Why I choose to climb Everest with Furtenbach Adventures Review

I successfully climbed Mount Everest on May 17, 2023. I choose to climb with Furtenbach Adventures. It was a HUGE choice in my life. And thankfully I made the correct one. My Furtenbach Adventures review blog post will explain why I chose these guys.

There a lot of Everest companies these days. More than 20. They range from local Nepali operators to super high-end Chinese and Russian VIPs. And it’s a minefield for which company to climb with. I originally wrote this blog post once I had finally decided on who operator I would climb with. Furtenbach Adventures. And now, having successfully summited Everest with them, I want to share with you guys my thought process and why i choose them.

I hope my Furtenbach Adventures review helps you guys successfully climb this thing too!

Mount Everest summit
Mount Everest summit


Before we go on, and maybe you can’t be bothered to read the rest, the long-story-short is that I choose these guys because they are THE MOST SUCCESSFUL EVEREST OPERATOR in existence.

They have a 100% success rate in their expeditions reaching the summit Everest (not counting the year COVID stopped it). And ultimately, that was the number one factor.

Everest 2023
Everest 2023

Why I choose Furtenbach Adventures?

IT’S A HUGE DECISION. QUITE LITERALLY LIFE OR DEATH. My season, in 2023, was the deadliest for Everest climbers in history. And i’m so, so grateful for Furtenbach and the way they dealt with the whole season. Not least, getting us ALL to the summit. The whole team. 100% success!

The million-dollar question. Or rather the £50,000 question. I’ve used a few different companies to help me climb mountains over the last few years. I particularly love Elbrus Tours who helped me climb both Mount Elbrus in Russia (Europe’s highest mountain) and Aconcagua in Argentina. I used a great company for my Mont Blanc climb in France too. And I climbed Denali in 2022 with Jagged Globe (they were useless for the record). But Everest? Everest is different.

For a start, it’s super expensive. This meant I couldn’t afford to fail. I have just built my dream home and now am building a new family life in Thailand, so to fail Everest and then to drop another big chunk of cash for another attempt just wasn’t viable for me. I had to succeed.

Everest 2023
Everest 2023

Highest Success rate on Everest

So the main driver for me was the likelihood to summit on my first try. Of course, with the weather etc, nothing is guaranteed. But I can control the controllables. That means choosing the company with THE highest success rate in summiting Everest. In fact, Furtenbach Adventures have the most highest success rate with summiting everest EVER.

Cost Vrs Safety Vrs Success

Furtenbach are not the cheapest operator. $70k or so.

If you go with a local Nepali operator you may even get away with somewhere between $40k to $50k total fee. But what you don’t hear about from the marketing is the death rate with local operators. And the failure rate. Both are 10 TIMES+ more likely with Nepali operators. I’m not going to get into a negative spin, but my advice from climbing Everest? Go with a western operator.

So with that decision then made. I’d still rather spend an extra $10k or so with a ‘better’ operator that increases my chances of summiting (and surviving). Than cut corners, find a cheaper foreign operator, and then fail! Only to have to pay again. Suddenly the ‘cheaper’ operator isn’t so cheap when you have to go back the following year to try again (and pay again!).

Lukas Furtenbach

Lukas Furtenbach is the main man who started Furtenbach Adventures. He, himself, is an elite mountaineer. 8000m+ without oxygen, multiple Everest summits etc. Not only that, he’s the most humble, lovely, helpful mountaineer in the business. I can’t speak highly about him enough. He was so great to deal with.

When you book, or even just consider booking with them, you get a chance to discuss with him on the phone. No issue to too small, to question too stupid. The customer service was impeccable. They were with us every step of the way for YEARS leading up the climb. Training. Guides. Gear. Everything was covered. Constantly. It gave us real peace of mind.

Not only that, he’s quite famous in the community. And Furtenbach Adventures are kind-of known as the best operator in the business. With his Austrian (German-speaking) background, I was expecting a stern operator. But as soon as he arrived at Base Camp, I realised I was wrong. Such a humble energy. Just a lovely, lovely guy.

furtenbach adventures base camp
With the main man, After we summited


99.9% of people who climb Everest, use Oxygen. All the way back to the first summit, with Tenzing and Hilary, Oxygen has been used. Most failures, most frostbite incidents, and most deaths are attributed to oxygen, and lack thereof.

With Furtenbach Adventures, you don’t have that issue. Lukas OWNS the Himalayan oxygen set-up. So you have access to the best oxygen, the most oxygen, the most reliable apparatus. It’s cutting edge. And because they own the company, you will never run out of Oxygen. Again, that’s life and death. And that alone is reason enough to go with these guys.

furtenbach adventures base camp
Lukas showing us the brand new oxygen systems

Everest Base Camp

The first reason, apart from the highest success rare, that I actually climbed Everest with Furtenbach Adventures was probably their Everest Base Camp set-up. For anyone who has done long expeditions, you know that there is a lot more downtime than people realise. And sleeping in a tiny tent, on a crappy fold-up mattress, with 2 people, no room for bags etc, for weeks on end is hell. It’s the worst part about these expeditions.

In Everest, it’s even worse. The expedition can be 2 months. And a month of that can be at Base Camp. Furtenbach have created the best Base Camp in history, literally:

  • Dining tent. Complete with 3 course dinners each night.
  • Recreation tent. Complete with heaters, 65″ screen and movies, inflatable lounge chairs
  • INDIVIDUAL sleeping tents, with a ‘porch’ for all your gear.
  • Proper sit-down toilets
  • A heated shower every 3/4 days.
  • A REAL coffee machine that they paid a fortune to helicopter in!

For people who would say this ruins the climbing experience, I’d say “come and try it”. Do endless expeditions when you suffer more than you need to, like we all have done, then when given the option to have this, you’ll take it all day long. Everest is difficult enough, and dangerous enough. There’s no need to suffer at base camp too, if you can avoid it. Furtenbach Adventurers Base Camp was a dream. It meant any delays were manageable. And the unlimited chocolate and wine. Wow!

furtenbach adventures review
furtenbach adventures review
Furtenbach Base Camp
Furtenbach Base Camp


Everest 2023
Everest 2023

Hypoxic Pre-acclimatization with Furtenbach

And then there is there hypoxic pre-acclimatization. The reason these guys have such a high success rate is that their expeditions are shorter, and you pre-acclimatise so you’re ready for the high altitudes, where other operators aren’t.

Once signed up, a few weeks before the expedition, you get a special tent to sleep in at your home. That trains your body to work ‘normally’ with less oxygen. It means that you can spend less time on the mountain, reducing the chances of getting sick or anything going wrong AND you can perform better/fitter/stronger to get you to the summit. AMAZING!

hypoxic pre-acclimatization
Hypoxic pre-acclimatization example

Trip length

Furtenbach are pioneering ‘flash’ climbs on 8000m peaks. Where they try to get you in and out in 20 days or so. As opposed to 2 months. I couldn’t quite afford that, but it is pretty cool. I went for the ‘cheaper’ (yeah right) trip: THIS IS THE EXPEDITION I SIGNED UP FOR.

But if you’re wealthy, this is a great option. It’s less time away from home (and of course less time on the mountain is less time to have an accident on the mountain!).

The best sherpa & Sherpa Treatment

Lukas treats his sherpa staff the best of all operators. He also pays the most. He gives them unlimited oxygen as they help set-up camps etc too, whereas other operators don’t. They also have insurance, and access to healthcare.

Because of this, the Sherpa team at Furtenbach is the best. They all want to work with and for Lukas. So the amount of experience these guys have is insane. So many summits of Everest, K2 etc. Everywhere you look is a legend. These guys have your back.

International Doctor

Furtenbach are one of only 2 or 3 operators to have a western doctor ON SITE and permanently at Base Camp. That’s pretty amazing.

Why Not Any Other Operators?

Furtenbach are the best operator on the mountain, but they’re also still a boutique operator. Or at least they feel that way. Small groups, the best sherpa, personal contact, highest success rate, zero deaths. It’s a simple decision to be honest.

I was originally going to go with 2 of the biggest companies (I won’t mention their names, but they’re famous!). And spoke to them both. But in the end, I decided not to because I felt their groups were too big, and also that they were cost-cutting to make themselves more available to the mass market. I prefered to pay a little more, and know that my chances to summit are higher.

Also, I want a small group and a group that has been analysed one by one to make sure we are all ok to attempt it. In the end our group was me plus 3 other climbers. Just 4 of us, perfect (and we all made it!).

What Was climbing Mount Everest Like!?

It was harder than I thought! But I blogged all about it in my Climbing Everest blog post, so check that out.

My Everest summit day
furtenbach review
At Camp 1

FAQs about Climbing Everest 2023

How much does it cost to climb Everest?

It ranges from $30,000USD to over $100,000USD. It’s pricey, no doubt about that. But then again, it is the highest mountain on earth!
For the expedition that I’m going on it was €69,900 (£55,000GBP / $74,400USD).

How long does it take?

Normally 2 months, for my expedition it’s April 13th to May 24. So that’s 42 days.

How hard is it?

It’s not easy, that’s for sure. The death rate for Everest is 1-3% BUT that number is much lower if we look just at the last 10 years with better gear, health & safety etc. But, for me at least, one should be in the best shape of their life when taking on the world’s highest peak. Let’s do it!

Do I need experience?

It categorically cannot be your first mountain (and in fact, they won’t take you if it is!). I’d recommend having climbed AT LEAST 2 or 3 mountains first. A good way to do it would be an easy one, like a Kilimanjaro (I’m going in November if you want to do it!), then either Elbrus or Mont Blanc (both quite cheap) and then Aconcagua or Denali. That should get you ready.

Can I die?

Yes, but highly unlikely with modern conditions.

What Equipment Do I need to Climb Everest?

Quite a lot of clothing, not so much hard-core ‘climbing’ gear. I’ll publish a full packing list in the coming months, but for example, I don’t have that much stuff and yet the only thing I need that I don’t have is the full summit suit (The big puffy onesie). The rest is just normal hard-core outdoor gear for sub-0 temperatures.
The company I’m going with can also help with the gear of course (either to rent or buy).

What Is the Success Rate of Climbing Everest?!

About 50% (bear in mind most people climbing it are beasts though).

I’ve seen it cheaper with another company, should I go with them?

For me, I wouldn’t. I guess it comes down to your own level. If you’re a hardcore mountaineer, you can get your permit and gear for $15k or so and go. But for me, I want a expert guide. 1-1 sherpa for summit. Oxygen at high camp AND the highest chance to summit imaginable. For me, that comes through the expedition I’ve chosen. It’s personal preference at the end of the day.

I heard it’s easy these days and anyone can pay and climb it?

Nonsense. Absolute nonsense. We all saw the photo a couple of years ago of people ‘queuing to get to the summit of Everest. That was a perfect storm. The weather window (the time when you can try to summit) had closed so narrow that pretty much the entire mountain had to summit on the same day, causing a line of people. Rest assured, anyone who has made it to 8,000m+ is a beast. One who has sacrificed so much to be there. Training, finances, risk of death. Watching people sit at home and criticizing is nothing short of hating. People who didn’t have the courage to chase their dreams, so now carry schadenfreude for those that do. Don’t be them.

furtenbach adventures review
Summit day!


Firstly, think long and hard. It’s expensive, it’s difficult, it’s cold. You have to train for at least 6 months beforehand, but it’s all worth it.

Anyone who wants to join an expedition can check out their offerings here:


furtenbach adventures

Remember, never travel without travel insurance! And never overpay for travel insurance!

I use HeyMondo. You get INSTANT quotes. Super cheap, they actually pay out, AND they cover almost everywhere, where most insurance companies don't (even places like Central African Republic etc!). You can sign-up here. PS You even get 5% off if you use MY LINK! You can even sign up if you're already overseas and traveling, pretty cool.

Also, if you want to start a blog...I CAN HELP YOU!

Also, if you want to start a blog, and start to change your life, I'd love to help you! Email me on johnny@onestep4ward.com. In the meantime, check out my super easy blog post on how to start a travel blog in under 30 minutes, here! And if you just want to get cracking, use BlueHost at a discount, through me.

Also, (if you're like me, and awful with tech-stuff) email me and my team can get a blog up and running for you, designed and everything, for $699 - email johnny@onestep4ward.com to get started.

Do you work remotely? Are you a digital nomad/blogger etc? You need to be insured too.

I use SafetyWing for my digital nomad insurance. It covers me while I live overseas. It's just $10 a week, and it's amazing! No upfront fees, you just pay week by week, and you can sign up just for a week if you want, then switch it off and on whenever. You can read my review here, and you can sign-up here!


So if you’re ready to…..

1) Change your life
2) Travel the world
3) Get paid to travel
4) Create a positive influence on others
5) Be free of offices and ‘real world’ rubbish

Then Sign Up Below and Let’s Get Started!

Follow me on Instagram @onestep4ward