Below are some links to resources we feel you'll find interesting and useful in preparing for your adventures:
- Scheduling Your Adventure with Adventure Spirit
- Climbing & COVID-19
- Considerations in Hiring a Guide-Instructor
- Northeastern Trip Planning Resources
- Area & Activity Specific Clothing, Gear, & Equipment Lists
- Clothing, Equipment, & Gear Prep Resources
- Mountain & Adventure Resources
- Climbing & Backcountry Skiing Reading You Might Enjoy
- Climbing & Backcountry Skiing-Related Associations We Support
- Climbing & Climate
Beyond simply safety reasons, there are many other reasons to consider hiring a skilled guide-instructor. Here are a few articles that our Lead Guide Kel Rossiter contributed to that explain some of the benefits:
- How to Choose a Climbing Guide. Post in the Global Rescue blog.
- 5 Reasons to Climb with a Professional Mountain Guide. Post in Kate's Real Food blog.
- Effectively Choosing a Climbing Guide. Post in our blog.
As with any profession, training and on-going development is vital to maintaining proficiency. With that in mind, we also suggest you check out The American Mountain Guide Association (AMGA) page here that details the training and testing process that goes into becoming a IFMGA Certified Mountain Guide.
Go Stowe: Provides a range of resources useful for your travels to and within the Stowe (VT) area.
Vermont Outdoor Guide Association: Provides helpful links to lodging, activities, and other services useful for your Vermont vacation.
Mt. Washington Valley Chamber of Commerce: Provides a range of resources useful for your travels to and within the Mt. Washington (NH) area.
Franconia Notch Chamber of Commerce: Provides a range of resources useful for your travels to and within the Franconia Notch (NH) area.
Keene Chamber of Commerce: Provides a range of resources useful to your travels to and within the Keene Valley area.
Lake Placid Homepage: Provides a range of resources useful to your travels to and within the Lake Placid/ADK High Peaks area.
AirBnB and a variety of other house/hotel online sites are becoming a great go-to source for lodging options, allowing you to choose the place that best fits your financial and amenities priorities. Below are a few ideas that you might find useful to consider as well.
The Willoughby Lake Store: For climbing at Lake Willoughby, the Willoughby Lake Store offers comfortable, competitively-priced rooms above the store.
Green Mountain Club: Offers an array of lodging options in the Green Mountains, as well as information on a host of topics related to the conservation and enjoyment of the Green Mountain outdoors.
White Mountains Hostel: A great place to stay in the Mt. Washington Valley (NH) if you're with a group or on a budget. A full kitchen allows you to save on meals.
The Notch Hostel: A great place to stay in the Franconia Notch Area (NH) if you're with a group or on a budget. A full kitchen allows you to save on meals.
Appalachian Mountain Club: Offers an array of lodging options in the White Mountains, as well as information on a host of topics related to the conservation and enjoyment of the Appalachian outdoors.
Keene Valley Hostel: A great place to stay in Keene Valley (NY) if you're with a group or on a budget. A full kitchen allows you to save on meals. It is also possible to save a bit more money by camping outside and you can still use the hostel's kitchen and shower/bath facilities.
T-Max n' Topos Hostel: Another hostel option in the ADK area that you might enjoy.
The Alpine Club of Canada: This club offers their quaint, rustic Keene Farm Cabin for individuals and groups.
Adirondack Mountain Club: Offers an array of lodging options in the Adirondacks, as well as information on a host of topics related to the conservation and enjoyment of the Adirondack outdoors.
Weather & Climbing Conditions Reports
Mt. Washington Observatory: Offers the most complete and up-to-the-minute information about Mt. Washington's ever-changing weather via their High Peaks Forecast.
Vermont Weather Forecast: Based out of the Fairbanks Museum in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont, on-site meteorologists present forecasts focused very specifically on this region.
Mt. Washington Avalanche Center: Offers vital information about the avalanche conditions in Huntington and Tuckerman Ravines (NH).
New England Climbing (NEClimbs): A useful resource for climbing information in the Mt. Washington Valley area. During the ice season, their weekly ice conditions report is particularly useful.
Northeastern Ice (NEIce): A useful resource for information on ice routes and current conditions.
Ice Conditions: Some post-people and hashtags we follow on social media are @neclimbs, @ne_ice_conditions, #neiceconditions, #northeastice
Travel & Rescue Insurance
For all your adventure-related travel we strongly recommend travel and rescue insurance. For all of our international trips, we require that you purchase a comprehensive rescue insurance plan. Here are two companies we have worked with and recommend.
Travelguard: Travelguard provides policies to insure the expenses of your trips. Our guides have purchased policies numerous times over the years and have cashed in on the policies twice. In both cases, Travelguard was very prompt and complete in their refunding of costs incurred. When setting up a policy, be sure to advise them you plan to engage in adventure activities and we highly suggest a policy covering pre-existing conditions.
Global Rescue: Many people assume that with their American Alpine Club membership they are covered, but it is important to remember that coverage only goes up to $12,500. The reality of the matter is that just putting the key into the ignition of a fully-staffed rescue helicopter costs more than $12,500. We highly recommend the policies offered through Global Rescue. Perusing their website you'll see they are a world leader in rescue, with a well-staffed, well-trained operation that has experience in a range of rescue conditions. Policies are available per-trip or on an annual basis. Check out options here.
There is a lot of great gear out there and a lot of great gear suppliers. And having the appropriate gear is important. But when exploring gear, rmoderation is the key: Sometimes it seems that people spend too much time grocking over gear and not enough actually using it! The most important thing in preparing for any adventure is not gear preparation—it is physical, mental, and technical preparation. As the saying goes, "Greater climbers have accomplished more with less."
Also in preparing gear for your adventure, another great quote comes from Antoine St. Exupery, who said, "Perfection is not reached when there's nothing more to add, but when there's nothing more to take away." Focus on simplifying your system and staying physically prepared, and then with whatever time remains, you can check out some of our favorite gear resources below:
Adventure Spirit Guides Gear & Equipment Pages: This page on our website has gear and equipment lists specific to the variety of Northeastern, Pacific Northwest/Cascades, and International destinations in which we guide.
Ortovox: Ortovox produces a top-quality range of climbing and skiing clothing and equipment, effectively balancing style and functionality, while always keeping a keen eye on the human and ecological processes involved in production.
Outdoor Gear Exchange: This on-line site offers tremendous bargains on new, used, clearance, and closeout merchandise, all supported by very friendly and knowledgeable staff. Additionally, their bricks-and-mortar site site in Burlington, VT has an entire basement filled with quality clothing, climbing, and backcountry skiing consignment items.
Darn Tough Vermont Socks: Darn Tough Socks set the highest bar for performance and comfort in the field. And each pair of socks is backed up with an incredible lifetime warranty.
Ice Climbing Beta From Our Blog: This blog post contains detailed information regarding climbing strategies for three of New Hampshire's most classic ice routes: The Smear, Pegasus Left, and Pegasus Right.
More Ice Climbing Beta From Our Blog: This blog post contains detailed information regarding climbing strategies for three of New Hampshire's most classic ice routes: Hard Rane, Chia, and Bob's Delight.
Adirondack Rock: This website serves as a supplement to the excellent guidebook of the same name. On the website you can find info on new routes not in the book and lots of great photos of cliffs and routes in the 'Daks.
Vermont Rock: Vermont finally has it's own rock guidebook! And there are still lots of new routes being put up—this website has info on new routes that are not in the guidebook.
General Climbing & Outdoor Resources
Mountain Project: If you don't already know about this climbing resource, you should definitely bookmark it. It's got a tremendous amount of information about climbing sites in the US and internationally. One word of caution: Take any information you read there—particularly anything you read in the Comments section—with a big boulder of salt.
All-Trails: This site serves as a good database for hikes all over the US. As with any online, open-source site, quality and accuracy of the content/information can range.
New England Climbing (NEClimbs): A useful resource for information on rock and ice routes and current conditions.
Northeastern Ice (NEIce): A useful resource for information on ice routes and current conditions.
Stephabegg Trip Reports: Stepha Begg is a Washington-based woman who has climbed many/most of the Cascades' classic climbs. In between all of that, she somehow finds time to create very informative trip reports with excellent photo documentation.
General Reading Related to Adventure Spirit
Here are a few articles written about climbers' experiences with Adventure Spirit, as well as a variety of essays, tech tips, opinion pieces, and gear reviews written by or with our Lead Guide, that you might find interesting::
The Climbing Life
- Five reasons to climb with a professional mountain guide — An article in the Kate's Real Food Blog
- How to choose a climbing guide. — An article in the Global Rescue Blog
- New England Outdoors — This article details the authors experiences doing mountaineering training in Huntington Ravine.
- Green Ice: Vermont's ice and mixed climbing. — Article written in Climbing Magazine.
- In mountaineering, as in life, preparation trumps optimism. — Opinion piece on climbing strategy in Seattle Times.
- The case against bucket lists. — Opinion piece on peak bagging in the Seattle Times.
- Work: Ice man.— Featured in Seven Days News Weekly.
- Zen and the art of climbing: How to lead a considered life. — Featured in the Desk-to-Dirtbag Blog.
- Partner Athlete Profile: Kel Rossiter with Mammut. — An article in the American Mountain Guides Association Blog.
- Meet Kel Rossiter: Climber, skier, and adventure guide extraordinaire. — An article in the Roots Rated Blog.
- Mammut Athlete Team Blog. — Numerous pieces written in this blog (search "Kel Rossiter").
- Learn this: How to glissade. — Tech tip in Climbing Magazine.
- Learn this: Better clipping and extension techniques. — Tech tip in Climbing Magazine.
- Learn this: Alpine cooking 201. — Tech tip in Climbing Magazine. Climbing Magazine.
- Learn this: Alpine cooking. — Tech tip in Climbing Magazine.
- Review: Black Diamond Reactor Tools. — Review in Climbing Magazine.
- Editors choice: Black Diamond Ultralight screw review. — Review in Climbing Magazine.
- Alpinist Mountain Standards. — Numerous gear reviews (search "Kel Rossiter").
American Mountain Guides Association (AMGA): For over 30 years, the American Mountain Guides Association (AMGA) has been dedicated to supporting the guiding community through excellence in education, standards and certification to enhance the quality of services provided to the public, while serving as a resource for accessing and protecting the natural environment.
Climbing Resource Access Group of Vermont (CRAG-VT): CRAG-VT provides service to the Northeastern climbing community through preserving climbing opportunities in Vermont and promoting responsible stewardship of climbing areas. CRAG-VT purchases/owns many of the notable crags in Vermont and fosters relationships with owners and state agencies that manage other sites. Their efforts are vital in protecting climbing opportunities in the Northeast. If you're a resident of Vermont and/or have been climbing here for more than a year, you need to become a member.
Vermont Outdoor Guide Association (VOGA): VOGA is dedicated to the support and promotion of professional outdoor leadership, education, and stewardship.in Vermont. The organization accomplishes this through advocacy in state legislature, coordinating the efforts or Vermont guides across a range of activities, and providing a website clearinghouse for advertising Vermont guide services that attracts tourism to the state. If you are a Vermont guide and/or are involved in aspects of the Vermont outdoor recreation economy, you should strongly consider becoming a member.
The Access Fund: The Access Fund is a rock climbing advocacy group in the US. Their goals are twofold. First, keeping climbing areas open and gaining access to currently closed climbing areas. Second, they promote an ethic of responsible climbing and conservation of the climbing environment. Working closely with local climbing organizations, they are instrumental in helping secure access through providing loans for property purchases and negotiating access with owners and land management agencies. If you've been outdoor climbing for more than a year, become an active part of your climbing community and become a member.
The Vermont Land Trust (VLT): The VLT works to preserve and provide access to lands across the state of Vermont. Many of those places provide Northeastern climbers with opportunities for climbing, skiing, biking, and other outdoor activities. You should strongly consider supporting their work by becoming a member.
The American Safe Climbing Association (ASCA): This organization focuses on replacing old, deteriorating climbing bolts on many of the nation's most classic routes. They do not change the nature or safety ratings of routes, they only replace existing fixed protection. If you've ever enjoyed clipping bolts on a sport route—or praised the heavens for a reliable bolt when run out way above your trad gear—then you'll surely want to support this organization.
The American Alpine Club (AAC): The AAC is dedicated to building a united community of competent climbers and healthy climbing landscapes. In recent times, it has increasingly focused on the important aspect of climate change as it relates to preserving the mountain environments that climbers enjoy and the mountain cultures that inhabit them. You should strongly consider becoming a member.
Climbing, backcountry skiing, ski mountaineering, and all mountain sports are occurring in an increasingly climate-affected world. As a community of mountain enthusiasts, we need to stay informed and engaged. Check out our Climbing & Climate Page for useful resources on this topic.
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