The Spirit of Alpinism

(360) 671-1505 [email protected]

Custom Expeditions

The American Alpine Institute has been in operation since 1975 and has been running expeditions since 1976. Early expeditions took place in Mexico, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia. But over time, the expeditionary reach of the Institute expanded dramatically.  AAI has run expeditions in each of the world's major ranges on all seven continents, and has conducted dozens of programs in the world's lesser-known ranges as well.

AAI runs regular expeditions on seven continents and in sixteen countries. Each of these programs may be offered on a private basis with private program dates appropriate to the location.

If you are interested in engaging in an expedition in a lesser-known area that is not listed as one of our program locations, we still may be able to accommodate you. The Institute has been in operation long enough and has developed enough contacts in the international mountaineering and guiding community that, given enough time, we can develop a custom expedition to any mountain or mountain range in the world.


There are a number of features that come together to determine a price for an expedition. Following are some of the considerations that we make when developing a price for custom foreign or remote expeditions.  Some locations may have more considerations, and some may have less.  The following is meant to be a sample.

  • Guide Fees
  • Guide Transportation - Transportation of guide(s) to the program site.
  • Guide Pre and Post-Trip Accommodations and Per Diem
  • On Site Transportation - This may include anything from on-site vehicular travel, to the hiring of animals, to glacier flights.
  • Local Staff - Many expeditions require local guides, animal handlers, cooks and/or porters.
  • Lodging Fees - We regularly set-up accommodations on foreign expeditions for guides and climbers.
  • Camp Fees - Some locations charge for campsites.
  • Group Camping and Climbing Equipment - Wear and tear on camping gear and climbing equipment.
  • Park and Permit Fees - These fees vary based on the location of the expedition and the individual country's rules and regulations concerning climbing.
  • Food - AAI provides meals on most expeditionary adventures.


Inclusions and Exclusions

It would be impossible to list every inclusion and exclusion for every possible expeditionary program here.  The following are some standard foreign program inclusions and exclusions:

Inclusions: Included are the guide(s), group climbing gear, group camping gear, food, camping fees, local staff fees, permit fees, on-site transportation fees and (in many cases) lodging fees during the program.

Exclusions: Excluded are transportation to the site, lodging before and after the trip, personal climbing equipment, personal camping equipment, front-country restaurant meals and guide gratuities.


Sample Ranges Available for Private Expeditions

  • Alaska Range, United States - North America
  • Wrangle-St. Elias Range, United States -- North America
  • Coast Range, Canada - North America
  • Bugaboo Mountains, Canada - North America
  • Cascade Range, United States - North America 
  • Sierra-Nevada, United States - North America
  • San Juan Mountains, United States - North America
  • Cordillera Occidental, Ecuador - South America
  • Cordillera Blanca, Peru - South America
  • Cordillera Huayhuash, Peru - South America
  • Cordillera Real, Bolivia - South America
  • Cordillera Occidental, Bolivia - South America
  • Patagonia Ice Cap, Chile - South America
  • Cordillera Fitz Roy, Argentina - South America
  • Aconcagua, Argentina - South America
  • Alps, France - Europe
  • Alps, Switzerland - Europe
  • Caucasus Mountains, Russia - Europe
  • Mt. Kilimanjaro, Tanzania - Africa
  • Himalaya, Nepal - Asia
  • Tien Shan Mountains, China - Asia
  • Southern Alps, New Zealand - Oceana
  • Sudirman Range, Papua New Guinea - Oceana
  • Sentinel Range - Antarctica

Program Finder