Monday, August 24, 2015

Wilderness Backpacking Hike, Ajango Returns

Our dear friend and longtime guest Roland has completed his 21st Alaskan adventure with AMS! Roland with AMS Guides Deb Ajango and Fallon Connolly have just returned from the foothills of the Eldridge Glacier area of the Alaska Range within Denali National Park.  They had 5 days beautiful weather. The team had a great time hiking and enjoying the beautiful scenery.

We are waiting to see the pictures from the field!

Guides Deb Ajango, Fallon Connolly, Intern Simon, Roland
Caitlin Palmer, Lisle holding Jack, the AMS terrier. 

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Wilderness Backpacking Hike, Ajango

Our good friend and guest Roland just flew to the Talkeetna Range with Guides Deb Ajango and Fallon Connolly.  The team plans to establish a base camp and hike from there daily.

Roland has been returning to Alaska and AMS for Wilderness Hikes for many years.  We are happy that Roland is part of the AMS family.  We look forward to hearing all about this adventure.

Guide Fallon Connolly, Roland, Guide Deb Anango
Talkeetna Mountains

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Exciting News! Full Release of final 2016 schedule:

Start planning early! 

Check out Denali Expedition dates, new wilderness adventure courses that involve packrafting, 2-day treks to get a taste of the Alaska Range, and much more! 

We are open year round, give us a call or email with any questions. 
(907) 733-1016

AMS Okonek photo of Denali West Buttress summit ridge

AMS mountaineering course practicing skills 

AMS recent glory walk down Main street of Talkeetna after mountaineering, hiking and packrafting back from the Pika glacier. 

Sunday, August 16, 2015

AMS Mountaineering Course, 12 day, Sykes- RETURNS!

AMS 12 day team lead by John Sykes and Simon Frez-Albrecht with participants Sam and Abel have returned safely to Talkeetna via the Chulitna river.  Here a few photos right as they were getting back, with more to come from the actual trip! For now they are showering and eating a well-deserved meal! What a unique adventure!~ 

AMS 12 day team unloading at the main Talkeetna beach. The Chulitna, Susitna, and Talkeetna all meet here and are composed of glacial melt. 

AMS group shot of 12 day team: Abel, John, Simon, Sam

AMS 12 day team getting the glory walk down Main Street Talkeetna with tourists taking their photo.

AMS intern Simon stoked to be back after some long days in the field!

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Combat Wounded Verteran Challange

Colby Coombs check in from Hatcher Pass today,  the team is doing great!  They have been hiking!

Colby also sent some pictures.

They will be changing location to the Matanuska Glacier to complete their adventure!

AMS 12 Mountaineering Course, Sykes

AMS instructor John Sykes checked in last night, "Camped close to Tok River.  Hoping to start float tomorrow. All is well."

The climbing, hiking and packrafting are a great adventure!  We are looking forward to seeing the team tomorrow and hearing all about the course.


AMS 6 Day Mountaineering Course, D'Alessio Returns

Instructors Nick D'Alessio, Fallon Connelly and team returned from the Pika Glacier late last evening. They enjoyed a great learning adventure!

After a restful night and a great breakfast at the Roadhouse, the team is busy unpacking and sorting gear.

Nobu and Joe


Drying the tents

AMS Glacier Travel & Crevasse Rescue, Hoeschen 8/15

Instructors Josh Hoeschen and Chelsea Bomba are teaching a 2 day workshop at the Matanuska Glacier this week-end.

This is a very skill intensive workshop that teaches climbing techniques and safety systems necessary to travel safely on a glacier.  The instructors will cover knots, harnesses, crampon use, self-arrest positions, placing protection and building anchors.

The students will form rope teams and practice traveling and route finding skills.  They will also learn fixed line ascension techniques at a crevasse or suitable cliff face.

This is a great beginner workshop!

Knot class taken by Josh Hoeschen

Fixed line ascension 

Thursday, August 13, 2015

AMS 2016 Climbing Season Dates

We have been working very hard to finalize our 2016 Schedule!  We hope to see you next season!


Denali West Buttress, 22 Days, $7500, with 6 climbers, 2 - 3 guides.

April 29 - May 20
May 5 - May 26
May 8 - May 29
May 11 - June 1
May 18 - June 8
May 22 - June 13
May 25 - June 16
June 1 - June 22
June 5 - June 26
June 8 - June 29
June 12 - July 3
June 15 - July 6
June 25 - July 16
June 27 - July 18
July 29 - July 20

Denali Full West Rib, 22 Days, $8700 with 4 climbers, 2 guides

June 2 - June 24

Foraker, 22 Days, $8700 with 4 climbers, 2 guides

April 24 - May 14

Range from the river


6 Day Mountaineering, $2500, 9 students, 3 instructors

April 25 - April 30
May 17 - May 22
June 12- June 17
July 17 - July 22
August 7 - August 12

12 Day Mountaineering,  $3600, 9 students, 3 instructors

April 24 - May 5
May 15 - May 26
June 7 - June 18
July 12 - July 23
August 2 - August 13
September 1 September 12

Camp on Glacier 1
12 Day Mountaineering with Avalanche I Certification,  price TBD, 9 students, 3 instructors

May 12 - May 24

Denali Prep: Kahiltna Dome Climb, 10 Days, $3800, 9 students, 3 instructors

May 30 - June 8
June 11 - June 20

Climbers on Kahiltna Dome

Advanced Mountaineering , 12 Days, $4300, 6 students, 2 instructors

April 12 - April 23

Alaska Mountain Guide Training, 12 Days, $4500, 6 students, 2 instructors

May 1 - May 12

Multi Sport Courses

Mountaineering and Packrafting, 12 Days, $3800, 6 students, 2 instructors

June 27 - July 8

Mountaineering and Backpacking,  15 Days,  $4000, 9 students, 3 instructors

July 12 - July 26

Packrafting,  10 Days, $3200, 6 students, 2 instructors

Students Packrafting

Mountaineering Course Updates

Instructor Nick D'Alessio 6 Day Mountaineering course checked in from the field last night.   The team is doing great!  They have had some snow and a good freeze.  They plan to move camp today.

Students traveling

Instructor John Sykes 12 Day Mountaineering Course checked in form the Pika today.  The team has completed the climbing portion and began their hike out today.  They will be packrafting back to Talkeetna on Saturday.  We look forward to hearing about their adventure!

Previous hike our

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Combat Wounded Veteran Challenge, Plan B: Mint and Matanuska Glacier

AMS and CWVC crew re-fueled at headquarters after returning from Denali National Park where the Mckinley river, the gateway to Mt. Brooks, was at flood stage and uncrossable. The alternate route was a no-go as well, so a new plan has been hatched. Everyone is in good spirits and excited to be eating moose burgers again. The team departed this morning and we just received a Delorme inreach (tracking device) message saying they have arrived to Hatcher Pass and will embark to the Mint glacier soon. Hatcher Pass is a great recreational area near Palmer, AK. Can't really go wrong in Alaska, especially with the sunny days we continue to have into August!
Lee and Zach fine tuning and adjusting prosthetic with weight of a backpack. 

Having a good time at AMS headquarters!

CWVC location at 1:15pm on August 12th, 2015

Monday, August 10, 2015

6 Day Mountaineering Course- Departs!

AMS guides Nick D'Alessio and Fallon Connolly head out today with group of three climbers to the Pika glacier. All three participants it is there first time to Alaska and they are excited to see some of the best parts! About 5 pm Alaska time tonight they departed on a glacier plane into the Alaska Range. When we hear updates from the guides, will post again with previous photos from the Pika glacier!

Gear pack up! 
AMS crew Nick, Fallon, Gabe, Nobu, and Joe

Saturday, August 8, 2015

AMS 12 Day Mountaineering Course, Sykes 8/5

AMS instructor John Sykes checked in last night.  Yesterday the team moved camp to the Crown Glacier.  Today the team is doing snow climbing and practice self arrest.

The team is doing well and are enjoying themselves.

Tent set 

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

12 Day Mountaineering Course 8/5 DEPARTS!

AMS 12 day team lead by John Sykes are departing here in a few minutes on a glacier plane from Talkeetna, Alaska into the Alaska Range, Pika Glacier. They will land and make a good winter camp, settling in for the night. The Aurora forecast is somewhat high for the evenings of the 6th and 7th, so there may have the chance to experience the Northern Lights! We are excited for this team and can't wait to hear stories from this custom trip that will navigate back to Talkeetna human-powered by hiking and packrafting back! A true wilderness and amazing experience. 

AMS with Combat Wounded Veteran Challenge- Wonder Lake

AMS travels to Wonder Lake within Denali National Park  today on a "camper bus". They plan on camping there tonight and departing for off trail terrain tomorrow early.

AMS/CWVC Crew after traditional Panorama Pizza dinner pre-expedition. 

AMS Colby Coombs previous photo of a great reflection of Denali at Wonderlake, the end of the park road.  The crew may get a similar view like this today! 

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

AMS with Combat Wounded Veteran Challenge- DEPARTS!

AMS director and guide Colby Coombs heads out today with assistants Beth Cleary, Mike Gardner, and Ariel Svetlik-McCarthy along with nine participants of the Combat Wounded Veteran Challenge. Some participants have been to Alaska before, but others are very excited for their first time Alaskan adventure that lies ahead. David Olson supported with the last two days of arriving to Anchorage, traveling to Talkeetna, a great gathering of folks for a BBQ hosted by Caitlin and Colby last night, and now today loading up the AMS van full of gear and people driving North to Denali National Park.

This evenings activities will include a backcountry check-in/safety video about respecting wildlife, river crossings, and leaving no trace. Dinner tonight in the park entrance, (at one of the many restaurants to choose from to support the large summer crowds), and then camping a short distance away from the DNP entrance at Riley Creek. Bright and early tomorrow morning the crew will arise to leave behind the hustle/bustle and creature comforts to embark on a journey to Mt. Brooks: fording rivers, mosquito head nets, possible bear sightings, etc. en route to finding snow and climbing.

What a great crew with top notch guides, stay tuned for updates as they trek along!

AMS packing up!

AMS BBQ nail painting session :)

Lee checking out Yancy's awesome nail art done by Lisle Coombs and friends. 

Group photo at AMS headquarters: Zach, Caitlin, Colby and Lisle, Garrett, Rocky, Fara, Dom, Gerard, Mike, Roland, Fallon, Ariel, Yancy, Beth, Lee, and David. 

Lee and Lisle waiting for the crew to get going!

Denali Park Entrance, trip advisor photo

Moose and two calves, part of the wildlife at Riley Creek at the National Park entrance. Flickr photo