The guy behind all this:
Andean Ascents is managed by Alexander von Ungern. This swiss/german guy was born in 85 in Berne. Already at a young age his parents took him outdoors, for a walk in the neighboring mountains or for intercontinental long term journeys. This might be a hint to why he chose to become a biologist and got a Msc in Evolutionary and Ecological Biology (DEE-UNIL) in 2009. But his passion for nature is also expressed by his practice of nearly every outdoor activity. Alex made his first climbs in the Andes in 2007 during a year long bicycle trip through Latin America (http://alexetsonvelo.weebly.com). He now lives in La Paz - Bolivia since 2010 and is spending most of his time in the Mountains, when not lost somewhere in the Amazon bassin (see my other project www.andes2amazonas.com). He completed his mountain guide training beginning of 2018 and is now a IFMGA/UIAGM certified mountain guide. He also is currently the treasurer and secretary of the S.A.B (Socorro Andino Boliviano), the Bolivian mountain rescue organization. After years spent working in the Bolivian mountains, he acquired plenty of experience and does not need recommendations to complete his staff. He saw on his own how each of his colleagues works out there. As Alex masters 4 languages (Fr,De,En & Es) he has a special position to coordinate expeditions between the locals and foreign visitors.
Our Philosophy is pretty simple. Do a good job or don't even start with it! We prefer to offer a quality service over cheap prices.
We exclusively work with UIAGM/IFMGA certified mountain guides mainly for two reasons. The internationally recognized mountain guide school introduced by the french ENSA ensures that the qualified guides are proficient in the mountains and up to date with the latest standards in alpine/andean environment. The second reason we believe in, is that we support the implementation of a good touristic infrastructure in a country which still works on it.
We feel that not only our mountain guides, but also our drivers, cooks and muleteers deserve a fair salary. By the way, earning a "1st world" salary abroad and spending it in a country which economy still is developing, is an excellent way to make a personal contribution to the existing inequities.
Even though you won't find eco responsable logos on this site it is of course part of our job to keep the mountains clean. We are adept of the alpine style and think moving light has its advantages. We also think that the pression on the local environment is lower, when it is equally distributed on the many summits of the Andes. We therefore try to promote the routes which are less climbed.
We will provide you with fair-trade and organic food, because it is good for you, but also for the country long term benefits in which we operate. Whereas in many parts of Bolivia, food is still produced on a small scale, sustainable, eco-friendly manner, we also support some companies which make a special effort to take care of the environment. Again, we believe that both, our customers, and the country benefits from this collaboration as the products we purchase are excellent. To name a few: we love the success story of "el ceibo" and its chocolate, the "arco iris" bakery providing kids from the streets with long term support in there lives, and the organic products from "Irupana".
Paola Varinia Aramayo de Cartagena
Paola is in charge of the logistics of our journeys. She is the one contacting guides, drivers, cooks, hotels and refuges and even muleteers, making sure that the trip will unfold smoothly. Paola is a confirmed mountaineer, and knows most of the places you will visit by herself. She does however not guide in the mountains and is therefore easy to contact in La Paz (cel +591 72081359).
depicts Wiracocha, the sun god as represented by the ancient Tiwanaku culture. For us he represents the uncommon and extremely stable weather in the bolivian Andes from end of May to September, where snow conditions are frozen hard and the sun will climb into the sky as you approach to the summit !
please find below scans of our Taxe Identification Number and Business register, proof that we are operating a legal and registered business.