Everest

Mount Everest South Side Summit Climb

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Benegas Brothers Expeditions began guiding expeditions on Mount Everest in 1999. Along with our strong Sherpa team, we have proven ourselves to be the strongest, safest, and most respected guiding team on the mountain.

Upcoming Dates

April 7th - June 2nd

Every spring, we offer a full range of Himalayan opportunities. We will run our Mount Everest South Side Summit Climb, and our really fun classic Everest Base Camp Trek, culminating with two nights of comfort at Base Camp!

We fill our trips, which gives us the luxury of screening our climbers carefully. We look for climbers who share our ethics: teamwork, shared responsibility, compassion, and fun!

Benegas Brothers Expeditions has long been a leader in mountain safety. We are known for our professional integrity and maintaining a strong safety ethic among our team. We believe it’s important for our support staff to be up to standard as well, so each spring you’ll see us training our Sherpas in crevasse rescue, mountain medicine, and first response. In fact, our training sessions have grown so popular that Sherpas from all across base camp come to us for training and safety skills.

With the experience of over a dozen summits and a strong and loyal staff of Sherpas, kitchen crew, and base camp support, climbing with Benegas Brothers Expeditions is an Everest expedition incomparable to any of the larger commercial operators. Our level of service is renowned, our base camp a true family experience, and our passion for the mountain unmatched.

As we prepare for next year, we continue our tradition of leadership and attention to detail. We don’t cut corners. We conduct the absolute best program that we can, and you won’t be disappointed. For Everest climbers we are now offering pre-training with a 10-day course in Ecuador, and closer to home, on Mount Baker for 6 days.

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  • Cost

    $75,000

    3:1 Minimum of 3

  • Duration

    2 months

  • Location

    Khumbu, Nepal

  • Client/Guide

    4:1 , 3:1 or 1:1

  • Downloads

    Equipment List

  • View in Map

The Route

There are innumerable books and articles published on the South Col route providing a surfeit of information, so we include here only a summary of the route. Base Camp is situated at 5,300 meters at the foot of the Khumbu Ice Fall. Above lies the famous constantly moving icefall, which needs to be fixed with ropes and ladders. A Sherpa team arranged by Sagarmatha National Park will equip the icefall for all teams to use.

Camp 1 is located at the top of the icefall at about 6,100 meters. The Western Cwm opens out in front of us with the South West Face of Everest and Lhotse coming completely into view for the first time. It is an easy but long walk up into the Western Cwm to Camp 2 winding our way around crevasses.

Camp 2 at 6,400 meters is on a patch of moraine under the imposing South West Face. This will be our Advanced Base Camp where members can stay for extended periods between rests at Base Camp.

Another gentle slope leads to the huge Lhotse face, an ice wall of about 30 – 40 degrees in angle. Rope will be fixed on this. Halfway up at about 7,400 meters we will place Camp 3.

Continuing up the Lhotse Face we pass the rocks of the Yellow Band then traverse left towards the South Col at just under 8000 meters where we place Camp 4.

The Summit

Summit day follows the lower slopes of the South East Ridge climbing long snow slopes to reach the Balcony, a prominent feature on the route. Above this the route climbs the flank of the ridge to the South Summit, climbing occasional short rock steps. From the south summit the ridge is traversed to the foot of the Hillary Step. This famous obstacle must be overcome before the final gentle slope to the summit.

The Role of the Sherpa: on summit day Sherpas will be assigned to members to provide support and to carry additional oxygen for members.

The Climbing Programme

The approach to Base Camp from Kathmandu is a time when team members can get to know one another and enjoy the comforts of the Khumbu region. An extensive network of high quality lodges means that it is now possible to trek all the way to Everest Base Camp without having to camp en route. The initial approach to Base Camp takes approximately ten days and allows us to acclimatize properly during the slow and gradual ascent. This walk up is extremely enjoyable and many of the most famous peaks of the Nepalese Himalaya are seen. After establishing Base Camp we will spend up to a further week static acclimatizing, during which the guides will review the procedures for climbing the ladders and ropes of the Khumbu Icefall.

This will also be a time when procedures for understanding and using the oxygen breathing apparatus will be explained and tested. The initial climb through the Khumbu Icefall to Camp 1 will be hard work. After the second visit to this camp it should be possible to move up to Camp 2 / ABC. Above Camp 2 the Lhotse Face rises up to the South Col. Midway up this huge face lies Camp 3 and all members will be required to sleep at Camp 3 and descend to Base Camp before a summit attempt will be permitted. Those who wish can descend at this time as far as Pheriche village at 4,300 meters and some may wish to go even lower. This descent allows the body to recover better than at the higher altitudes and after this period of rest we return to Base Camp to prepare for the summit attempt. Now suitably acclimatized we move through the camps in quick succession (weather permitting) and climb to Camp 4 at the South Col. Some members may wish to use supplemental oxygen for the ascent to the South Col.

Summit day starts at 9pm. The guides and Climbing Sherpas will lead out the route, climbing through the night on the easier lower part of the route. Members will be required to carry the oxygen cylinder in use, whilst Climbing Sherpas will carry two additional cylinders for members to change during the summit day.

The guides will nominate a ‘turn-around’ time and this will be strictly enforced.

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.

Leadership

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.

Sherpa Team

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.

Acclimatization
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

Safety 
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.

April 7th: Kathmandu Arrivals (Two nights hotel included)

April 9th: Fly to Lukla

April 9th to April 17th: Trek to Base Camp

April 18th to May 5th: Establish camps and acclimatize

May 5th to May 12th: Rest Period

May 13th to May 26th: Summit Climb windows

May 27th to May 28th: Clean up and depart Base Camp; trek to Lukla / Namche Bazaar

May 29th to June 1st: Fly Lukla / Namche Bazaar to Kathmandu (One night hotel included)

June 2nd: Depart Kathmandu

Location: Himalaya

Length: 2 months

Trip Dates: April 7 to June 2

Prerequisites: Experience with all the logistics of climbing a big mountain. Please consult our offices with your resume and we will organize the neceasssry training. The reward for your dedication and hard work is standing on the summit of the highest point in the world

Guide Ratio: 3:1

Max: 6 climbers

Group Cost: $75,000 minimum of 3

Deposit: $20,000

Trip fee includes:

  • BBE Professional guide services (IFMGA Licensed Mountain Guide), climbing permits and max flow rate climbing oxygen
  • Airport transfers
  • Group fixed-wing flights KTM-Lukla and Lukla-KTM
  • Hotel accommodations in new Kathmandu Fairfield by Marriott Hotel for two nights before expeditions and one night after based on shared occupancy** (climbers descending early from Base Camp will probably incur extra hotel fees)
  • All tea house accommodations and meals (fixed menu) during trek in and out
  • Porter support for trek in
  • All food whilst in the mountains, base camp services, and all group climbing equipment
  • 1 Climbing Sherpa per member (1:1 support on summit day, and prior to summit push, the set up and cacheing of high camps)
  • Basic internet services, provided by Everest Link (4 x 1GB Cards provided value R5000 each) plus InReach messaging system
  • HRA Membership

Does not include:

  • Climbing/trip insurance and rescue expenses as needed
  • Any helicopter flight
  • International airfare
  • Single Room Supplement (Hotels Only)
  • Some supplemental snacks such as candy bars – see confirmation materials
  • Additional hotels, meals and transportation should the climb end early
  • Excess baggage charges and airport taxes
  • All fees for early departure from team (such as non-scheduled heli transport), these fees to be outlined in confirmation materials for early departure
  • Personal gear
  • Charges incurred as a result of delays beyond the control of BBE

*NB Accommodations are based on double occupancy. A Single Supplement Fee will be charged to those occupying single accommodations by choice or circumstance. The single supplement is not available in huts, tents, or in all hotels.

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