American Mountain Guides Association
eNewsletterJanuary, 2012
Greetings from Boulder,
The new year is upon us and things are quite busy. Next week will see a few of us headed to Salt Lake City, for the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market and AMGA Board Meeting, the deadline for scholarship applications is coming up fast, we're adding a new Ski Mountaineering Guide Course and there is space on a few spring Rock Guide programs. That's just a few of the items you can read about below. So sit back and enjoy the show.
AMGA Board of Directors Meeting January 24, 2012

The AMGA Board of Directors will meet on Tuesday, January 24, 2012 at 9:00am. The meeting will take place at the Black Diamond HQ in Salt Lake City, Utah. If you plan on attending, please email for more details.

To read the President's and/or Executive Director's Reports that will be presented at the meeting, you can click on the links below:

President's Report

Executive Director's Report

2012 Board Committees

Magaret Wheeler
Chair of Access Committee

Martin Volken
Chair of Brand
Chair of Nominations

Scott Soden
Chair of Finance and Audit

Peter Gould
Chair of Professional Compliance Committee

Dale Remsberg
Chair of Technical Committee

Marc Chauvin
Chair of Risk Management Committee

Jim Pearson
Chair of Governance Committee

Evan Stevens
Chair of 2006 Strategic Plan Review Committee

Ed Crothers
Chair of Accreditation Committee

2012 Scholarship Program - Applications Due January 31st

The Scholarship Application deadline is almost here. Make sure to get everything submitted by January 31, 2012. Late and/or incomplete applications will not be considered for review.

Please note, we've added a few new scholarships that do not appear on the on-line application. If you are interested in applying for either the Craig Luebben Memorial (Rock Guide Course/Exam) or Brooks-Range (Alpine or Ski) Scholarships, just send a note to and let us know to add you to the list. The Craig Luebben Memorial Scholarship is a partial-tuition ($500) scholarship and the Brooks-Range Scholarship is a full-tuition scholarship.


Application Criteria

The purpose of a scholarship is to provide funding for the continuing education of a qualified professional guide. The successful applicant is a guide and:

  • Must be a current member of the AMGA
  • Must be currently enrolled in the Course/Exam to which the scholarship will be applied
  • Is pursuing guiding as a profession
  • Is seeking to better his/her guiding skills through educational courses and/or exams
  • Agree to provide 250-word (minimum) testimonial describing your program experience and how the scholarship/scholarship sponsor contributed to the experience, 5 Photos (minimum) shot during the Program and 1 video (minimum) shot during the Program.
  • Depending on the scholarship, may be asked to participate in three mutually agreed upon events during the period of 04/1/12-12/31/12. An event is considered a minimum four-hour time commitment. Events include, but are not limited to: climbing demonstrations, clinics, time spent at trade shows discussing products, and store visits.

Application Process

Please visit the link below to begin the application process.  


Only after we receive the following items will your application be considered for review:

1.     Completed General Application Survey

2.     Completed Questionaire

3.     Guiding Resume

4.     Personal Climbing/Skiing Resume


You must be enrolled in the AMGA Course/Exam to which the scholarship will be applied for your application to be accepted.


You must submit both a guiding resume and climbing/skiing resume for your application to be accepted.


There is one general application that applies to all scholarships. If you are applying for multiple scholarships for the same Course/Exam you only need to complete 1 application making sure to list the scholarships for which you are applying.


**All scholarship applications are due January 31, 2012. Any applications received after 11:59pm (MST) on January 31, 2012 will not be considered for review.**

Mountain Guide Program Update

We will be adding a second Ski Mountaineering Guide Course/Aspirant Exam (SMGC/AE) to the 2012 Program Schedule. The course is scheduled for April 26 - May 5 (subject to change) in Valdez, Alaska. There will be 8 spots available and enrollment will open on Monday, January 16.

We have space available on both the Rock Guide Course/Aspirant Exam (RGC/AE) and Rock Guide Exam (RGE) in Red Rock, Nevada, in April. The RGE is scheduled for April 3 - 8 and the RGC/AE is scheduled for April 10 - 19.
AMGA Thanks Patton Boggs, LLP. for Continued Support as Legal Advisor

Pboggs The AMGA would like to recognize the outstanding service of  Patton Boggs LLP.
Patton Boggs LLP is without a doubt the AMGA's largest supporter. In 2011 alone, Patton Boggs donated over 170 hours of time to our organization. This indispensable work equaled $82,000 in in-kind services. We are extremely grateful for their contribution to the professional mountain guiding community and would like to offer a huge and sincere thanks to the firm and first-rate lawyers that have been by our side for over 6 years. Thanks to Patton Boggs, the world's largest lobbying firm, the AMGA has been able to take advocacy and policy work to a whole new level. Special thanks to Peter Gould, Jim Lewis, Kyaw Tin, Anne Harrington and Greg Louer.
Level 3 & 2 Avalanche Course Schedules

Level 3 Avalanche Courses

aiare_logoAmerican Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE) Level 3 Course Schedule
March 1 - 7, Silverton, Colorado
March 9-15 - Silverton, Colorado

More information can be found HERE.

Level 2 Avalanche Courses
We would also like to list any Level 2 Avalanche Courses being offered by AMGA Accredited Programs and Certified Guides. If you would like your course(s) to be listed in the February eNewsletter, please submit course information to, by February 5.

Colorado Mountain School AIARE Level 2 Course Schedule
January 19-22 - Estes Park, Colorado
February 23-26 - Estes Park, Colorado
March 22-25 - Estes Park, Colorado
April 5-8 - Estes Park, Colorado
More information can be found HERE.
Alpine World Ascents AIARE Level 2 Course Schedule
February 9-12 - Berthoud Pass, Colorado
March 15-18 - Berthoud Pass, Colorado
More information can be found HERE.

Climbing Instructor Program Update

Year in Review

2011 was another strong year for the AMGA CIP. Growth of the Program averaged a little over 10% both financially and in the number of participants. It was the first year the total number of participants went over 1000, finishing the year at 1019. Of that number, 488 individuals became AMGA certified or re-certified as Single Pitch Instructors or Climbing Wall Instructors. Congratulations to all of you! If there was ever any doubt, it should be clear that the AMGA is leading the way in the training and certification of climbing instructors in the United States.


It was also a busy year in the realm of SPI and CWI Providers. Twenty-one individuals attended Provider trainings throughout the US and began the process toward becoming Providers. In 2011six individuals, Josh Jackson, Eli Simon, Joe Vitti, Daniel Turner, Matt Shove, and Alexis Finely, completed the SPI training process. Also, Andy Hershey, Justin Moynihan, and Brien Sheedy completed the CWI training process. It was great having these outstanding educators join the Provider Pool this year.


Most recently, Gabe Coler and Josh Kling became the first new SPI Providers in 2012. Another first for 2012 is that Ron Funderburke has become the newest AMGA SPI Provider Trainer. Ron has been a very active SPI Provider for a number of years. His quality work, commitment to the SPI Program, and years working as an educator make him a great addition to the eight other members of the SPI Trainers Team.


2012 Provider Trainings

At this time there are several Provider trainings scheduled for 2012:


SPI Provider Training - March 10 and 11 in Joshua Tree National Park, CA

SPI Provider Training - October 17 and 18 in Red Rocks National Conservation Area, NV

SPI Provider Refresher - October 19 in Red Rock National Conservation Area, NV


CWI Provider Training - February 28 and 29, Boston, MA


Additional trainings will be posted when course locations and dates have been finalized.


If you have an interest in beginning the process to become a SPI or CWI Provider, contact Ed Crothers, AMGA CIP Director by email at

2012 AMGA/IFMGA Member Dues Increase

Effective January 1, 2012, AMGA/IFMGA Member dues have been increased from $200 to $250.
Access Update

Black Canyon Update and AMGA Lobbying Trip to Capitol Hill


Right before the holidays, Betsy Winter, AMGA Executive Director, Leigh Goldberg, AMGA Access Director, and Peter Gould, AMGA Board Member and lobbyist from Patton Boggs LLP travelled to Washington, DC for an important cause: to preserve guided climbing access in the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park. We are pleased to report that we had three productive meetings with the Chiefs of Staff from Senator Udall (CO), Bennet (CO) and Baucus' (MT) Offices. We asked for their urgent support to help save guided climbing access in the Black and to directly reach out to the NPS and the Black Canyon in support of our position.


Please stay tuned. The Park plans to publish a summary of the public comments they received sometime this month. We expect the Black to make a decision later this quarter. In the meantime, we encourage you to express your concerns to Senator Udall by visiting his website. (In addition to representing constituents in Colorado, Senator Udall chairs the very important Subcommittee on National Parks, and we are hopeful to have his support on this issue).


A special thanks to Peter Gould and Patton Boggs LLP for their incredible support! It is a very rare occasion to get to meet with a Senator's Chief of Staff. And a huge thanks to all our members for getting involved, writing letters and helping to spread the word! You rock!


AMGA Speaking at Stanford University Conference


We are so excited to have received an invitation to an exclusive annual policy conference being hosted by Stanford University next month. Leigh Goldberg, Access Director, will be representing the AMGA amongst 50 land managers, academics and policy makers. The topic is "Commercial Outfitting and the Wilderness Act." In preparation, Leigh is collecting examples from AMGA membership illustrating ways that you are a resource to local land managers. How do AMGA Certified Guides, Climbing Instructors and Accredited Programs benefit the public, the resource and the land manager? To share your story or brief example, please send an email to or call the AMGA Office. Your story may make it into Leigh's presentation at Stanford!


Certified Guides Cooperative Wins Permit for Ouray Ice Park


Last month, the Ouray Ice Park opened to climbers for another exciting season of ice. The CGC is thrilled to announce its acquisition of this new permit for Co-op shareholders' guiding use. A lottery system determines how to divvy up the block of days. For more information, please send an email to Scott Schell, Executive Director of the CGC at

AMGA Merchandise

We recently added Outdoor Research Radar Pocket Caps as well as some new Zip Hoodies to the list of AMGA merchandise. The Caps are available in Orange, Olive, or Khaki and have the AMGA "text" logo embroidered across the front. The Zip Hoodies are available in black or green for the men and light blue or pink for the ladies. They have the AMGA "text" logo on the chest and the current t-shirt design on the back.


Caps - $25 + shipping
Hoodies - $45 + shipping  


We also have some older items on our shelves that we need to clear out - quantities are limited and the sizes listed below are all we have. These items will be sold on a first-come first-served basis, so don't delay. Call 303.271.0984 x2 to place your order.

Marmot Women's DriClime Windshirt - Black w/AMGA logo embroidered on right chest area
Size Small (1)
Size Medium (3)
$35 + Shipping

AMGA T-shirt - Black/White Ringer or Green
Size X-large Black (15)
Size X-Large Green (15)
$10 + Shipping

AMGA Embroidered Sweatshirts - Black, Blue or Green w/AMGA logo embroidered on left chest area
Size Small Black Hoodie (1)
Size Small Blue Hoodie (1)
Size Small Green Hoodie (1)
Size Small Blue Crew (3)
Size Medium Black Crew (1)
Size Medium Green Crew (1)
Hoodie $20 + Shipping
Crew $15+ Shipping  
Help Wanted

helpwantedIn an attempt to better serve our Accredited Programs, Certified Guides and Corporate Partners, we will be offering space in the monthly e-Newsletter to share job opportunities. This benefit is available to any current AMGA Accredited Program, Certified Guide or Corporate Partner.  Postings must be submitted to  between the 1st and the 5th of every month in order to make the monthly e-Newsletter. Any postings submitted outside this time-frame will be deleted. Postings must be 200 words or less and will be reviewed and accepted or denied by the AMGA office staff. Please email with any questions.


Jackson Hole Mountain Guides Expands Guest Guide Opportunities 

CONTACT:       Rob Hess, Chief Guide
Jackson Hole Mountain Guides 


In early September, 2011, I notified AMGA certified rock guides of the opportunity to guest guide under JHMG's permits in Moab/ Indian Creek, the Red Rock and Boulder, Colorado. I am pleased to announce a further expansion of our guest guide program to include the world class ice climbing found in the South Fork Canyon and surrounding areas near Cody, Wyoming. 


This opportunity is available only to AMGA certified alpine guides and IFMGA-level guides. Guides wishing to climb South Fork ice under JHMG's guest guide program should submit a letter of interest along with a climbing resume, copy of current first aid and CPR cards, and a copy of the guide's AMGA certification card to Rob Hess at the email address shown above. Guides whose applications have been approved will receive a written acknowledgement and additional information about the program. 


Details can be found HERE


Exum Mountain Guides - Guest Guide Opportunities  

The AMGA is excited to announce that we will be working with Exum Mountain Guides this summer to offer you the opportunity to work as a guest guide in Grand Teton National Park!


The Tetons provide some of the most accessible and diverse climbing in the North America. One of its premier climbs is, naturally, the Grand Teton (13,770 ft), a remarkable ascent via many outstanding routes that all providing an exhilarating day in the mountains. While the Grand Teton is the most famous peak in the region, the range also offers dozens of other climbs that are both famous and challenging, all in a beautiful and dramatic landscape. 


The AMGA is proud to work with Exum Mountain Guides in this capacity, and Exum is proud to offer AMGA guides this opportunity. To apply to be a guest guide at Exum you must be an AMGA Certified Alpine Guide.  Click Here to find out how to apply. 

 American Mountain Guides Association
In This Issue
Board of Directors Meeting
Scholarship Program
Mountain Guide Program
Thank You Patton Boggs
Avalanche Training
Climbing Instructor Program
IFMGA Member Dues
Access Update
Help Wanted
Quick Links
blog facebook
twitter youtube
Our Partners
Double Diamond 


Mammut Logo
Marmot logo


Arcteryx logo
BCA Logo

Visit Our Website
Join Our Mailing List