The last two days were exactly what I was seeking, learning more about mountain craft. It was a great experience and a feeling of accomplishment.

Thank you for a great time in the mountains.
— Martina

MARK KLASSEN

I am a fully certified Mountain Guide and member of the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides (ACMG), the International Federation of Mountain Guiding Associations (IFMGA) and the Canadian Avalanche Association (CAA). My objective in guiding is to have fun in the mountains while achieving the goals of my guests and maintaining the highest safety standards in the guiding industry.

I have been a professional skier and climber since 1983, working as a ski patroller and avalanche forecaster before becoming a mountain guide. Living in Banff I have spent much of my time in the mountains close by, climbing the north faces of Mount Temple, Howse Peak, Mount Kitchener, Diadem Peak and Mount Edith Cavell; great ridges like the Emperor on Mount Robson and the northeast ridge of Mount Bryce; and many of the Selkirk and Bugaboo classics, such as Mount Sir Donald, Mount Sir Sandford, and the Beckey/Chouinard route on the South Howser Tower.

I also have climbed further afield. Some of my favourite trips have been making first ascents on Baffin Island and in Nepal; climbing walls in Yosemite; spending two summers mountaineering in Peru; sport climbing in Thailand; and exploring remote areas of Alaska and Yukon.

In the winter I have focused on skiing and have completed over a dozen major ski traverses throughout western Canada, South America and Europe.

I finished my guide certification in 1996. Since then I have guided many of the mountaineering classics in western Canada, with ascents of Mount Alberta, Mount Bryce and Mount Robson being highlights. I have also guided many trips in other areas, such as the East Ridge of Mount Logan in Yukon, Mount Cook in New Zealand, the Matterhorn in Switzerland, Pisco in Peru and Pachermo in Nepal.

My ski guiding experience includes 7 years heli-skiing in the Purcell, Selkirk and Coast Ranges as well as many long ski traverses such as the Haute Route in the Alps, the Lilloet Traverse on the coast, the Bugaboos-Rogers Pass Traverse in the Columbia Mountains and the Great Divide Traverse in the Rockies. In addition I spend multiple weeks every winter travelling throughout the mountains of western Canada, searching for the best powder skiing at my favourite backcountry lodges and roadside ski-touring destinations. In the past few years I have also made several trip to Japan, sampling the amazing powder skiing there.

Other work includes teaching professional level avalanche courses for the CAA and for many years I worked as an instructor/examiner on ACMG climbing guide and ski guide certification courses. I continue to work as an educator teaching professional and recreational level avalanche courses, and running a mountain guide training programme to help students prepare for their ACMG guide examinations.

In 2011 I co-authored, with Chic Scott, an update to Chic’s original Summits and Icefields ski touring guidebook for the Rocky Mountains. 2012 saw Chic and I publish the next instalment in this series, a guidebook for ski touring in the Columbia Mountains. In 2013 Chic, TJ Neault and I published a marked route map and mini-guide for the Wapta Icefields and Bow Summit area.

You can find out a bit more about me here:

Mark's mountain resume

Guiding qualifications