Guiding & Instruction - Mountaineering (Alpine Climbing)

Instruction & Skill Building - Mountaineering

Custom, or private instruction means you have a guide dedicated to you or your group, rather than being in a class with a specified dates and curriculum and other guests. UMA can tailor the skills taught to your specific goals, needs and time frame.

UMA's outstanding instructors are available daily to help guests progress in any and all aspects of alpine climbing. Personalized coaching accelerates learning and helps you push the limits of your ability. Tell us your goals and together we'll design a custom program to match.

The options listed below are some, BUT NOT ALL possible programs. Contact UMA to customize your outing.

Snow Mountaineering Skills

Custom instruction in the use of crampons and ice axe on snow, including self-arrest and roped travel to fit your climbing needs and goals. Excellent preparation for spring / summer climbs in Utah, The Rockies, Cascades, Alaska, etc.

Typical Skills Taught: 

  • Climbing in balance, using duck-foot, crossover, side and plunge-step
  • Self-belay with ice axe
  • High and low dagger and piolet traction
  • Flat-footing and front-pointing with crampons
  • Using rope: proper tension, stepping over the rope for turns
  • Limitations / dangers of being roped on steep, exposed terrain
  • Pickets, bollards, deadman and other snow anchors
  • Fixed belays, hip belay, running protection
  • Self-arrest with the axe, an essential skill to know
  • Arresting falls on the seat, face, upside down and backward

Difficulty: No experience necessary; moderate fitness required

Duration: 6-8 hours

Max Ratio: 4:1

Meeting Time: Generally 7am

Meeting Location: Big or Little Cottonwood Park and Ride Lot, Alta or Brighton

What We Provide: 

  • Broadly experienced, highly-trained, professional mountaineering guides
  • Helmet, harness, avalanche beacon, shovel, probe and pack (if needed)

What You Need: 

How to Register: 

1 person $395 / person
2 people $275 / person
3 people $225 / person
4 people $200 / person

6.85% tax will be added to all prices; gratuity is not included

Running Belay on Mt. Rainier

Running Belay on Mt. Rainier

Photo by Tyson Bradley


Crevasse Rescue and Glacier Travel Skills

Instruction in glacial travel, belaying, snow anchors, raising systems, ascending a rope and any related skills desired. Using a simulated crevasse location, this is ideal preparation for ascents of Rainier, Denali, Gannett or other crevassed terrain.

Typical Skills Taught: 

  • Belaying, and rope tension between climbers traveling as a team
  • "Reading" glacial terrain for the safest route
  • Use of snow pickets, deadman anchors, bollards and snow flukes
  • Building and equalizing solid snow anchors
  • Knots, hitches, and pulley systems for crevasse rescue
  • Hands on building of 3:1 and 6:1 raising systems
  • Escaping a belay after catching a fall
  • Self-belay to a crevasse and padding the lip
  • Raising, assisting and lowering a companion
  • Fitting prusiks to individuals
  • Ascending a rope with ascenders, friction and Garda hitches

Difficulty: No experience necessary; moderate fitness required

Duration: 6-8 hours

Max Ratio: 4:1

Meeting Time: Generally 7am

Meeting Location: Big or Little Cottonwood Park and Ride Lot, Alta or Brighton

What We Provide: 

  • Broadly experienced, highly-trained, professional mountaineering guides
  • Helmet, harness, avalanche beacon, shovel, probe and pack (if needed)

What You Need: 

How to Register: 

1 person $395 / person
2 people $275 / person
3 people $225 / person
4 people $200 / person

6.85% tax will be added to all prices; gratuity is not included

Climbers Cross a Crevasse

Practicing Crevasse Rescue Skills

Photo by Tyson Bradley


Grand Teton Training

The Grand Teton is a world-famous mountaineering objective. The moderate technical difficulty makes it possible for most fit and athletic people. Certain skills are essential, and the Salt Lake mountains provide an excellent training venue. A custom class can be oriented to climbing with our without guides. It can be made equivalent to Exum Mountain Guides' "Multi-pitch Level I" class.

Typical Skills Taught: 

  • Equipment, tie-in knots and rope management
  • Footwork, movement and efficiency in rock climbing
  • Multi-pitch alpine rock climbing skills
  • Belaying a leader and follower(s)
  • Transitions during multi-pitch climbs
  • Placement and removal of cams, stoppers and other protection
  • Building and equalizing anchors
  • Belaying from a ledge with hip belay, Munter hitch and placette
  • Overhanging rappel
  • Instructor will be an experienced Teton guide

Difficulty: No experience necessary; moderate fitness required

Duration: 6-8 hours

Max Ratio: 4:1

Meeting Time: Generally 7am

Meeting Location: Big or Little Cottonwood Park and Ride Lot, Alta or Brighton

What We Provide: 

  • Broadly experienced, highly-trained, professional mountaineering guides
  • Helmet, harness, avalanche beacon, shovel, probe and pack (if needed)

What You Need: 

How to Register: 

1 person $395 / person
2 people $275 / person
3 people $225 / person
4 people $200 / person

6.85% tax will be added to all prices; gratuity is not included

Climbing in the Tetons

Climbing in the Tetons

Photo by Tyson Bradley


Matterhorn Training

Build essential rock and mountaineering skills for scaling the "worlds most beautiful mountain" in the ideal terrain of the Wasatch. Train on long, moderate alpine climbs, accessible ice climbs (winter only) and snowy peaks and couloirs (Dec-June.) Prepare to climb strong and safely on the BUSY Hornli Route on The Matterhorn, or other alpine climbing.

May be one or multiple days of training.

Common training venues include Mt. Olympus, Storm Mountain, Standard Ridge, Mt. Superior, Pfeifferhorn, Great White Icicle and Provo Canyon (winter only.)

Typical Skills Taught: 

  • Short-roping, short-pitching and tethering (PAS) on ledges
  • Steep snow and ice climbing in light alpine boots
  • Crampon climbing on snow and rock in exposed terrain
  • Single and multi-tool up and down ice climbing in crampons
  • Stamina training for 4,000' of technical climbing in 1 day to 14,700'
  • Climbing and ridge traversing in the 10-11,500' altitude range
  • Fast efficient movement on moderate rock with a guide
  • Snow, rock and ice protection placement and removal
  • Tips and tricks for dealing with crowds on a steep, exposed route
  • Tips and tricks for staying in a crowded European Hut

Difficulty: No experience necessary; moderate fitness required

Duration: 6-8 hours

Max Ratio: 4:1

Meeting Time: Generally 7am

Meeting Location: Big or Little Cottonwood Park and Ride Lot, Alta or Brighton

What We Provide: 

  • Broadly experienced, highly-trained, professional mountaineering guides
  • Helmet, harness, avalanche beacon, shovel, probe and pack (if needed)

What You Need: 

How to Register: 

1 person $395 / person
2 people $275 / person
3 people $225 / person
4 people $200 / person

6.85% tax will be added to all prices; gratuity is not included

Matterhorn, Hornli Ridge

Matterhorn, Hornli Ridge

Photo by Tyson Bradley


Self-Rescue / AMGA Course Prep

Ever wondered what you would do if your partner gets injured on a multi-pitch route? What if your ropes get stuck while on rappel? What if your second can't pull past a crux, or is hanging in mid air below a roof? Dropped your belay device from top of pitch 7 and now you have to rappel?

Self-Rescue Clinic will instill skills to help deal with the unexpected. Clinic can be customized to fit the needs of a SAR team Instruction can be oriented specifically to a climber/guide preparing for an AMGA course or exam..

Typical Skills Taught: 

  • Essential knots and hitches
  • Rigging anchors for efficient belay, tether and rescue
  • Escaping the belay
  • Third hand, autoblock and backup knots
  • Tandem and counterbalance rappels
  • Ascending a rope, passing a knot
  • Raising, lowering and assisting
  • Rescue litters
  • Activating and working with Search and Rescue
  • Preparation specific to AMGA courses and exams

Difficulty: Participants should already be familiar with belaying, rappelling, and building anchors, and should know the following knots and hitches: figure eight, munter hitch, clove hitch and prussic hitch. If you are not familiar with these skills we can still run the program as a private and get you up to speed.

Duration: 6-8 hours

Max Ratio: 4:1

Meeting Time: Generally 8am

Meeting Location: Big or Little Cottonwood Park and Ride Lot

What We Provide: 

  • Broadly experienced, highly-trained, professional mountaineering guides
  • Helmet, harness (if needed)

What You Need: 

How to Register: 

1 person $395 / person
2 people $275 / person
3 people $225 / person
4 people $200 / person

6.85% tax will be added to all prices; gratuity is not included

Matterhorn, Hornli Ridge

Matterhorn, Hornli Ridge

Photo by Tyson Bradley


Utah Mountain Adventures

P.O. Box 521809

Salt Lake City, Utah 84152-1809

Phone: (801) 550 3986

Fax: (801) 486 8505

Email: uma@utahmountainadventures.com

Utah Mountain Adventures | Patagonia Utah Mountain Adventures | Forest Service Backcountry Skiing Utah, by Tyson Bradley
Backcountry Skiing & Snowboarding - Utah Mountain Adventures

Leave the crowds behind, and expand your skiing and snowboarding horizons! Traveling out-ofbounds, using climbing skins and alpine touring (AT) or telemark binding, or a split-board is becoming tremendously popular.

AT skis and splitboards are available for rent from UMA and local shops.

Touring is the perfect sport for those who hike or climb in summer and love to ski or snowboard in winter. Skinning facilitates approach and egress from peaks in winter and spring that would take far longer without. Solitude, cardio-vascular exercise, and adventurous runs are all part of the "off-piste" experience.

The Wasatch Range offers easy lift and trailhead access to deep, light snow in wide-open bowls, protected glades, and steep chutes.

Lift access is available from Alta, Brighton, The Canyons and Snowbird.

Trailhead access is available in Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons and Millcreek, etc.

A knowledgeable UMA guide will lead you into the finest snow and terrain. Our guides keep abreast of the avalanche, snow and weather conditions to choose the best tours. They take into consideration both your fitness level and downhill ability to select the appropriate routes for you.

UMA guides pace you and teach you how to travel uphill efficiently, working on rest-step and kick-turning techniques and progress only as fast as you feel comfortable. They give you plenty of time to rest, enjoy the view and take photos. UMA guides demonstrate how to transition between the uphill and downhill modes and teach as much about avalanche hazard evaluation, route finding and other skills as you want to learn.

Skiers and snowboarders of all ability levels improve techniques, discover new terrain, and build leadership skills.

For more information on backcountry skiing & snowboarding classes in the Salt Lake City, Utah area, please view our Backcountry Skiing & Splitboarding Courses.

We also offer private Guided Backcountry Touring & Instruction in the Wasatch Range in and around the Salt Lake area.