Expeditions refer to mountaineering which involves setting up a fixed line of stocked camps on the mountain which can be accessed at one’s leisure, as opposed to an Alpine-style where one carries all of one’s food, shelter, equipment etc. as one climbs. Expedition style also incorporates the use of fixed ropes, and climbers (and the porters they frequently employ) will travel up and down the route several times to fix ropes and set up camps, while Alpine style eschews fixed ropes, porters, and camps, and climbers usually only climb the route once in a continuous push.

While mountaineering began as attempts to reach the highest point of unclimbed big mountains it has branched into specializations that address different aspects of the mountain and consists of three (3) areas: rock-craft, snow-craft, and skiing depending on whether the route is chosen are over rock, snow or ice. All require experience, athletic ability, and technical knowledge to maintain safety.