Guide Gear Review – Dynafit Huascaran Set Up

Dynafit Huascaran Set up Gear Review – by Russell Hunter My name is Russell and I work full-time as a Senior Mountain Guide for the Colorado Mountain School. This year Dynafit became our official ski, binding, and skin sponsor. As a result…

Finding the Joy in Skiing with the US Snowboard Team

Finding the Joy in Skiing with the US Snowboard Team – by Mike Alkaitis Last week I had the pleasure of skiing with a few members of the US Snowboard Halfpipe Team (Coach Rick Bower and riders Matt Ladley, Gretchen…

Marmot Women’s Minimalist Jacket

Marmot Women’s Minimalist Jacket Gear Review – by Norie Kizaki I wore Marmot’s Minimalist Jacket every day this winter while ski guiding in Hokkaido, Japan. Marmot uses GORE-TEX® with Paclite® Technology in the jacket, which means that it is light,…

Gear Review – Scarpa Maestrale RS

Scarpa Maestrale RS  Yes, I know it’s a little late, but I was waiting for more snow before reviewing these boots. Finally, after receiving said snow, I decided to take them out for a spin during our Christmas storm and…

Gear Review: Black Diamond Storm Headlamp

Black Diamond Storm Headlamp Gear Review – by Joey Thompson Earlier this season in Rocky Mountain National Park, the Black Diamond Storm headlamp helped me recover lost equipment and get my first turns of the season. Here’s my recount from an…

Gear Review: Black Diamond Cobra Ice Tool

Black Diamond Cobra Ice Tool Gear Review – by Eric Whewell The Black Diamond Cobras are my favorite ice tools on the market. They have the craftsmanship of a Ferrari and the burl of an eighteen wheel truck. I have used…

Scarpa Maestrale RS

  When I saw the Scarpa Maestrale RS at last winters OR show I was intrigued. I loved touring in the original orange Maestrale, but always wanted a bit more behind the boot for the skis I use (95-118mm underfoot)….

Guide Gear Review: Black Diamond Spinner Leash

Mike Lewis utilizing the BD Spinner Leash on All Mixed Up in Rocky Mountain National Park – Photo by Rainbow Weinstock  There I was…climbing the second pitch of Goldrush…a four pitch WI5 route in the Silverton area of Colorado. I…

Guide Gear Review: Marmot Zeus Jacket

Marmot Zeus Jacket I’m a hardman darn it and this jacket is just so…soft! And light! And I’m not a lightweight either (at least in my mind). That being said, this is what I have to say about the Marmot Zeus…

Guide Gear Review: Black Diamond Vector Helmet Review

I have long awaited the arrival of the new Black Diamond Vector Helmet. I like to carry as little weight up the hill as possible and since my LG/XL Vector weighs in at a trim 8.5 ounces (SM/MD 8.1 ounces) I…

Conditions Pictures from RMNP

Winter is making it’s way! Here are a few shots from the past week that CMS Guides Mike Lewis and Joey Thompson took from the field. All Mixed Up is IN and in great condition from bottom to top. Mike and Joey…

Guide Gear Review: Black Diamond LightWeight Glove

  The Black Diamond LightWeight Gloves are a consistent item in my pack no matter what time of year. The LightWeight Glove does not receive the time in the spotlight it deserves. This is partly because in the winter they…

Guide Gear Review: La Sportiva Xplorer

Recently, I’ve been out in La Sportiva’s latest approach shoe incarnation, the Xplorer. I first heard mention of this shoe from a Sportiva employee after inquiring why they hadn’t yet released an updated Exum model. I prefer approach shoes that…

Guide Gear Review: Black Diamond Half Dome Helmet

  Kevin Baines rocking his new Black Diamond Half Dome Black Diamond has revised and updated their helmet line for 2012, including their stalwart, the Half Dome. The Half Dome has been my go-to helmet for years. It is dependable, sturdy, and…

Guide Gear Review: La Sportiva Xplorer Approach

For big days out it is hard to imagine a more important piece of gear than your shoes.  You often leave and return to the trailhead in the dark, without ever taking your shoes off.  How your shoes treat your body in between is pretty…

Conditions Report – Flagstaff Fire – 90% Contained

Eldorado Canyon reopened on Friday the 29th. On June 29, CMS Guide Steve Levin and his client Ed spent the afternoon climbing the Wind Tower. They reported a bit of smoke/haze in the air (see photo to the right) but…

Conditions Report

As we all know, there are fires burning throughout many areas of Colorado.  Climbers are calling our offices to find out if and what climbing areas are being affected.   Here is the local breakdown.  The following fires are all within 50 miles of our…

Guide Gear Review: Black Diamond Hoodwire Carabiner

Last season I retired many of my well-used carabiners and decided to try the new Black Diamond Hoodwires. According to BD: “Their hot-forged construction combines a keylock design with wire gate functionality.” Translation: greatly reduced snagging when you’re clipping gear,…

Guide Gear Review: Marmot Nano Jacket

Ian Fowler here with Colorado Mountain School. Originally from England, I grew up with three-hundred days of rain annually. Thus, I have a lot of experience with waterproof shells. The ultra-light Marmot Nano is a streamlined GORE-TEX® Paclite® shell that…

Gear Review: Marmot Women’s Jena Jacket

Jane here with Colorado Mountain School, checking in about another high-performing product from  Marmot! Known for their incredibily lightweight primo down insulation, Marmot does not disapoint with the Women’s Jena Down Jacket. Marmot uses only the highest quality goose down and it…

Guide Gear Review: Black Diamond Spot Headlamp

Russell Hunter, full-time guide with the Colorado Mountain School, here to share with you my opinion on the Black Diamond Spot headlamp. Recently I have been using the Spot headlamp and it has quickly become one of my new favorite…

Circuit Training at the BRC

BRC trainers have developed a training circuit incorporating Tru Blue auotobelays.  Check out this video on how to better train for your climbing objectives.

Mountain Climbing Safety

CMS guide Russell Hunter recently spent the day climbing with Outside Television.  Here’s and excerpt where they spend a few minutes discussing mountain climbing safety.  Enjoy!

Weekly Monday Gear Review: Black Diamond Primrose SA Harness

The Black Diamond Primrose SA Harness is a great women’s-specific harness for all climbing uses: sport, trad, multi-pitch, gym, snow and ice!  This is the second Primrose harness that I have owned.  Recently, I have been wearing it regularly for…

AMGA Ski Guide Course with Norie Kizaki

CMS Guide Norie Kizaki recently took the AMGA Ski Guide Course with help from funding through a scholarship that she received  from Backcountry Access.  Luckily for us, the camera was rolling.  The course was great and Norie crushed it!  Thank you BCA, you’re the best!!!

Spring Skiing in RMNP… I love it!

I skied Dragon Tail Couloir (DTC) this morning along with one of my coworkers, Andrew Councell, and my husband who wanted to get some skiing in before going to work. For a change, we decided to drop in from the…

Weekly Monday Gear Review: Marmot Minimalist Jacket

Here is a telling statistic regarding the Marmot Minimalist Jacket: I wore the Marmot Minimalist every day this past winter.  Yes, that is correct – every single day while ski guiding in Hokkaido, Japan this past January and February. Historically,…

Alpine, Rock & Ski Trip Report

Recently I had the pleasure to climb and ski with Jake Lauer form Durango.  Jake is an aspirant in the mountain guiding realm working hard to achieve AMGA Rock Certification – and he is well on his way. Day #1:  AMGA Single…

Skiing Dragon Tail Couloir

Spring skiing is still crankin’ in Rocky Mountain National Park! CMS Guides Matt Lipscomb, Joey Thompson and Mike Alkaitis spent this morning on a training outing up and down Dragon Tail Couloir.

Rocky Mountain National Park Conditions

We’ve had a lot of guides out in the field recently – on rock, ice and snow.  The following is a compilation of conditions reports from the past few days.  THE DIAMOND, LONGS PEAK THE NORTH FACE, LONGS PEAK…

Revo Bearing Sunglasses

Hey there, It’s Colorado Mountain School Senior Guide Joey Thompson here to talk to you about my favorite sunglasses – Revo Bearings.   Revo’s High Contrast Polarization blocks glare while maintaining clear optics while I am working in the high alpine environment. …

Dragon Tail Couloir

Colorado Mountain School Guide Rainbow Weinstock heads to Rocky Mountain National Park to climb a local classic, Dragon Tail Couloir, with Outside Television.  Mountaineering season is here, let’s go climbing!

Black Diamond Guide Glove

Growing up I spent a lot of time working in the yard with my father.  He taught me the importance of hard work, physical activity and being outside.  He also showed me the importance of a good set of work…

Weekly Gear Review: BD Speed 40 Pack

As I have said in gear reviews past: I am old and set in my ways. I like my old stand-by gear. I know it well, it works. Gear companies, however, don’t understand my dependency on unchanging gear. No –…

Weekly Monday Gear Review: Revo Guide Sunglasses

One thing a Mountain Guide must have is a good pair of sunglasses. With the amount of time outdoor professionals spend in the sun, UV protection is paramount. I recently acquired a pair of the “Guide” sunglasses from Revo and…