"Ask a Guide" Letters
Got a question about climbing? We want to hear it!
Our top guide answers technical questions about rock, alpine, ski, and expedition tools and techniques.
Michael Powers, IFMGA, AAI Senior Guide and our Director for Staff Development, answers all Ask A Guide questions. Michael oversees field staff, guide training, and continuing education, and serves as an instructor in mountaineering, ice, rock, and skiing. He is an IFMGA certified climbing and ski guide, serves as an instructor and examiner for the AMGA's National Guide Certification Program, and is a former Technical Director of the AMGA.
CAUTION: Mountain travel of any kind carries significant risks to the participants, and travel on rock, snow, and ice carries inherent dangers that can lead to injury or death. Every situation is unique and calls for use of different techniques, gear, and methodologies. Those choices must be made in the context and location where the activity will occur, and final choices require an assessment by the person on the scene. Therefore, AAI assumes no responsibility or liability for your use of the suggestions offered in this article or by guides and staff. AAI offers tips to assist climbers to expand their skills, but makes no assertion regarding the appropriateness of choosing particular techniques, gear, methodologies, or ways of proceeding in any given circumstance. You must make your own assessments and decisions, and you assume all risks in applying them.