Active + Adventure

Adrenaline High

by Sarah Tuff

The dream: To climb where the eagles fly
Go to: Soler Valley, Patagonia, Chile
And enroll at: Alpine Ascents International's Patagonia Mountaineering School

This is the greatest homeroom in the world, with meringuelike mountain ranges that peak at more than 13,310 feet and plummet to ribbons of turquoise rivers running through valleys. Bienvenido to Chilean Patagonia, the site of Alpine Ascents' ten-day mountaineering school. Students include never-evers to experienced mountaineers, and itineraries are tailored to specific backgrounds. After sleeping in tents at the base of the Andes, the intrepid climb to the head of the class along secret glacial bowls and the Paulina Icefield. Clients scout out summits, learn how to evaluate mountain hazards, and acquire the technical skills to tackle even Everest. Then it's time for recess: a celebratory stay at a 2,000-acre ranch on Lago Plomo, for toasting with Chilean wines, and toasty, soft beds.
Ten days, $3,500, including meals and tents

Alpine Ascents
Tel: 206 378 1927

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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