Patagonia Mountaineering

Credit: Ignacio Grez

Patagonia Mountaineering

Climb high in the Andes Mountains

Find adventure among the peaks, rivers, and coastal rainforests of the Andes. On this course, you’ll learn about living and traveling in the mountains of Patagonia. Wake up to see the sun warming high rocky crags. Savor delicious meals you’ll learn to make on a camp stove. Learn about the natural history of how cliffs and glaciers formed as you gain the skills to navigate them. Feel the delight of summiting an unnamed peak. On your course, you’ll start with the basics, like setting up a tent and staying comfortable in the unpredictable weather of the Andes. Then, you’ll advance to skills like navigating off-trail at high elevations and the knot tying, rescue, and rope handling skills essential to mountaineering. You don’t need to be an expert at camping or come in with prior experience—your instructors will help you learn everything you need to know.

This course is also about developing leadership. You’ll dive deep into learning about your leadership style and how to use it to contribute to your group. Living in a small community becomes an opportunity to learn about communication and group dynamics. Navigating mountain terrain becomes a chance to practice tolerance for adversity and uncertainty. Making decisions with your group is a change to practice peer leadership and develop judgement. It’s skills like these that will help you cross glaciers, climb mountains, and prepare you for leadership roles at home. You’ll go home from this course with greater awareness of your leadership style, the skills to continue growing, and the experiences to explore the mountains for the rest of your life.



2020 Dates

Jan. 12 – Feb. 14, 2020

Tuition: $7,750
In Progress

Jan. 12 – Feb. 14, 2020

Tuition: $7,750
In Progress

2021 Dates

Jan. 12 – Feb. 14, 2021

Tuition: $7,750


All course information at a glance


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Equipment Deposit



34 days

Minimum Age

18 yrs.

Academic Credit

6 College Credits
  • 2 Risk Assessment
  • 2 Skills Practicum
  • 2 Environmental Studies

1.50 High School Credits

  • 1.00 Leadership
  • 0.50 Physical Education
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Course Description

Equipment List

Travel and Logistics


Coyhaique, Chile

Fly in/out

Balmaceda, Chile

Skills learned


Additional Details

Essential Eligibility Criteria


“I probably would have never learned some of the skills if I had never attended NOLS.”