Alpine Mountaineering and Technical Leadership, Part 3 COVID-19 UPDATE: AAI is open and operating with new policies and procedures for COVID-19. Click the following links to learn more about AAI's COVID-19 Operating Plans and cancellation policy. Note that AAI requires proof of full COVID-19 vaccination for all trips at least through September 30, 2022. Overview
AAI's four-part mountain leadership program has been called "the country's most respected and thorough rock and mountaineering course," by Men's Journal. It has four 12-day segments, and you can choose to take one, two, three, or all four. AMTL Part 1 provides a comprehensive introduction to all the skills of alpine mountaineering, general team leadership, and leading rope teams on glaciers. Part 2 develops techniques for leading multi-pitch rock routes while further advancing technical and evaluative skills on snow, ice, and rock. Part 3 allows you to continue to develop your technical leadership skills while providing an opportunity to focus those skills on one of two areas. Part 4 is an expedition in which all of the skills developed are employed in a remote and complex big mountain setting.
Part 3 - Advanced Climbing and Leadership
The third portion of the Alpine Mountaineering and Technical Leadership Program provides the opportunity to practice and apply the skills that you learned in Parts 1 and 2 while engaging in a series of new advanced alpine techniques.
The earlier courses laid a solid foundation for your skills as a mountaineer, an ice climber, and a rock climber. This advanced level course provides an opportunity for you to apply those techniques and to expand on them while specializing in a specific type of alpine travel.
Climber enjoying the view on the W. Ridge of Pigeon Spire in the Bugaboos. Kurt Hicks
The Part 3 course offers two different specializations. The first is an aid climbing/big wall course, combined with a mountaineering expedition to a remote and spectacular part of the the North Cascades. And the second option is an advanced alpine rock climbing trip that will combine a technical climbing seminar with an expedition to the remarkable granite rock spires that rise from the complex, heavily glaciated terrain of Bugaboo Provincial Park in British Columbia.
In order to participate in this high-end training and expedition, you must first complete Parts 1 and 2. If you took Part 2 more than a year and a half prior, you will need to take a four-day refresher course. If you have engaged in a significant amount of climbing in the interim this may be waived.
Both options offer the unique opportunity for participants to co-lead a mini-expedition and to obtain further instruction. The expedition brings together all the logistical skills, climbing techniques, and mountain judgment learned and practiced in Parts 1 and 2 in a bigger, more complex and more challenging environment.
Alpine Mountaineering and Technical Leadership, Part 3 Curriculum Options
The third part of our Alpine Mountaineering and Technical Leadership series includes two options. Each of these options run on different dates. And though some may wish to participate in only one of these options, others will want to continue to expand their climbing and expeditionary skills by participating in both.
Cascades (AMTL 3a) - Advanced Alpine Mountaineering and Rock Climbing, Aid Climbing, Big Wall Techniques & Remote Cascade Expedition
Bugaboos (AMTL 3b) - Advanced Alpine Rock Climbing, Squamish Multi-Pitch Rock Efficiency Clinic and Bugaboos Expedition
It is our primary goal that upon completion of this program you will be able to function successfully as an alpine climbing leader at an advanced level.
Climbers who successfully complete all 4 parts of this program receive certification in Alpine Mountaineering Leadership. One does not need to complete Parts 3a and 3b to attain this certification. However, you will receive an endorsement based on the part that you choose to complete. Those who elect to complete more than one section will be awarded additional endorsements on their certification.
Due to your schedule or personal goals, you may not be able to participate in
AMTL Part 4. If you elect to take more than one version of the AMTL 3, the second course at the AMTL 3 Level will be counted as an AMTL 4 and you will be awarded your certificate of Alpine Mountaineering Leadership.
Part 3a - Remote Cascade Expedition - Advanced Alpine Skills, Aid Climbing, Big Wall Techniques and Technical Leading
Structure and Goals:
In this third 12-day segment of the program you will develop more sophisticated technical skills on rock, snow and ice while making ascents of technical rock routes using both free and aid techniques as well as continuing to explore the rugged glaciers and high peaks of North Cascades National Park. This is one of the rare courses in the world that specifically teaches techniques for leading on rock, snow, and ice. You will increase your proficiency in free climbing and mountaineering, you will learn the techniques required to climb big wall aid routes and you will become capable of setting up sophisticated rescue systems.
The stunning Northern Picket Range.
Your instructors will help you refine your route selection skills, route finding, and natural hazard evaluation that were introduced in Parts 1 and 2. Additionally, we emphasize the development of both the judgment and the specific climbing and protective systems skills required for leading more advanced climbs. It is our goal that you emerge from this program as a qualified rope team leader on both rock and glacier routes.
NOTE - Those who complete a Part 3b may also get an Aid Climbing and Big Wall endorsement on their certification if they take the 4-day Aid Climbing and Big Wall Technique seminar. They do not have to complete all of 3a to obtain this endorsement.
Part 3b - Bugaboos - Advanced Alpine Rock Climbing, Squamish Multi-Pitch Rock Efficiency Clinic and Bugaboos Expedition
Structure and Goals:
In this third 12-day segment of the program, you will develop more sophisticated technical skills on rock, snow and ice while making ascents of technical rock routes in both the Stawamus Chief Provincial Park as well as in the Bugaboo Provincial Park in British Columbia. This is one of the rare courses in the world that specifically teaches techniques for leading on rock, snow, and ice. You will increase your proficiency as a free climber as well as engage in complex glacier travel.
Though there are many mountaineering elements, this particular program has a heavier focus on rock climbing than the other options. In Part 3b, climbers will learn specifically how to move fast on large and complex features. The first part of the program will provide you the opportunity to refine your movement skills on the granite above the mountain town of Squamish. And the second part will challenge those same skills on high and remote alpine rock peaks in the Bugaboos. Route selection, route finding and hazard evaluation continue to play a major role in your education as you proceed to refine protective systems, rock rescue techniques and movement skills. It is our goal that you emerge from this program as a qualified rope team leader on both rock and glacier routes.
Alpine Mountaineering and Technical Leadership, Part 3 Dates and Locations
** Bugaboos programs are contingent upon the diminished COVID hazard and the Canadian border being open. If the border is still closed at the start of Summer 2022, all AMTL 3 programs will be converted to 3a - Remote Cascades Expeditions.
Approaching the Southern Pickets.
Save Save Alpine Mountaineering and Technical Leadership, Part 3 Cost and Details
Max Ratio - 2:1 (Climber:Guide)
Capacity - 6
Successful completion of
AMTL I and AMTL II or equivalent experience. Ability to confidently and smoothly lead 5.6 traditional rock.
Ability to lead multipitch rock climbs and descents.
Ability to build a traditional rock anchor without direct supervision.
Ability to properly rig an autoblocking device in a multi-pitch environment.
Strong understanding of French Technique.
Ability to lead 45-degree ice.
Ability to confidently lead a rope team in glaciated terrain.
Some students may need some time to practice their skills between AMTL II and AMTL III. Students who elect to take these courses back-to-back will need to demonstrate proficiency of the subject matter in Part II before they start AMTL III.
Alpine Mountaineering and Technical Leadership, Part 3 Testimonials
Men's Journal calls this program "the country's
most respected and thorough rock and mountaineering
"The 4-part course was just what we were looking
for: a systematic way to learn how to lead on rock and glaciers,
starting from minimal experience on those media. By going through
the course, we now have a whole new dimension to explore on our
Myron and Adele (Laramie, WY)
"My overall impression of the guides was that they were amazing
individuals. They were professional, considerate, hard working, and
still able to have fun throughout the course. The way they handled
certain situations that arose on the course was stellar. They were
able to multi-task and handle everything that camp up."
Kailyn M. (Bellingham, WA)
"Our guide was very experienced. First and foremost, this stood
out as a great quality and was the single greatest aspect of the
whole course. It kept the course glued together as a whole, and
made the course feel safe and structured. My favorite talent of my
guide was his ability to speak slowly. He is very easy to
understand, and very clear about what he wants to say. He also has
an extensive and admirable amount of knowledge about the area, and
used that knowledge to tailor our course to the best of his
Cora S. (Los Angeles, CA)
They did a good job of keeping the course challenging while not
making it too taking for less fit and experienced course
Schalk S. (Morristown, NJ)
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