Peru, cross several 14-16,000â€™ passes and innumerable emerald glacial lakes, to the remote northern basecamp for 19,511 ft. Cerro Alpamayo, where we’ll have a free day to rest and explore before descending to the village of Hualcayan for transport back to civilization. Our high point on this segment is 15,482 ft.
Itinerary: We’ll travel in late May to early June, early winter in Peru and a bit chilly in the high country, but the dry season and the best chance for excellent weather on our treks (and early enough to miss the worst tourist crowds). We’ll meet in Cusco (fly through Lima); day hike for two days and trek for eight days around Cusco, ending with a day-and-a-half in Machu Picchu before taking the famous Vistadome train back to Cusco for a festive dinner marking the end of our first leg of this segment. Those taking the Alpamayo extension will meet in Huaraz two days later (convenient domestic flights available from Cusco to Lima and Lima to Huaraz) where we’ll convene for the start of our Alpamayo trek. At the end of the Alpamayo trek, after a chance for a hot shower, we’ll take a luxurious overnight bus back from Huaraz to Lima where our program ends after a tasty farewell dinner. Please note that the exact itineraries may change without notice due to weather or other circumstances.
On all our treks we’ll be fully supported with guides and pack animals carrying all of our gear, setting up cozy tent camps for us each night, and preparing tasty and substantial meals. You will only need to carry a daypack. Our itinerary is designed to acclimatize everyone gradually to the altitude to minimize the likelihood of illness. During our trip we’ll spend time with local businesses and NGOs sponsoring a range of sustainable development projects, including visiting a weavers’ co-op with some of the founders of Threads of Peru, a nonprofit group which promotes and preserves indigenous Quechua communities and weaving arts by connecting them to a global market.
Lodging: Basic hotels in villages (double occupancy), shared (two-person) tent accommodations on treks.
Food: Continental breakfasts and tasty, hearty dinners are provided while in town, and three filling meals plus afternoon tea each day are provided while on our treks. The trekking cooks pride themselves on their preparations of traditional and hearty Peruvian dishes. The towns of Lima, Cusco and Huaraz also feature a wide range of international and Peruvian specialties, known for their fusion between indigenous, European, African, and Asian cultures. Vegetarian options are readily available.
Leader: Cheryl Talbert has been a Mountaineers hike and backpack leader since 2009, and a Global Outings leader since 2011. She has led or co-led a number of extended backpacks in the US as well as successful trips and treks including Turkey, Spain, Italy, New Zealand, Australia, Belize, Patagonia and Nepal. This will be her first trip to Peru.
Price: $2,700 for the 12-day Cuzco segment, including 1.5 days at Machu Picchu; $1,900 for the 12-day Alpamayo Trek segment. A surcharge may be added if fewer than 12 people sign up for a segment or if exchange rates deteriorate significantly.
The price of the Cusco segment includes all ground transport, most meals, guides and camping support for all day tours and treks, plus entry fees and tickets for parks and historical sites. The price for the Alpamayo segment includes all ground transport and an overnight bus back to Lima from Huaraz, with one night’s lodging in Lima at the end; meals, guides and camping support during our trek, and park fees. Prices for both segments include an American Alpine Club membership (with international alpine rescue insurance), Mountaineers admin expense and a portion of the leader’s costs. The price does not include your international airfare ($1,200), any domestic flights within Peru ($150 each), additional hotel nights in Lima (though these can be arranged at cost plus a small club admin fee); lunches, snacks and drinks in town, gear rentals, optional tips for trekking guides, or any personal items.
Limit: Maximum of 14 Mountaineers, minimum of eight on an individual segment, including the leader.
Participant Requirements: Must be a current Mountaineers member with an up-to-date waiver on file. Both segments include strenuous hiking on rugged terrain at high elevations for multiple successive days without such amenities as showers or laundry. For this reason, participants need to be in excellent condition with good balance and confidence traveling on rough trail with a pack, and with the capability and willingness to deal with some discomfort, cold and inclement weather for extended periods. Recent experience with strenuous multi-day backpacking or trekking, a positive attitude, and a demonstrated ability to get along well with groups under demanding conditions will be very important. Successful trekking experience at high altitude would be beneficial but is not required.
Registration: Please download and complete the application form and email it to the leader. Please indicate whether you are signing up for the Cusco segment, the Alpamayo segment, or both. Preference in registration will be given to people who sign up for both segments. After the leader’s approval, please call The Mountaineers at 206-521-6001 with your credit card number and $1,000 deposit in order to hold your space for the trip. Registration will close on July 1, or whenever the trip fills. A place on the roster can only be held with payment of the deposit. The balance of the trip price is due by September 1. Through the next year the leader will provide extensive information and assistance to help participants prepare for a successful and informative journey.
Cancellation: If you cancel from either or both segments, you may receive a refund less non-recoverable expenses and a $100 administrative fee.Back to top