Guide Certification, Training & Qualities
Yamnuska guides and instructors are certified as described below. In addition to certification, which only relates to a guide’s technical competence, they need many other skills and qualities. They need to be endowed with patience, empathy, and a sense of humour. They must also be effective communicators and great coaches.
Yamnuska guides and instructors are certified by the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides (ACMG) or other member associations of the International Federation of Mountain Guide Associations (IFMGA) of which the ACMG is a member. Yamnuska guides and instructors operate within the certification and terrain guidelines of the ACMG. They are also certified in Wilderness First Aid and in Avalanche Safety. In addition, guide and instructor certification must meet the standards dictated by the various Land Managers who license our operations. Where jurisdictional standards are low (British Columbia) Yamnuska follows the higher ACMG standards.
Jason began climbing at the age of 13 and hasn’t looked back since. His love for climbing has taken him to beautiful spots all over the world – Australia, France, Italy, Switzerland, Mexico, and climbing areas across the U.S. and Canada. But still, he thinks: “the Rocky Mountains are the best, just so much variety in all seasons, so much space and untouched wilderness, so many amazing climbs and mountains.” Jason has been guiding with Yamnuska since 2007 and has become known for his patient and clear teaching style, and his approachable, friendly personality. “I love my job and am passionate about giving my guests 100% of my energy. Climbing has given me so much, and as a guide my goal is to show my guests how much the mountains, wilderness and climbing can give them. It is a real pleasure to see their eyes opened, to see them learn something new and do things that they never thought possible.”
Jason is an ACMG/IFMGA Mountain Guide and when not in the mountains he is a tech rep for Onward Up working with Patagonia and Petzl.
James is something of a legend in guiding circles. One of the original “Yamnuska Mountain School” guides, he was involved in its founding of the company and has been an active guide and instructor since the late ’70s. James was a member of the small group of young climbers that put ice climbing and the Canadian Rockies on the map in the ’70s and early ’80s. He participated in many seminal first ascents including the first free ascent of Nemesis. He participated in the successful ascent of the W. Ridge of Everest in 1986 and made the first ascent of the S. Face of Gangapurna in ’81. He has also climbed extensively in Peru. To this day James is an active high-end climber. He guides and instructs all aspect of mountaineering including avalanche safety programs. James obviously derives great enjoyment from being in the mountains as his clients can attest. He lives in Canmore with his wife Leslie and son Simon.
James is a fully certified international Mountain Guide (IFMGA) and holds Level 3 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Merrie-Beth Board (MB) has been exploring and working in the Canadian west since she came from small town Ontario at 19 years old. A drive and passion for vertical adventures and places less traveled led her to completing the ACMG/IFMGA Mountain Guide certification. MB has guided in Chile, Alaska, New Zealand and has been working with Yamnuska since 2008. Whether teaching mountain skills, guiding technical peaks on foot or skis, ice or multi-pitch rock climbing, MB is most at home in the mountains and enjoys sharing the local ranges with everyone she meets.
Merrie-Beth is an ACMG/IFMGA internationally certified Mountain Guide and holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Adam grew up in Thunder Bay, spending most winter weekends at the amazing 225 metre local ski hill and in the summer trying to rock climb in running shoes at the local bluffs. He started his lifelong guiding career in Ontario as a sea kayak, white-water canoe and rock climbing guide, and has expanded his repertoire to include hiking, backpacking, ski touring, heli-skiing, via ferrata and mountain rescue. Adam has followed his passions around the world, bicycle touring in New Zealand, paddling the Northwest Territory’s South Nahanni River, thru-hiking the Appalachian and Pacific Crest Trails, sea kayaking in Belize, surfing and climbing volcanoes in Mexico, mountaineering in Alaska and climbing all over Canada and the US. Adam has worked with Yamnuska since 2006, guiding and instructing ski touring, avalanche courses, rock climbing, hiking and backpacking for Yamnuska. He lives in Canmore with his wife Joanna and their two kids.
Adam is an ACMG Ski Guide, Hiking Guide and Apprentice Rock Guide
Mike grew up in the Similkameen Valley of British Columbia where he began to climb and ski in the mountains at a young age. After completing an undergraduate degree in Physics in Burnaby BC Mike began travelling the world seeking out great climbing and skiing opportunities. Mike began his professional career in the mountains working as a mountain rescue technician in summer and avalanche forecaster for ski areas in winter. Mike has since completed his guiding certification and pursues his passion of taking guests into the mountains year round. Although he has traveled to the high peaks of USA, South America and the European alps to climb and ski his favorite place to climb is still the Canadian Rockies! Mike has been working with Yamnuska since 2015 and is a solid addition to our guiding team. Mike lives in Invermere with his wife and two children.
Mike is an ACMG/IFMGA internationally certified Mountain Guide and holds a Level 2 Certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Paul is Yamnuska’s Program Director and a fully certified international mountain guide originally from the UK. He has been active in the outdoors since the early nineties, during which he has climbed and skied extensively in all corners of the Alps, as well as the Himalayas, Norway, North America, Canada and Alaska. For more than a decade Paul delivered and managed all aspects of climbing, mountaineering and back country ski courses for the British Armed Forces, which ranged from a variety of introductory programs to training and assessment courses at all levels. Paul is always looking for the next big adventure and especially looks forward to the winter months and the unlimited amount of ice that is available in the Canadian Rockies.
Paul is an IFMGA internationally certified Mountain Guide and member of the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides and the British Association of Mountain Guides.
After realizing that post-secondary education might not be his cup of tea, Darcy opted for a job at Nelson’s White Water Ski Resort. It was here that he realized he wanted a career surrounded by the elements and the beauty of the mountains. Darcy quickly registered in Yamnuska’s three-month semester program in 1994 to speed up the process of becoming guide, and hasn’t looked back. He has been an ACMG ski guide since 2000 and feels fortunate to have guided throughout British Columbia, Alberta, Europe, and Japan meeting wonderful people and skiing great snow. Darcy works all the ski and avalanche programs through the winter and in the summer, is Yamnuska’s Program Director at the Rocky Mountain Cadet Summer Training Centre.
Darcy is an ACMG Ski Guide and holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Brad was born in Calgary and grew up near Cochrane within view of the Eastern slopes of the Rockies. He began climbing and backcountry skiing while attending the University of Calgary and didn’t last long at a ‘real’ job before turning his efforts to becoming proficient in the mountains and training for guides’ exams. Having climbed extensively throughout Western Canada and North America, he is excited to offer you a safe and friendly environment in which to learn, summit and achieve your dreams! Brad has been guiding with Yamnuska since 2011. When he’s not in the mountains he lives in Calgary with his toddler, Ivy.
Brad is an ACMG Apprentice Alpine Guide and CSIA-certified ski instructor.
Pat’s vertical addiction has taken him around the world in search of rock, ice and snow. In climbing it has always been his end goal to experience “flow”, being totally absorbed in the moment, and fully present! Pat’s professional goal is to facilitate experiences for his guests, increase enjoyment and manage risk with the highest standard in the industry. His base camp is in Canmore, Alberta but he is motivated to climb anywhere on the globe. Pat has been guiding with Yamnuska since 2006 and is a senior core guide. Rock, Ice and Alpine programs as well as private guiding is Pat’s arena. He has always strived to help our guests explore the possibilities for new climbing challenges and enable them to achieve and surpass their goals.
Patrick is an ACMG Alpine Guide and holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Jesse De Montigny
Jesse moved to the Bow Valley in 1998 to take part in Yamnuska’s three- month Mountain Skills Semester program. Using this as a springboard for his skills development, he has traveled all over the world to climb and ski and has pursued his passion. He now also acts as an examiner with the Canadian Mountain and Ski Guide Program to help others obtain their certification. Jesse is the Managing Director for Yamnuska and uses his skills both in the field and in the office to provide you with the best mountain experience possible. Some of Jesse’s personal mountain achievements have included: a 175km ski tour through the spine of the Canadian Rockies from Jasper to the Columbia Icefields, climbing the north face of Mt Temple, and climbing 5.12+ routes around the world. Some of Jesse’s favorite personal trips include: rock climbing in Thailand, Greece and Mexico, lodge-based ski touring in the Selkirk Mountains and ice climbing in the best ice climbing area on the planet… the Canadian Rockies! Jesse lives in Canmore with his wife Christine and 3 children.
Jesse is an ACMG/IFMGA internationally certified Mountain Guide and holds Level 3 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
From the moment Jean had his first rock climbing lesson, climbing became his passion. Now an accomplished climber and guide Jean was born in the quiet town of Klaipeda, Lithuania and relocated to Newfoundland, Canada in 1996. It was there in 1998 that Jean visited St. John’s first indoor rock climbing gym and was soon thereafter tying into the lead lines on the beautiful sea cliffs of Newfoundland. His love of climbing eventually brought him to the west and he now calls Canmore his home. Jean has climbed many of North America’s classic climbing areas. From the cool cliffs of Newfoundland to the busy rocks of Ontario, to the fiery Mexican spires, the granite monoliths of California to the rock face amidst the scorching deserts of Jordan and now the mountains and cliffs of the Rockies and the Coast Mountains of Canada. To Jean, climbing is a metaphor for life. Every day, like every climb, is different and the experience you have depends on the route you choose and the moves you make. In addition to guiding Jean is a photographer and a filmmaker with two feature documentary films under his belt.
Jean is an ACMG Apprentice Alpine Guide.
Originally from a long line of east-coast fisherman, Jason grew up just outside Halifax, NS, where the BIG mountains are! He moved west in 2004 to find deeper snow, and has been hooked on the pow-pow ever since. Jason recently moved from his van into a house, in Golden, and spends his non-skiing time guiding rock climbing, road tripping, and doing yard work.
Jason is an ACMG Apprentice Ski Guide and Apprentice Rock Guide, and holds ISIA (international ski instructor) qualification, teaching and coaching alpine skiing since 2003.
Richard is perhaps our most cosmopolitan guide. An Australian/Canadian resident in Germany, Richard spends his summers guiding for Yamnuska in the Canadian Rockies and winters translating German / English medical papers and articles as well as embarking on climbing trips all over the globe. Because of his globetrotting he has an amazing resume of climbing experience including significant first ascents in the Himalayas. Richard is yet, another guide who works extremely hard for our guests and is consequently in much demand. A long time Yamnuska guide, Richard has been instructing and guiding rock and alpine programs since1997. When not in Canmore he is based in Munich with his wife and son.
Richard is an ACMG Assistant Alpine Guide.
Growing up scrambling limestone in Eastern Canada, Carl’s fascination with the Rockies was revealed early on – at 12, while on family vacation, he attempted a spontaneous solo crossing of the Columbia Glacier. The escape failed, but he has enjoyed surprising people in the mountains ever since. While at university, climbing adventures yielded remote first ascents on some of the East’s biggest faces. In 1997, wanting a change, he left an aerospace PhD to come to the Rocky Mountains and get a real job. Settling in Canmore, he joined Yam in 2000. Carl is a senior Core Guide with Yamnuska and is also an instructor and examiner for the ACMG guides training program. In addition, he is a paramedic with 10 years of mountain rescue experience. With a broad teaching background, Carl is a dedicated instructor who strives to fill each guiding day with discovery. When not busy sharing his sense of humour and passion for the Rockies, Carl enjoys exploring the world’s other great ranges and has organized climbs on 6 continents. Recent trips include Patagonia’s Cerro Torre, high altitude volcanoes in Ecuador and East Africa, and the granite big walls of Madagascar’s Tsaranoro.
Carl is an ACMG Alpine Guide and holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
With a BSc. Kinesiology from Simon Fraser University. and a Diploma in Adventure Tourism from Thompson Rivers University, Shaun joined the ACMG in 1997, and in 1999 moved to Calgary where he managed the climbing, skiing and avalanche programs at the U of C’s Outdoor Centre for almost 8 years.
Having climbed and skied many of the well-known (and not so well-known) routes in the Rockies and Interior Ranges, Shaun knows these areas well. He has also skied and climbed in the US, Asia and Europe (where he lived and guided for 7 months). He has heli-ski & cat-ski guided in Japan and Canada, and completed many of the long ski traverses that Canada is known for. Author of the Lake Louise / Sunshine / Banff & Area Ski Touring guide book, Shaun has also edited and co-authored four different ski touring & mountaineering map guides in the West Kootenays. He has been teaching rock & ice climbing, crevasse rescue, avalanche and backcountry skiing courses for decades and loves sharing his knowledge with keen learners. His patient nature and skilled pedagogy combine to provide a comfortable, safe and fun filled learning environment.
Shaun is an ACMG/IFMGA certified Mountain Guide and holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Originally from Manitoba, Renée’s first passion was ice hockey. She was initially introduced to climbing in St-Boniface but only took it up regularly when she moved to northern Thailand at age 25. She lived and worked in Chiang Mai for four years and discovered the joy of steep sport climbing at the local limestone crag. It was in Thailand that Renée decided to move to the Bow Valley to become a rock guide. She has been instructing climbing in indoor gyms since 2005 and guiding outdoor climbs since 2013.
Some of Renée’s favorite personal trips include rock climbing in Thailand, Laos, Squamish, and Red Rock Canyon. Some of her personal climbing achievements include “Pervertical Sanctuary” on Long’s Peak, Colorado and climbing 5.12- routes around the world.
Reneé speaks French and English, lives in Canmore and works in information governance during the winters.
Renée is an ACMG Rock Guide.
Growing up in Ontario Alex’s childhood revolved around seeking adventure, whether it was in the forest behind his house or the lake and rivers surrounding his town. He wanted to find new places, make discoveries and get outside. When he found himself in the Rocky Mountains this desire to discover only strengthened inside him. Climbing soon became an addiction, a daily pursuit that became the focus. It seemed like he just couldn’t get enough of it! This appetite for adventure was the driving force for him to develop new skills like ice climbing and skiing. Over the years Alex has climbed throughout North America, Australia and Asia but the Rockies has always been his home base. Alex’s main job is with Banff National Park Visitor Safety, where he spends a great deal of time suspended under helicopters saving lives.
Alex is an ACMG/IFMGA internationally certified Mountain Guide and holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
For his second birthday James got an old pair of wooden skies which he spent every waking moment skiing around the living room with. Nothing less could be expected with a mother who ski raced for Canada. Growing up in a small town in BC, James turned to the mountains at 16 with his older brother looking for more adventures. He grew fond of not only being out there but teaching and taking others with him to experience these great places. James has since visited Baffin Island, and Alaska as he worked his way through the guiding stream. James has been guiding with Yamnuska since 2007 and looks forward to sharing his experiences with you!
James is a fully certified ACMG/IFMGA internationally certified Mountain Guide.
Originally from Ireland, Daire moved to Canada in 2008 to partake in Thompson Rivers University well known Adventure Guide Diploma. Using this program as a base to develop his mountain skills, Daire is working his way through the ACMG Mountain Stream. Upon finishing university in 2012 Daire spent the summer months guiding throughout Canada from Vancouver Island to Nunavut. He has lived in Canmore since 2015 and began working with Yamnuska in the summer of 2016 on our Hiking programs and more recently our Rock programs too. When not working Daire is either in the mountains or in the gym training for his next guides exam.
Daire is an Apprentice Rock and Hiking Guide
Dave is originally from Vancouver where he obtained a degree in Geology in the early seventies. His mining exploration work on the Northern BC coast and in the Yukon fueled hs passion for the mountains. He started climbing as a result and by 1979 was teaching rock climbing and outdoor skills at Plas Y Brenin in Wales then lived and worked for 5 years at Outward Bound in Keremeos first as an instructor then a Course Director. Dave was instrumental in developing a mountaineering program backed by the Federation of Mountain Clubs of BC in the late eighties. Although he had been guiding for almost 10 years, it was during that time that he achieved his certification with the ACMG. Dave moved to Alberta with his family in 1989 and spent the next 4 years running the mountain operations at the Banff Cadet Camp. Soon after that he took a 10 year hiatus from guiding to raise two kids that are now a teacher and an architect. Since 1994 he has owned and operated a “working at heights” consulting company which has advised and trained over 130 companies in safe work procedures and rope rescue strategies. Dave could not have achieved what he has without the support of his lovely wife Jana, who has been with him since 1977. His passion for guiding, mentoring and teaching continues to inspire outdoor enthusiasts of all ages.
Dave is an ACMG Assistant Ski Guide and Assistant Alpine Guide.
Grant is an internationally certified Mountain Guide who was born and raised in the Yukon Territory. For several years, Grant lived above the Arctic Circle and he spent most of his youth in the mountains of northern Canada. He began skiing in 1972 and climbing in 1980. In 1979 he was named Yukon’s “Athlete of the Year” for his performances in Cross Country Skiing, Table Tennis and Wrestling. Grant moved to Alberta in 1997. Since then, he has numerous first ascents to his credit such as “Cineplex” (M9) and “Rocky Mountain Horror Show” (M11+). He has climbed several of the world’s most difficult mixed climbs, including “Musashi” (M12). Internationally, Grant has enjoyed guiding some of the world’s most beautiful mountains including Ama Dablam, Lobuche, Imja Tse and Aconcagua. Bilingual in English and French, Grant worked as a high school teacher before discovering his love of guiding. He has a calm, easy-going manner, and gets deep satisfaction out of helping people attain their dreams, whether it be a beginner taking their first steps on a glacier or as an examiner on the Canadian Mountain and Ski Guide Program. Grant lives in Canmore with his wife, a world champion extreme skier Maegan Carney and their son Lincoln.
Grant is an ACMG/IFMGA internationally certified Mountain Guide and holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Francisco is from Santiago, Chile where he began to climb at an early age accomplishing numerous first ascents. At 18 he was invited on a climbing trip to the Alps where his passion for the mountains was cemented. He began his guiding career leading mountaineering trips to Aconcagua and trekking trips to Patagonia and Atacama in South America and in 2004 he received his UIAGM/IFMGA in France. Since then he has continued to climb, guide and instruct in the Andes, Alps, Rockies and Himalayas. Francisco has also been very involved with snow safety, working with ski patrols in Chile, Switzerland, Italy and Canada, as well as consulting on winter safety for various mining operations. In 2006 he began semi-annual trips to Canada to experience all the Canadian Rockies have to offer and now resides full-time with his wife in Canmore. Whether it is mountaineering expeditions, climbing, skiing, trekking or outdoor education courses Francisco is excited about sharing the outdoors with his guests. Francisco speaks Spanish, English, Italian and French.
Francisco is an IFMGA internationally certified Mountain Guide and holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Born and raised in Calgary, Jesse Petersen started rock climbing in gyms at the age of 16. Shortly after that he spent a year in Squamish, BC. This is where he truly developed a passion for climbing and skiing. That passion has grown into a life style, which has taken him to many corners of the globe in search of the next big mountain adventure. Now Jesse has lived in Canmore, AB for almost 10 years, and is proud to call the Rocky Mountains home. Jesse is an ACMG Alpine Guide. He has climbed on 4 continents, many different mountain ranges, and reached altitudes of 19,000 feet. But most of all, he is thankful for the friends he has met along the way. What Jesse loves the most about guiding is sharing his passion for mountain sports with his clients.
Jesse is an ACMG Alpine Guide and holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Lisa works for Yamnuska both in the summer and winter on everything from avalanche courses, ski mountaineering weeks, to backpacking trips! While completing her Master’s of Science Degree at the University of Alberta, Lisa began Ski Patrolling and working as an Avalanche Forecaster at Mt. Norquay in Banff, AB. She then moved on to work with BC’s Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure as an Avalanche Technician in the North Cascades. Over the last few years, Lisa has also worked her way through the Thompson Rivers University courses to become an ACMG certified Hiking and Ski Guide. Lisa also spends several weeks of the winter in the Cariboos working as a heli-ski guide. Lisa is a Professional Member of the Canadian Avalanche Association and a member of the CAA’s Complaint and Investigation Committee, and also chairs the ACMG’s Communication Committee. Lisa lives in Canmore, AB where you can find her skiing, biking, climbing, hiking. Her passion for the mountains is infectious, and she makes it her goal to share the joy the mountains bring with everyone.
Lisa Is an ACMG Ski Guide, ACMG Hiking Guide and holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Erica has been guiding with Yamnuska since 2005. Originally from the UK, she spent much of her childhood in Asia, the Middle East and Europe. She moved to Canada with her family in 1998 and fell in love with the mountains of Western Canada. After moving to the West, she began her ski career as a Pro Ski Patroller at Lake Louise Ski Resort. Wanting to share her passion for the mountains with other people led her to a career in guiding. A natural teacher, Erica quickly puts everyone at ease and allows them to achieve their goals and objectives with safety at the forefront. Erica now splits her time between guiding, playing in the mountains with friends, and hanging out with her daughter Grace.
Erica is an ACMG Ski Guide and an Apprentice Alpine Guide. She also holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Christian moved to Switzerland in 2011 after growing up near Toronto, Ontario. He quickly discovered climbing and ski touring, something that he began pursuing with intensity from the beginning. Working full time during the week as an engineer, most evenings were spent at the climbing gym or the local crag, and every weekend was spent in the mountains. His experience guiding began as a volunteer rock and alpine climbing leader for youth in the Swiss Alpine Club. After almost 4 years in the Alps, he moved to the Bow valley to explore a new area and pursue certification as a Mountain Guide. What he loves best about being in western Canada is the vast amount of space, the remoteness, and the diversity of it’s mountain regions. He has climbed extensively through western Canada, and enjoys sharing his knowledge and passion with his guests. Currently he works with Yamnuska’s various rock programs, but is looking forward to furthering his certification to include ski, ice, and alpine guiding as well.
Christian is currently an ACMG Apprentice Rock Guide and holds Level 1 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Nick Sharpe is another import from the UK, moving to Canada in 2002. He began rock climbing and mountaineering in his native Lake District in NW England. At 16 he joined the Royal Air Force and soon after discovered and joined the RAF Mountain Rescue Service. A 22 year association with this Service allowed Nick to hone his mountaineering and instructional skills leading up to the running of a 36- man rescue team and eventual post as the Chief Instructor for the RAF Mountain Rescue Service. Throughout the 80’s early 90’s Nick was an extremely active climber surprising the locals with on-sight ascents of some of the leading climbs of the day, both in summer and winter. He has many European Alpine seasons under his belt and has climbed around the world. Highlights include India in ’86 (Shivling 2nd ascent East Ridge), Norway (Troll Wall), Nepal in ’98 (SW ridge Ama Dablam) and Mt McKinley in ’89. Nick was also a team member to successful expeditions to Diran in ’92 and the North Ridge of Everest in ’01. Nick trained and certified in the UK and Europe with the British Mountain Guides attaining the coveted IFMGA Mountain Guides Carnet. Now resident in Canmore and a member of the ACMG, Nick actively climbs and guides year round. Nick is also enjoying introducing his two boys Ben and Alex to their vast Canadian playground.
Nick is an IFMGA internationally certified Mountain Guide and member of the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides and the British Association of Mountain Guides.
Chhering Dorjee Sherpa was born in a remote mountain village of Nepal, at an elevation of 4200m. He moved to Kathmandu at the age of nine to attend school. At the age of seventeen, Chhering began his career in the mountains as a kitchen boy for an expedition to Mt. Shisapangma (8011m). He successfully summited Mt. Everest for the first time in 2008, at the age of 19, as a climbing sherpa. Cherring has summited Mt. Everest seven times, all through the Khumbu Icefall, south side route. After working as a climbing sherpa for a few years, he got the chance to lead an Everest Expedition in autumn 2010, successfully recording the first Autumn ascent of Mt. Everest in 10 years. Cherring has also successfully led and summited three expeditions to Mt. Manasalu (8163m) and two to the summit of Mt.Cho-Oyu (8201m) within three days without the use of oxygen. He has done numerous summits of other peaks in Nepal such as Island Peak, Lobuche, Mera, Parchamo, Gyajikhang, Pisang, and Chulu East. Besides the Himalaya, Chhering has also been guiding in North and South America where he guided two successful summits of Aconcagua, Denali, Mt. Rainier, and many peaks in the Canadian Rockies. Chhering began working with Yamnuska during a 2012 expedition in Nepal where he worked together with Dave Stark on an Island Peak expedition. He has since settled in Canmore with his family and now works full time with Yamnuska.
Chhering is an IFMGA/UIAGM internationally certified Mountain Guide. He is also a certified mountaineering instructor in Nepal.
Originally from Taiwan, Larry started to rock climb and explore the mountains in 2000. In 2007, Larry traveled to Canada and took Yamnuska’s three- month Mountain Skills Semester program. This trip opened his eyes and changed his life. Glaciated peaks, big rock walls, and the powder snow completely embraced his heart. He soon decided to move to Canada to pursue a mountain life. Larry now loves nothing more than taking every moment to explore the mountains with his guests and friends. A renowned ice climber, Larry became the poster boy for the 42nd annual Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival. Larry calls Canmore home but whenever he is free from work, he enjoys travelling around the world to find new climbing destinations.
Larry is an ACMG Apprentice Alpine guide.
Originally from Montreal QC, Olivia’s love for the outdoors began when she put on her skis at the age of 6. She was part of the Rod Roy ski school which took her to numerous ski hills inspiring her desire to always see new places. While at McGill University she started ice climbing in the winters and raft guiding in the summers. It was 5 years later that she came to the Canadian Rockies to raft guide and climb the peaks of her dreams. She took an Intro to Mountaineering course with Yamnuska and never turned back. Since her arrival in the West, she has guided on rivers across BC and Alaska, she has guided hikes and treks around the Rockies and interior ranges of BC and ski guides in the winter months. “What captured me was not only the beauty and love for the mountains that I have found but the peace that it brings me and the smiles it brings to those around me. I continue guiding to share that love and bring out the ‘down to earth’ side in people. Out there we are all on the same playing field.” She has also climbed peaks in South and Central America and India.
Olivia is an ACMG Ski Guide and Hiking Guide. She also holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Dave Stark has been instructing and guiding with Yamnuska since 1986. His climbing resume spans the globe with climbing and mountaineering experience on five continents. He has guided groups on high alpine peaks in Asia, South America, Antarctica and North America. As the Director of Operations at Yamnuska Mountain Adventures, Dave oversees the guides and all aspects of the programming. In addition to his supervisory and training duties he still actively guides and stays current with all technical facets of Mountain Guiding. He has written curriculum and evolved programs from ideas into full scale operations. He initially directed the Mountain Skills Semester at Yamnuska for over ten years. He has coordinated mountain safety crews and rigging staff on many film projects. He helped develop the curriculum for CAC Avalanche Skills Training Courses and has been teaching avalanche awareness courses for the past thirty years. Dave’s primary focus with Yamnuska, involves education, technical training, safety systems and assessment of risk. His specialty is providing maximum benefit in programming and skills learning.
Dave is an IFMGA certified international Mountain Guide and holds Level 3 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Takeshi, otherwise known as Tak, is originally from Japan. Tak started his mountain career with ski patrol and Search & rescue in Nagano prefecture in Japan, which has 21 peaks over 3,000m and great skiing in winter time. Prior to coming to Canada, he also patrolled at Niseko ski area in Hokkaido, lucky guy. He moved to Canada 2012 to start climbing more seriously and took the mountain world by storm. He climbed, and continues to climb hard routes in Canadian Rockies, Wild Things 1400m M7 ED1, Greenwood Locke 1200m M6 ED1 in winter conditions. He has also done several first ascent Rockies and Bugaboos last few years. Tak guided Japanese clients on hiking trips for Yamnuska Mountain Tours and in 2015 started rock and alpine guiding with Yamnuska Mountain Adventures. A serious and humble man, he is a great addition to our guiding team.
Takeshi is first ACMG Apprentice Alpine Guide.
Alix grew up in Toronto. She studied Adventures Management at Thompson Rivers University, where she received a Bachelors in Adventure Tourism and an Adventure Guide Diploma. Alix started working with Yamnuska in 2015. When she is not behind the scenes at the Yamnuska office she is out in the field guiding Day Rock programs.
Alix is an ACMG Top Rope Climbing Instructor and holds a level 1 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Growing up in Edmonton, Alberta, Darren started gym climbing at 17 years old and quickly progressed to the mountains. Soon after, Darren moved to Canmore and started climbing full-time for himself. Travelling all over North America, he has climbed classic alpine routes in the Sierra’s, developed new routes in Alaska as well as extensively in his home range, the Canadian Rockies. Darren started his ACMG rock guide exam in Spring of 2011 and has since achieved his Alpine Certification. He is well on his way to completing his International Full Mountain Guide status.
Darren is an ACMG Alpine Guide and holds Level 2 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association.