All round athletes!
There is an age limit!
The high altitude mountain guide has mastered and can teach techniques such as mountaineering (rock, ice or mixed terrain routes), ski mountianeering, ice climbing, rock climbing, canyoning, via ferrata, acrobatic activity routes, hiking or snowshoeing, mountain biking (with an additional qualification) ...
Client safety is the mountain guide’s priority but they also have in depth knowledge of the mountains: the dangers, the history of the first ascents, the geology, flora and fauna.
Their level of competance in moutaineering techniques allows them to work as rope access technicians in the off season. Their expertise in many other mountain sports means they can become trainers at competitive level.
Often a dual activity
Given their versatility, more and more guides (about a quarter of them) are able to make a living from guiding. However the majority need to have another string to their bow. Half of the 1 500 mountain guides in France have a second job “on snow” as a ski instructor, ski patroller ... or work in tourism or as rope access technicians for specialist companies.
After the age of 50-55 the job becomes difficult, so guides need to think about their career later in life. Guides can go on to consecrate themselves to their secondary profession. They can also go on to become trainers at the Alpine School (ENSA) in Chamonix, or one of the may other training centers in France.
COURSE CONTENTS AND STRUCTURE