Friday, June 8, 2018

American Alpine Institute Class of 2018

We have just completed the 2018 guide training and we have a great group of new guides. Below is a photo gallery from the training...

Ben Gardner (Trainer), Zack Wentz, Samuel Fletcher, Mike Powers (Trainer), Jules Holder, 
Jacky Thompson and Mike Riley. Not Shown: Josh Harris (click to enlarge)

Jules, Zack and Sam enjoying a meal on Mt. Baker. 

Jules, hanging out on the ice. 

Vertical ice training. 

Jacky, Sam and Zack enjoying another meal.

Lowering practice.

Messing around on Mt. Erie. 

Mike and Sam working on releasable rappels at Mt. Erie. 

Jules in Leavenworth. 

Mike, climbing in Leavenworth. 

Classroom time in Leavenworth, with professor Ben Gardner. 

Sam and Jules, playing in the mountains. 

Zack, on February Buttress. 

Jacky, on February Buttress. 

Jules, leading the first pitch of Heart of Gold, on Duty Dome in Leavenworth.

Zack, in Leavenworth. 

 Sam, working his way up a slab on Duty Dome.

Jacky, on Prime Rib. 

The famous Mike Powers, showing us how it's done on Mazama's Prime Rib (5.8, III). 

Parking lot "crevasses" at Mt. Baker Ski Area. 

Road cuts can be a good place for crevasse rescue practice. 

Snow training! 

Short-roping in the snow. 

 Skinning up to South Early Winter Spire.

 On South Early Winter Spire.

The Southeast Buttress of South Early Winter Spire (5.8, III). 

The "Whaleback" pitch on the South Arete of SEWS. 

Mike, on SEWS.

Skiing down Spire Gully.

"Good work, ladies and gentlemen."

The gully below the Beckey Route. 

The first pitch of the Beckey Route (5.6, II). 

Sam and Ben on Liberty Bell.

Sam, rappelling Liberty Bell.

AAI has a unique guide training program. There are two weeks of technical skills and one week of student teaching. During that final week the guides worked with several real climbing students at Mt. Erie and on Mt. Baker under the supervision of senior guides.

At the end of the program, one of the students told the new guides that they had to have a cartwheel contest to win some unused fuel. Jacky and Jules were all in...

I believe that they both won some fuel...

This was a very strong class of new guides. We are extremely excited to have every single one of them on staff. They each bring something special to AAI, and ultimately to you...

--Jason D. Martin

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