Mount Bona is an outstanding spot to gain expedition and altitude experience, and is also a significant climbing objective in its own right! Climb it as a standard mountaineering objective or on skis!
- View of the summit of Bona and Churchill during the flight into basecamp
- Flying into basecamp with a turbo prop Otter from Chitna
- Taking a break on a rope team during the move to camp 2
- View with alpenglow from high camp on Mt. Bona
Mount Bona is located in the heart of the Wrangell-St. Elias National Park. It is a spectacular climb situated in a remote and wild setting.
From Anchorage we will take a private van for the three-hour ride to Chitina. From Chitina it is a 45-minute scenic flight into the lodge. Once at the lodge we will either fly directly to the mountain, or stay for the evening, depending on the current weather conditions on the mountain.
Located in the Wrangell-St. Elias National Park. The Park and the adjacent 27 million acres comprise the largest protected wilderness area in the world. It is an extremely jagged, glaciated, mountain landscape containing several of the largest non-polar ice caps in the world. This terrain is among the best in North America for honing your mountaineering skills, and the climbing, trekking, and skiing here are truly world class!
ANCHORAGE: Anchorage will be the start and finish point for this trip. It is Alaska’s largest city and a central hub for both domestic and international flights, making for convenient travel options to get here. The city has a great selection of restaurants and breweries and on clear days offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains.
TRAVEL TO THE ULTIMA THULE LODGE: From Anchorage we will take a private van for the three-hour ride to Chitina. From Chitina it is a 45-minute scenic flight to the Ultima Thule Lodge, within Wrangell-St. Elias National Park . The lodge is the only private property within the park and offers visitors a unique experience. Once at the lodge we will either fly directly to the mountain, or stay for the evening, depending on the current weather conditions on the mountain.
THE CLIMB: We will fly into the 10,000 ft level on the mountain and spend a couple of days acclimatizing before moving up. The climbing on Mt Bona is basic to moderate snow and ice climbing. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding your ability to participate in this expedition. After we are done with the climb we will retrace our route to Anchorage for flights home.
ITINERARIES & ALTITUDE: Our itineraries include ample time for rest and acclimatization days. They are designed to provide participants with a positive high altitude experience!
OUR GUIDES: Alaska Mountain Guides & Climbing School Inc. instructors and guides are professionals. They are special individuals who have a passion for being in the mountain environment. They bring a wealth of experience from guiding throughout Alaska, and the world, to every trip. Their skill and positive attitudes help our guests to have the best possible experience during their trip. All of our guides are also professional climbing instructors who genuinely enjoy sharing their knowledge. This is an important consideration for individuals who have not spent a lot of time at altitude and are interested in learning the safest, and most efficient ways to climb.
PULSE OXIMETERS: Pulse oximeters are small, precise, medical instruments that essentially give a digital readout of how you are acclimatizing. With this information we can make more informed decisions as to how we can best tailor the trip to meet your individual needs. We use them every step of the way, on every trip to altitude. In our opinion all high altitude guides should have one to help assure your safety!
The below itinerary is designed to give guests an understanding of the climb, the itinerary is extremely flexible in order to accommodate different weather and route conditions. This trip is primarily an expedition summit climb and may be shorter or longer in length as weather and conditions permit.
Day 0: Arrive in Anchorage in time for pre-trip meeting at 6:00pm. We’ll go over your personal equipment and answer any questions that you might have.
Day 1: We’ll take a private van to Chitina, a three hour drive. From there a 45 minute scenic flight to the Ultima Thule Lodge will take us into the park and on to the staging area for this expedition. If weather permits we’ll fly by ski plane ,landing on the mountain at approximately 10,500′ on the Klutlan Glacier. Establishing base camp will be the first step as we get settled in.
Day 2: Acclimatization Day. An important step to make the trip to altitude more enjoyable, we’ll spend the day acclimating and going for short hikes to help prepare for the climb. The guides will also review important topics such as expedition climbing, glacier travel, and crevasse rescue.
Day 3: Move to Camp 2. We’ll begin moving up the mountain to around 12,000′. Bringing essential equipment and supplies up with us, we’ll dig in and establish camp 2.
Day 4: Acclimation Day. With the change in elevation we’ll take time to allow our bodies to adjust. A great opportunity to practice steep snow climbing and review skills to stay active and help with the acclimatization process.
Day 5-6: Move to Camp 3. We’ll continue to move upward on the mountain and establish camp 3 around 14,000′. A grand view of the southeastern region of the park awaits, with clear weather we’ll be able to see many impressive peaks in the surrounding area including, Mt. Logan – 19,850-foot (6,050 m) and Mt. St. Elias – 18,008-foot (5,488 m).
Day 7: Rest Day: We’ll enjoy the view from Camp 3 and allow time for acclimatization before making our summit push.
Day 8: Summit Day. Crossing Bona’s broad plateau we’ll head for the summit ridge. Putting crampons on as we prepare to ascend the summit ridge, we’ll do the most technical bit of climbing on the trip, encountering slope angles of 40 degrees or more we’ll navigate crevasses and hard windblown snow. Guests should prepare for a long 8 to 12 hour day and bring enough warm layers and water to protect themselves from the elements and stay hydrated. After passing two false summits we’ll ascend to the final high point and celebrate with the grandeur of our surroundings before descending back to camp.
Day 9: Descend back down to base camp. We’ll work our way down the mountain and prepare to catch our flight back to Ultima Thule Lodge / Chitina
Day 10,11: Weather days. These extra days give us time to allow for weather on the mountain associated with flights or reaching the summit.
Day 12: Depart. After our return to Chitina a private van will take us back to Anchorage. Spend the night in town, freshen up with a warm shower at your hotel and revel in your experiences on Bona.
- Trip Itinerary – Printable detailed trip itinerary.
- Equipment List – Overview of personal clothing and equipment that you’ll need for this trip.
- Rental Gear List – Price and list of personal mountaineering clothing/equipment available for rent
- Registration Form – Outlines policies, and essential information. One required per participant.
- Health Form – This form enables our guides to have accurate health information in the event of an emergency.
- Acknowledgement of Risk Form – One required per participant over the age of 18.
- Travel Info – Helpful information on how to get to/from Anchorage
Price: $4400 (+ tax, in USD)
2018 Dates: May - June
2019 Dates: May - June
What is included in the trip price:
- Climbing Equipment & group expedition gear – group camping equipment, tents, ropes, snow anchors, etc…
- Expedition food – all food while out in the field
- Transportation during trip – flights into Ultima Thule Lodge / Mt. Bona, van transportation in Anchorage and to Chitina
- Professional guides – Our guides have extensive knowledge of the area and a passion for climbing in wild places.
Guests are responsible for the following:
- Personal clothing & equipment – review the equipment list included under “Documents”
- Food & Lodging in town – Anchorage has a variety of great options
- Trip insurance – we highly recommend trip insurance for all of our programs
- Airfare – review the “Travel Information” under “Documents” for more details
- Reviewing trip policies – please reference our policies page for policies regarding payment, cancellations, refunds and guest responsibilities.
To Book your adventure, follow the steps below:
- Please call to confirm availability at 1-800-766-3396 or fill out an online form to request more information via this link:
Feel free to call or email anytime if you have questions about your upcoming trip. Our team is excited to help you prepare for your adventure!
This trip was my first big mountain experience, and WOW did it blow me away. The climb was more than I could have imagined and the guides were kind, professional, and encouraging every step of the way. I can't wait to climb with you guys again!
- Jess K.