2010 was the year of Red Rock Canyon National Conservation area for me. Between February and October, I spent a total of almost three months climbing in its magnificent canyons and crags. In the spring, when the summits were still snow covered and canyon’s creeks were flowing high, I was training for, then taking, the AMGA Rock Guide Course. We did some excellent climbing including Olive Oil (III, 5.7), Dream of Wild Turkeys (III, 5.10a), Nightcrawler (II, 5.10c), The Walker Spur (II, 5.10b), and the full Geronimo (III+, 5.8).
In the warm and sweaty days of fall, I got in a little more training before taking my AMGA Rock Guide exam. My friend and AAI co-worker Danny Uhlmann was also taking the exam and we completed a number of excellent climbs prior to its start. We made the most of our prep time, climbing Risky Business into Dark Shadows (III+, 5.10c R) in Pine Creek Canyon, Rock Warrior in Black Velvet Canyon (III, 5.10b R), Community Pillar (III, 5.8) in Pine Creek, Gin Ricky (I, 5.10c) and Birthday Party (II, 5.6) in First Creek Canyon, and Solar Slab to Eagle Dance (IV, 5.10) in Oak Creek Canyon.
During the exam, we climbed some more classic routes including Beulah’s Book to Arch Enemy (III, 5.9) in Oak Creek, cragging at the Trophy Wall/Wall of Confusion, Myster Z (III, 5.7) to Armatron (II, 5.9) in Juniper Canyon, The Gobbler to Dream of Wild Turkeys in Black Velvet Canyon (III+, 5.10), and There and Back Again (II, 5.8) to Eagle Dance (IV, 5.10c) in Oak Creek Canyon.
I am proud to announce that I passed my exam with excellent marks. I am available for guiding in Red Rock Canyon through the American Alpine Institute, an authorized concessionaire, from September to May each year.