Alpine Adventures - Mountain Adventures In The Adirondacks Since 1985 - Instruction & Guiding For Rock Climbing, Ice Climbing, Mountaineering And Backcountry Skiing
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Guided Mountaineering

A mountain adventure can start with just you and your boots! We offer non-technical and semi-technical adventures, throughout the year, in the Adirondacks and afar. If you aspire to more technical objectives, be sure to visit our Guided Rock Climbing and Guided Ice Climbing pages.

Our approach to guided mountaineering typically takes one of two directions. It can serve to increase your chances for successfully completing a particular climb, or climbs, or it can be just for fun! Whatever direction it takes, guided mountaineering will help you make the most of your climbing time.

The best guide/client relationships are built upon familiarity and experience. The resulting dynamics closely resemble a partnership, although the guide remains your “ace in the hole”, as you enjoy the mountains together. With this approach, a talented guide can expose you to more climbing, tailored to your preferences, than you could otherwise expect to enjoy.

In keeping with our commitment to personal attention and individualized experiences, guiding arrangements are made with a maximum of three clients per guide – often, we climb with a single client. Unencumbered by concern for disparities in ability or personality, this ideal setting assures the experience focuses on your preferences and makes the most of your abilities.

Summit-bound on a semi-technical Adirondack slide climb

Practicing self-arrest skills

Requisite Skills & Familiarity
Instruction may be necessary for you to acquire the requisite skills for the adventure you have chosen. Fitness requirements also apply to most of our guided adventures.

Only after a guide and client get to know one another does it make sense for them to plan, and undertake, demanding objectives so, at first, we limit our choices to objectives well within your estimated ability. After climbing with us for a day or two you will have a clear picture of our expectations and we will have a clear picture of your abilities.

Once you are comfortable with us, and we are knowledgeable about you and your abilities, we can build a guide/client relationship based upon familiarity and experience. Together, we can then establish realistic objectives that provide challenge and satisfaction, specific to your interests and abilities.

Guided Climbing In The Adirondacks
The Adirondack Mountains offer a vast resource and we have amassed a large collection of adventures for all ability levels. This list continues to grow and we welcome the challenge of creating an adventure just for you.

We can arrange for summer and winter ascents of peaks, with or without maintained trails. The Adirondack Mountains offer numerous scrambles on open rock slides and exposed summit ridges. From a large collection of long and short climbs, we’ll help you choose an adventure that’s just right for your current fitness, goals and preferences. From a quick dip in a mountain stream to the perfect scenic photo opportunity, our mountain adventures focus on more than just the climbing. Our guided hikes, scrambles, and climbs are a great way to expand your horizons.

We guide on nearly 100 peaks inside the Adirondack Park. You can choose the type of climbing you like best and, with our vast selection, there will always be something new.

In addition to roadside peaks, offering quick access, you can pick from a collection of more remote destinations. We’ll go fast and light on these day-long outings that combine hikes of up to fifteen miles with an ascent to an Adirondack summit. Excellent fitness is essential for these wilderness adventures. Some remote objectives can be, or must be, arranged on an overnight basis.

You will not find specific routes listed, or described, in this web site. We believe that featuring specific destinations promotes overcrowding, which is contrary to Our Values. Nearly all of the photos found in this web site were taken during our programs and they should serve to give you a general idea of the resources we have to offer. For the specifics, you will need to contact us directly. Then, we can discuss objectives tailored to your interests and abilities.

Cost & Booking

Adirondack summit view

Via ferrata adventure

Classic alpine destinations

Approaching the summit

Guided Trips Worldwide
Although Alpine Adventures is based in the Adirondacks, our guiding perspective extends around the world. Over the past quarter-century we have accumulated vast experience running small, personalized trips to destinations in North America, South America, Europe, and Australasia.

All of our trips are privately arranged, occasionally for three clients, sometimes for two, often for one, but always for individuals we already know well. Each trip is custom-crafted for the unique abilities and interests of the participant(s). These personalized adventures can open the door to objectives that might otherwise be impossible for you.

To avoid the pitfalls common to many commercial trips, and to make the most of your valuable climbing time, we adhere to the following principles.

Our Trip-Planning Principles

Proven Technical Skills
We believe a trip’s objectives should be designed around your abilities, not adjusted to accommodate them after the fact. Because of this belief, we only arrange trips for clients with proven skills. For technical rock and ice climbs, this knowledge is critical – for semi-technical mountaineering it also important.

Compatible Personalities
Some of the most engaging reading to be found in expedition accounts pertains to personality clashes. While it makes for colorful reading, and it may even encourage character-building, suffering with incompatible personalities, especially strong ones, does not make for fond vacation memories. And it is largely avoidable.

Almost all of our trips are arranged for individuals, where the only personality issues are between client and guide; or climbing partners, who are already comfortable with one another. This eliminates most compatibility issues right from the start. On the rare occasion when we bring two or three unfamiliar people together for a trip, we only do so if we believe their personalities, skills and risk-tolerance are very compatible.

Appropriate Destinations & Seasons
An appropriate destination is one that offers objectives compatible with your abilities and interests. The best destinations will leverage your strengths, more than challenge your weaknesses. We will make sure you and your destination are well suited for each other before arranging a trip.

Visiting the right place is the first step, but being there at the right time is equally important. Sometimes, peak season is a poor time to visit a destination because of crowding. In most cases, crowds present a bigger obstacle than weather so a visit during “shoulder seasons” often makes more sense. Sometimes it’s better not to go at all than to go at the wrong time. We will make sure the timing fits the destination.

Multiple Objectives
We rarely conduct single-objective trips. Trips aimed at a single objective become pass/fail experiences; you either succeed or you don’t. After investing large amounts of time, energy and money, there is tremendous pressure on clients and guides to succeed. This pressure can influence judgment and encourage otherwise unjustifiable risk-taking.

When a trip includes multiple objectives, failure with one can be offset by success with others. If a climb can’t be completed due to weather, or other obstacles, it becomes a set-back rather than a complete failure. When there are other successes, often failures serve mostly to remind participants that uncertainty and demanding objectives go hand-in-hand.

Flexible Itineraries
One of the most important aspects of our trips is that they are rarely constrained by fixed itineraries. Long before departing, with your input, we assemble a “hit list” of appropriate routes – more than we could possibly complete during the trip. This list provides a framework for the possibilities.

Once we arrive in the area where we plan to climb, the itinerary adjusts to account for weather, energy levels and the other factors that invariably present themselves. This type of flexible itinerary demands considerable logistical acumen, and thorough advance planning, but it allows us to maximize the quantity and quality of your climbing.

Trips Are Journeys, Not Destinations
The purpose of a climbing trip (well, our trips anyway) is to have fun! Alpinists are often very goal-oriented people but, taken to extremes, this attitude can turn otherwise enjoyable experiences into forced marches. We are convinced that goals are essential for a successful trip (wait until you see one of our "hit lists"), but we are equally convinced that their importance is derived, not so much from reaching them, but from the journeys required to reach them. Our trips focus more on the journey than the destination.

A Trip Is More Than Just Climbing
Climbing objectives always form the nucleus for each of our trips, but we don’t stop there. Accommodations can vary from well-appointed inns and motels to mountain huts; mountain campsites; and even bivouacs. Likewise, meals can range from an energy bar, half-way up a climb, to a sumptuous feast in a fine restaurant. Often a cool dip, or a hot soak, after a strenuous day is very welcome and sometimes cultural, historical or other aspects of a place are simply not-to-be-missed. By maintaining flexibility, and assembling these options according to your preferences and mood, we can enhance your enjoyment of the trip beyond just the climbing.


Swinging bridge

Celebrating… after a long climb

Alpine climbing – where rock & ice climbing meet mountaineering

To Learn More About Trips
Because of the personalized nature of our trips, they are neither listed nor described in this web site. If you are interested in arranging a trip, the best approach is to contact us by telephone so we can discuss the particulars.

A Few Suggestions
Before investing in any guided trip you should ask yourself if you have carefully considered all of the issues we address above. If your plans don’t address these issues you may find your trip includes some unpleasant surprises.

In most cases a trip will work far better with a guide who knows you well – even if local guides might know the destination better. A talented guide can often operate nearly as efficiently on unfamiliar terrain as at home, and a responsible guide will always do whatever research is feasible to enhance a trip’s success potential.

Sometimes bringing your own guide does not make sense. When a trip’s primary purpose is not climbing, and you have just a day or two to climb, when your guide can not accommodate your schedule, or when you may not have a chance to make the trip later, it may make sense to change your expectations, hire a local guide, and go anyway.

Comparing Guides, Guide Services & Climbing Schools
When we started Alpine Adventures, the mountain guiding industry consisted of a small handful of devoted professionals. Over the years, the industry has grown enormously and you will find a wide variety of companies offering an even wider variety of services. To help you make an informed decision when purchasing mountain guiding services, we have prepared a list of concerns you might wish to consider at Comparing Guides, Guide Services & Climbing Schools.

Many factors will enter into an informed decision, including a company’s experience, qualifications, prices, availability, and the level of services offered. It is essential that you clearly understand what is available, your own needs, and what is being offered before you can assess the value of any program. Keep in mind that there is no single credential that will guarantee you a quality experience – be especially wary of anyone who claims to have one.

World-wide adventures

Negotiating a glacier

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~ Mountain Adventures In the Adirondacks Since 1985 ~

Alpine Adventures, Inc.
10873 NYS Route 9N, P.O. Box 179
Keene, New York 12942 USA

(518) 576-9881

Copyright © 2004-2019 Alpine Adventures, Inc.