Concordia Expeditions - Classic Trips to Pakistan

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Syed Masood Ahmad

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Concordia Expeditions
PO Box 1229
Crestone, Colorado

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Client Feedback

Mark Ross
October 12, 2000

Dear Masood,

Unbelievable, spectacular, well organized, great diversity, super friendly!

OUTSTANDING ALL THE WAY! I thank you for the single most wonderful trip I've taken in years and years; and keep in mind that safaris are my business. Everything just went so incredibly smoothly and well, and we felt so well taken care of it was a great vacation for me, even being in the very same business. Salman and the staff were just great. The porters were fine, and such fun to interact with.

The timing of the trip, the number of days, the pace, etc., couldn't have been better. We certainly would have liked to cross over Gondogoro La, but it couldn't be helped. We made up for it by going up to the Khyber Pass, and having a couple of wonderful days in Peshawar(which must be the friendliest city in the world).

The mountains are definitely more spectacular than Nepal, the food is far better, and the porters, people, etc., are far friendlier. It makes me so sad to think of all the US propaganda that is put out about Pakistan. I HAVE NEVER VISITED A FRIENDLIER COUNTRY, anywhere in the entire world, truly. I just talked and photographed every one and they couldn't have been more embracing then they were.

I was just so amazed at that, every single day. I could have spent a week just in Peshawar alone, much less the rest of the country. It certainly is a far safer place to travel than Kenya, including the Khyber Pass.

Thank you so much for an oustanding adventure. I'll see you in the spring, show you the pictures, etc.

most gratefully yours,

Mark Ross

Concordia Expeditions Pakistan

Paul W. Whistler
Durango, Colorado

To whom it may concern:

"Now you must prepare yourself spiritually to see the big mountains." This was the advice given to me from our guide as we began to enter the "Throne Room of the Mountain Gods," Galen Rowell's term for the greatest concentration of high peaks on Earth.

I recently returned from Pakistan and a trek to K2 with Concordia Expeditions, based in Buena Vista, Colorado. I can say without reservation that every aspect of this trek was expertly prepared by Concordia Expeditions.

Concordia's guide was extremely well connected in Pakistan, and most competent to conduct treks to the heart of Karakoram. He hired the best porters, known from years of experience, as well as the finest available cook. Our cook came from an impressive background of expedition experience, and our meals were clearly the envy of other trekkers with guides.

Concordia Expeditions is owned and operated by Pakistanis who know and love their country. As we walked past the famous and impressive peaks of Paiju, Trango Towers, Masherbrum, and Gasherbrum on our way to K2, we were fully immersed in Pakistani mountain culture and lore. The spiritual power of the Karadoram was therefore a forceful presence on our trek.

Our trek culminated with three spectacular days in Concordia, the great glacial intersection at the base of K2. Here, surrounded by seven- and eight-thousand meter peaks, we had indeed arrived, spiritually and physically, in the Throne Room of the Mountain Gods.

For anyone considering a trek through the Karakoram, I strongly recommend Concordia Expeditions. Not only is Concordia the finest adventure company to guide treks through the Karakoram, the staff shares a heartfelt love of the mountains that will make your trip the most memorable of a lifetime.


Paul Whistler

What some of our recent guests say:


"...But I know that when I look at the pictures, they will be able to stir in me these multi-dimensional memories, vivid sounds, smells, tastes, and feelings of a wonderful time on the Baltoro."

'Bizz' Johns, Colorado
Gondogoro La


"...Well, thanx for arranging a fine trip and now I shall return to Mr. Starr's report!"

Craig Feeney, M.D., Washington
Snow Lake


"...I hope that one day we in the USA can extend the hospitality shown to us as visitors in your country."

Kathy Peroff, Washington DC
Jeep Trip

(from letter written to our family in Pakistan)


"...Now that I've been back here and have had time to reflect on my experience on the Baltoro, it really has been (and will be) one of the high points of my life. Thanks for everything you did for me along the way."

Chris Oppfelt, Washington
Gondogoro La

(from letter written to one of our guides)

"...I want you to know, with all of my heart, that I had the greatest time in Pakistan. The people, Fazal and all of his crew, all were fantastic and gave us the best of Pakistan."

Mercedes Pierrend, Peru
K2 Trek

Concordia Expeditions Pakistan

Jim Mauch
Breckenridge, Colorado

Dear Masood:

I would like to thank you for arranging a tremendous Gondogoro La trip in northern Pakistan for us. The views were breathtaking and your staff were wonderful. The trip was very well run.

I would like to comment on traveling in Pakistan. There is a lot of debate on whether traveling to Pakistan is safe, and I would like to voice the opinion that it is indeed safe, specially when traveling with a tour company such as yours.

With the Kashmir border skirmish, rumors of imminent terrorist activity, and reports of certain areas off limits to foreigners, I certainly had concerns about safety. But following your leadership, I felt very confident we would avoid any suspect areas, and we would be taken care of if the political situation should truly turn volatile. I am happy to report no terrorists or battle fields were encountered! And may I also note that by respecting the local customs, I found the Pakistani people to be regularly very friendly and helpful.

Obviously 100% safety cannot be guaranteed on any trip to anywhere, as danger can be encountered in any part of the world at any time. But, I would consider traveling to Pakistan no more dangerous than traveling to any other part of world, including the USA, and considerably safer than many.

I would like to return someday, and would recommend a trip to Pakistan to everyone.


Jim Mauch


Concordia Expeditions Pakistan


John & Alma Price
Shawnee Mission, KS

Dear Masood:

We want to thank you for the most beautiful and fascinating trip in our seventy-some years. Our early odyssey in northern Pakistan surpassed all expectations: for sheer loveliness, for friendliness, for courtesy and for just plain pleasure.

To travel in the greatest range of mountains in the world, with a friendly local guide, the most professional (and delightful) guide possible, our experienced and friendly drivers, into towns, villages, and valleys that are endlessly engaging--what could be more pleasurable! Accommodations were fine, food was nutritious, and comforts were plentiful.

One of us walks with a cane--and somewhat slowly at that. Climbing in and out of old forts, going down slopes, traveling in other passageways, these posed no problem. If anything, the Pakistanis were almost too helpful. They showed genuine and consistent concern for the welfare of their visitors. Their warmth was very welcoming.

It is unfortunate that official statements are made suggesting that travel in Pakistan be restricted. And no time, in no place did we feel the slightest threat. In the towns of Lahore, Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Gilgit, Karimabad, and in Hunza Valley, in the shops and streets, in the hotels and restaurants, in the private homes we visited we always felt secure and were consistently treated as personal guests.

We only regret is that it will be a while before we can return.


John R. Price & Alma R. Price


Concordia Expeditions Pakistan


David Stiller & Jean Aaro 
Boulder, CO

Dear Masood,

Jean and I wish to express our sincerest, whole-hearted thanks for what was genuinely a trek of a lifetime. We are reasonably well-traveled and cannot remember a vacation that went so smoothly. Even the weather was incredible.

In spite of everyone's pre-trek worries and frequent admonitions to "go with the flow," we congratulate you and everyone with Concordia Expeditions for organizing such an enjoyable trek. As one of our group said after passing through the Braldu Gorge and reaching Askole, "If our trek ended today, I've gotten my money's worth."

Of course, our trek did not end there. As we worked our way up the Baltoro Glacier to Concordia, then over Gondogoro La and out through Hushe, essentially circumnavigating Masherbrum, the sights simply got better and better. What incredible memories we have.

One element of which you should be proud is your Pakistani staff. We met numerous other trekkers coming down the Baltoro, satisfied with the scenery but rolling their eyes over their local guides and porters. In EVERY case, they were at least moderately frustrated with the difficulty of communicating with local staff, leading to some unfortunate misunderstandings.

To Concordia's credit, your guides and senior staff, from Hunza, managed our Balti porters with skill and fairness. And their ability to speak English enhanced our communications and enjoyment. Most of all, we appreciated seeing the Karakoram and Hunza through the eyes of Pakistanis. We made friends in Karimabad and Skardu and expect to see them again. And certainly, when we plan our next trip to the Karakoram, perhaps to Snow Lake, we will not hesitate to use Concordia Expeditions.

Once again, many thanks for a fantastic trip.

David Stiller & Jean Aaro


Concordia Expeditions Pakistan


by Norman Brown,
Santa Fe, New Mexico
K-2 Trek

Mighty Karakoram...
Angry, savage, wild-eyed mountains,
Hurling peak after peak, stacking tower upon tower,
Flexing great knotted granite sinews each
Supporting long chain-saw blades that rip the sky-
All tooth, fang, snag and pinnacle.

Mighty Karakoram...
Hard, fierce, punishing mountains,
Forged on an anvil of high, sun blasted deserts,
Thrust up in traumatic tectonic collision,
Then cut by desolate, dangerous rivers
Themselves born live from ugly grinding glaciers
Busily gouging clean, incredible, desperately vertical
Walls of mountains.

Mighty Karakoram...
Bold, brash, restless mountains,
Young and insolent and unforgiving,
Fickle with weather,
Foolish with lives,
Indifferent to any sense of rational order,
Crazed with mass and jumble and chaos,
Pleased, in fact, with absolute and unmitigated excess.

Mighty Karakoram...
Silent and secretive mountains
Hiding deep in their faults and folds a special place
Guarded by fortress, tower, and spire-
"Nameless" and "Trango," "Lobsang" and "Mustagh;"
Hiding there in splendid isolation
An implausible place-"Concordia" is its name-
Because there it is a world of glaciers unsurpassed
And mountain gods so awesome all together dwell-
"K-2" and "Gasherbrum,"
"Broad Peak" and "Masherbrum."

Oh, mighty Karakoram...
Most exuberant and overwhelming of mountains,
Holding ever close your "once upon a time" Concordia,
So marvelous and full of inspiration
That every human struggle, every sacrifice and pain
Is resolved altogether in the glory and the grandeur
Of such a quintessential mountian place,
Such an amphitheater sublime,
Such an unrestrained assemblage of mountain, snow and glacier,
Spirit, cloud and sky.

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