Learn More About Our Whistler Alpine Guides in our handy FAQ

Who we are and FAQ

Monday, 11th May 2015  /  By Dan O'Keefe

Who we are and FAQ

Who are Mountain Skills Academy & Adventures Guides?

The members of the Mountain Skills Academy & Adventures guiding team have been chosen for their expertise and experience within their field. With a staff of over 25 professionals, all with their own unique backgrounds and experience, we employ only the best instructors and guides, all of whom are certified in advanced first aid and have a strong background leading in the outdoors. All ski, rock climbing and alpine guides are trained and certified by the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides (ACMG).

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Where are you located?
Our office is located upstairs in the Market Pavillion Building. Near IGA, above Crepe Montagne.

Do you offer summer programs for beginners?

We sure do!  Whether you want to explore a glacier, try the unique Via Ferrata, hike through Whistler’s wildflower-laden alpine or try rock climbing – we have an activity that will pique your interest.  No previous experience is necessary.  Our professional guides will patiently teach you everything you need to know.

I have hiked/mountaineered/rock climbed before. Is there a program for me?
If you have tried rock climbing in a gym, or have done some hiking on your own, let us know!  We’ll make sure to fit you with a program that will take your experience to the next level.

We also offer a variety of programs for advanced adventurers (Overnight Alpine Experience, multi-day mountaineering objectives, Multi-Pitch Classics – to highlight just a few).  Additionally, our privately guided tours allow you to customize an adventure that will challenge your personal goals.

I am an experienced hiker/rock climber/mountaineer. Is there a program for me?
Definitely.  We would like to know about your previous experience so we can make sure to fit you with a program that will take your experience to the next level.

Our advanced programs include overnight alpine hiking, multi-day mountaineering objectives, multi-pitch rock climbing routes and customized adventures that will challenge your personal goals.

Is private guiding available?
Absolutely! We excel at creating custom experiences tailored to you or your group’s interests and ability level. Call us for more details.

Is transportation provided on any of your summer tours?
Transportation is not included in the tour prices. Contact us if you require assistance arranging transportation to the location of your tour.

Via Ferrata, Glacier Tours, and some hikes depart from Whistler Village and require a gondola lift ticket to access the alpine.  Rock climbing and some hiking programs require you to arrange transportation from Whistler Village to the activity location.

Do I need to purchase a lift ticket for your summer programs?
We use the lifts for quick access to the alpine and backcountry of Whistler mountain.  If you are joining us for a Glacier Tour, Via Ferrata, and some hikes. A lift ticket will be necessary.

Tickets are available for sale at our office.  Guests who are Whistler Blackcomb Season Pass Holders do not require any additional lift ticket.

What’s the weather like in Whistler in the summer?
Whistler lies within the Coast Mountain Range, an area characterized by moderate temperatures and heavy precipitation. Our seasonal rains mean that our mountains are lush with plant growth throughout the summer.  Temperatures vary dramatically between lowland coastal and the adjacent alpine area. On the same day that shorts will be appropriate down in Whistler Village, you’ll want to be equipped with warm, dry layers for the mountains.

What should I wear in the backcountry in the summer?
We strongly recommend wearing synthetic or wool clothing instead of cotton while in the backcountry, even in the summer. Cotton does not wick moisture and can become abrasive, causing blisters when wet. In addition, cotton can hold moisture against your body and make you cold.

Dress in layers or carry extra layers in a pack! It allows you to adjust to the temperature changes of your body and the environment. Weather conditions change quickly and and dramatically in the mountains. Be prepared.

Finally, be sure to wear outdoor footwear and warm socks. Hiking boots are ideal for all of our programs, and running shoes can be acceptable as well. Open toed shoes/sandals are not appropriate. We have hiking boots and climbing shoes available in many sizes to borrow.

What type of equipment do I need on your summer programs?
We provide all the technical equipment you will need on your tour.  A backpack with food, water, sunscreen, bug spray and other essentials is recommended.

What is your cancellation policy?
– Cancellation within 24 hours of tour start is 100% non-refundable.
– Cancellation of a tour with more than a full day’s notice can be fully refunded or rescheduled.
– Change of date will result in a $25 + tax rebooking fee.
– Failure to cancel or reschedule 10 days before a course will result in 100% loss of tuition for that program.
– All programs are subject to cancellation pending adequate registration.
– Most tours are run in all weather conditions. MSAA does not normally cancel tours for weather.

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.  This is our general cancellation policy – some booking-specific details may be applied to your reservation.

What if I’m late for a tour?
– If you arrive more than 15 minutes after the stated meeting time, you forfeit 100% of the tour price.
– If you know you will be late, please call the office as soon as possible.
– We cannot hold back a public tour when other guests arrive promptly.