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THE SKYLINE ADVENTURE SCHOOL

Skyline Adventure School - About Us

WHO WE ARE - WHERE WE COME FROM - WHAT PROMISES WE MAKE TO YOU ...

Skyline Adventures is a quality guiding company, made up of an international group of dedicated mountain guides and outdoor professionals who live and work in Huaraz, Peru. Our passion to help people enjoy and flourish in the wilderness has helped us become the thriving company we are today, committed to maintaining only the highest of standards and consistently offering the very best trips in the area.

As you may have noticed in our name, we consider ourselves a school as well as a guide service. We believe that learning can be both fun and rewarding so whether you find yourself on an outdoor course, a guided trek, or a guided climb, our staff will not just show you the way but will teach and empower you to succeed in the mountain environment. From map reading to knot tying, you will leave Peru with some great new skills to show your friends at home or to use on your next adventure outdoors!

 

OUR GUIDES, INSTRUCTORS, STAFF: (view staff profiles)

 

Without exception, each and every mountain guide and instructor is carefully selected for their technical skills, sound judgment, and impeccable safety record. They are a key ingredient in your trip and also the face of Skyline Adventures guiding service. For this, we are unbending in our high expectations of all of our staff and in all of our interactions with you, the client. We seek out masters of the craft, be it guiding mountains, teaching skills, or working in the office helping plan your holiday. Everyone here is eager for your arrival in Peru and prepared to deliver the trip of your lifetime!

 

WHY SKYLINE ADVENTURES:

 

With so many guide services and tour operators offering trips in the Cordillera Blanca and Cordillera Huayhuash of Peru, it can be a tough decision choosing to whom you will trust your hard-earned vacation. What is it then that makes Skyline Adventures so different?

 

We live in Huaraz. The Cordillera Blanca and Cordillera Huayhuash is our backyard. By focusing 100% of our energy on adventures in this area alone, we have simply become very good at it! In addition, we don't just sell our trips; we go out there and guide them. We are a small and personable company, often answering the telephone to provide information and then lacing up our own boots and sharing the mountain experience with our guests. For over five years we have helped people realize their dreams as they experience the magic of Peru, Huaraz, and the Andes Mountains. We take your vacation very seriously and we look forward to opening the doors of this part of the World to you!

 

As a part of that, we make the following promises:

 

    >     To provide prompt, abundant, and upfront information during the months and weeks prior to your trip with Skyline Adventures.

    >     To keep your goals at the forefront and work diligently throughout your trip to aid in their realization.

    >     To ensure that safety remains our absolute and unquestioned priority.

    >     To lead by example with our care for the fragile environments and unique cultures we visit.

    >     To do the very best we can in all situations while you are with us in Peru!

 

While words are cheap, actions speak loudly. Every year, 25% of our business comes from return clients and client recommendations. Feel free to peruse our client comments page for trip impressions from seasons past.

 

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STAFF PROFILES:

Ted Alexander - Skyline Adventure School

Ted Alexander - Head Guide, Mountain Instructor, Owner

 

In 1998, Ted Alexander made his first journey to Huaraz, Peru. Between then and now, he has not missed a single climbing season in the Cordillera Blanca, fulfilling both personal and professional objectives. Ted, or as the locals call him "Alex," founded Skyline Adventures in 2001 and currently works as the Head Guide setting standards of excellence for our alpine and trekking staff, as a Mountaineering Course Instructor, and as our primary reconnaissance man seeking out and opening up new routes in the area to increase the itineraries and opportunities we can offer to our guests. Ted has been professionally guiding high altitude mountains for eleven years, prior to which he worked as an instructor and manager for various outdoor education organizations in the States including the Wilderness School and Outward Bound. He also held the position of program director for the Patagonia Program of the North Carolina Outward Bound School in both Chile and Argentina for 4 years. Ted holds his level II Avalanche certification, Wilderness First Responder Certification, and is a member of the American Mountain Guides Association working towards his alpine certification.

 

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Koky Casteneda - Guide, Mountain Instructor

 

Koky Castaneda’s climbing repertoire is a long and inspirational chronicle. Living in Huaraz with a backyard full of world class mountaineering possibilities provided for Koky in his formative climbing years, a wealth of ascent opportunities that many guides could only have been dreaming of. He is currently a fully certified UIAGM Alpine guide, and along his path has served as president of the Guides Association in Huaraz as well as worked as director of the certification program for aspiring Peruvian guides. Koky speaks fluent English, French and Spanish. Koky has a gift for identifying and utilizing weather windows and matching these perfectly to our clients overall objectives and personal needs in a challenging mountain environment. He works for many popular guiding services based in Huaraz and internationally, and will enrich your journey in the Cordillera Blanca with his knowledge, wit, professionalism, and love for the alpine world.

 

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Koky Casteneda - Skyline Adventure School
Tyler Anderson - Skyline Adventure School

Jason Wheeler - Guide, Mountain Instructor

 

Born outside of Portland, OR on a 60-acre farm to a climbing-guide father , Jason will often say that the reason he took the outdoor path in life is “genetic”. He began climbing at a young age: 6 years old on his first multi-pitch rock climb and 12 years old when his feet first stood atop Mt. Hood!! Years later (a few at least!) it’s no wonder that he’s a natural in the mountains, with over 7 years of professional instructing and guiding experience all over the world; from the Argentine and Peruvian Andes to the huge Alaskan Range. Jason is a world-class guide who is not only comfortable on rock and ice, but will cook you an amazing dinner upon returning to camp and then charm you over great evening conversation. He loves teaching as well (his career began as an outdoor educator with Outward Bound), making him a great asset to Skyline’s mountaineering courses and hopefully YOUR future as an alpine enthusiast! Jason’s proudest climbing achievement was a successful climb of the Cassin Ridge on Denali in 2010; completed in a 70-hour alpine style ascent. We are proud to have Jason on the Skyline Adventure’s team for his professionalism, commitment to quality, personal experience, love of life, and cherished friendship. Jason speaks fluent Spanish and holds his current WFR cert.

 

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Christian Stoll - Guide, Mountain Instructor

 

Christian was born in Trujillo, Peru to a Swiss father and a Peruvian mother. He lived there until the age of 2, when he and his family moved to the United States (Pennsylvania) where Christian remained through University. He returned to Peru in 1999 to follow his love for the mountains and climbing. In 2006, Christian began working towards his UIAGM guiding certification and is scheduled to take his final exam in 2009. Currently he has "aspirant" guide status within the national park and works without much pause during the high season, squeezing in personal objectives whenever he is able. Christian has personally pioneered several new prestigious routes in the Cordillera Blanca, including first ascents on well known giants Huantsan and Ranrapalca, as well as an attempt on a new line up Chacraraju. He holds his Wilderness First Responder certification and also works for the Patagonia Program of the North Carolina Outward Bound School in Chile and Argentina.

 

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Christian Stoll - Skyline Adventure School
Jenn Hrinkevich - Skyline Adventure School

Jenn Hrinkevich
Guide, Mountain Instructor, Program Development

 

Jenn discovered climbing during her teens and has been drawn to the vertical world ever since. Her climbing has led her all over the continental USA, Africa, Chile, Argentina, Ecuador, and Peru. After graduating from Radford University with a B.A. in Outdoor Recreation and Education, Jenn began work with the North Carolina Outward Bound School in 1997, filling the positions of Field Instructor, Head Climber, Course Director, Residential Leader, Mountaineering Specialist, and Staff Trainer. She also played a key role in developing the Outward Bound mountaineering program in Patagonia and filled the position of Associate Program Director for 4 years. In 2001, she received the prestigious “Buckley Bearing Award” from OB, to honor her pioneering spirit and drive. If you are lucky, you may have her guide your climb or trek; however, at the moment Jenn spends most of her energy keeping the Skyline office running smoothly and taking care of her son Cole. We are indebted to her for our reputation of flawless logistics and prompt, friendly customer correspondence. During her lunch hour, Jenn can be found outside doing laps on the Skyline Adventures climbing wall. – You go girl!

 

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Pablo Purancajas - Guide, Mountain Instructor

 

Pablo Puruncajas fell in love with the mountains at a young age while climbing Ecuador’s volcanoes with his family-owned mountain guide company. He has been guiding in the Andes since 1999 and has been guiding for the past six years in the Northwest of the United States. In 1997 he expanded his adventure skills by taking on rock climbing. He represented Chimborazo province three times as the Ecuadorian National Rock Climbing Champion. In 2002 he moved to the United States to study English at Eastern Kentucky University. While in the U.S. he has spent his free time exploring the vast alpine, mixed, ice and rock climbing areas, throughout North America. He completed his UIAGM Alpine & Rock certification with the Bolivian Mountain & Trekking Guide Association, accredited by the National School of Ski and Alpinism of Chamonix (ENSA), and has completed Advanced Alpine and Rock Guides Courses with American Mountain Guide Association (AMGA). He guides in Kenya, South America, Alaska, and throughout the mainland United States. Pablo joined Skyline Adventures in 2010 and we hope to keep him in the field with us until his knees begin to ache and an office job starts to look appealing (which should be a VERY long time from now!).

 

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Pablo Purancajas - Skyline Adventure School
Alejo Lazzati - Skyline Adventure School

Alejo Lazzati & Genevieve Rajoy - Ecuador Program Directors

 

Alejo fell in love with the mountains in his early years as a boy-scout, and became a proficient rock climber in his youth. Through these activities, he met the friends that helped him summit Ecuador's famed peak Cotopaxi at age 14. Since then, Alejo has spent countless days in the mountains and has shared this love with many aspiring climbers. He has climbed in Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia, Argentina, Chile and some alpine climbing in the Alps and Dolomites as part of his training to obtain his UIAGM certification. Alejo is the first Ecuadorian guide to achieve full UIAGM certification, one of very few US-certified Wilderness Emergency Medical Technicians (WEMT), and a certified member of the Associacion Ecuatoriana de Guias de Montana (ASEGUIM). He also works as a climbing, rescue, and outdoor medicine instructor. When he's not showing you the time of your life on a mountain, he enjoys traveling, hiking, scuba diving, running, and is also a pretty darned good cook (just ask Genevieve!).

 

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Willy Beltran - Guide

 

Born at the foot of Huascaran, Peru’s highest peak, Willy spent his childhood preparing for a career as a mountain guide. He began working as a porter on big expeditions all around the Cordillera Blanca range to earn both money and the necessary experience to begin his accreditation process towards a prestigious UIAGM Certification. As his training for this, Willy spent most of his years from his early 20’s on in the mountains as an aspirant guide, apprenticing under others and developing his own strength, style, and techniques as a guide. Having earned the title of UIAGM mountain guide in 2002, Willy has worked on just about every peak in the National Park with groups from around the globe and continues to do so with patience and professionalism in all aspects of the job. Now in his early 30’s, Willy has a 1 year old daughter and a blossoming career in this competitive and challenging field.

 

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Willy Beltran - Skyline Adventure School
Gladys Jiminez - Skyline Adventure School

Gladys Jiminez - Trekking Guide

 

Gladys was born about 50 kilometers north of Huaraz in the now ‘famous’ city of Yungay. In 1970, this is the town which was tragically covered by a landslide, triggered by the earthquake which also destroyed the city of Huaraz in the same 15 minute period. Gladys (although not yet born) & her family survived the catastrophe. She moved to Huaraz in her teens for her secondary schooling and from there attended University where she earned a degree in Tourism. Her first trip into the Cordillera Blanca occurred during her studies, and this sparked the ember that caught fire within her, to spend as much time in the mountains as life could allow. Since then she has become a nationally certified trekking guide, is an avid personal climber and adventurer, maintains a delightfully curious way of being – even in places she has visited a dozen times before - and is a truly spectacular companion to have along on any journey.

 

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Ryan Waters - Guide, Mountain Instructor, Skyline Associate

 

Ryan has been professionally guiding and instructing in the outdoor education field for eight years, running with companies from around the world. He has spent many-a-night in tents in Mexico, Nepal, Argentina, Chile, Tibet, Pakistan, and all over the United States. His credentials with Outward Bound, Rainier Mountain Guides, and Mountain Professionals are vast, though the person you meet, who introduces himself as your guide, is a soft spoken, well versed, humble and friendly guy. Ryan’s professional climbing resume includes successful summits of Cho Oyu (2 times), Broad Peak, the northeast ridge of Mt. Everest, the southeast ridge of Pumo Ri, Aconcagua, and he reached just under 8000 meters on K2. Ryan has also led multiple climbing and paddling expeditions in northern Patagonia. He has worked on expeditions that have placed over 50 climbers on the summits of 8,000 meter peaks. Ryan is a certified Wilderness First Responder, has completed the American Avalanche Level II, plus carries a B.S. in Geology.

 

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Ryan Waters - Skyline Adventure School
Tyler Anderson - Skyline Adventure School

Tyler Anderson - REST IN PEACE our friend!!

 

Tyler Anderson attained almost legendary status in the climbing community of Huaraz, only part of which can be attributed to his mountain achievements (which are many) leaving the rest to the very unique and loveable nature of his being. Tyler climbed mountains and alpine rock for over 15 years before an accident in the Cordillera Blanca took his life in July of 2010. Tyler will be remembered always for his outstandingly fun, thoughtful, and inspiring style of life. We were blessed to have Tyler as a friend and part of our guiding team and wish him spectacular adventures on the 'other side'. A foundation in Tyler's name has been set up to help train local guides in the Huaraz area, improve operational safety standards, and augment emergency resources as a step towards making the Cordillera Blanca a safer climbing mecca for all. For information on how to donate or be part of the Anderson Foundation please send us an email or give us a call or check out the 2011 project line-up here.

 

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Umberto Solano - Expedition Cook, High Mountain Porter

 

His trademark is patience. No matter what the weather might be doing, Umberto will be smiling! Umberto works on expeditions as a cook, as a porter, as a donkey driver, and sometimes all three! He has climbed many of the peaks in the Cordillera Blanca himself for his training and certification as a high mountain porter, and he is as happy to help put in the tracks for a climb the following day as he is to serve you a nice hot beverage and a pick-me-up snack after a long day's work. When not out with us as an expedition cook, Umberto can be found in his “Chacra” or family farm growing some mighty fine potatoes and tending to his herd of cows and sheep.

 

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Umberto Solano - Skyline Adventure School
Ubaldo Lluya - Skyline Adventure School

Ubaldo Lluya - Expedition Cook, High Mountain Porter

 

 

During the climbing season, this man is hard to find. He is always out on one expedition or the other and we need to book him early if we want him to come along! He is quick, eager and does not mess around in the kitchen! His mountain skills are well refined after many years working on expeditions, and in his certification as a porter, he has also climbed many of the peaks in the Cordillera Blanca range. Fast, strong, friendly, and always willing to do what is needed, Ubaldo is one of our top guys. We love the traditional Peruvian cuisine he brings to our trips and to our clients mouths as well! When not on an expedition, Ubaldo can be found teaching his two sons how to plant potatoes and all of his secret wheat thrashing techniques.

 

 

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Juan Lluya
Expedition Cook, High Mountain Porter, Donkey Driver

 

The Lluya family is practically famous in Huaraz for its long heritage of expedition cooks. When you have a Lluya on your trip, you can rest assured you will be well cared for in the culinary realm of things, always greeted with a warm smile and usually a hot beverage in tow. Juan Lluya grew up in the mountains surrounding Huaraz, works as a farmer and also a cook, donkey driver, porter, and camp guard. Two of his sons are aspirant guides and they all know the Cordillera Blanca in such an intensely close way, we the visitors to this place can only be respectful and fascinated by the link between earth and man. From an early age, Juan began his work with expeditions in the area, always eager to meet and assist those whom have come to discover his “backyard” for the first time. Now over 60 years old, Juan continues to delight our clients with his food and his charm, as well as maintain his child-like enthusiasm for his work.

 

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Juan Lluya - Skyline Adventure School
Cirilo Loli - Skyline Adventure School

Cerilo Loli
Donkey Driver, High Mountain Porter, Aspirant Expedition Cook

 

Cerilo's Loli’s bright smile, bountiful energy, and willingness to work hard have made him an invaluable member on many of our expeditions in the Cordillera Blanca and Cordillera Huayhuash. He works as a porter and donkey driver, and is currently in-training to become an expedition cook as well. Cerilo lives in the tiny village of Pashpa, where our trips to Urus, Ishinca, and Tocllaraju begin. If you are lucky, he will invite your group to his rustic home for lunch on your way back from your climbs, where you’ll gain a better understanding of the lifestyle and incredible hospitality of the Andean people.

 

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Cole Alexander - Career Yet to be Decided

 

 

Aspiring alpine guide, mountain instructor, outdoor educator, or possibly none of the above, Cole has recently passed his three year birthday and is off to a running start. Literally. He has spent three full seasons in Huaraz and explored many of the mountain basecamps, always with his eyes sparkling upward. Currently his credentials are only in camping at altitudes at or below 4500 meters, however, his genetic disposition to being outside and in action is clear and obvious. Keep your eyes out for this guy in the future. He will be something of a star we all suspect!

 

 

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Cole Alexander - Skyline Adventure School

Noah Alexander - Baby

 

 

A 2009 arrival, Noah is currently employed as our basecamp trainer for alpine starts and general light sleeping. Should you ever wonder how is it that your guide was able to get up and ready so quickly, be curious no more - Skyline Adventures puts all of its guides through rigorous training in this arena. We have no idea what Noah wants to be when he gets bigger, we only know that he will get bigger. We shall keep you posted as things progress...

 

 

 

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Toast the Wonder Mutt - Camp Guard, Great Companion

 

Toast was born in a small cardboard box in the Huaraz Central Market with several other less-cute-than-he black puppies. He joined the Skyline family at the ripe young age of 5 weeks and has been both an asset and a joy ever since. Toast has worked in several different capacities within the Skyline Adventure School, serving primarily as a good buddy, but also in security, couch warming, stick gathering, and is pushing the limits of high altitude canine alpine camp guarding!

 

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