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This July, I was invited to join some friends form Park City, Utah to climb the Grand Teton. I faced three big challenges.

October 30, 2015 | Posted in:


This July, I was invited to join some friends form Park City, Utah to climb the Grand Teton. I faced three big challenges. First, I had no climbing experience. Second, I am not a huge camper. Third, I was very apprehensive about what it would be like and perhaps more importantly if I could do it. The trip I pursued was a three day trip, day 1 to base camp, day 2 training and day 3 ascend and descend. For my first challenge of having no climbing experience, JHMG prepared a day of training to build my basic climbing skills, repelling skills, and how to work as a team. Not having been through any of this before, they took the time to uncover that and customize the training for my level of experience (or none as it were). Throughout each part of the training, they used proven adult learning approaches, gave me multiple attempts to build confidence and provided important feedback when I needed it. Challenge number two (little camping appetite) was a place where JHMG really stood out. Unlike other guide companies I researched, JHMG made breakfast and dinner for us each day of the adventure. The food was good, the company was even better and the fact the trip had some high-end touches unrelated to climbing were welcome after a hard day of climbing, training or the day of the big summit. Those small touches were a big deal. Finally, challenge three and my apprehension of the technical elements of the climb. The training day was a difference maker but the real test was on the mountain the day we made the summit. The climb to the summit for me, was a mental challenge on two fronts. Although physically I felt OK, I tended to move too quickly. Several of the guides helped me set and maintain a pace that I could maintain that helped us get to the top. When I reached points in the climb and was unsure if I could do it or continue, I had multiple experts breaking down the task into small pieces and helping me achieve each one. At several points in the climb it was their technical support, ongoing training and encouragement that made all the difference. So, two weeks later, I think about Mark, Jacob and Jason, their tireless work to prepare me, create a high-end experience, and build my confidence that it was achievable. Given to my own challenges, I know I could not have achieved this without their help. I am so grateful for their attention to detail, attention to my experience and professionalism.


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