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AMGA Multi-Pitch Instructor

New in 2020 – the Multi-Pitch Instructor Course & Exam prepares candidates to guide multi-pitch climbs up to 4 pitches in length (not to exceed 400 ft total) that are not remote in nature, and have simple approaches and descents without short-roping. This program has an emphasis on providing a great client experience while adequately managing risk for both the client and the guide.

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To get your Multi-Pitch Instructor Certification, you must complete:

  • The 3-day SPI Course
  • The 2-day SPI Assessment
  • The 10-day Rock Guide Course
  • The 8-day Multi-Pitch Instructor Course and Exam
  • Have a current CPR Certification
  • Have a current Wilderness First Responder (WFR) Certification  or higher that meets the Minimum Guidelines and Scope of Practice for a WFR

Program Information

UPDATES AND FAQS ABOUT THE MULTI-PITCH INSTRUCTOR COURSE & EXAM: HERE

  • SINGLE PITCH INSTRUCTOR COURSE

    Single Pitch Instructor Course

    Prerequisites:

    • You are a Professional Member of the AMGA.
    • You have a genuine interest in rock climbing and instructing novices on single pitch crags.
    • You are at least 18 years old at the time of the course.
    • You have at least 12 months prior climbing experience.
    • You are an active climber with traditional lead climbing experience (leader placing pro).
    • You have led a minimum of 15 traditional rock climbing routes (any grade).
    • You are capable of comfortably climbing 5.8 while on a top rope.

    The above prerequisites are absolute minimums. Learn more HERE.

  • SINGLE PITCH INSTRUCTOR ASSESSMENT

    Single Pitch Instructor Assessment

    Prerequisites

    • You are a current member of the AMGA.
    • You have successfully completed an AMGA Single Pitch Instructor Course.
    • You have led a minimum of 40 traditional routes, most of which should be 5.6 and on a variety of rock types.
    • You are able to comfortably lead 5.6 traditional routes, which means you place protection.
    • You are able to comfortably climb 5.8 on top rope.
    • The SPI Assessment can be taken directly following the SPI Course if the candidate successfully completed the course and meets the assessment prerequisites. However, it is highly recommended that the SPI Course candidate take time practicing and consolidating the skills learned on the course before assessment (6-12 months).
    • You do not need First Aid training to take the course or assessment. However, it is your responsibility to hold appropriate medical certification for the location that you are working in.

    Learn more HERE.

  • ROCK GUIDE COURSE

    This is the entry-level course for the Rock Guide and Alpine Guide programs and the Rock Instructor Certification. The Rock Guide Course (RGC) was designed for aspiring guides who have a strong rock climbing background and for instructors who are interested in improving their skills and increasing knowledge. The RGC trains aspiring guides on routes up to Grade III and 5.9 while emphasizing risk management and client rewards. You are expected to arrive with a strong recreational climbing background with an acquired knowledge of knots, belaying, anchors, protection strategies, and climbing systems. It is assumed that you can lead the climbs listed on the submitted resume and that you are physically, mentally, and emotionally prepared for a week of outdoor activity.

    Prerequisites:

    • Current AMGA member
    • Current CPR Certification
    • Current Wilderness First Responder (WFR) Certification  or higher that meets the Minimum Guidelines and Scope of Practice for a WFR
    • Five years personal rock climbing experience
    • Confidence leading traditional and sport routes up to 5.9, at the time of the course
    • Familiar with basic knots, including: figure 8, bowline, clove hitch, munter hitch, mule hitch, prusik, flat overhand, double fisherman's and klemheist
    • Familiar with multiple types of mechanical and non-mechanical belay devices
    • Familiar with a variety of rappel devices on multi-pitch rappels
    • Familiar with LNT Practices
    • You have led 10 traditional climbs rated 5.10a or harder on various rock types (single or multi-pitch)
    • You have led or shared lead on 50 multi-pitch rock routes (10 of which are Grade III or longer)
  • MULTI-PITCH INSTRUCTOR COURSE & EXAM

    FORMAT

    The Multi-Pitch Instructor Course & Exam includes instruction, coaching, debriefing, and assessment. The program is 8 days in length. There are 5 days of instruction and course work and a 3-day assessment.

    The Course portion of the program includes:

    • Principle-based learning routed in giving candidates strategies for problem-solving through coaching and practical application in simulated guide/client scenarios

    The Exam portion of the program includes:

    • 2 days of guiding route objectives
    • 1 day of objective skills assessing proficiency with the AMGA Rock Rescue Drill, and climbing movement at the 5.9 standard

    ASSESSMENT AREAS:

    • Screening of movement skills in rock terrain
    • Proficiency with the AMGA Rock Rescue Drill
    • Guided days assessment includes evaluation in the following nine categories: Risk Management, Client Care, Technical Systems, Application, Terrain Assessment, Movement Skills, Mountain Sense, Professionalism, and Instructional Techniques.

    PREREQUISITES

    General Requirements

    • Current AMGA Member
    • Current CPR Certification
    • Current Wilderness First Responder (WFR) certification or higher that meets the minimum guidelines and scope of practice for a WFR

    Training Level Requirements

    • Current Certified Single Pitch Instructor (successfully completed both the SPI Course & the SPI Assessment)
    • Current Apprentice Rock Guide or higher (minimum successful completion of the RGC)

    Technical & Movement Requirements

    • Confidence leading onsight traditional and sport climbs up to 5.9 at the time of the program
    • Mastery of basic knots including figure 8, bowline, clove hitch, munter hitch, mule hitch, prusik, flat overhand, double fisherman, klemheist and auto-block
    • Mastery of mechanical and non-mechanical belay devices
    • Mastery of raising systems and mechanical advantage
    • Advanced knowledge of LNT practices

    Resume Requirements: Applicants are required to document the below requirements in the resume template provided by the AMGA during the application process. The same climb may be used to fulfill multiple requirements

    • Since completing the Rock Guide Course, led 25 traditional rock climbs (single or multi-pitch)
      • 15 of which are rated 5.10a or harder
    • Since completing the RGC, led or shared lead on 15 rock climbs that are 3 pitches or longer 
    • Since completing the SPI Assessment and the RGC, worked 20 days in Apprentice Rock Guide terrain (this may include Single Pitch Instructor terrain)
      • 5 of these days must be on multi-pitch rock routes and include a documented supervising guide


Multi-Pitch Instructor Programs Schedule

  • Applications will open on August 1st, 2019 for all 2020 Mountain Guide programs
  • For information on how to apply to a program and how applications are reviewed, click here
  • For the complete AMGA Course Schedule, click here
Program Type Code Location State Dates Tuition Status Apply
Rock Guide Course R11 RGC 19 Joshua Tree California 11/5/19 - 11/14/19 $2,850.00 Waitlist Waitlist
Rock Guide Course R12 RGC 19 Joshua Tree California 11/14/19 - 11/23/19 $2,850.00 Waitlist Waitlist
Rock Guide Course R1 RGC 20 Joshua Tree California 3/3/20 - 3/12/20 $2,950.00 Applications Under Review*
Rock Guide Course R2 RGC 20 Red Rock Canyon NCA Nevada 3/17/20 - 3/26/20 $2,950.00 Applications Under Review*
Rock Guide Course R4 RGC 20 Smith Rock State Park Oregon 4/7/20 - 4/16/20 $2,950.00 Applications Under Review*
Rock Guide Course R7 RGC 20 Gunks New York 4/20/20 - 4/29/20 $2,950.00 Applications Under Review*
Rock Guide Course R10 RGC 20 Boulder Colorado 6/1/20 - 6/10/20 $2,950.00 Open Apply
Rock Guide Course R11 RGC 20 Boulder Colorado 7/11/20 - 7/20/20 $2,950.00 Open Apply
Rock Guide Course R16 RGC 20 Boulder Colorado 9/17/20 - 9/24/20 $3,700.00 Open Apply
Rock Guide Course R20 RGC 20 Boulder Colorado 9/29/20 - 10/8/20 $2,950.00 Open Apply
Rock Guide Course R14 RGC 20 North Conway New Hampshire 9/9/20 - 9/18/20 $2,950.00 Open Apply
Rock Guide Course R28 VETERANS RGC 20 Leavenworth Washington 9/29/20 - 10/8/20 $2,950.00 Open Apply
Rock Guide Course R22 RGC 20 Smith Rock State Park Oregon 10/6/20 - 10/15/20 $2,950.00 Open Apply
Rock Guide Course R23 RGC 20 Brevard North Carolina 10/6/20 - 10/15/20 $2,950.00 Open Apply
Rock Guide Course R26 RGC 20 Joshua Tree California 10/28/20 - 11/6/20 $2,950.00 Open Apply
Rock Guide Course R27 RGC 20 Joshua Tree California 11/9/20 - 11/18/20 $2,950.00 Open Apply
Multi-Pitch Instructor Course/Exam R12 MPI 20 Boulder Colorado 6/23/20 - 6/30/20 $2,800.00 Open Apply
Multi-Pitch Instructor Course/Exam R18 MPI 20 North Conway New Hampshire 9/22/20 - 9/29/20 $2,800.00 Open Apply

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

Student Kate McHugh leading Western Saga during the 2016 RGC in Joshua Tree. Photo by Azissa Singh.

This program will be instructed by Geoff Unger, Patrick Ormond, Amos Whiting, and Ian Nicholson.

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

Student Kate McHugh leading Western Saga during the 2016 RGC in Joshua Tree. Photo by Azissa Singh.

This program will be instructed by Erik Leidecker, Jeff Ward, Dylan Taylor, and Forest McBrian.

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

Student Kate McHugh leading Western Saga during the 2016 RGC in Joshua Tree. Photo by Azissa Singh.

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

A student leads the way during the 2016 RGC at Smith Rock. Photo by Instructor Pete Keane.

This is a small program that is limited to 6 students. Conditions and weather dependent, this program may travel to the Adirondacks.

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

Instructor Geoff Unger coaches a student on belay management from below during the 2016 RGC in the ADKs. Photo by Instructor Silas Rossi. 

Weather and condiion dependent, this program may also utilize Lump Ridge in Estes Park, Colorado.

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

Student Karen Hilton works her way up the Bastille Crack in Eldorado Canyon during the 2016 RGC in Boulder. Photo by student Brandon Phillips.

Weather and condiion dependent, this program may also utilize Lump Ridge in Estes Park, Colorado.

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

Student Karen Hilton works her way up the Bastille Crack in Eldorado Canyon during the 2016 RGC in Boulder. Photo by student Brandon Phillips.

This is a trial 2:1 ratio Rock Guide Course. The program is shortened to 8 days and will have a maximum of 8 students and 4 instructors. 

Weather and condiion dependent, this program may also utilize Lump Ridge in Estes Park, Colorado.

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

Student Karen Hilton works her way up the Bastille Crack in Eldorado Canyon during the 2016 RGC in Boulder. Photo by student Brandon Phillips.

Weather and condiion dependent, this program may also utilize Lump Ridge in Estes Park, Colorado.

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

Student Karen Hilton works her way up the Bastille Crack in Eldorado Canyon during the 2016 RGC in Boulder. Photo by student Brandon Phillips.

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

This program is only open to VETERANS of the US Military who wish to use their GI Bill funds to pay for the course. This course is run through the American Alpine Institute (an AMGA accredited business), who are accredited and approved to accept GI Bill funding.

In order to participate on this Rock Guide Course, you must:

1) Be a veteran of the US Military

2) Apply to the program, pay the non-refundable $65.00 application fee, and submit all of the required application materials (resume and WFR/CPR) to show that you meet the prerequisites for the RGC

3) Email Peter Schultz ([email protected]) proof of veteran status

4) Once your materials have been reviewed, you will be eligible to become enrolled in the course if space is available (like all AMGA programs, entrance is competitive and we may receive more applications than we have spaces available - meeting the prerequisites is not a guarantee of enrollment, please review the process for application review here)

5) If accepted into the program, you will be sent a document describing how to complete the enrollment process and use your VA benefits to pay for the program. You cannot be officially enrolled until you have completed the VA Benefits Survey and Enrollment Agreement through the American Alpine Institute.

If you have any questions about this course, the application review/enrollment process, how to use your VA benefits, or anything else related to this program, please contact Peter Schultz ([email protected]). 

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

A student leads the way during the 2016 RGC at Smith Rock. Photo by Instructor Pete Keane.

This is a small program limited to 6 students. Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

Student Kate McHugh leading Western Saga during the 2016 RGC in Joshua Tree. Photo by Azissa Singh.

Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted.

Student Kate McHugh leading Western Saga during the 2016 RGC in Joshua Tree. Photo by Azissa Singh.


2020 Application and Notification Deadlines

  • The application deadline is when your complete application is due.
  • The notification deadline is the latest date you will be contacted in regard to your enrollment.
  • Applications received after the application deadline will be reviewed on a rolling admission.
    Program DatesCourse or Exam CodeApplication DeadlineNotification Deadline
    All programs with start dates between December 1, 2019 and April 30, 2020S1, S2, S3, S4, S5, S6, S7, S8, S9, S10, S11, S12, I1, I2, I3, I4, I5, I6, A1, R1, R2, R3, R4, R5, R6, R7Sunday, September 15, 2019Friday, October 18, 2019
    All programs with start dates between May 1, 2020 and July 31, 2020A2, A17, A3, A4, A5, A6, A7, A8, A9, A10, A11, A12, R8, R9, R10, R11, R12Sunday, December 15, 2019Friday, January 17, 2020
    All programs with start dates between August 1, 2020 and November 30, 2020A13, A18, A19, A14, A15, A16, R13, R14, R15, R16, R17, R18, R19, R20, R28, R21, R22, R23, R24, R26, R27 Sunday, March 15, 2020Friday, April 17, 2020