Howdy all you NC3 Climbers out there,

In an effort to get to know our 2013 sponsors we will be periodically featuring interviews with them on the blog, up first is the American Alpine Institute where we spoke with Jason Martin the Operations Manager at AAI.


NC3 Blog: What is your experience in the climbing/outdoor industry?

Founded in 1975, the American Alpine Institute is a climbing school and guide service that operates in six states and sixteen countries on all mountain mediums. The Institute works with climbers, mountaineers and backcountry skiers at all levels. Beginning level climbers learn the basics of rock, snow and ice climbing, while advanced course participants study high altitude mountaineering, rescue techniques, guide training, and big wall and aid climbing. 

In the thirty-eight years that the company has existed it has developed a sharp focus on education. No matter what level a climber or skier is at, there’s always room for advancement. Whether your goal is to climb a grade harder, to lead traditional rock, to climb a grand ice face, or to summit Mt. Everest, the Institute can help you develop the skills you need to reach your goals.

I am an AMGA certified rock guide and outdoor adventure writer. I have been climbing for 20 years and guiding since the year 2000.  I have instructed and guided in the Cascades, Red Rock, Joshua Tree, the Coast Range, the Sierra, the Alaska Range, and in the Andes of Bolivia, Ecuador and Peru.

NC3 Blog: Favorite outdoor climbing location and why?

Red Rock Canyon is my favorite climbing area. I spent nine years living in Las Vegas and guiding in Red Rock.  I have dozens of first ascents there and wrote the guidebook, “Fun Climbs Red Rocks: Topropes and Moderates.” I love long multi-pitch moderate routes, and there are hundreds in Red Rock!

NC3 Blog: Roll at your company?

Operations Manager – I oversee the guide staff, permitting, social media, and course curriculum.

NC3 Blog: How has climbing influenced your life? The life of your company?

Climbing has taken me to some amazing places and allowed me to meet some amazing people. It has allowed me to push myself to my limit in a variety of venues.

The American Alpine Institute is a climbing school and guide service. Climbing is in our blood here.

NC3 Blog: Why does your company support the NC3?

We believe that there are a lot of talented young climbers out there that could be great.  But to be great, all they need is a little bit more training in order to give them the skills to access the greater ranges of the world. We want to provide you with the training to get there.

NC3 Blog: Advice to young climbers?

Young climbers like to pretend that climbing’s not dangerous. They tell their parents and their peers that it is no more dangerous than driving a car or riding a bike…but we all know the truth. Climbing can be extremely dangerous. A minor mistake can lead to a life altering injury or even death.

Many young climbers learn much of what they know from friends, who in turn learned what they know from friends. When this happens skills and techniques get watered down. As such, it is important for young climbers to seek out professional instruction and highly experienced mentors. Be wary of your friend who has only been climbing for a year or two…

NC3 Blog: Where and how can NC3 Athletes support your company? Where do we buy your stuff?

American Alpine Institute


1515 12th Street

Bellingham, WA 98225

NC3 Blog: Who are some sponsored athletes that NC3 Athletes should follow and learn from?

Sponsored athletes are often good role models with their movement skills and high-end ability when it comes to climbing hard grades. However, I think that NC3 athletes can learn a great deal more from a professional mountain guide than they ever could from a sponsored athlete.

 NC3 Blog: Are there any big projects or events that your company thinks NC3 Athletes should plan to attend in the next year?

NC3 Athletes should involve themselves in crag stewardship in any way possible. I don’t know all of the things going on the Pacific Northwest, but I can say that there will be a clean-up on Mt. Erie on April 20th. For more info on this contact:

Jonn Lundsford

Anacortes Community Forest Lands


Many Thanks again to the American Alpine Institute, Jason and all of our other sponsors.  Be sure to get pumped for the upcoming comps at Eastern Washington University (this weekend! January 26th) and Wester Washington University (February 2nd).



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