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Island Peak Climbing Expedition

Climb a 6000 meter peak in the Himalayas

DIFFICULTY: Moderate/Strenuous

TOTAL TREKKING DAYS: 13-14 days including rest days

MAX ALTITUDE: 6189 meters

ACCOMMODATION: mix of local tea houses, camping and 4-star hotel

GROUP SIZE: 10 people max

AGE LIMIT: 64 years old

Island Peak Climbing Overview

Located in the heart of the legendary Everest region of Sagarmatha National Park in Nepal, this Island Peak expedition offers up the chance to gain experience climbing a 6000-meter peak, and learning from experienced guides, all while taking in the culture and incredible views of this special part of Nepal.

Island Peak, locally known as Imja Tse, offers a worthy challenge and jaw-dropping views of some of the most impressive peaks in Nepal. At 6,189m, it is a great introductory peak for those looking to get into the world of mountaineering as a mixture of essential climbing skills are learned and then applied during this trip.

island peak climbing

Why Choose to Climb Island Peak

  • A GREAT FIRST 6000er: If you have been looking for a chance to break into the world of mountaineering, Island Peak is the perfect peak to start with. 
  • EPIC TREKKING:  A majority of the trek to Island Peak Base Camp follows the legendary Everest Base Camp Trek route. 
  • COMFORT IN THE HIMALAYAS: For the majority of this expedition, we will be staying in comfortable local tea-houses – which means that you will have a bed each night. 
  • CLIMBING HISTORY: The Everest region is steeped in alpine climbing lore. The Khumbu Region is kind of where it all started when it comes to big-mountain climbing Learn about the fascinating history of mountaineering and climbing in the area.
  • GAIN NEW SKILLS: Have the chance to learn new climbing from our professional guide staff (local and western). 
  • SURROUND YOURSELF WITH GOOD PEOPLE: Our participants hail from all over the world and come from all walks of life, but they all have these things in common: they love adventure travel and they want to bag a 6000-meter peak. Make friends of a lifetime on a trip of a lifetime.

Upcoming Dates: Island Peak Climbing 2023

Dates

Places

Deposit

Full

March 27th - April 13th (2023)SOLD OUT - Waiting List OnlyN/AN/A
October 10th - 27th (2023) Available$600$4300

REFUNDS RELATED TO COVID-19 :  Clients are entitled to have FULL TRIP BALANCE moved to a future trip (credit) OR request a FULL REFUND if we cancel the tour due to complications related to Covid-19

GENERAL REFUND POLICY :

  • Cancellation Less than 90 days until the start of the tour: NO REFUND – Trip deposit can be used as credit towards a future trip. 
  • Cancellation with more than 90 days before the start of the tour: 50% of the trip balance payment (less the deposit amount). Trip deposit can be used as credit towards a future trip. 
  • Cancellation with more than 160 days before the start of the tour: Full refund minus the trip deposit. Trip deposit can be used as credit towards a future trip. 

 Read our full refund policy here 

Have a question or ready to book?

Whether you’re just curious about this trip or are ready to make a deposit, we’re here for you.

To submit an inquiry or make a trip deposit, please fill out and submit the form below.

*If you are over our 64-year-old age limit but think you are up to the physical challenge of the Island Peak Expedition, please email us to book a call with our adventure consulting staff to see if you qualify for this adventure. 

Your Island Peak Expedition Trip Leader

adventure tours pakistan

Chris Lininger

Since 2017, Chris has been to Pakistan 15 times (and counting). Every year he leads group trips to K2 Base Camp, the Hunza region, and is the director and founder of Epic Backpacker Tours.

Chris wanted to take the concept of an adventure holiday a step further by combining his passion for photography, trekking, and alpine environments into one-of-a-kind curated adventures for people who are as stoked on challenging high-altitude adventures as he is – thus this trip was born!

Highlights of the Island Peak Climbing Expedition

  • Get up-close views of Ama Dablam, Nuptse, Lhotse, Makalu, and many more massive peaks!
  • Trek on the famous route to Everest Base Camp
  • Gain expereince climbing a 6000 meter Himalayan Peak
  • Get to know Sherpa culture
  • Explore cultural sites in Kathmandu
  • Sleep in comfortable tea houses and fixed campsites
  • Eat delicious Nepali/Tibetan food
  • Learn about the history of mountaineering in the Everest region.
  • Explore magnificent glacial and alpine landscapes.
  • Learn new climbing skills
  • Trek with a fun international group of like-minded individuals.

Island Peak Expedition- Day by Day Breakdown

Welcome to Nepal! After you land at Airport, a private car will pick you up and drive you directly to the very nice hotel in Kathmandu (we specifically chose the fancy Aloft Kathmandu because of its awesome amenities!).

The hotel is located in the famous Thamel neighborhood and there is plenty of cool stuff to get into within walking distance of the hotel. You can also take your time recovering from flight and just chill out. In the evening, our team will gather for our initial group briefing and trip introduction before we have our first epic team welcome dinner.

Overnight in Kathmandu.

Today, we start the day with a short sight seeing tour around Kathmandu Valley for those who want to join. Kathmandu is a beautiful city of temples, markets, bars, and cafes and has many architectural masterpieces listed in the UNESCO world heritage list. We begin by visiting Swayambhunath and Pashupatinath. In the early afternoon we will move to Balaju for rock climbing training and practice with our gear.

The guides will offer a quick workshop in using ropes and any climbing gear you are unfamiliar with. In the evening, we get back to Thamel to rest, do all the final shopping that you need to do, and maybe have a drink or two. After the final gear checks, you can enjoy the nightlife of Thamel.

Overnight in Kathmandu

Max altitude: 2,800m/9,187ft
Hiking duration: 3-4 hours

Early in the morning, our driver picks us up from the hotel and the team heads to the airport. We will be flying to the legendary Lukla Airport at 2,845 meters in a small prop plane. After arrival in Lukla, we meet our Sherpas and porters here, starting the trek as a group.

From Lukla, the team starts the hike via the small villages of Chheplung and Ghat. Walking the route of the Dudh Koshi River, we hike to Sano and Thulo Gumela. Day 1 brings us into direct contact with Sherpa culture; we get to check out the beautiful monasteries of Drangdrak Gompa and Pema Choling Gompa. After a couple of hours of hiking, we will be resting at the tea house of Phakding.

Overnight in Kathmandu

Max altitude:3,438m/11,280ft
Hiking duration: 5-6 hours

The 4th day of the trip is an exciting walk via the subtropical Himalayan forest. It’s our chance to see Nepal’s unique flora and fauna before we start getting into alpine grassland.

We also get to cross the famous Hillary suspension Bridge. In Monjo, we stop to get our permits checked and start climbing upward. The final steep climb brings us to the Namche Bazaar by the evening. This traditional trading town of the Khumbu Valley is where the dual worlds of Sherpa culture and the legacy of decades of mountaineering have come together to create one of the most fun little mountain towns in the world.

Overnight in Namche Bazaar

Hiking duration: N/A – Rest!

Today the plan is to rest, acclimatize our bodies, and to enjoy the vibrant scene that is Namche Bazaar. Sip (real) coffee in the hip cafes, eat local dumplings (manti) until your heart is content, and just generally take it easy before our push upwards the following day.

Overnight in Namche Bazaar

Max altitude: 3,870m/12,697ft
Hiking duration: 5-6 hours

Our plan today is to continue further on the classic EBC route. Following the Dudh Koshi River valley, we walk to the sub-tropical forest for several hours. Climbing above Namche, our path first continues to Khyangjuma.

As the iconic Ama Dablam appears before us, we shall first walk down the beautiful stonepaved path of Phunki Tenga. Then, we shall climb to Tengboche hill. In the village, we visit the Tengboche monastery; the largest in the region.

Overnight in Tengboche

Max altitude: 4,360m/14,305ft
Hiking duration: 5-6 hours

Leaving Tengboche, we head further north into the mountains. With the awesome views of Ama Dablam and Kantega before us, we shall stop at Pangboche. Here, we get to visit another large monastery and then climb to a medium-sized village. After visiting another big mani stupa, we hike towards Dingboche for the night’s stay.

Overnight in Dingboche

Max altitude: 4,730m/15,519ft
Hiking duration: 3-4 hours

From Dingboche, our initial climb is towards the Imja valley. Witnessing the stunning Lhotse (8000+ meters) and Nuptse (7800+ meters).

We are now starting to feel the presence of the big mountains. The altitude at this point in the trip can start to become a factor, which is why we take it slow and take care never to sleep too high too fast.

Overnight in Chhukung

Max altitude: 5,546m/18,196ft
Hiking duration: 3-4 hours

If at this point on our schedule we are on track timewise (no delayed flights from Kathmandu) and the team is feeling well, there is a chance to summit a nearby “easy” peak as part of our acclimatization program. This hike would get us up to 5,546m/18,196ft and takes around 3-4 hours. After the hike we return to the village at Chhukung.

Overnight in Chhukung

Max altitude:
5,200m/17,061ft (Island Peak Base Camp)

Hiking duration: 3-4 hours

Today we continue from Chukung to Island Peak Base Camp. Walking for a few hours to the southeast direction on the path along the stream, we soon reach our destination. Here, we set up camp with the team’s help and let our bodies rest. Views from camp are gorgeous!

Overnight in Island Peak Base Camp

Max altitude: 5,200m/17,061ft
Hiking duration: 3-4 hours

Our main purpose for the day is acclimatization and training. As we stay at 5,000 meters above sea level, you must let your body adjust to the changing air pressure and altitude.

We will hike to a spot nearby and continue our training with our mountaineering gear and so fourth. We check to make sure everyone is comfortable using their gear before we prepare our bags and get some rest before our summit push.

Overnight in Island Peak Base Camp

Max altitude: 6,189m/20,306ft
Climb duration: 8-12 hours Roundtrip

Today is the hardest and the most exciting day of the entire Island Peak climbing journey – it is summit day! We start the day early, i.e., two or three am departure. Fully geared up, we aim to climb to the summit before noon since the wind after midday can be strong.

We will tackle several technical sections as we head towards the summit.

The guides will assist you in the difficult sections as needed. There will be a 1 guide/climbing Sherpa for every two team members.

From the summit, we can witness the breathtaking panorama of the mountain vistas before us; these views are well deserved after our climb! There are peaks in all directions including Lhotse, Makalu, Ama Dablam, and more.

To ensure that we have maximum opportunity for success at Island Peak, we have factored in an extra day at base camp in the event we need to wait a day for our summit push due to weather conditions.

Overnight in Island Peak Base Camp

Max altitude: 3,870m/12,697ft
Hiking duration: 6-7 hours

Today, we make a big push down in altitude. We cover twice the distance that we did coming up, skipping Dingboche and heading straight for Tengboche.

Crossing the familiar paved path of Phunki Tenga, we will reach the village of Tengboche after roughly 6-7 hours of hiking. The return can be even more interesting as we have the time to spend shooting photos and interacting with the locals. Today, you can “hike your own hike” and go at your own pace as we go down the well marked trail.

Overnight in Tengboche

Max altitude: 3,438m/11,280ft
Hiking duration: 4 hours

Descending more again today, we will arrive back at the Dudh Koshi River. We will experience the drastic change in landscape – the alpine grassland gradually turns into a thick forest. After about 4 hours of easy walking, we will be back to Namche; time for a beer!

Overnight in Namche Bazaar

Max altitude: 2,800m/9,187ft
Walking duration: 3 hours

From Namche to Lukla, the path moves steeply downwards. As on our initial journey up, we cross Mani-stone, chortens, prayer flags, and a beautiful pine forest, leading us to Monjo and finally to Lukla. Our expedition has almost come to an end here as we wrap up our final day of trekking. Tomorrow we have our flight to Kathmandu and back to city life.

Overnight in Lukla

The goal today is to catch a flight straight to Kathmandu in the early morning.

Our driver will meet us at the airport and we will make our way back to the hotel in Thamel. In the evening, it’s party time. We shall raise a toast for our (hopefully) successful expedition to Island Peak and enjoy a final meal together.

Overnight in Kathmandu

Team members fly home or set off to explore other parts of Nepal on their own!

Breakfast is included today at the hotel but there are no scheduled activities planned. Check out is around 11 AM.

Island Peak Climbing FAQ

Trip participants need to be in good shape and capable of trekking over mixed terrain for long distances (maximum 8 hours). On average our trekking days are 5 hours per day. We employ many local porters and mules to help us carry the supplies that will make the trek to Island Peak Base Camp a comfortable and rewarding experience.

The highest point on the trip is the Island Peak Summit at 6,192 meters. 

A standard tourist visa is all you need. 

Most nationalities including USA, Canada, UK, Australia, New Zealand, and EU countries can simply fly into Nepal and get a tourist visa on arrival at the airport. 

The cost of the Nepali tourist visa depends on how long you want to stay. They have an option for 30, 60, and 90 days. 

No you do not. As mentioned previously, Island Peak is a great introductory mountain for novice climbers to learn and gain valuable high-altitude expereince before tackiling something higher or more technical. 

The K2 Base Camp Trek is a great introduction to being at high altitude if your goal is to eventually climb some 6000 or 7000-meter peaks. 

Kathmandu: 4-star accommodation at Aloft Kathmandu Thamel

During the trek: Local tea house accommodation. 2 people to a room, each member has their own bed. Bathrooms are shared. 

Trip prices are based on the sharing of rooms/tents and single (same sex) members of the group will typically be put together.

Single Room Supplement Costs: If a client would like to reserve a single hotel room and a private room for the trek, the cost is $500. If you would like your own hotel room in Kathmandu only, the extra cost is $300. 

You will need to book your round trip flights into/out of Kathmandu International Airport (Tribhuvan International Airport). 

Being the capital city of Nepal, Kathmandu has got all of the things that we love about a crazy South Asian City. Incredible historical sites, buzzing nightlife, endless cafes and bars; it is a very good time to say the least. 

We advise that you arrive in Nepal one day before the tour starts. This is so that clients can shake off any jet lag they may be experiencing, and also to give all clients more of a time window in case of schedule changes or flight delays.

We will organize our driver to pick you up at the airport and shuttle you to to hotel if you are arriving within 24 hours of the start of the tour. If you are arriving earlier, we can still arrange the airport pickup for you at cost (around $20 USD). 

When we are at Aloft Kathmandu in Thamel, there is an epic breakfast buffet with many different options including custom omelettes and made-to-order pancakes. 

While in the tea houses:

You get to order (usually the night before) off of their menu. Here are something you can expect:

Breakfast: Eggs any style, Tibetan bread, porridge + coffee/tea. 

Lunch: We usually stop at a tea house along the trekking route and order from their menu. Many options are available including Daal Bhat (national Nepali dish of rice and lentils), soups, momos (Tibetan dumplings), pasta dishes, pizza, and local Yak steak. 

Dinner: The main event!
Same as lunch in terms of options and you are able to order 1 main dish of your choosing. Daal Bhat is best because it is usually all-you-can-eat. 

Note: Vegetarians/vegans/gluten/lactose free can be accommodated as well! There are always plenty of options on the menu. 

On day three of the trip, the plan is to fly to Lukla from Kathmandu. This is an iconic airport known for the crazy runway approach. 

Once we finish the trek, we will also catch a flight back to Kathmandu from Lukla. Internal flights are included in the trip price of course!

If bad weather cancels the flight, we will need to wait until the weather clears. Please note that any extra days in Kathmandu extra from the “whats included” section are not included. Over the past three seasons, we have had a 90% success rate when it comes to catching our flights. 

Each team member has a 20 kilo (40 pounds) porter allowance. This is for your luggage that will be carried to each tea house and eventually Island Peak Base Camp.

Members are only required to carry their daypack while trekking – which just has what you need for the day in it, IE water, snacks, layers, suncream, etc. 

If your backpack/duffle bag weighs more than 15 kilos, you will need to pay for the additional weight. Cost for additional weight will be determined on the ground as prices for porters vary by the season. If you want to bring 25 kg (so 10 kg extra) as an example, the price will be around $140 USD for the entire trek.

Most other companies give a porter allowance of 12.5 kg, but with all of the gear required for this trip to be comfortable, we want to give you guys a little bit extra weight so you are not having to leave behind things you really want to bring! 

Yes!

Wifi and electricity (for charging) are available at each tea house we stay at. 

Prices tend to increase for both things the higher we go – but expect to pay no more than $5 for a 24 hour wifi card and about the same to charge a power bank. 

What People Have to Say

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Island Peak the Mountain - Abridged

Island Peak:

Locally known as Imja Tse, Island Peak, is a mountain in the so called “Land of the Sherpa” in Sagarmatha National Park of the Himalayas of eastern Nepal.

The peak was first named Island Peak in 1953 by members of the British Mount Everest expedition because it appears as an island in a sea of ice when viewed from the nearby village of Dingboche. The peak was later renamed in 1983 to Imja Tse but Island Peak remains the popular choice among foreign climbers and local Nepalis have followed suit.

The peak is actually an extension of the ridge coming down off the south end of Lhotse Sar – a major peak feature in the area. 

The southwest summit of Imja Tse was first climbed in 1953 as part of a training exercise by a British expedition that went on to summit Mount Everest. The team who climbed Imja Tse comprised Tenzing Norgay, Charles Evans, Alfred Gregory, Charles Wylie and seven other Sherpas.

The main summit was first climbed in 1956 by Hans-Rudolf Von Gunten and two unknown Sherpas, members of a Swiss team that went on to make the second ascent of Everest and the first ascent of Lhotse.

Additional Resources

Fairy Meadows

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Our Favorite Experiences

#1 Sunrise from Reflection Lake

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#2 Hiking to Nanga Parbat Base Camp

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#3 Playing cricket with the locals

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Our flagship Pakistani adventure tour.  Road trip with some  hiking and cultural immersion.

A trekking-style tour that features some very remote locations, inlcuding a K2 viewpoint.

Adventure Guide

João has born in the mountains of Madeira Islands in Portugal. Nature lover, writer, musician, guide, for him, a day without contact with outdoor vibes is a nightmare.

With a degree in Cultural Studies in Portugal and a Master of Arts in Global Cultures and Creativity in the U.K.

João found out what really matters in life can be found on the trails, and in the contact with people from different backgrounds and cultures.

Guiding, crazy trekking missions, and sharing observations about the natural world, – these are some of João’s passions. 

After trekking to K2 Base Camp and exploring all over Northern Pakistan, he fell in love with the country and the local people. His experiences resulted in his desire to share these feelings with the world.

João is one of the most experienced guides at Epic and his skillset and positive mindset in the mountains is second to none

When not in Pakistan, João is  guiding and exploring in the Madeira Islands trails –  discovering some of the hidden treasures on his Portuguese Island.

João I can not thank you enough for the off the beaten paths and views you keep giving. Definitely one of the most challenging and amazing hikes we did 1200m meters all the way up to Fanal forest and circling back to the hidden village. Wow!

– Jeffery 

travel hunza valley

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Sohail is the newest addition to the Epic Backpacker Tours team and we are beyond stoked to have him on board. As a veteran of the Karakoram and a native of Karimabad in Hunza, there is not much Sohail can’t do in the mountains. 

Besides having the ability to speak more languages than we can count, Sohail has explored every corner of Gilgit Baltistan and logs more trekking miles 

in a year than most people will do in a lifetime. As of the summer of 2022, Sohail has summited Gasherbrum 1, Gasherbrum 2, and K2 – three of Pakistan’s five 8000-meter peaks. Sohail guides several trips including our annual bespoke expeditions but specializes in Hunza Valley tours.

Chris and Sohail, and the team at Epic are FANTASTIC! Highly recommend anyone to do a tour with ‘Epic’. They have the perfect balance of fun, excitement and wild adventures, tied in with being super professional and ensuring your safety/health in a foreign environment. Don’t waste a moment and book a tour with these guys as the value for money is UNREAL!

– Borgan

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Adventure Guide

Pedro’s been traveling all around the globe since 2009. His keen interests in documentary photography, rural life, and local people from different ethnic groups have been the focus of many of his professional projects.

Since 2012, he has developed his passion for travel and awesome shared experiences into a full-time adventure photography tour leader position.

Pedro has found himself continuously going back to the Middle East, with his likely favorite destination being Iran. Pedro will be leading his 11th tour in Iran with EBT this coming spring 2020

When Pedro’s not traveling the world with Epic Backpacker Tours, you’ll find him based in the western south of Portugal planning he’s next adventure missions, logistics and working out his photos in local exhibitions.

 I loved the combination of hiking, camping around breathtaking scenery mixed with the cultural aspects. The guide (Pedro) is knowledgeable and work very hard to make the trip as memorable as possible. All in all an epic adventure with some extremely epic individuals! Go for it, you won’t regret it!

– Saisun

Touring Iran with EBT in May 2022 was way above our expectation: itineraries well planned and carefully executed, perfect mix of sights and trekking, delicious food, nice accommodation, great guides and wonderful fellow travellers. Trekking can be handled by anyone physically fit. Highly recommended for those who want to experience the real Iran.

– Sumera

Diane Bouvet

Adventure Admin / Marketing

After fleeing from the corporate fashion world in Paris towards the start of 2020, Diane has been working as a web developer and graphic designer remotely from various bases across the globe

She brings all of her incredible design and organizational power to Epic Backpacker Tours and is responsible for many of the beautiful behind-the-scenes design elements. 

Diane has been to Iran and to Pakistan twice including all over Gilgit Baltistan and KPK.

k2 gondogoro la trek

Head of Operations | Guide

A veteran of Pakistan travel, Ralph is an experienced guide, photographer and writer who specializes in documenting remote locations. 

Not one to simply go where everyone else does, he insists on exploring new and lesser-known areas.

Together with Epic Backpacker Tours, he shows people parts of Pakistan that most other operators don’t even know about. He is particularly fond of the village of Barah, which he believes will become just as famous as Hunza one day.

Just got back from EBT’s Trekking Amongst Giants 15 day tour. The experience was first class. Ralph, our head guide, ensured that the entire trip ran smoothly and relatively on time (a bonus for anyone travelling in Pakistan). We had so many unforgettable days on the tour and the trekking was well-planned, safe but also a rewarding challenge. 

– Calvin


Traveling to a non-tourist destination can be a little intimidating but EBT takes all of the worry and trepidation away. From the pre-trip call to meeting the wonderful staff in person you can tell that you are dealing with a company that has a passion for what they do each and every day. Ralph, Zahid, and Khan were supportive, kind, and always willing to go the extra mile to make sure that everyone on the trip was getting what they wanted out of the experience.

– Katrina 

adventure tours pakistan

Founder | Adventure Guide | Director

For the last eleven years, Chris has been seeking out every shade of adventure in various parts of the globe and had visited more than 65 countries along the way. 

Since 2011, Chris has logged more than 6300 trail miles across five continents and climbed multiple 6000 + 7000 meter peaks in Pakistan and Nepal.

In 2017, a distant dream and a deep passion for the mountains and people of Pakistan led Chris to found Epic Backpacker Tours at a time when foreign adventure tourism in Pakistan was almost nonexistent. Since then, Chris has guided more than 15 expeditions to various parts of Northern Pakistan.

Chris believes in using photography and powerful adventure experiences to dismantle negative stereotypes regarding what mainstream media considers “dangerous” countries while facilitating unique and meaningful memories in the mountains for countless people from around the globe. 

Long-distance hiking, learning languages, meaningful conversations, all things Turkish food, mountaineering, and making tasty coffee above 6,000 meters rank among his favorite things in life. 

For him, an ideal start to the day begins with a steaming cup of good coffee, the beam of a headlamp, alpine boots, and a camera in hand.

When he is not leading or planning tours, Chris works as a writer and photographer on his blog Off the Atlas – an adventure travel blog all about Pakistan. 

Read this interview our staff did with Chris to learn more about him!

Chris believes in Pakistan and its people, and he believes in the value of journeys shared with others and family cultivated on the road. Honesty and integrity are at the heart of what he does, and this really shines through in his work as a guide. He also makes great coffee – whether at 5am in an empty guesthouse or half way up a Himalayan peak.”

– Will De Villers

Pakistan is a magical country! Had 3 of the best weeks of my life thanks to Epic Backpacking Tours with owner, and one of our awesome guides, Chris. From detailed itinerary, preparation with an equipment list, and visa assistance. To amazing food, great porters, helpful guides, and great accommodations. Epic really hit home run after home run. […]

Their desire for adventure and amazing trip is just as high as yours. Bring a good pound of coffee for the trip. French press coffee every morning and no average tin coffee, plus you’ll be in your guides good books.

– Clark Tyler

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