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About the Course Options


The Rocky Mountains are unparalleled in the diversity of terrain they offer to early-career climbers, and that diversity only grows as you build up your skills to access more technical slopes. Pair this with world-class mountain guides and you have one of the best places to get your start in mountaineering on the planet. You can explore plenty of the Rockies without a guide, especially by climbing some of the easy Colorado Fourteeners. Once you decide you’re ready for more technical skills, you can choose from a wide range of course providers, who will teach you the basics of using crampons and traveling in roped teams. In Colorado, one of the best options is the Colorado Mountain School (CMS), while in the Canadian Rockies, Yamnuska Mountain Adventure has an excellent reputation.

And there in the blue air I saw for the first time, far off, the great snowy tops of the Rocky Mountains. I had to get to Denver at once.

- Jack Kerouac

If you’re a more advanced mountaineer, the Rockies are also a great place to break into new disciplines, like ski mountaineering and ice climbing. Exum Mountain Guides, based in Grand Teton National Park near Jackson Hole, offers some of the best ski mountaineering courses in North America, where it also happens to be the oldest guide service provider. For ice climbing, you can’t do much better than Ouray, Colorado. San Juan Mountain Guides is an excellent choice for ice climbing courses in and around Ouray, not to mention other courses, like rock climbing and backcountry skiing.

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