FAQs

We recommend an early registration to guarantee your spot. All tours are subject to availability.

We require a $500 deposit per person to register for a guided or self-guided tour. Private guided tours require a deposit equal to 25% of the total land cost. Just give us a call to process your Visa, Master Card or Discover. We also accept checks and money orders.

Upon receipt of your deposit, we will send you a confirmation letter, travel insurance application, waivers and a final invoice. All travelers will receive a pre-departure booklet following final payment. The book includes cultural information, travel instructions, equipment list and more.

For self guided travelers, an additional travel booklet including maps, hike descriptions and custom travel details also arrives around 30 days prior to departure. Exceptions apply on a case-by-case basis. Last minute registrations, for example, follow an expedited timeline. Please inform us of special requirements.

Final payment is due for all trips at 90 days prior to departure. Registrants that book within 90 days of the tour’s starting date must pay the full tour balance at the time of registration. Again, we make exceptions on a case-by-case basis.

Prices are quoted in U.S. Dollars and all payments must be made as such.

There is no charge for rescheduling guided or self guided tours prior to 90 days before departure. If rescheduling is not an option then please refer to the following guidelines.

Guided Trips:

  • Cancellations more than 90 days prior to tour departure: full refund.
  • Cancellations between 45 days and 90 days prior to tour departure: forfeit 25% of the land cost.
  • Cancellations within 45 days of tour departure: forfeit 100% of the land cost.

Independent Travel:

  • Cancellations more than 90 days prior to tour departure: full refund.
  • Cancellations between 45 and 90 days prior to tour departure: forfeit deposit.
  • Cancellations within 45 days of tour departure: forfeit 100% of the land cost.

Private Guided Travel:

  • Cancellations more than 90 days pior to tour departure: forfeit deposit worth 25% of the land cost.
  • Cancellations within 90 days of the tour departure: forfeit 100% of the land cost.

The obvious answer is that one is guided and one is not. Check out the following articles for a more definitive answer. They offer a comprehensive look at each style.

You Might Like a Guided Tour

You Might Like a Self-Guided Tour

For guided tours: The cost includes guiding, accommodations, breakfast and dinner, luggage transfer, and all transportation during the tour and incidental to the itinerary.

For self-guided tours: The cost includes two books filled with four-color topographical maps, written hike descriptions, cultural information, and more. (You don’t need to carry both books on the trail). We designed our easy-to-follow materials so that you simply turn to page one and follow the directions. The cost also includes accommodations with breakfast and dinner on most tours. Most self-guided tours also include luggage transfer, but a few exceptions exist. Custom tours may differ in what’s included from the standard tours.

Lunch is not included in the tour cost simply because we have such an enjoyable selection of available choices. We might visit the local market one day and build a delicious picnic filled with local flavors. We might grab lunch at an alpine mountain restaurant on another day. The flexibility allows us to sample the best in local fare, and it also allows our guests to eat whatever they have a taste for along the trail.

Most European hotels charge an additional fee for single occupants. We simply pass along this cost, and it’s the reason that we price our tours based on “double occupancy.” We wish that we didn’t have to do it, and in fact, we don’t “mark up” the additional fee imposed by the hotels. Some single travelers save money by booking a double room with another single group member. It can be challenging to find another group member willing to share, but we’re happy to help you try.

The answer is “yes” for ALL guided tours and MOST self-guided tours. The few exceptions to the rule involve remote and/or custom self-guided trips. Please read the following article, What’s the Deal with the Luggage?, if you’d like to know what you’re paying for.

The answer depends entirely upon your trip. If you registered for the Engadine Summit Series than the answer is “yes.” If you signed up for the Hiker’s Haute Route then the answer is “not quite.” For high alpine tours like the Hiker’s Haute Route and Tour du Mont Blanc, you will have your luggage in all locations except for the remote mountain houses and/or huts. Please check our indivdual tour pages for more details, or inquire about the specific tour that interests you.

The answer to this question depends on the trip. In general, a hut refers to a small mountain building, usually made of wood or stone, that offers a bed and a warm meal to weary travelers. The huts can be very elaborate, and they can also be very simple. In most huts, the accommodations are dormitory style with bunk beds and a communal bathroom. The meals are simple, but the wine flows abundantly. We try to incorporate a hut stay whenever we can because they provide a unique component of alpine culture, and everyone should experience an alpine hut at least once in their lives. These huts are known for their lively atmosphere, aromatic wood paneling, and convivial patrons.

Berghauses, literally translated as mountain houses, can be simple or elaborate affairs. This goes for the Italian rifugios as well. Some of these establishments offer hot showers, private rooms, and extensive menus. Check out the following blog entry for a peek. Please inquire about the the hut or berghaus on your specific tour.

Usually no more than 12 guests and two guides, though we occasionally go smaller or slightly larger. Many of our accommodations resemble small B&Bs, so we’re limited by their capacity. We also believe that we can offer better guest service with a smaller guest to guide ratio. Private trips are a different matter. We’ve had as many as 30 guests on one of our private celebrations.

That question is relative, but in general, the alpine hiking season runs from mid June to mid September. However, mild weather conditions, and a few shoulder season itineraries, allow us to extend the hiking season from April to the end of October. Check out the following article for a brief look at the advantages and disadvantages of hiking during certain months of spring, summer, and fall.

Unfortunately not. That would be one heck of a deal.

Yes we do. We’ll send you a list when you register for a trip. You can also get a head start by clicking here.

We are delighted to provide references. Just email or give us a call.

Please visit our media section and look under, Press Archives: Recent Awards and Stories. We also have many more articles on file. Just let us know what interests you.

One last thing:

Ryder-Walker Alpine Adventures is a family owned and operated adventure travel company based in Telluride, Colorado. Run by a dedicated team of outdoor fanatics, we delight in providing fun, healthy adventures in the most dramatic and breathtaking regions on earth.

Whether you call us by phone, send us an email, or communicate via social media, you’ll always connect with someone that knows (and loves) what they’re talking about. We love what we do, and we hope that you’ll love it too!