Jed Porter certified by guides' group

Bishop, CA — After passing his ski mountaineering exams near Whistler in British Columbia, Margaretville native Jed Porter has been fully certified by the International Federation of Mountain Guides Associations (IFMGA).

The guide training and exams, administered by the American Mountain Guides Association (AMGA), produce certified guides to a high level of ability. Only 89 U.S. guides have been fully certified in rock, alpine and ski guiding by the AMGA since the American program was recognized internationally in 1997.

“I was fortunate to begin guiding at a time when formalized guide training was becoming more widely recognized and available,” said Porter. “IFMGA certification will open some new doors, but most importantly it will help me to work more safely and sustainably on the terrain I have already come to love.”

Difficult task
Becoming an internationally certified guide is a huge commitment, requiring years of practice, over 100 days of formal training and rigorous performance exams in rock and alpine climbing and ski mountaineering. The process can take nearly a decade to complete. Jed began climbing and backcountry skiing in 2000 in New England and his formal guide training commenced in 2007 in California.

Guides with the highest level of training are tested in four different disciplines in order to become a certified IFMGA mountain guide: rock climbing, ice climbing, mountaineering and ski mountaineering. IFMGA training gives a guide the ability to work on any mountain range whether they already know the mountain or not. It takes five to 10 years to reach the proficiency necessary to become a certified mountain guide; from the moment they start serious mountaineering to the moment when they receive their guide diploma.

Worldwide group
The IFMGA, a worldwide association, founded by guides from Austria, France, Switzerland, and Italy, has existed since 1965 and currently organizes mountain guide associations from more than 20 countries in Europe, Asia, the Americas, and Oceania, representing a total of almost 6,000 guides.

Jed is the son of Mike and Becky Porter of Margaretville and is employed at Sierra Mountain Guides in Bishop, CA where he is lead guide.