DOI link for Guided mountaineering
Guided mountaineering book
Introduction Guided mountaineering has a history dating back to the early nineteenth century where guiding was an alternative, but often necessary, activity that supplemented the income earnings of local people living in the European Alps. The professionalism of mountain guiding through the development of international guiding qualiﬁcations, increased demand from amateur or novice climbers and the global mobility of guiding businesses’ activities have seen individuals’ passion for mountaineering resulting in professional guiding careers. The commodiﬁcation of mountaineering or the guided experience has been examined by researchers including Carr (2001), Beedie (2003, 2010, 2013), Beedie and Hudson (2003), Houge Mackenzie and Kerr (2013), Johnston and Edwards (1994), Martinoia (2013) and Pomfret (2011). Few studies to date have been conducted to examine speciﬁcally what motivates professional mountain guides to pursue their careers. Beedie (2010) observed in his research the role of guides ‘choreographing’ the experience of clients and noted the value of ‘extensive mountaineering cultural capital’ as a component critical to guides’ identity and the guiding lifestyle. More academic research has explored the motivations of mountaineers in general and these motivations are often relevant to guides (Beedie 2010; Ewert 1985, 1994; Cronin 1991; Carr 2001; Cloutier 2003; Pomfret 2006, 2011). Rich mountaineering literature provides insights through autobiographies of guides where the pure necessity of employment was either secondary to, or accompanied by, a passion for alpine areas amongst early guides such as Peter Graham, Conrad Kain, Mick Bowie and Harry Ayres (Graham 1965; Bowie 1969; Kain 1979; Mahoney 1982). This passion for climbing and mountain environments is clearly a continual theme central both to guides’ choice of profession and also for the non-professional climbers who have been referred to as ‘mountaineering adventure tourists’ (Pomfret 2006, 2011). The chapter provides an overview of the development of professional mountain guiding with an initial focus on demand for guided experiences and then continues to explore the development of commercial guiding in New Zealand from the 1880s, with a predominant focus on international developments in the New Zealand guiding sector over the past 20 years. This chapter draws from
mountaineering literature, academic research and the author’s personal experiences and observations as a co-owner of a mountain guiding business in the 1980s and 1990s with several years as secretary/treasurer of the New Zealand Mountain Guides’ Association (NZMGA).