EL CERRITO, Calif. -- Mountain Travel Sobek turned 30 this year and
is offering a number of one-time departures to commemorate the
occasion. The trips were created by longtime company officials and
trip leaders who resurrected old-time favorite expeditions, many of
which haven't been offered in years.
Four of the 10 trips already are sold out, according to the
firm. The following is a brief description of some of the available
The Trans Himalaya Trek is a 31-day trip -- including 20 days
of strenuous hiking -- crossing three major mountain ranges in some
of the remotest terrain in the Himalayas. The trip will be led by
Leo Le Bon, the founder of Mountain Travel, who scouted the high
desert trails of Buddhist Ladakh and Zanskar several times in the
1970s and 1980s.
The trip starts with a visit to Manali and the Lahoul Valley,
then crosses the Shingo La mountain pass and twisting river gorges
dotted with 15th century Buddhist monasteries and tiny villages
before ending at the famous Lamayuru Monastery, a landmark on the
old Silk Route. The available departure is Aug. 7 to Sept. 6. Land
cost is $3,850 per person, double, plus $285 in internal air
fare.Vagabonding in Greece is a return of a popular trip first
offered in 1976 that Mountain Travel said created a festive type of
adventure travel known as a "4D trip" -- drinking, dining, dancing
and debauchery. The trip will be led by Allen Steck, one of
Mountain Travel's founders, who created the itinerary.
The trip will include a climb of Mount Olympus, a four-day hike
through the canyon of the Vikos Gorge in the Pindos Mountains and a
visit to the clifftop monasteries at Meteora. Mountain Travel said
that in addition to some hiking experience, qualifications for the
trip might include "a passion for Greek line dancing and a
tolerance for smoky taverns with loud music." The available
departure is Aug. 8 to 24. Land cost is $2,890 per person,
The Peruvian Highlands is a 23-day expedition that will
resurrect the company's most popular Peru trip from 1979 to 1988.
The trip will be led by Alfredo Ferreyros, Mountain Travel's Peru
expert, who will shepherd clients through a five-day wilderness
hike that crosses Salcantay Pass on a little-used trail to Machu
Picchu, then through a seven-day trek in the Cordillera Vilcanota,
a lake-dotted highland savanna inhabited by weavers, herders,
alpacas and condors. The available departure is May 21 to June 12.
Land cost is $3,495 per person, double.Mount Kenya and Kilimanjaro is a 19-day trip to Kenya and
Tanzania that includes back-to-back climbs of the two mountains.
Mountain Travel's Africa specialist, Lain Allan, leads the 19-day
expedition, which includes 12 days of strenuous hiking at high
elevation. According to Mountain Travel, when this trip was first
offered 20 years ago, it was the lure of climbing Kilimanjaro that
locked people into the trip, whereas Mount Kenya was "something of
However, "usually at about 12,000 feet, [clients] became aware
that they were indeed in a very special place," said Allan. To
reach the highest peak on Mount Kenya requires a high level of
technical expertise, but the third-highest peak, Point Lenana, can
be reached by trekkers. The available departure is Sept. 24 to Oct.
12. Land cost is $4,790 per person, double, plus $350 in park fees.
Mountain Travel Sobek. Phone: (888) 687-6235. Web: