/ recommend a mountain guide for the alps

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djellworth on 23 Nov 2012
Hi there. I am looking for a recommendation of a mountain guide to spend some time with us in the French alps next summer. My main criteria (given they are highly qualified and our technical needs will be lowish) is to find someone who will be able to fit in to the needs of my teenage son. So we are looking for someone who is good fun, likes a laugh and is, shall we say, "socially skilled". Does anyone have experience with such a person? I'd be very grateful for your recommendations. cheers. DJ
Nick Harvey - on 23 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth: I'll always give a shout out for Alpine Guides. I took a bunch of cadets out there a few years ago and Rich and Al were great, as were all the guides they recruited to help. There was good banter and they weren't too 'softly, softly' either which the lads really appreciated.
innesmac - on 23 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth:

Try Stuart MacDonald out, based in cham - http://stuartmacdonald.org/
Heike - on 23 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth:
Hi,
Rob Jarvis at http://www.highmountainguides.com would fit the bill.
IanC - on 23 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth:

I've was on a course lead by Tim Blakemore (http://www.northernmountainsport.co.uk/index.php/eng) a few years ago. Great guy, often takes his teenage son into son in the alps, so will know the score in that regard. Found him to be keen to teach alpine skills not just show people the way too.
John Alcock - on 23 Nov 2012
In reply to Heike:
I can't recommend Mike "Twid" Turner highly enough. Vastly experienced, very motivated, and great company
gowla - on 23 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth: I'll second Rob Jarvis. he's a great guy, based near chamonix.
djellworth on 23 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth:Many thanks all. Anyone else?
SteveHolmes - on 23 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth:
Give Mike Pescod a shout - http://www.abacusmountainguides.com/ certainly fills all your criteria and more.
Becky E - on 23 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth:
John Lyall is a great guy. He's become a family friend.
mrmattwright - on 23 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth: + 1 for Rob Jarvis...excellent chap!
Bevans on 25 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth: Mark Walker - professional but a good laugh and has worked loads with kids
chris bedford - on 25 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth:
Rob Jarvis, Stu MacDonald, Tim Blakemore, Mark Walker, Twid Turner: have met all of these guys on and / or off the hill, and can't recommend them too strongly. You don't get a carnet without an exceptional level of technical skill and mountain experience, but being a guide also requires great 'people skills'. These folks (and others in this profession) have this in bucket loads, without it being too 'in yer face'. You would have a great time with any of them, and they'll bend over backwards to fit you in around any current bookings. Drop them an email via the BMG website (or their own sites).
chris bedford - on 25 Nov 2012
Simon4 - on 26 Nov 2012
In reply to chris bedford:

> .... but being a guide also requires great 'people skills'

Unless you are French or Swiss of course. Then misanthropy and arrogance are compulsory.
Gael Force - on 26 Nov 2012
In reply to chris bedford: Not all the ones I've met had great people skills. Some have had to be threatened with a smack, and in one case got one from my partner, for pushing or que jumping on busy / popular routes.
flett53 - on 26 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth: Another shout for Mike pescod at abacus, Or This french guy is great! Funny guy knows his shit, http://guidechamonix.net/
gerome guala
djellworth on 26 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth:

Many thanks all - your recommendations are very much appreciated.
[In response to Gaelforce above I would indeed strongly agree that being a BMG is not a guarantee of social skills. Hence my original request based on a fairly "mixed" experience in the alps this year. And no, I wont be telling, after all it might be us not him....]
mattrm - on 26 Nov 2012
In reply to chris bedford:
> (In reply to djellworth)
>
> ....and James Thacker http://www.jamesthacker-mountaineering.co.uk/

James is ace. Nice bloke. Also Rich at Alpine Guides is a great guy as well.
barney800 on 26 Nov 2012
In reply to djellworth: Andy Perkins (based in Chamonix) is another top bloke with a great sense of humour:

http://andypmountainguide.com/
jhw - on 28 Nov 2012
Graham Frost taught me the basics of mountaineering, ice climbing and ski touring and was great. Arolla is a top venue for this type of thing also.

http://www.frostguiding.co.uk/
Dugg - on 28 Nov 2012
In reply to Simon4:

> Unless you are French or Swiss of course. Then misanthropy and arrogance are compulsory.

Not true, I know some great French guides. In my experience they are the same as British Guides in that you get just as many that are arrogant etc. I've had some great banter with them before.

Trying to find one of their cards now but I seem to have misplaced it.
Simon4 - on 28 Nov 2012
In reply to Dugg: Well I have met plenty of reasonable British guides, also Italian ones and even the odd German (or is that a tautology?), but the number of incidents of French or Swiss guides acting like arses are too many to count (especially on the Matterhorn in the Swiss case, but that really is a law unto itself). This may be coincidence, but I suspect not.

It is probably not helped by the French guiding system, rather like the French ski-intructing selection, encouraging absolute hard-core, envelope pushing alpinists - and then telling them to take punters up the voie normale on Mont Blanc du Tacul for the first 3 years, while the more experienced guides get to take the more capable clients up the more interesting and challenging routes.
Jayhigh - on 06 Dec 2012
In reply to djellworth: Bruce Goodlad is very easy going and would probably suit your needs. And he did actually write the (okay, a) book...
ads.ukclimbing.com
Oceanic - on 06 Dec 2012
In reply to mrmattwright:
> (In reply to djellworth) + 1 for Rob Jarvis...excellent chap!

Rob Jarvis gets my vote too.


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