Site last updated on Friday 13th October 2017
First Ascents in Argentina. In January 2010 and December 2011 we made a number of first ascents of 6000m peaks in the high Andes of the Puna de Atacama, as reported in the Alpine Journal and American Alpine Journal 2012. These were very successful expeditions with many clients making many summits. We are heading back to the same general area in January 2018, but obviously to a different (probably) unclimbed summit. This is an area of the Andes we know exceptionally well, having run many successful trips in the past twenty years. Pictured above on the summit of Laguna Blanca Sur, 5900m, 2016 ANDES "First Ascents" expedition. This peak proved not to be a first ascent because the Incas had been there first.... you can just make out a wall and a pile of firewood in the centre right. This expedition went on to make a (probable) first ascent of the highest peak of Laguna Blanca, at 6012m. It appears the couple who made the first claimed ascent of Laguna Blanca in 2006 may in fact have only ascended the southern summit of the main peak! We're still trying to resolve what became a very complex situation, but not through lawyers!!
Information about the climbing and trekking guidebooks to the Andes which John Biggar has authored. These have been translated into French, Spanish & Polish. You can purchase the English & Spanish editions on this website.
We can provide or organise logistical support for many types of mountain expeditions, in many parts of the Andes. In the past ANDES have organised treks, ski holidays, expeditions and guided climbing for private individuals, groups of friends, schools, clubs and military groups
Every year ANDES schedule a small number of unique and interesting expeditions to the Andes and Latin America. Many of these are First Ascents and other exploratory expeditions. The majority of these are led by John Biggar in person, with one or two selected trips being led or co-led by other qualified and experienced leaders.
In addition to the scheduled expeditions and courses that ANDES organise, we can organise instructional courses, expeditions and straightforward ski-touring trips in many diverse parts of the world.
Scottish Climbing Instruction (opens in Johnbiggar.com website)
John Biggar and ANDES can also instruct winter climbing, rock climbing and ski mountaineering in all parts of Scotland. In the past we've run winter skills weekends, week long winter courses and guided ascents of classic rock climbs for individuals, Mountain Rescue Teams and clubs.
Why book with ANDES and John Biggar?
- Past Successes. Many of the mountaineering expeditions to the Andes that we organise offer those critical extra 2 or 3 days and low guide:client ratios necessary for success on a big mountain.
- We're Good. We are highly recommended by past customers. Have a look at the Customer Satisfaction page for further details. Not surprisingly we have very high repeat booking rates and referral booking rates and run a lot of private itineraries. That's why we haven't advertised much for more than ten years.
- We're Specialists. John Biggar personally has MORE experience of operating mountaineering, skiing and trekking expeditions to South America than anyone else in the world. He has more than twenty-five years of experience climbing and skiing in the Andes and has climbed over 300 of the 5000m+ summits and skiied on over 100 summits in Patagonia.
- We get lots of Repeat Business. We have many satisfied customers, including some who have completed more than ten expeditions with us. Thom from Scotland just recently climbed his 20th major 6000m+ peak in the Andes. All these were climbed with John as a guide and organiser..... although we should point out that Thom's put a lot of effort in himself!
- Small Groups. Our maximum group size on all regular courses and expeditions is four. Smaller groups are more flexible and much less intrusive in remote mountain areas. Have a look at the 'Our Style' page for further details.
Andes Guidebooks Details of the guidebooks we publish - 'The Andes - A Guide for Climbers' and its E-book, French, Spanish and Polish editions. The 4th English edition of "The Andes - A Guide for Climbers" was published in March 2015 and the E-book version of this 4th edition in November 2015. Spanish and French editions of this guidebook were published in 2007 and 2009, and a Polish edition in 2012.
Guidebook, Photo and Map Library Information about the extensive guidebook, photo and map library I maintain at the office in Castle Douglas.
For further details of the services ANDES and John Biggar can offer, more information on the mountains of South America, or to purchase guidebooks please contact us at
or by phone 01556 503929 from the UK, + 44 1556 503929 from elsewhere in the world.
You are also welcome to write or visit at
Andes, 37a St. Andrew Street, Castle Douglas, Kirkcudbrightshire, DG7 1EN, SCOTLAND
The office is located in the middle of the town of Castle Douglas, which lies in Galloway in southern Scotland about half-way between the towns of Kirkcudbright and Dumfries.
If you experience any problems with this website (even if it's just a missing picture or missing link) or with the e-mail address please let us know using the above numbers or the alternate email address email@example.com .
This website, including all photos (unless otherwise credited), maps, lists, diagrams and text are © 1997-2017 John Biggar t/a Andes. Unauthorised reproduction prohibited. If you wish to use any material from this site please contact us for permission first; permission will usually be granted for non-commercial use providing you give full credit and link directly back to this website.
Free Information Files & Photo Galleries on this Website