About Your Guide

Kurt atop the Whitney- Gilman Ridge, Cannon Cliff, NH. Photo by Sean McCartney

Kurt atop the Whitney-Gilman Ridge, Cannon Cliff, NH. Photo by Sean McCartney

Kurt and five friends first went rock climbing under the watchful eye of Bob Reen, in 1964, as a reward for completing a 50 mile road walk in under 23 hours.  Later that summer they did a 50 mile hike through the White Mountains of New Hampshire.  Kurt earned the Eagle Scout and God and Country Awards while in Boy Scout Troop 701 in Wakefield, Ma. and learned to adventure rock climb from Bob Proudman while working for the AMC Trail Crew.  He started work as a climbing guide with the IME Climbing School in 1980, moved to the EMS Climbing School in 1982 and helped start Mountain Guides Alliance in 1986. He has guided both here and abroad. His climbing background includes a 1977 four day solo ascent of Lotus Flower Tower in the Northwest Territories; the first ascent (in 1980, with Jim Tierney) of La Pomme D’Or, a 1,200′ ice climb in Quebec; and was an American Alpine Club representative (with Steve Larson) to the French Alpine Club’s 1982 High Altitude Meet held in the Dauphine Alps.  Kurt has climbed big walls in Yosemite Valley and completed winter ascents in the Canadian Rockies.  In the European Alps he’s climbed Mt. Blanc, the Matterhorn and the Eiger by their normal routes.  High altitude climbing has brought him to Mexico, Africa, Alaska and Argentina where he guided Aconcagua (22,841’) in January, 2010.  In June, 2014, on a trip to Ecuador with Doug Heroux, they stood together on the “Veintimilla” summit of Chimborazo (20,564′).  Kurt has pioneered many first ascents on the rock and ice of New England and his wide-ranging enthusiasm for climbing has helped many people develop confidence in themselves and their sport.  Kurt and his wife Karin have raised three children near the end of a mile long dirt road, off the grid, and now live with two dogs, two cats and 10 free ranging chickens.  Kurt is on the Board of Directors and is a Team Leader for the Mountain Rescue Service (www.nhmrs.org).  He is a Wilderness First Responder and has taught winter survival and improvised self-rescue techniques to members of the US Special Forces.  Kurt became an AMGA Certified Alpine Guide in 2001.

AMGA Alpine Guide pin

2 thoughts on “About Your Guide

  1. Bob Proudman

    Hey Kurt: Cool website! Great to see you last November. Just found your card in my wallet. Call me slow poke. BP

    1. Kurt Winkler Post author

      Hey Bob! I owe everything climbing to the Bob’s in my life – go figure!
      I always point out the piton (still there) you placed sideways on the second pitch of “Thin Air”.
      Very creative. Thanks for your psych and mentorship during the most critical part of a climber’s life:
      Learning to lead! Foo Toi!
      – Kurt


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