“Becoming an AMGA guide is being part of a community of knowledge and experience” — Majka Burhardt, AMGA Certified Rock Guide
Welcome to our Certification Program. The American Mountain Guides Association offers a series of training course and exams designed to certify guides and climbing instructors to the highly respected standards of our organization. Through these courses you can achieve professional AMGA Certification within the disciplines of: Alpine Guide, Rock Guide, Rock Instructor, Ski Mountaineering Guide, Climbing Wall Instructor, and Single Pitch Instructor. Dedicated to protecting the public interest in all of these areas, the AMGA is the only internationally recognized professional association of trained and certified Guides and Climbing Instructors in the United States.
The Guide Program consists of three (3) certification streams, Alpine, Rock and Ski Mountaineering. By completing all three disciplines a guide achieves international recognition as an International Federation of Mountain Guides Associations (IFMGA/UIAGM) Guide. This achievement is the highest level of credential attainable by a professional mountain guide anywhere in the world and is recognized in the more than 20-member-countries of the IFMGA.
There is no better way to grow as a professional than learning from certified guides with experience from around the world and from a group of your peers with diverse backgrounds. The AMGA strives to incorporate a wealth of knowledge accumulated and polished over decades of guiding experience into its Guide Program.
The AMGA Climbing Instructor Program consists of two (2) certification streams, Climbing Wall Instructor and Single Pitch Instructor. The Climbing Instructor Program is intended for individuals who facilitate climbing experiences, instruct climbing skills, and/or monitor climbing activities.
When individuals sign up to take part in the emotionally and physically demanding sport of climbing it is assumed that their instructors will employ sound risk management practices and provide an enjoyable experience while also protecting the finite resource of our treasured top rope, single and multi-pitch crags. The AMGA Climbing Wall Instructor and Single Pitch Instructor programs are designed to enable instructors to proficiently facilitate and instruct the sport of rock climbing. The two programs are for current, active rock climbers that have a real desire to teach rock climbing to novices in an indoor or single pitch setting. The target audiences of the Climbing Wall and Single Pitch Instructor include but are not limited to: college outdoor recreation leaders, experiential education program instructors, wilderness therapy staff, camp directors, youth leaders, climbing school instructors, climbing gym staff, and recreational climbers looking to improve upon their technical climbing skills and risk management.
The AMGA began as a forum for discussing issues facing the guiding industry as well as a cooperative for support and exposure in a growing market. Sharing techniques and technical skills was a natural progression for the group of founding guides. As a result, the educational process developed and formal training emerged.
In 1987, the AMGA training and certification programs began to take shape with professional development clinics offered at the organization’s Annual Meeting. This tradition still continues to this day. By 1990, the first Rock Guide Exam was held in Boulder, Colorado and today the AMGA offers over 40 programs attended by more than 500 climbers and skiers each year. In 1998 the AMGA created the Top Rope Site Manager Program that, in 2008, evolved into the Single Pitch Instructor Program. In 2007 the Climbing Wall Instructor Program came into being. Today over 1,500 individuals have gone through these programs. AMGA Contract Programs have opened the door for hundreds of aspiring guides to enter into the training and certification program by providing alternative program opportunities that meet individuals scheduling and group arrangement needs.
Many AMGA instructors have been involved in the development of guide training for over two decades. Their wealth of knowledge and efforts to refine the educational and certification process has brought the organization’s courses and exams to an international standard. This level of training cannot be found anywhere else in the country.
It’s time to take that next step towards your guiding career. Call the AMGA today to find out more about the opportunities ahead.