Don't "Belay"... Start Climbing!
Experience is the first thing you need. Start on a wall and work your way up. Mountain Guides will be expected to have even more recreational climbing experience and knowledge of the gear and climbing systems as well as the ability to show mental strength and risk management skills.
You must be at least 17 (18 years old at assessment) and will need to have a current CPR/First Aid certification AND/OR a current Wilderness First Responder (WFR)
Join a local or international climbing club
It can be worthwhile considering where you want to work right at the start. The qualifications to work in summer conditions are different than those needed to work on the snow and ice. Depending on the country, you may be required to be a member of the governing body or mountaineering council.
Qualifications Required to Begin
There are a few different certification “paths” you can take:
The first certificates can usually be done part time while holding down a day job. Alternatively, you can do an intensive course or find a placement where you work for a smaller wage and the training. If you go the Outdoor Education route through a University you might be able to access student loans and grants.
Click to Select your region on the left side of the page to get more detailed information by location, but more generally;
Climbing Wall Instructor or Climbing Wall Award, will roughly cover
Single Pitch Instructor (SPI) courses follow on from a climbing wall instructor program. You may be required to have your own equipment, regularly climb and have been climbing for at least 12 months. This will roughly cover
The course will be followed by an exam or SPI Assessment and often includes real group instruction as part of the assessment
Mountain Guide: The Trilogy
There are three disciplines: Mountain Rock and Ski. Very few people achieve all three (It can take between 4-8 years) People usually certify within one area.
From base to summit, courses will look something like this with terrain and region specific modules available in between, depending where you are;
If you want to work with particular employer or in a particular location, it’s a good idea check with them before beginning your certifications. Some places may accept people with first aid and provide their own training. Select a country for more region specific training. You can message an employer on Work The Wilds to ask what they would accept. Find an employer here. When you have registered you can post any questions to our Wild Chat Board for personalised feedback. Register for Free. If you become a Green Flash Member you can spread the net a bit wider by increasing your communication ability and have your profile featured