logo Join The ACMG

The mandate of the ACMG is to protect the public interest in mountain travel and climbing instruction. As such, the association has a series of processes, codes and guidelines that help ensure that its members act professionally and within their certification limitations. This builds the trust of the public in ACMG members along with your personal credibility.

Choosing to become a member of a self-governing professional association such as the ACMG is not something to be taken lightly. It is a commitment that comes with many benefits, but also with significant responsibilities.

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Please read through the rest of this document before deciding whether ACMG membership is for you

Code of Conduct
All members of the ACMG must adhere to a Code of Conduct. The Code defines acceptable behaviour while you are acting in any professional ACMG capacity or promoting yourself as an ACMG member. Please take a few moments to read it here: Code of Conduct. Breach of the code may lead to a conduct review and possible sanction by the Association.

Scope of Practice
A Scope of Practice defines the limitations of one’s level of certification with respect to terrain, supervision and activities. It is a critical document that helps professionals understand how and where they may carry out their work. Please take some time to read over the section that applies to your desired certification Scope of Practice as it will help ensure that you choose the right stream for your career aspirations. For example, the Top-rope Climbing Instructor certification (TRCI) is quite limited in scope and is often misunderstood by those who believe that it allows for broader activities.


Professional Practice and Development
The ACMG requires that you stay current through regular practice as well as periodic training/development. This document outlines the ACMG’s expectations on remaining current: Professional Practice & CPD

Apprentice Guide Timeline
If you are planning on becoming a Rock Guide, Ski Guide, Alpine Guide or Hiking Guide, after having passed any apprentice exam, you must challenge the appropriate certificate exam within 3 years or risk losing your apprentice standing. You may also challenge a specific exam a maximum of three times. If this is a certificate exam (Rock, Ski, Alpine or Hiking) then you will lose your apprentice standing after the third failure. More information can be found here: Apprentice Timelines

Maximum Exam Attempts
A student may attempt to pass any given exam to a maximum of three (3) times. After a third failed attempt, they will no longer be permitted to apply for that exam. If a student fails their certificate exam three times, they will lose their apprentice certification in that stream.
Don’t hesitate to contact the Executive Director at



  • Membership in the ACMG is open to anyone who has passed one or more of the courses offered through the ACMG’s Training and Assessment Program (TAP) or through the Canadian Mountain and Ski Guide Program that used to be offered through Thompson Rivers University.
  • If you have been trained and examined by other qualified organizations, or are an IFMGA guide from a “non-ski” country you may apply for certificate equivalency through a Prior Learning Assessment Review (PLAR). Contact TAP@ACMG.CA
  • Non-profit or not-for-profit organizations that share the values and objectives of the ACMG may apply for Associate Membership. Contact


There are many reasons to consider membership in the ACMG

  • Professional Credibility and Representation
    As a professional guide/instructor, your voice to government and industry is amplified by being part of an association dedicated to advocating for the highest standards and best practices of mountain guiding and its related activities. In addition, your professional credibility is enhanced by belonging to a respected organization that emulates the best practices of self-regulating professions, often through the use of its recognized logos.

  • Services
    As an ACMG member, you will have access to a suite of insurance options (group liability , accident, life, critical illness, diagnostic and specialist access, travel), permits for a variety of public land agencies in Alberta and British Columbia, amazing pro deals on equipment from our vast array of partners and scholarship awards from a variety of ACMG funds.
  • Support
    The mountain guiding community in Canada is remarkably supportive. Should you ever have an accident or run into difficulties, the Association can help with financial or advocacy matters while individual members are there for emotional and motivational support.

  • Information
    The ACMG provides its members with a plethora of information on topics such as current mountaineering techniques, mountain conditions, outdoor clothing and equipment, land access and news that involves outdoor recreation and guiding. The main venues for this information are the ACMG technical manuals, the ACMG public and member websites, frequent professional development seminars, the Arête (biannual journal) and regular e-Bulletins and e-blasts. In addition, affiliation with the International Federation of Mountain Guides Associations (IFMGA) creates a conduit for the transfer of valuable information from member countries abroad.

  • Interaction
    Although ACMG members are often geographically separated, the Association provides opportunities for them to interact at various levels. We have a Facebook page and Twitter account that allows interaction with the public. There also exists a form of e-mail-based Intranet, called the Informalex, which allows members the opportunity to share up-to-date route conditions and information, learn about employment opportunities as well as debate issues and topics of current interest. Also, the Annual General Meeting, with its associated professional development seminars and social events, is an excellent chance for face-to-face interaction.

  • Inspiration and Mentorship
    The ACMG is comprised of truly amazing people, many of whose personal and professional accomplishments are indeed remarkable. Learning from, speaking to or working with the best this industry has to offer, will only enhance your own excitement for and devotion to the guiding profession.

How to join the ACMG

New Members

If you successfully completed your first ACMG Training and Assessment program (TAP) course LESS than one year ago:

  1. E-mail the ACMG Member Services Manager at indicating your interest in joining and attaching a copy of your current first aid certificate:

    While e-mail is the preferred method of communication and document transfer, you may also use post:

    Association of Canadian Mountain Guides
    Box 8341
    Canmore AB T1W 2V1
    Phone: 403-678-2885
    Fax: 403-609-0070

  2. You will be allowed temporary access to the ACMG member website and be provided with instructions on how to proceed.

  3. Member Services Price List


If you successfully completed your first course through either the ACMG Training and Assessment Program (TAP) or through Thompson Rivers University (CMSG) MORE than one year ago:

Submit your application with the following three (3) items by e-mail to

  1. Resume including:
    1. Any pertinent certification you have acquired since you passed your first ACMG Training and Assessment Program (TAP) or Canadain Mountain and Ski Guide (CMSG) course, including all courses/exams you have taken since your last certification was completed and that are related to your ACMG membership and current level of certification. For example: continuing education, technical refreshers, etc. DO NOT include non-guiding/instruction related training or certification. DO INCLUDE COPIES OF CERTIFICATES or other proof of attendance and certification.
    2. Any pertinent personal experience you have acquired since you passed your first ACMG/TAP/CMSG course. Providing copies of activity logs or a resume-style list is strongly recommended, this is especially important if you have not been actively working as a guide or instructor. List only that experience which is related to your level of ACMG certification. DO NOT include non-guiding/instruction related personal experience. For example, list hiking, backpacking, climbing, skiing, etc. but do not list cycling trips, fishing, hunting, etc.
    3. Any pertinent professional experience you have acquired since you passed your first ACMG/TAP/CMSG course. If you've been working at jobs that are related to your certification, a log or resume of that work will be required. A letter from an employer would be valuable if you were working for someone; this letter should confirm your period of employment and what kind of work you have done. DO NOT include non-guiding/instruction related professional experience.

  2. Copy of your current valid First Aid Certificate (see First Aid Courses)

  3. Recommendation DIRECTLY TO US from an ACMG member in good standing
    Request that a signed and dated reference be sent directly to the ACMG; forward the following parameters to whichever member in good standing you approach to recommend you for membership.

    The recommendation for membership should cover:

    • How long and in what capacity you have known the applicant
    • Comments on the applicant’s integrity, good character, capability as a guide or instructor, and technical currency

The recommendation must either be sent directly to the ACMG as a signed, dated letter (by e-mail attachment or post) or in the body of an e-mail sent from you (the recommender, not the applicant), directly to the ACMG using the email address on record in the member site.

post: ACMG Box 8341, Canmore AB T1W 2V1

Initial payment
Once your application is received, you will be contacted by the ACMG Member Services Manager instructing you on the amount and the process for your initial non-refundable payment. Your membership application will not proceed until all of the above have been received by the ACMG.

Technical Review
Once we have received your application, it will be forwarded to the Technical Committee for consideration. One of the following rulings will then be made:

  • Join without further requirements.
  • Require some measure of training or upgrading before joining.
  • Require some measure of re-certification before joining.

The Technical Committee are volunteers and active guides so this process can take several weeks before you get an answer. If you want your membership request rushed for some reason, please forward the information requested above at your earliest opportunity, explain the urgency, and your request may be expedited, if possible.

Dues and Fees
Once the technical review is completed and you have met any requirements set by the Technical Committee, you will be required to pay all mandatory dues and fees assessed to members of the same category for the current calendar year.


Reinstatement is the process by which people who had been ACMG members at one time apply to regain professional membership.

If you have been a non-member for less than 1 year
  1. Send your request for reinstatement to

  2. E-mail or mail a copy of your current, valid first aid certificate

  3. You will receive notice of your next steps and the required payment

  4. Payments include: dues, administrative fee, outstanding balances


If you have been a non-member for 1 year or longer

If you have been a non-member for 1 year or longer, it is important for us to assess your level of currency in order to determine whether any re-training is required. We will look at your recent activities, your first aid certification and recommendations from active ACMG members. The process can be a little complex so please contact us at and we will guide you through the hoops.


IFMGA/UIAGM Foreign Guides


IFMGA Guides
IFMGA/UIAGM Guides wishing to join the ACMG, or to bring clients to Canada, should contact the ACMG Main Office for details on the process.

For foreign guides intending to ski in Glacier National Park (Rogers Pass), the Winter Permit System has been translated into German, French, Italian and Spanish:

Main Office:

Featured Partner

Thank you to our partners for their excellent support and commitment to professional guiding in Canada.