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Expedition Opportunity for New England AAC Members

Posted on: January 12th, 2012 by Northeast Region

Climbing Expedition to Volcan San Jose


With Kurt Diemberger, (5856 m / 19,213 ft) 8-10 Days


Optional ascents of Marmolejo (6,110m/20,050ft.) 8-10 Days


And/or Aconcagua (6959m/22,830ft.) 14-17 Days


March 2012


Kurt Diemberger moving to high camp

Join MT MOUNTAIN GUIDING for our special expedition, featuring a one of a kind opportunity to climb with a legend: world-renowned climber-photographer Kurt Diemberger. This fantastic journey will allow you to learn mountain photo and film techniques from Kurt Diemberger, the Master himself. The Camera Man of the 8000’s will be there to impart some of his knowledge and share his experiences, as he wishes to pass on the legacy of the “Highest Filmmaking Team in the World,” formed with the late Julie Tullis (together, they filmed on Everest, Nanga Parbat and in the Karakoram).

Kurt is the only person alive to have the distinction of making first ascents of two of the world’s 8,000 meter peaks, Broad Peak in 1957 and Dhaulagiri in 1960. He climbed each without supplemental oxygen, and Broad Peak, which he climbed with the late Hermann Buhl and two others, was the first eight-thousander to be climbed in West-Alpine-Style, long before this technique became widely used on the Himalayan giants. Kurt has, in all, climbed six of the eight-thousanders, however, he is probably best known for his 30-year association with K2, and for surviving the 1986 tragedy which claimed the lives of 13 climbers.

Kurt Diemberger crossing the Engorda Stream

This became the subject of one of climbing’s most widely read books, “The Endless Knot,” and the award-winning movie “Mountain of Dreams and Destiny.” In addition, he has climbed in virtually all of the world’s mountain ranges, including many first ascents, from Africa to the Himalayas, and from South America to  Greenland. He has received many awards for films, photographs, and literature. Without a doubt, he is one of the most renowned  climbers, an influential writer, and an indomitable survivor. Unable to escape the pull of the mountains, Kurt has returned to the great ranges. Come and join him on his next expedition to the Andes.

 This unique excursion to the famous Chilean Andes will provide you with an opportunity to climb one of Kurt’s and Martin’s favorite peaks, which have been selected because of its amazing views and photo opportunities, incredible biodiversity, river crossings, multiple camps, portages, hot springs, and low initial elevation. Volcan San Jose is an uncomplicated climb to high altitude over easy terrain with some snow, which leads to a wonderful  summit crater.

Volcan San Jose

We have extended the itinerary for the ascent of Volcan San Jose. These extra days are important for better acclimatization, therefore, will be used taking supplies to higher altitudes, and to allow plenty of time for composing photographs.  By doing so, we will increase our chances of reaching the summit, as well as make the ascent more enjoyable and less tiring. Participants should be familiar with the use of ice axe, crampons,  and rope.  In addition, we will rely on guides, porters, and pack animals to help us with the loads, and to establish camps at the Plantat mountain hut (3,480 m/11,420 ft), Camp One (4,500m/14,670 ft.) and Camp two ( 5,200m/17,060 ft).
 Members of the expedition will also have the option to climb Marmolejo 
(6,109 m / 19,600 ft.), which is the southernmost “six-thousander” (in meters) in the world.  Marmolejo is separated from San Jose only by a narrow pass. Both mountains form part of a long chain composed by a series of summits surrounded by imposing glaciers. This six-thousander is of easy access and its ascent will be relatively simple. After our summit bid to San Jose,  guides, porters and  members of the expedition willing to continue to Marmolejo, will  move camp to the other side of the mountain, where we will establish base camp (3,500/ 11,500ft). Next camp will be established at Marmolejo Pass (4,150 m/13,620 ft.), then camp One (4,900m/16,100ft), and if snow conditions allow, a higher camp between Camp One and the summit. Camp Two. These not interested in Marmolejo can slowly descend to the Plantat mountain hut, and wait for the rest of the team in Baños Morales.

Camp Two (5,200 m 17,100 ft.)

For those insisting on the big one, we have created an optional 16-day extension that will include a traverse of Aconcagua  (6,960m 22,841ft). By taking advantage of the acclimatization & fitness achieved on San Jose, we can then move very quickly along a customized route following the Polish Glacier. This, as opposed to the normal route, is not as congested with guided and non-guided climbers from all over the world, but has the same percentage of summit success as the normal route. Depending on conditions, we may  complete the traverse with a descent via the normal route.
For more information please contact:

MT Mountain Guiding
PO Box 2986
New Haven,  CT 06515
[email protected]


NEWS FLASH: Kurt Diemberger will be giving a feature slide show during the upcoming AAC Annual Benefit Dinner weekend in Boston! Kurt will be giving a slide show on Friday, March 2 at the Westin Hotel in Boston. This show will be free to AAC Members and open to the public. You can purchase tickets for the Annual Dinner here:

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