Utah & Nevada Rock & Ice Climbing

Leadership & Guide Training Course
(5 & 12 days)




Utah is renowned throughout the country for its magnitude of high quality climbing areas. From the sustained sandstone cracks of Indian Creek to the frozen waterfalls of Provo to seas of granite in the west desert, Utah has something for everyone. Utah offers the solitude, terrain, and quality rock and ice that make for the perfect educational climbing opportunity.

Imagine climbing long frozen waterfalls, honing your footwork on a sweeping granite slab, or teaching your fellow students the proper front-pointing technique. Picture yourself at a hanging belay on a sunny mid-winter day, rappelling down an ice face, or practicing your high angle rescue techniques. The combination of rock and ice gives students a solid background in a range of technical skills.

This comprehensive rock and ice climbing course is the perfect setting to achieve your goals whether you are looking to become a professional guide, hone your technical abilities for personal adventures, or expand your leadership skills. It focuses on teaching students to be safe, efficient, knowledgeable and confident outdoor leaders on vertical rock.

The Wasatch Mountains are renowned for high-quality, long ice routes. The limestone shelves of Provo Canyon offer tiers of varying length, great for honing technique on a top-rope or managing belay stations on multi-pitch climbs. Joe’s Valley, situated in the Manti-La Salle National Forest, provides a great desert ice climbing experience in secluded canyons.

THE INSTRUCTORS AND GUIDES OF IWLS are widely recognized as some of the very best in their field and have practical leadership experience from around the globe. They are well trained and have an uncommon enthusiasm for sharing their skill and knowledge, borne out of a passion for outdoor exploration.

The International Wilderness Leadership Schools’ educational model nurtures leadership development and creates an awareness of the guiding mentality that is essential for leading safe, fun adventures in the mountains. The combination of technical skills training, experiential education and practical leadership experience make the IWLS curriculum world class.

THE IWLS GENERAL CURRICULUM outlines the essential components for effective outdoor leadership. Here are a few points that your course will focus on.

  • Leadership: Opportunities to lead the group will be abundant and you’ll have the time to learn and practice multiple styles of leadership.
  • Natural and Cultural History: Having a strong understanding of cultural history, flora, and fauna is an integral part of leading people in an outdoor environment. You’ll learn some of the botany, ecology, and geology that apply to these remarkable areas.
  • Safety and Risk Management: Safety is always the #1 consideration. As the course progresses, you’ll develop an awareness to appropriately asses risk and make safe decisions.
  • Travel Techniques: Course instruction will help you discover ways to safely maximize your efficiency, whether hiking down a well-beaten path or traversing an exposed ridge.

-Kevin Forster

IWLS ROCK & ICE CLIMBING CURRICULUM is designed to create safe and strong technical climbers. Below are some examples of what you’ll learn:

  • Climbing Technique: Whether stemming an inside corner, jamming an off-width, or friction climbing on a blank slab, you’ll learn the techniques to climb efficiently on a variety of different features.
  • Rock Protection: Pitons, nuts, cams, hexes… learn the nuances of quality placements. You’ll have the opportunity to place protection in a variety of settings and rock quality.
  • High Angle Rescue: What happens when things go bad? We’ll practice escaping the belay and getting to the aid of an injured climber.
  • Ice Protection: Ice screws, ice pitons, v threads…learn the nuances of quality placements. You’ll have the opportunity to place protection in a variety of settings and ice quality.

EXPERIENCE LEVEL No previous experience is necessary for this course. However, with a desire to learn and an enthusiasm for adventure, you’ll develop the skills necessary for a lifetime of wilderness exploration.

CERTIFICATIONS Upon completion of the 5 or 12-day course, participants may qualify for the following certifications:

5 or 12 Day Certificate of Completion
International Wilderness Leadership School

DATES & PRICES Please see our schedule for current dates and price information.