Single Pitch Rock Climbing Instructor

Company: Acadia Mountain Guides Climbing School

Job Type: Contract

Job Description

Position Description:

Acadia Mountain Guides, Inc. is seeking a Single Pitch Rock Climbing Instructor for the summer season. We seek highly motivated expert climbers who are passionate about rock climbing and trip leading and who are attentive to detail, thirsty for knowledge, and willing to a full schedule. In return, you will take home many new skills and experiences. 

The typical day begins around 7:30 am with a morning guide meeting to set the stage for the day. Clients arrive usually between 8 – 9:00 am for most local guiding. During the summer a large percentage of the guiding in Acadia is comprised of half-day entry-level sessions for families, couples, and groups. These require a high level of organization and efficiency to get a reasonable amount of climbing in. Morning sessions run until noon with a 30 – 60 minute break before meeting afternoon clients. After returning from the afternoon session, guides are expected to put the gear away, complete equipment logs, and complete all course or client-related administration such as confirming payment, verifying client data, and reviewing evaluations. The day usually ends around 5:30 pm. Each climbing school employee is expected to work an average of one additional retail day per week in our store and reservation counter. 

Most employees are expected to arrive in early to mid-June and to work through August 20th. Options exist for shorter or longer seasons for exceptional candidates. Training takes place in mid-late June. Guiding in June is sporadic – expect 1 – 3 days per week. Things get busy in July and August with many staff working 7 days per week. 

Instructor/Guide Related Expectations (75%):

  • Appropriately select climbs and manage large and small groups of clients in busy top rope settings

  • Lead 1 – 2 weeks of advanced youth climbing camp programs per season

  • Respect and enjoy the mountain environment

  • Enjoy people and teaching climbing sports 

  • Demonstrate a high level of professional competence and ability to instruct technical skills such as belaying, anchoring, and partner rescue in an efficient and effective manner

  • Aware of strengths and weaknesses

  • Demonstrate sound judgment and decision-making skills

  • Tolerance and patience for adversity, diversity, and uncertainty

  • Be punctual and reliable

  • Able to give and receive constructive feedback, sense of humor

  • Maintain a high regard for client safety and client experience

  • Learn client expectations and strive to meet them

  • Develop an appropriate curriculum for each client based on skills and ability

  • Relate local knowledge including natural and cultural history

  • Demonstrate and promote minimum impact practices and environmental awareness

  • Provide leadership, instruction, and medical care during an emergency

  • Inspect and maintain equipment

Guide Administrative Expectations (25%):

  • Review and file related client paperwork

  • Process reservations, prepare and edit written course materials

  • Plan curriculum and itineraries 

  • Plan and organize transportation, equipment, and food logistics for trips

  • Assist in climbing school operation, marketing, and sales 

  • Contact potential clients and sources of potential clients.


A variety of positions are available between May 20 – Columbus Day – some full season, some partial season.

Preferred Technical Qualifications:

  • Age 23 or greater with a minimum of 3 years of climbing experience including a diversity of areas and routes. Significant personal skills in rock climbing, backcountry travel/camping, and other outdoor pursuits, expertise in teaching rock climbing, outdoor skills, and environmental consciousness; strong interpersonal / leadership skills;  excellent driving record; excellent physical condition; proven judgment and decision-making; and a desire to serve as a positive role model. 

  • Climbing resume showing a minimum of 40 days outdoor climbing per year and 20 days instructing climbing or guiding in the past year.

  • Demonstrated ability to currently and safely lead routes as follows: grade II, 5.9.

  • PCIA (preferred) or AMGA Single Pitch Instructor Certification. (Certifications may be completed at the start of the season)

  • AMGA Rock Instructor Course. 

  • Wilderness First Responder and CPR certification

  • Demonstrated ability in the following: managing top rope sites safely and efficiently, teaching and leadership, climbing equipment, natural history, environmental consciousness, judgment and decision-making, improvised rescue, and general outdoor skills. 

  • Requires excellent people skills, solid organizational skills, and a strong knowledge of outdoor activities and outdoor equipment. 

  • Preference will be given to candidates seeking multiple seasons of employment and who are pursuing further guide education and certification.

  • May be waived for exceptional candidates. 


Salary is commensurate with education and experience. The base salary is 100.00 / day up to $130.00 / day. Access to professional courses (climbing/ mountaineering, Maine Trip Leader, WMA wilderness medicine, PCIA and AMGA training) is available at discounted rates.  Housing assistance options. Pro-purchase access and Worker’s compensation insurance are provided. Climbing school employees are encouraged to apply for retail positions to earn extra income. One of the best aspects of working at AMG is the community of friends and climbing partners you will join.

How to Apply

Complete our application (available at acadiamountainguides.com) and return electronically with a letter of interest and resume to Jon Tierney ([email protected]) or via mail to AMGCS, PO Box 121, Orono, ME 04473. 207-866-7562. After receiving your application, we will evaluate it and, if you are among the qualified candidates, we will arrange an in-person, phone, or zoom interview. We prefer in-person interviews and can often meet at organizational meetings or major climbing areas. EEOE.
Posted on: September 15, 2022
Job Type: Contract
Job Starting Date:
May 27, 2023
Application Closing Date:
April 27, 2023
Job Salary Range:
18.00 to 25.00
Years of Experience: Not Specified
Job Activity(ies): Top Rope Rock Climbing
Job Category(ies): Outdoor Skills School
Region(s): Northeast US
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