Join the ACMG

join icon Member Responsibilities

Thank you for considering membership in the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides, the professional association for mountain guiding and climbing instruction in Canada.

guiding photo

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 Member Benefits , but also with significant responsibilities. Please read through the rest of this document before deciding whether ACMG membership is for you.

Good Character
Beginning in 2018, before you can join the ACMG, you must attest to whether you have ever been charged or convicted of violating the Criminal Code or the National Parks Act, or whether you have ever been sanctioned by another professional association. These attestations are the association’s due diligence in ensuring that its members are presently of good character. Having had a prior conviction or professional sanction does not summarily prevent you from joining, but your situation will be reviewed by a neutral and trained panel to ensure that, at this moment in time, you are a suitable candidate.

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, Ski, Alpine or Mountain Guide, after having passed any apprentice exam, you must challenge the appropriate certificate exam within 3 years or risk losing your apprentice standing. More information can be found here: Apprentice Timelines

Don’t hesitate to contact the Executive Director at

  • As a professional association, membership in the ACMG is open to anyone who has passed one or more of the ACMG-accredited courses offered by Thompson Rivers University (Kamloops, British Columbia).
  • IFMGA guides from other countries are also eligible for membership.
  • 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 it’s related activities. In addition, your professional credibility is enhanced by belonging to a respected, self-regulating organization and through the use of its recognized logos.
  • Services
    As an ACMG member, you will have access to group liability insurance, permits for a variety of public land agencies in Alberta and British Columbia, pro deals on equipment from our sponsors 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 members’ websites, periodic professional development seminars, the semi-annual ACMG News and the Quarterly ACMG Bulletin. 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. There is a website forum through which members may ask questions, debate issues and offer or learn about employment opportunities. In addition, there exists a form of Internet, called the Informalex, which allows members the opportunity to share up-to-date route conditions and information as well as any other 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
    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 course through Thompson Rivers University LESS than one year ago:

  1. Contact the ACMG at the Canmore membership office supplying a copy of your current first aid certificate:

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

  2. You’ll be allowed temporary access to the ACMG members’ website.

If you successfully completed your first ACMG course through Thompson Rivers University MORE than one year ago:

  1. Résumé
  2. Prepare a résumé with the following:
    1. Any pertinent certification you have acquired since you passed your first ACMG 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 course. Providing copies of activity logs or a résumé-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 course. If you've been working at jobs that are related to your certification, a log or résumé 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.

  3. Copy of your current valid first aid certificate (see First Aid Courses)

  4. Recommendation from an ACMG member in good standing

    Request that a signed and dated reference be sent directly to the ACMG; forwarding the following parameters to whichever member in good standing you approach to recommend you for membership.

    1. 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
    2. The recommendation must either be sent directly to the ACMG as a signed, dated letter (by e-mail attachment, fax 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: Box 8341, Canmore AB  T1W 2V1  

  5. Initial payment
    Credit cards are not accepted. An administration fee of $40.00 (contact the ACMG Canmore office) is required before we will process your application. This initial payment is non-refundable.

  6. Submit your Application
    Your membership application will not proceed until all of the following have been received by the ACMG office in Canmore:
    1. Letter, fax, or email requesting membership application with the information noted in step 1 – 3 above to You are encouraged to send this information by email if possible.
    2. The letter of recommendation noted in step 3) and
    3. * Payment as noted in step 4) above

  7. 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 re-certification before joining.

The Technical Committee are volunteers and active guides so this process can take some time. It may 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 will be expedited, if possible.

  1. Dues and Fees
    Once the technical review is completed and you’ve 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.


The following annual dues currently apply and are subject to change:
Mountain, Alpine, Rock and Ski Guides
(includes Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance)
$465 + GST
Apprentice Guides
(includes Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance)
$325 + GST
Hiking Guides $120
Assistant Hiking Guides $100
Climbing Gym and Top Rope Instructors $90


  Reinstate: Non-Member for less than 1 year


  • Re-familiarize yourself with the Association governing documents at > About The ACMG > Governance. Some things may have changed since you were last a member, and you should know what you're signing up for.
  1. Send your request for reinstatement to
  2. Email a copy of your current, valid first aid certificate
  3. You will receive notice of your next steps and the required payment
  4. Payment includes: dues, administrative fee per schedule below, outstanding balances

join icon Reinstate: Non-Member for 1 year or longer

Reinstate: Non-member for 1 year or longer

  • Send your request for reinstatement to
  • Include a résumé for the time you were not a member, with the following:
    1. All guiding/instructing related training and certification you have completed. Send copies of certificates.
    2. Description or activity logs of personal experiences that relate to your currently-held certification.
    3. Description or activity logs of professional experiences that relate to your currently-held certification. Send employer letters if available.
  • Email a copy of your current valid first aid certificate
  • A letter of recommendation from an active ACMG member in good standing who is familiar with your personal and professional technical standards and is willing to recommend reinstatement.. This letter must be sent directly to ACMG Member Services by the member writing it and it should include relevant information about your currency and skills relating to ACMG membership. 
  • Submit the administration fee per the schedule below by e-transfer to
  • Once all the above has been done, the ACMG Technical Committee will do a technical review to determine whether any retraining or recertification is required.
  • Once you have been approved for reinstatement, ACMG Member Services will contact you about paying dues and any outstanding balances . You will be able to purchase personal, travel and liability insurance and permits once reinstated.
Category Climbing Instructor Hiking Mountain

Non-member < 1 year




Non-member 1 year to 3 years




Non-member > 3 years




Inactive < 1 year




Inactive 1 year to 3 years




Inactive > 3 years





  IFMGA 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: