Mountain Adventure Skills Training
Stories and Testimonials
When asked: "In what ways did the MAST program meet your expectations?" Recent graduates said:
1. Guide focussed training, lots of outdoor time, hands on.
2. Outtrips were awesome, educational, friendly, relaxed, hands on, trust put in students.
3. MAST exceeded my expectations. I learned valuable skills and I believe I grew into a better person. Mast helped me discover my passion and my life path.
4. Learning from industry professionals developed my skills greatly.
2016 Student Letter
The Mountain Adventure Skills Training Program has undoubtedly been one of the best years of my life. Great classmates, awesome guidance and the beautiful mountains we explore have all contributed to making this year so great. The MAST class has given me skills that enable me to do everything I love safely, mountaineering and ski touring are just a few examples. It is not just the class activities that make this experience so great, Fernie is truly one of the most amazing places in the world. the Southern Rocky Mountains that span as far as one can see from the Elk Valley have so much to offer, like stunning alpine bowls, crashing waterfalls and crystal clear glacier fed lakes. Taking the MAST class was one of the best decisions I have ever made for myself, and I feel as though every second has been worth it. Thanks, Will
Recent Graduate sends update:
Matt Finger Graduated in 2013 and has been working his way into the Adventure tourism industry in and around his home state of Massachusetts.
"After a summer of working hard to make some cash I set off on a long thru-hike, 25 days and 272 miles (430km). The Long Trail goes from the Massachusetts/Vermont state line to the Canada/Vermont line. It was truly amazing to get out and just worry about nothing except food, water, and where I was going to sleep that night." "All the out trips we did in MAST definitely helped me, especially thinking about and preparing food. I definitely lost some weight, but being able to cook good food, helps out so much. So that menu planning project was definitely worth it.
"After I got back from the hike I decided to get a job as a ski instructor at a local hill called Wachusett. Having that Level 1 Ski Instructor Cert helped me a ton and I got the 2nd highest score of the 60 people who passed the local training." It turned out to be a lot more fun than I had anticipated. It was so rewarding to see them grow as skiers and having a blast all the same. I can see myself ski instructing for a long time."
"For the summer I went up to the Forks, Maine and got a job raft guiding. So I lived in a tent all summer!. The 10 days of raft guide training in Fernie helped out immensely. At the end of one of the training runs one of the guide trainers asked me if I had done this before! I explained the MAST program to her and she was impressed. If you could thank Blair and Jarrod for their time teaching us that would be much appreciated. Their instruction has helped me to have a lot of success guiding this summer." "Next summer I plan to do some more training and guide on the Penobscott River which is a class V world class river. And I plan to upgrade my ski instructor certification next winter and continue teaching at Wachusett.
"I thought I would give you an update as to what I have been up to, and to thank you again for all that you do with MAST. It was such a solid foundation as to what I am doing now, and has helped me out immensely!
Graduating class of 2014
How have our current students been enjoying MAST?...
"The group dynamic is amazing between the students and the guides. Its nice to be able to talk with guides as a kind of peer."
"The trips were a the perfect amount of difficulty."
"You really can get spanked by the weather and terrain!"
"I loved the challenges involved in each different environment."
"I enjoyed the ability to focus entirely upon our appointed skill - all our energy and focus was devoted "to the skills and learning."
"The MAST program took me from zero experience in anything other than snow boarding the resort, to being able to go into any part of the mountains and do any of the activities safely."
3 Most valuable aspects of MAST?
1. Being taught by Mountain Guides
2. Wide variety of skills
3. Good group of people.
"In the program you are constantly being put in leadership roles, I think this is the best and most effective way of developing leadership abilities."
"I really enjoyed the atmosphere in the classroom; it was very laid back and welcoming, yet also comfortably pushing and encouraging. "
THE ULTIMATE TESTIMONIAL - FROM A PARENT OF A GRADUATE OF THE CLASS OF 2013
Just a quick note to thank you for doing an amazing job of coordinating and teaching the MAST program in Fernie - it was unbelievably obvious to me last night that this program has an impact on the students that is very deep and meaningful - and TRULY life changing!
I have been to a "thousand and one" grad ceremonies over the years, and last night was a first for me. It was a first because I got to listen first hand to the deep and meaningful impact that MAST has on young people. It was incredibly powerful last night to listen first hand to the students roast each other, I was amazed at the depth of love and appreciation that the students had for one and another, and their endless respect for you and the other instructors... WOW!
As a parent with two daughters growing up in the mountains of British Columbia, I now look at MAST as a "must do" course and one that opens the door to "a life well lived" - not just in our wilderness, but from an open heart as well. Last night floored me...simply because I would not ever have been able to predict the degree of compassion and caring that was in the air - it was strong, and I felt it all night long.
I knew the MAST program had a powerful impact on our children...but I could never have predicted to this extent!
God bless you Brian, it's amazing what you are facilitating.
Ps... Bryn will be in this program in a few years, if I have anything to say about it :)
Graduating class of 2012.
The graduating class of 2012 were asked if they would recommend the MAST program and why…. Their answers are below:
"It was worth every single cent, I have recommended it to all my friends!"
I would recommend the MAST program for the simple reasons that you will learn a ton in 9 months, push your personal boundaries and make great friends for life.
All the teachers and guides seem to take great pride and joy in teaching and it shows when they are speaking to you.
I learned that the adventure tourism industry is much larger than I had ever thought.
Every out trip was well organized.
My expectations were blown out of the water! The skills I’ve gained far surpass what I thought I would leave the course with.
I would recommend the MAST program because it’s a great learning experience in a great location – Fernie.
"I learned how to be a professional guide from professional guides"
I would recommend the MAST program because of its fast paced learning and the skills are taught to the ACMG standard.
I am still in shock at how much we have covered in 9 months. It’s been the best money spent.
The MAST program has opened many doors in different segments of the industry that I never thought of as options.