Adrian Ballinger

Adrian Ballinger is a world class mountaineer, business leader, and professional speaker. As founder and head guide of the internationally acclaimed Alpenglow Expeditions, Adrian envisioned a more holistic climbing experience for his clients than the status quo. This vision, with a focus on small groups and client education, continues to change the way big mountains are climbed. What started in 2004 with three trips on one continent with one lead guide has grown into a thriving company running 30 trips annually on 5 continents with six lead guides. In 10 years, Alpenglow has helped more than 100 clients successfully summit Everest, Lhotse (the 4th tallest mountain in world), Manaslu (8th tallest), and Cho Oyu (6th tallest).

How was Alpenglow able to expand to 10 times its size in 10 years all while setting new industry standards and expectations? Adrian believes running a business is a lot like climbing a mountain and attributes his extensive mountaineering experiences to his company’s success. In his forthcoming book, “Why Everest Matters – Lessons Learned from the Roof of the World,” Adrian explains essential business concepts such as leadership, teamwork, and risk management from a climber’s perspective. Adrian’s inspiring stories from the amazing places he’s traveled embolden audiences to integrate these important concepts into their own lives and businesses.

As a professional athlete first and foremost, Adrian is the only American who has skied two 8,000 meter peaks, was the first person to ski Manaslu, the 8th tallest mountain in the world, and in 2011 became the first person to summit three 8,000 meter peaks in only 3 weeks (Everest twice and Lhotse once). He is the only American guide to have both AMGA/IFMGA guide’s certifications and has achieved more than 10 summits of 8,000 meter peaks (including 6 summits of Mt. Everest).

Not being one to rest on his laurels, Adrian continues to seek out new challenges and set goals that take him further into the world’s most difficult high-altitude environments. In 2015, he plans to ski Makalu, the world’s 5th tallest peak, from its 27,776-foot summit. Less than 200 people have summited Makalu and none have skied it from the top. Adrian is a sponsored athlete for Marmot, La Sportiva, Kaenon, Goal Zero, Hypoxico and Alpenglow Sports and welcomes new sponsors who are committed to aligning with high altitude achievement.

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