Climbing Articles

Writings on Various Topics by AAI Guides

Over the years, AAI guides and staff have written many articles about climbing tools, techniques, and trips they have taken, including rock climbing, ice, alpine, and ski mountaineering, both here in the Cascades and further afield. Below is a selection of articles. Be sure to check back as we bring more articles online!

Mike Powers - small


Ask a Mountain Guide

AAI's lead guide answers questions from our climbers and readers of our blog, website, and newsletter.

Richard Denali Guide

Feature Article

Choosing a Denali Guide

Former AAI Denali Coordinator and Guide Coley Gentzel discusses how to approach selecting a guide service for your Denali expedition.


Feature Article

Fighting for Fitzroy

AAI Guide Andrew Wexler gives an account of his personal climbing trip to Patagonia and his attempt to climb the iconic granite spire of Fitzroy, a mountain he had dreamed of since childhood.

Alpine Rack

Expert Tips

How to Select an Alpine Rack

Ever wonder how those alpine guides move so fast on long routes? Guide Erik Johnson explains how to "right-size" your gear for alpine routes on which speed and mobility are more important than a full set of cams.

Climbers First Aid Kit

Expert Tips

Building Your Wilderness First Aid Kit

The Director of the Wilderness Medicine Training Center in Mazama, WA, explains how to assemble a sensible first aid kit for the mountains.

Mike Powers - small

Technical Articles

Expert Tips

AAI's guide staff offer insights and technical wisdom on a variety of topics of interest to climbers, from glove selection to mountain photography.

Coley Gentzel

Technical Articles

Physical Conditioning for Mountaineering Expeditions

Onetime AAI Denali Coordinator and Guide Coley Gentzel explains how an ordinary person can systematically ramp up to the level of fitness required to climb high-altitude summits.

Tomk Small2

Technical Articles

Climbing Accident Reports: How (And Why) to Read Them

AAI Guide and Assistant Director Tom Kirby explains why reading the American Alpine Club's yearly supplement Accidents in North American Mountaineering could be the best thing you do this year – short of taking an AAI course – to improve your safety in the mountains.

Coley Gentzel

Route information

Mt. Waddington and the Coast Range

Guide Coley Gentzel gives an overview of the most renowned and sought-after summit in British Columbia's Coast Range.


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