What you have said

The following comments are from Learners feedback to the AQN on the training or assessment process they underwent…

  • It is a vital course to do as it contains a lot that is subsequently used in real situations: it was the best thing I did for my return to professional guiding and it empowered me immensely.
  • I have been very favourably impressed with the rigour of the training and the assessment process and have felt stretched at times. If I am to be regarded as having qualified I will feel justly proud of the qualification.

In response to the question: “Which skills that you learnt on your course have you found to be the most useful?”, these were some of their replies…

  • Leadership skills & Navigation
  • Pick offs
  • Clients, nature and risk in the mountain environment
  • Planning a hike: logistics, escape routes, timing
  • Proper Pre trip briefings
  • Leading and providing safety for second/s on multi-pitch traditional rock climbs
  • Guiding People in the outdoors
  • Planning and implementing a Guiding experience
  • Safety on Steep ground
  • Foundation knowledge of all aspects of guiding
  • Managing a group
  • Planning of and preparation for multi-day mountain tours
  • Producing a Tour
  • Managing awkward situations
  • Marketing My Business
  • Knowledge of Geology
  • Knowledge of applicable legislation
  • Selling the Tour
  • Tour guide professionalism

When asked why they felt the skills were useful, Learners replied:

  • You need to communicate effectively with your client(s). Be able to Navigate, read a map and the terrain to plan and get to your destination. You need to be able to help your group on steep and difficult terrain and be a to see storm/ bad weather moving in.
  • They ensure the safety and enjoyment of clients
  • They help get your head around most problems you encounter in rescue situation
  • They have added value in the services I offer as a guide.
  • I have used all of the above on my commercial hikes and feel better equipped and more confidant about leading hikes in wilderness areas
  • Before the assessment I used to concentrate on the actual activity only (e.g. doing only the abseil or rock climb with the client). I never paid much attention to everything leading up to the activity. Making sure the client is well informed before your activity start, you can be sure many problems will be sorted out even before you get to the crag.
  • Without these skills it would be very difficult to provide a quality experience for the client
  • Because these tourists are putting their lives in our hands. We need to manage their expectations and provide them with the nest possible experience their money can buy.
  • The initial training provides a foundation however one needs to continually refer to more detailed information and gain experience in the field. The assessment process was a real event, and I still use that experience when conducting my tours

And finally a recent letter recieved by one of the Assessors from a Learner

Just wanted to post some feedback on the AML course and process of learning.  What I thought was going to be an 8 day course, has actually been a 3 month learning process and I have learnt far more than I had expected.  Its really not about the classroom time at all – there is so much learning in the practical time we spend and in the personal study time required for the tests and the project.

I think it is about the most thorough training programme I have ever been involved in – and I have done a lot of training programmes ! The combination of the classroom teaching with the practice of skills on the mountain is really excellent.  My main objective was to learn how to be responsible for a group of people – to learn how to run a safe guiding experience, dealing with emergencies and day to day needs.

And I have learnt so much and feel confident now to be a hiking leader and guide.  The most important were the first aid skills (specifically those relevant on the mountain such as the snake bites and fractures),  the navigation, rope skills and the emergency procedures.  So many essential skills – and all so important.

The combination of the classroom learning with the tests, the project and the practical – all provided different aspects of learning. And most important is realising there is always more to learn – its an ongoing process. But I know feel that I have an excellent foundation and with more practice and experience I will continue to benefit from what you have introduced to me.

So – I am a real fan and really appreciate all your input and support – I think the course is a must for anyone leading hikes on the mountain – and for those that just enjoy being on the mountain – the skills are so important to guides and hikers alike.