Be prepared for the harsh environments of the greater ranges with our comprehensive expedition prep course. Gain essential skills & gear up for adventure.
Beginner, intermediate and advanced
1 to 4 days
1 to 6 participants
Our Expedition Prep Course is designed for those looking to develop the skills and knowledge necessary to embark on an adventure of a lifetime. Whether you are planning to climb Rainier, Denali or even Everest, our course will provide you with the essential training you need to prepare for a successful journey.
Through a combination of lessons, hands-on practice and experiences, you will learn how to navigate glaciated terrain, how to set up a basecamp, how to select and pack gear, and how to stay safe and healthy in the outdoors. Under the supervision of AMGA certified alpine guides, you couldn't ask for better teachers.
By the end of the course, you will have gained the confidence and knowledge to participate on an expedition across the globe with greater safety and preparedness. Our goal is to help you achieve your outdoor adventure dreams with a firm foundation in experiential education.
Max Lurie - Owner of Alpine to the Max
Max Lurie is an American Mountain Guides Association certified Rock and Alpine Guide, as well as an accomplished alpinist. Max has been climbing since 2004 and traveling to the greater ranges in pursuit of his passion.
As an independently certified climbing guide based in Boulder, CO, Max provides custom education and mountain experiences in the Colorado Front Range and beyond. All of the climbing instruction offered through Alpine to the Max is customized to your goals, objectives, and skill level.
This course is designed to provide climbers and mountaineers with the necessary skills and knowledge to not only survive, but to thrive in expedition life. The course will cover essential topics such as gear selection, backcountry navigation, glacier travel/rescue, snow camping, and wilderness ethics. The curriculum will include a combination of lectures, discussions, hands-on practice and plenty of opportunities for experience.
Module 1: Introduction to Expedition Preparation
Module 2: Navigation Techniques
Module 3: Glacier Travel and Crevasse Rescu
Module 4: Winter camp craft
Module 5: Wilderness Ethics
Practical hands-on practice is strongly emphasized with each module, we believe in a learning-by-doing approach. The foundational skills will be built upon throughout the course with a logical progression through the curriculum. No matter how lofty your mountain goals are, we can help you achieve them.
Note: any of these three options will work. Although a full double boot might be a bit much. Each has its pros/cons, if you have any questions at all about footwear, please let me know because it is vitally important to have a good trip.
No, this course is designed for everyone looking to develop their expeditionary skills. However, prior knowledge of rope systems, winter camping, general mountaineering and climbing will certainly come in handy.
All of our programs are entirely customizable to fit your schedule, goals and budget. The full expedition prep course is typically 4 days long and includes an overnight component.
The course is designed for individuals of all fitness levels. However, some physical activity is involved in practical exercises.
No, there is no examination component of this course. Many guide services require a participant to take an expedition prep course before attempting Aconcagua or Denali. This course is a higher level of training and offers a better preparation for those endeavors
Alpine to the Max is an independent certified guide with more than a decade of experience in a wide variety of terrain. No matter your current skill level, when you climb with us you get a top-notch experience that is fully customized to meet your exact desires.
“I climbed with Max last summer on a couple of couloirs in Rocky Mountain National Park. I’m a complete newbie to technical snow and Max was everything that I was hoping for in a guide. Knowledgeable, patient and passionate about educating his clients. It was a fantastic experience and I cannot wait to go back out with him.”
“Max is easily one of the best guides I have ever taken a course with. Max's knowledge paired with his experience and skill set is unparalleled. I learned so much and I am so grateful to have taken a course with him! Max provided the education and knowledge I needed to continue recreating safely in the mountains.”
“Max was an amazing guide and instructor for our 2-day AIARE 1 course. Funny, affable, deeply knowledgeable, with an excellent approach to instruction and learning. We saw several other AIARE courses out there in the same locations, and in comparison, we were VERY glad we were spending our weekend learning from Max!
Max is awesome! My climbing partner and I booked a day with Max to learn how to ice climb. Between making the meetup spot an easy to find location, to providing in-depth instruction throughout the day, I can't recommend Max enough. Max's instruction was clear, safe, and easy to follow. He's personable and easy to learn from.
What an awesome experience. My friend and I spent four days with Max going through a variety of topics and we couldn't have been happier with the instruction. Max is SO well versed in a multitude of areas. And he's an awesome person to be around and it makes the guiding experience that much better. I would 100% do another session with Max!
We strongly recommend Max as a guide and instructor. Having climbed with Max several times over the past decade, we always come away with a great experience and a smile. His enthusiasm and knowledge, plus a wry sense of humor, make for instructive and fun days of climbing. We hope to get out to CO to climb someday with Max again.
It was awesome. We covered a ton of material in such a short window and I was able to apply everything I learned. I had pretty minimal experience at the start but he delivered everything in a super easy to understand manner that made it a ton of fun and extremely informative. I’ll definitely be coming back for future sessions.
Max was incredibly helpful for our intro to trad course. He not only teaches the information, but makes sure to go over alternative techniques and general climbing philosophy. We were able to customize the class that day to go over things that interested us rather than a set curriculum, which I really enjoyed. I couldn’t recommend Max enough.
I had very limited climbing experience coming into this guided rock climbing experience. Max takes me out and we literally jump right into my introduction to climbing. Max literally inspired me to get out of my comfort zone immediately and go beyond what I thought I was capable of. Thank you Max for an awesome experience in the mountains.
Max is an outstanding guide! I couldn’t have asked for a better day of climbing and learning. I joined Max in hopes of setting a solid foundation of skills and knowledge in my own climbing endeavors to come, and I was beyond satisfied with the day he had prepared for us. An incredible instructor and ideal climbing partner!
Max is adept, knowledgeable, and great to work with all around! He breaks down skills and explains them thoroughly, taking the time to make sure you understand a concept before moving on to something more complex. If you want to up your technical climbing skills and have a darn good time doing it then Max is your guy!
Max was extremely knowledge and encouraging while we were learning and practicing building anchors and hauling for crevasse rescue. He also had a great sense of humor and kept the mood light while we were suffering through brutally cold temperatures during the practice. 10/10 would recommend!
My partner and I hired Max for a day of self rescue skills and we had an absolute blast. Max is super knowledgeable and was more than patient answering all of our questions. We never felt rushed and had time to go through different scenarios and skills. I really enjoyed learning from a professional and would recommend to anyone!
Max was a terrific mountain guide. We did a split-board tour of the Hidden Valley area of Rock Mtn National Park and I couldn’t have had asked for a better guide. He answered all of my questions and expressed great knowledge in snow science as well as mountain geology and avalanche safety. Highly recommend!
I spent a day learning trad/multipitch climbing with Max in a "classroom setting". The dollars I spent on that session have been more valuable than any climbing trip or equipment. The techniques he taught me have stuck with me throughout my climbing career and set me up for success in the mountains.