Private 2 Hour Tour

2 hrs in Palisades Tahoe / (Skill level: Introductory)

Price

$449 and up Full pricing breakdown below

About this trip

Discover what Via Ferrata is all about in this introductory 2-hr tour of Tram Face with your private group. This privately guided exploratory adventure will give you a taste of the Tahoe Via and is sure to leave you wanting more!

  • Weekday Price: $449 for 4 climbers. $69 per additional climber.
  • Weekend Price: $489 for 4 climbers. $79 per additional climber

Overview

  • skill level

    Introductory

  • Duration

    2 hrs

Immerse yourself in the mountains by climbing the Tahoe Via Ferrata in a 2 hour session that is fun for any ability level. This Lake Tahoe adventure climbs Squaw Valley’s iconic Tram Face making for a memorable morning or afternoon outdoor experience. Climbing a little over an hour, you can dip your toes in this amazing Lake Tahoe climbing adventure. Your group, young or old, is sure to have an unforgettable experience.

What is the Tahoe Via Ferrata

Owned and operated by Alpenglow Expeditions, the “Tahoe Via Ferrata” is a fixed climbing route on a towering granite peak known as the Tram Face. Via Ferrata, which means “Iron Road” in Italian, is a protected hiking and climbing experience that is accessible to all ability levels. Equipped with steel cables, bridges, and permanent steel anchors, the via ferrata aids climbers in ascending steep terrain without the need of prior climbing experience or technical knowledge.

All groups are professionally guided up one of our four routes while secured to the rock with specialized equipment including a harness, safety lanyard and helmet. The Tahoe Via sets itself apart from other Via Ferratas with its “Continuous Lifeline System.” With this system, climbers never detach from the rock and feel secure throughout the whole experience. Come climb with us!

What to expect during a 2 hour session

Climbing gear located in the Alpenglow Expeditions office in Squaw ValleyOffice Arrival / Check In

All tours begin when climbers arrive at our office at the start of their indicated reservation time. Check in happens immediately with our office staff and climbers will then be introduced to their climbing guide for the day.

 

Gearing Up

Once introduced to their climbing guide, all climbers are geared up with a rental harness, lanyard, and helmet. The safety equipment rentals are included in the cost of the tour. All climbers will quickly get fitted and the guide will go over proper fit as well as the safety features of each item.

If climbers do not have proper shoes, or want to upgrade their footwear, we offer special Via Ferrata shoe rentals for $10/day.

4×4 Mountain ShuttleThe open-safari vehicle known as "The Beast" used to transport Via Ferrata climbers

As soon as everyone is geared up, the group will head up the mountain in one of our 4×4 vehicles to the start of the climb. During the drive to the base of the routes, we pass through the heart of the Squaw Valley ski area while enjoying fantastic views of the valley, forests, cliffs, and creeks. After a ten-minute drive, a short walk brings us to the base of the Tahoe Via Ferrata.

Start the climb – Flamingo Buttress

kids having a good time on the Tahoe Via Ferrata!At the base of the routes, our climbing guide will orient climbers to the “Continuous Lifeline System” with a brief overview of all safety systems. All of the climbing routes start with a short beginner section called “Flamingo Buttress” to allow new climbers to practice sliding their carabiner along the cable before going higher.

 

Climb the Great Escape 

After completing the Flamingo Buttress, climbers will head up a short trail, less than 100 yards, and connect into the Great Escape cable section. The Great Escape starts in a small chimney, and then opens up onto beautiful granite slabs. Smearing our shoes, we’ll work our way up the slabs, using the texture of the rock to grip and the cable to ascend. After crossing a gully, we’ll take in the wonderful views of Olympic Valley from Sandy’s ledge, an ideal location for a snack and sip of water. From here, we’ll descend back down the Great Escape, and finish our climb on the descent trail back to the start.
In all, the whole experience will take roughly two hours from arriving at our base camp in The Village at Squaw Valley to saying goodbyes and heading back to the car. Plan to hike and climb for about 1 hour.

Preparation

  • Prior Experience

    No prior experience necessary. All routes were built to accommodate all skill levels.

  • Fitness Level

    Participants should be able to go on a hike for an hour. Nearly anyone can participate on the Tahoe Via Ferrrata.

  • What to Bring

    Participants should dress appropriately for the day's weather. Your welcome email will have a link to local weather, please check this before preparing for the day. All climbers must wear closed-toe shoes and bring along a small backpack with water, snacks, and sunscreen. Check out our "What to Wear" video here. If climbers do not have appropriate footwear, they can rent specialized Via Ferrata shoes for $10/day. We also sell gloves for $3.
    If climbers do not have appropriate footwear, they can rent specialized Via Ferrata shoes for $10/day. We also sell work gloves for $3.

    • Where is it located?

      The Tahoe Via Ferrata is located at Squaw Valley Resort in Olympic Valley, California. The climbing experience will start and end at the Alpenglow Expeditions office in The Village at Squaw Valley. Both Via Ferrata routes ascend what is known as “Tram Face,” which towers directly above the base area of the resort, offering stunning views of the valley and the surrounding Sierra Nevada.

    • What can I compare it to?

      The Tahoe Via is a very unique experience, most comparable to rock climbing. The Via Ferrata routes help participants learn to navigate the rock face on the protected climbing route with permanent steel anchors and cables that keep them safely connected to the rock 100% of the time. All climbs will be led by Alpenglow Expeditions’ experienced team of AMGA trained guides.

    • What about weather?

      Weather events such as lightning, rain, and snow may cause delays on the routes. Climbers will only depart if safe climbing conditions exist. When preparing for your climb, please dress appropriately for the days weather. Check your confirmation email for a link to the local weather report.

    • Who can participate?

      The Tahoe Via Ferrata is for everyone! No prior experience is necessary and nearly all ages can participate.

      Please note, all climbers must be at least 3’11” tall. Climbers under 3’11 cannot climb the Tahoe Via Ferrata. Additionally, climbers under 88 lbs must be in a private group. There can be a maximum of 2 climbers per group under the weight minimum.

      For any questions and more detail, please call the Alpenglow Expeditions office: 877-873-5376.

    • What do I need to bring?

      All technical equipment (harness, helmet and lanyards) is provided by Alpenglow Expeditions and included in the pricing.

      Participants are encouraged to wear clothes similar to what you would wear hiking. Light pants or shorts, and either a short sleeve or long sleeve shirt. A backpack to carry water, snacks, sunscreen and other items will also be useful. On colder weather days a jacket will come in handy. Closed-toe shoes are required.

    • Do you have group options?

      Yes! We can accommodate up to 120 people per day.  Please call the office for more information: 877-873-5376.

    • Is there a minimum group size?

      Non-private groups must have a minimum of 2 participants to depart. The maximum group size is 6 participants per guide, and larger groups/families will go out with several guides.

      Private groups have no minimum size but will operate at a 6 participants per 1 guide ratio.

Logan Talbott

Director of Operations / Chief Guide

Logan has been guiding professionally for over a decade in the disciplines of Rock, Alpine and Ski Mountaineering. When not out guiding, Logan keeps things running smoothly as the Director of Operations at Alpenglow Expeditions. From one day ascents of El Capitan to big Alpine climbs in the Himalaya, from ski descents on Denali to backyard ski tours around Lake Tahoe, he can’t help but smile when out running around the hills. Logan is a fully certified AMGA/IFMGA mountain guide, an Avalanche course leader with AIARE, as well as a wilderness EMT. In addition to guiding, Logan has extensive experience in mountain rescue, having worked for rescue teams in both Yosemite and Denali National Parks, and volunteering locally for Tahoe Nordic SAR. When not out in the hills, he lives in Truckee, CA with his lovely wife Lynette and daughter Maggie.

Guide Certifications
  • AMGA - American Mountain Guide
  • IVBV IFMGA UIAGM - Mountain Guide

Sam Kieckhefer

Via Ferrata Manager

Born and raised in Northern California, Sam began exploring the Sierra and developed a love for the mountains at a young age. A Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows passholder for more than 20 years, Sam is excited to share his passion for Olympic Valley with clients on the new Tahoe Via Ferrata. In the summer, Sam jumps out of bed at the crack of dawn for pre-work waterskiing on Lake Tahoe and in the winter, he’s searching for fresh turns in the West Shore backcountry. Sam is always down for a new adventure, which lately has been rock climbing.

Dave Nettle

Dave’s love for outdoor challenge, adventure and fun began early on by surviving his youth growing up in the Pacific Northwest climbing trees, running around the woods shooting BB guns and learning to “Be Prepared” the hard way on numerous Boy Scout backpacking trips into the rainy heart of the North Cascades.

In 1972 he started his lifelong pursuit and joy of rock climbing with his very first climb deep in the Sierra Nevada backcountry, which remains his favorite mountain range to share and enjoy.

In 1975, at age 17, he hiked the Pacific Crest Trail solo from Mexico to Canada and the following year hiked the Continental Divide Trail from Canada to Mexico, sealing his passion  for grand adventure and the desire to accomplish what he sets out to do.

His underlying philosophy of living life fully and approaching the world of adventure travel and alpinism with “confident uncertainty” has led him to the mountain ranges of the world where his climbing accomplishments are just a part of what he values: at the heart and soul of it all is the experience of interacting with and learning from the people, places and cultures along the way and sharing the challenge and beauty of wilderness with friends.

In addition to five decades of rock and alpine climbing which have included new routes and significant ascents throughout North America, South America, Europe and Asia, Dave is an accomplished ski mountaineer who hangs up his climbing shoes each winter in favor of backcountry alpine ski touring and hut to hut tours in the European Alps.

Dave brings 15 years of technical Rope Access and Rescue Training experience to the team. He has helped pioneer the use of Rope Access methods in place of traditional techniques to improve the safety and efficiency of ski lift, gondola, high angle and crevasse rescue procedures.  He is a certified level 3 SPRAT and IRATA supervisor and evaluator.

His blend of outdoor skills, professionalism and sense of humor make for memorable trips, not to mention epic slide show presentations which he loves to share with others.  Dave is the founder of a free community slideshow event in the Tahoe area that has been ongoing for over 25 years and continues to inform, entertain and inspire everyone to seek out and accomplish their dreams and goals.

Guide Certifications
  • IRATA

Tim Mincey

A native of Chicago, Tim grew up barely knowing that mountains existed, much less that you could climb or ski them for fun. But as an engineering student at Stanford, he managed to fall in love with snowboarding, and after college he made the move to Tahoe to ride full-time as a snowboard instructor. Once in Tahoe, Tim couldn’t wait to dive into backcountry splitboarding and rock climbing, and he is perpetually trying to make up for his late start in the mountains by climbing and snowboarding as much as possible. Tim has guided throughout California since 2011, and has a hard time imagining that he’ll ever tire of showing off the beauty of the Sierra Nevada.

He is an AMGA Assistant Rock and Splitboard Guide, Apprentice Alpine Guide, and Single Pitch Instructor, as well as an AIARE Course Leader and AASI Level 3 Snowboard Instructor. He lives in South Lake Tahoe with his girlfriend, Beth, and their Australian Shepherd, Pika.

Guide Certifications
  • AMGA Certified Single Pitch Instructor

Ali Agee

Ali grew up ski racing and competitive freestyle skiing in Lake Tahoe. It wasn’t until a backcountry skiing trip to the Eastern Sierra that Ali discovered her true passion for moving through the mountains, whether it be on skis or via long alpine rock routes. Since then, she has skied and rock climbed in multiple venues including the Sierra Nevada, Cascades, Japan, and Canada.

Ali has experienced firsthand the transformative powers that guided trips can have on someone looking to break through comfort zone barriers. She is passionate about sharing similar soul-filling, life-changing experiences with others.

Ali is currently an AMGA apprentice Ski and apprentice Alpine Guide, Pro 1 Avalanche Professional, Wilderness First Responder, Type-Two Fun Seeker, and Via Ferrata Enthusiast. She also has a master’s degree in accounting and is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).

Whit Welles

A New England native, Whit spent his summers fishing the Northeast’s abundant rivers and spent winters skiing and snowboarding on the icy slopes of Southern Vermont. An introduction to ski touring during a spring break trip to Jackson Hole ignited his passion for big mountains and untracked slopes – and he hasn’t looked back since.

After a brief foray deep into the concrete jungle of midtown Manhattan after college, Whit relocated to Squaw Valley to spend as much as he can in the mountains. His passion for the outdoors has since brought him skiing and climbing in the high alpine of the Sierra Nevada, Cascades, Rockies, and Tetons.

He now spends his winters as a full-time ski patroller, his summers as a guide on the Tahoe Via, and his spare time exploring the Sierra and beyond.

Whit currently holds wilderness EMT and AIARE PRO 1 certifications.

Glen Poulsen

A member of Squaw Valley’s pioneering founding family, Glen first ventured into the side and backcountry terrain surrounding Squaw Valley at the age of ten and has never looked back.  His forays into more remote parts of the Sierra Nevada led to numerous first descents and pioneering ski traverses throughout the range. After exploring mountains from Antarctica to the North Pole, Greenland and Spitsbergen,  Africa,  to the Andes , The Alps to Scandinavia,  Russia and China, The Himalaya, Central Asia and Oceania, Glen always returns with a greater appreciation for his home in  the “Range of Light”.  Whether its descents on skis or climbing alpine rock Glen has an intimate knowledge of the entire range. Whether its a local side country jaunt, a Sierra East side adventure, a hut tour in the alps or exploring new first descents in Greenland or Antarctica, Africa or the Andes, he can take you there. Glen has been trained by the American Mountain Guides Association and by the Canadian Ski Guide Association as a ski guide and ski mountaineering guide. He has an AIARE Level 3 Avalanche and Nols Wilderness First Responder certifications and has been an active Tahoe Nordic Search and Rescue Team member.

Isaac Laredo

Isaac found his appreciation  for the outdoors growing up in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Isaac attended Sierra Nevada College in Lake Tahoe where his appreciation  evolved into a lifelong passion. The scenery, accessibility and culture of the surrounding mountains captivated Isaac to major in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus in Environmental Science and Outdoor Adventure Leadership at Sierra Nevada College. Here he was inspired by his teachers and peers to facilitate the creation of special moments in the outdoors. As one of his mentors say “special moments happen, we just have to show up for them”. These special moments have been responsible for lots of personal growth for himself and those around him. He has experienced the power of the outdoors first hand and looks forward to life long learning in the mountains through climbing and skiing.
Isaac is an AMGA Single Pitch Instructor, Wilderness First Responder, Pro 1 Avalanche Professional, and Leave No Trace Master Educator.
Guide Certifications
  • AMGA Certified Single Pitch Instructor

What others are saying about this trip

Private 2 Hour Tour

Discover what Via Ferrata is all about in this introductory 2-hr tour of Tram Face with your private group. This privately guided exploratory adventure will give you a taste of the Tahoe Via and is sure to leave you wanting more!