IFMGA-Instructed Alaska Mountaineering Course

Probing the bridge over a crevasse in the Alaska Range. This is a custom course that we design together to cover the skills you want. The field venue is your choice depending on the skills you want to cover and your budget.  

Venues

Glen Alps 

This venue is the non-glaciated mountains above Anchorage. These rocky peaks are ideal for practicing moderate technical scrambling skills such as belaying, rappelling and running belays.   

Matanuska Glacier 

The best year-round glacier ice climbing venue near Anchorage. A two-hour drive to a 15-minute approach. Ideal for all abilities, from solid ice climbers to first time glacier walks. 

Fly-In Base Camp 

Learn mountaineering skills and apply those skills to climbing big mountains. We fly into the Alaska Range or Chugach Mountains and set up a fat base camp. From there we progress through skill days: glacier school, snow school and rock school. Then we climb mountains around base camp.  

In-Town Option

If you're purely interested in rope skills, then we can maximize learning and reduce cost by staying in Anchorage and practicing in a quiet park. See "In-Town Option" below. 

Skill Level 

All abilities. A strong interest to learn. 

Dates

1-5 days, all year.  

Optional Topics

  • Trip Prep: selecting gear, trip planning, food planning, reducing pack weight  
  • Glacier School: knots, roping together, snow anchors, escaping the system, haul system, prusiking  
  • Snow School: moving on snow, using the ice axe, self-arrest, snow anchors, belaying on snow  
  • Ice School: cramponing, ice climbing, ice anchors  
  • Climbing School: belaying, rappelling  
  • Rock School: movement on rock, rock protection, rock anchors, setting up a top rope, lead climbing  
  • Winter Camping: camp setup, storm readiness, camp cooking 
  • Avalanche Skills: companion rescue, snowpack observations, terrain management, decision-making  

Cost

In-Town Option

  • 1 client: $350 per day
  • 2 clients: $175 per person per day
  • 3 clients: $125 per person per day
  • 4+ clients: $100 per person per day 

Includes

  • AMGA/IFMGA Mountain Guide Joe Stock. A second guide may be added over four clients. 
  • Ropes, rock, ice and snow protection. 
  • Some gear is available for loan. 
  • Navigation, first aid and repair kits
  • Emergency communication and shelter

Does Not Include

"We can't thank you enough for giving us the skills to get out on the glacier and not die." —Rob Lynch, Glacier travel course before their trip to the Ruth Glacier.

"Joe is an excellent guide and person. Incredibly talented, amiable, and accomplished, he was still humble about his accomplishments and made the experience truly great." —Riley Ewen, mountain skills and ascent at Hatcher Pass.  

Building a ski anchor for crevasse companion rescue on the Kahiltna Glacier in the Alaska Range.

 

Building an EARNEST rock anchor in Little Switzerland. 

 

The Munter-Mule-Overhand is a core rope skill for self-rescue. 

 

The crevasse companion rescue haul system. There are many variations. We will focus on the most simple and effective system.

 

Setting up the prusiks for glacier travel. 

 

Prusik practice from a tree in an Anchorage park. This is a more user-friendly learning environment than in the bottom of a crevasse.