The Benegas Brothers Everest Team
Our guides are some of the strongest on the mountain, and their reputation is virtually unsurpassed amongst other guides, Sherpas, and climbing teams on Mount Everest. On the mountain, you’ll rest comfortably knowing you’ve got the safety, security, and professionalism of a world-class team. Our expedition will be lead by Willie and Damian Benegas, the directors of Benegas Brothers Expeditions and veterans of Everest expeditions guiding there for over a decade. In addition to their reputation for first ascents around the planet as The North Face athletes, their success rate for guiding climbers up Mount Everest are legendary. Together, their ethic of guiding is not to climb with mega-sized, institutionalized expeditions, but to run specialty trips with personalized service tailored to individual needs.
In our expeditions, we bring together the best components of high altitude mountaineering. On a BBE expedition, you’ll benefit from our many years of experience, our world-class guides, and the most professional Sherpa team in the industry. We also work hard to utilize new technology and equipment advancements, including the latest weather forecasting facilities, safety equipment, and communications systems. We can confidently say that our expedition offers you the most respected staff, resources, food, and base camp support available.
Willie Benegas (Lead Guide)
Willie Benegas first stood on the summit of Mount Everest on May 12, 1999. Since then, he’s summitted a total of thirteen times – the second most of any Westerner. Amongst the Everest community, Willie is known for his service on the mountain: fixing the route to the summit every year, performing multiple rescues of other teams above 8,000 meters, and supporting the Everest Cleaning Efforts, which encourages higher environmental standards amongst all climbers on one of the most beautiful mountains in the world. Amongst the members of his expedition team, Willie is known for his energy and enthusiasm, his teaching skills, and the passion with which he builds his team into a group of strong and independent climbers. Whether Everest is your final goal or you’re hoping to pursue further high-altitude mountaineering, Willie will ensure that you return from the summit a stronger, more passionate climber than when you arrived.
Damian Benegas (Lead Guide)
Like his brother, Damian’s reputation for world-class climbing and guiding is virtually unmatched. He has made first ascents on alpine climbs around the world (including Nuptse, at 25,791 feet), guided on some of the world’s highest mountains, and spent eighteen seasons on Aconcagua in Argentina. In addition to his passion for the mountains, Damian brings an acute attention to detail, which is clearly evident in the precision with which he organizes the logistics and communications of his expeditions. Most importantly, though, is the number of climbers who travel around the world for the chance to climb with Damian again, even after they’ve already stood with him at the summit of the highest mountain in the world.
Our Sherpa team can count dozens of Everest summits between them. Their knowledge and experience creates an atmosphere of cooperation and commitment to the expedition and its members, and our Sherpas are regarded as some of the strongest and most conscientious on the mountain. They feel a great sense of responsibility toward both their climbing team and the high mountain environment. Our reputation is so strong, in fact, that we’re proud to say that Sherpas from other expeditions work to pursue a future position with the Benegas Brothers Team.
Logistics and Base Camp Staff
Working closely with the team is Georgina Davenport, our Logistics and Base Camp Manager. She has been working with Damian and Willie on expeditions in Patagonia since 2008, where she also ran her own adventure travel company. This will be her fifth visit to Nepal, and her familiarity with our ‘family’, the Khumbu, as well as her passion for Nepal, adds a really personalized touch. She runs expedition logistics and base camp communications down to the finest detail, working closely with both our own Sherpa team and also all the other teams in Everest Base Camp to ensure the highest safety standards possible and maximize chances of a successful summit, with our weather forecasters, and with Raju Rai, who runs our kitchen. (Have you ever had sushi at 17,500 feet? If you travel with us, you will!)
… Raju Rai has been working with Benegas Brothers Expeditions for many years, and he and his staff continue to spoil us with well-balanced and delicious daily meals that keep our camp healthy and energetic. Raju Rai works closely with Georgie to run communications between base camp and Climbing Sherpas on the upper mountain, with other Sherpa teams, and with other teams around base camp. His exceptional reputation is well-earned.
Excellent physical conditioning significantly increases your ability to acclimatize. The key to climbing high is proper acclimatization. Our program follows a calculated ascent profile which allows time for your body to adjust to the altitude. In addition to a proper rate of ascent, your performance is often related to how well you have taken care of yourself throughout the hours, days and weeks prior to summit day. Proper hydration, nutrition, and warmth must be maintained on a daily basis throughout the expedition
At BBE, safety is paramount, and our proven 100% safetly rate reflects our decades of experience. In addition to our exceptional knowledge of the routes we climb, backed up by a phenomenal support staff in base camps and weather forecasting via satellite, we are prepared for every outcome, with rescue, medical equipment, and support always standing by. Our climbs and acclimatization programs are meticulously planned for the most enjoyable ascents possible, focussing on our teams’ safely to give you the experience of a lifetime.