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First Single Pitch Instructor Course Completed!

I recent­ly had the plea­sure of work­ing a cus­tom AMGA Sin­gle Pitch Instruc­tor Course for the North­west Out­ward Bound School. The folks on the course work out the Maza­ma Wash­ing­ton base and run cours­es in the North Cas­cades. For me it was a voy­age into the ear­ly days of work­ing in the out­door indus­try, hav­ing been a riv­er and moun­tain instruc­tor in Ore­gon back the mid 90’s when it was called Pacif­ic Crest Out­ward Bound. 

Prac­tic­ing haul­ing tech­niques. Jaime Pol­litte photo

I had the plea­sure of teach­ing the course with my good friend, for­mer stu­dent, and new equip­ment man­ag­er at Moun­tain Mad­ness Tan­ner Joyce who was there to shad­ow as part of his work towards becom­ing an instructor. 

Man­ag­ing a top-belayed site. Jaime Pol­litte photo

Among the par­tic­i­pants were Wash­ing­ton Pro­gram Direc­tor Josh Cole, Asso­ciate Pro­gram Direc­tor Megan Fras­er, long time instruc­tors Joel Reid and Wyatt South­worth , and first year instruc­tors, Ste­fanie Biron and Jack­lyn Long. 

The way a climber sees it. Pho­to cour­tesy of Jill Fineis Photography

All of the par­tic­i­pants came into the course with exten­sive out­door edu­ca­tion back­grounds as well as a pletho­ra of climb­ing expe­ri­ence. I was imme­di­ate­ly impressed at the lev­el of which all the par­tic­i­pants oper­at­ed, jump­ing right in with teach­ing pre­sen­ta­tion and tech­ni­cal skills demon­stra­tions. Along with some great per­son­al­i­ties, this made work­ing the course not only easy but it was a great time as well. Over the course of five days the Out­ward Bound crew went through days of focus­ing on tech­ni­cal sys­tems, ter­rain man­age­ment, instruction/​facil­i­ta­tion, and most of all my nit pick­ing of everything.

Set­ting up a rap­pel. Pho­to cour­tesy of Jill Fineis Photography

The week was divid­ed into a three day course and a two day exam, some­thing that is not rec­om­mend­ed unless you are work­ing with group with this type of expe­ri­ence. Every­one made through the exam with fly­ing col­ors, which I wish I could attest to my teach­ing skills but..

Out­ward Bound and Moun­tain Mad­ness crew. Pho­to cour­tesy of Jill Fineis Photography

I want to send a spe­cial thanks to Mark Ver­meal for help­ing to facil­i­tate this col­lab­o­ra­tion and I hope that we can make this an annu­al tradition.

~ MM North­west Pro­gram Direc­tor Jaime Pollitte