Guide Training Alpine

Training is divided into two sections (both are required)

  • (Part A) Ice: Takes place in the winter and emphasizes waterfall ice climbing skills
  • (Part B) Alpinism: Takes place in the summer months and emphasizes alpine climbing in the big mountains on rock, snow, ice and glaciated terrain.

To instruct participants in the application of guiding and instructional techniques in alpine and waterfall ice terrain. To introduces the participants to client care and safety. To screen candidate’s ice, rock and snow climbing skills and to provide recommendations for further participation in ACMG programs.


The courses are designed to help prepare and to introduce some of the recommended methods common to alpine and waterfall ice guiding and instruction through indoor and outdoor training sessions and through practical application with demonstration and coaching. Participants will receive counselling, feedback and recommendations to assist with the process of becoming a guide. Self-directed learning, and practical application of guide skills on the participant's own time is required prior to the exams.

Field session examples

Ice: Movement skills, teaching ice climbing schools, winter hazards, multi-pitch guiding and descents, steep ice technique, protection and anchor building

Alpinism: Navigation, snow and ice anchors, belays on snow and ice, short roping, multi-pitch ice climbing, glacier travel, crevasse rescue, client care, alpine hazard evaluation.

Lecture session examples (both)

Compass and map orientation, equipment preparation, guide meeting format, use of options, planning a guided week, hazard management.

Evaluation areas

Screening of movement skills on alpine snow, rock and ice - Screening on waterfall ice - Knowledge of systems: belays, protection, crevasse rescue - Recreational leadership, hazard evaluation skills.

Location and length
  • (Part A) Ice: 5 days, training usually takes place in January in the Rocky Mountains centred around Canmore.
  • (Part B) Alpinism: Seven days, training usually takes place in July. Location varies but centres around accessible glaciated alpine terrain; past examples include Bugaboos, Columbia Icefields, Lake Louise and Mount Joffre.