Exum Mountain Guides in the National Press

- Click on the links to read the original articles -

Outside Magazine – “The House of Rock” by Kevin Fedarko. April 1, 2004.

   “Help Wanted: Exum Mountain Guides, the country’s premier climbing service is looking for supremely talented alpinists with world-class résumés for seasonal work in the Tetons. Must be willing to follow in the footsteps of legends. If qualified, don’t bother calling. We’ll find you.”


Mountain Magazine – “The Gravitas of Doingness”  by Mark Peruzzi February 20, 2017.

    I’m kicking a staircase into the shaded February snowpack of the North Couloir of Eagle’s Rest Peak in Wyoming’s Grand Teton National Park. The 50-degree slope angle in the gut of the couloir is steep enough that I barely crouch to drive in my ice axe shaft. A sugary winter snow clears easily from the crampons.” 


Wall Street Journal – “Scaling the Grand Teton: An intrepid amateurs guide” – by Brigid Mander. June 2, 2017.

     Climbing the highest peak in Wyoming’s Teton Range is a mountaineering rite of passage. But you needn’t be a pro to reach the summit.”


Outside Magazine – “Grand Slammed” – by Christopher Solomon. June 19, 2012

     “Heaven has always been hell to get to. I stagger to the top pf the pool-table-size summit of the Grand Teton at four o’clock. It’s a glorious afternoon us here, sunny, with just a scrap of wind. Zahan Billimoria, one of our group’s town guides, points north.”


National Geographic – “A Grand Adventure: Skiing and Climbing the Grand Teton” – by Kelley McMillan. July 24, 2014

      “On June 16, 1971, Bill Briggs stood alone atop Wyoming’s 13,770-foot Grand Teton, one of the most iconic peaks in North America. He surveyed his surroundings, saw a storm gathering in the distance, and quickly clicked into his 210-centimeter fiberglass K2 skis. Then, he skied off the summit and into history.”


Powder Magazine – “Learn the Ropes and Live to Ski” – by Matt Hansen

Exum Honors Steve Romeo’s memory with Teton ski camp.

     On day one, May 8, the group met at 5 a.m., skins on and packs tight. Though the snowline was still a few thousand feet up, they followed Romeo’s philosophy of “Teton Style,” meaning ski boots went on at the car. They hiked quickly up Garnet Canyon, the gateway to the most prominent Teton peaks. After splitting into two, the first group summited 12,240-foot Spalding Peak and skied the 50-degree north face.” 


Big Life Magazine – “Then I Went Climbing” – by Jeff Burke. June 1, 2017.

     “Mentorship in climbing is as old as the sport of climbing itself. It goes hand in hand with learning history, and Reagan is part of a history—the history, long and storied, of Exum climbing guides. Exum was founded in 1929 by two wayward Idahoans—Glenn Exum and Paul Petzoldt—who went to the Tetons in search of some of North America’s greatest climbing challenges. Petzoldt first climbed The Grand at 16 years old in a pair of cowboy boots.” 


Arc’teryx Bird Blog – “Diamond in the Wind” – Cirque of Towers – by Jeff Burke. November 1, 2019.

     We arrived late. The dirt road to Allen’s Diamond 4 Ranch left Hwy 26 and wound its way fifteen dark miles into the southwestern foothills of Wyoming’s Wind River Range. Climbing 4000 feet into the Shoshone National Forest, my truck crept slowly under the moonless night en route to the remote dude ranch and outfitter. Our drive dead–ended into a dark collection of cabins and stables where a single figure emerged in the solitary wash of our headlights.”


Ski Magazine – “Big Mountain Grad School” – by Sam Bass. March 4, 2014.

     I’m shuffling sideways along the northeast ridge of Buck Mountain in the Tetons, kicking steps into refrozen corn, palms planted on the razorback crest like I’m trying to calm some humongous feral hog. Buck’s cliffy east face falls away toward the valley floor beneath my boot soles. An arm’s length away, the other side of the ridge drops more than a thousand feet into the Taggart Creek drainage.


Outside Magazine – “Upgrade Your Backcountry Skills” –  January 9, 2019

     “We’ve all been there—standing high on a ridge, about to drop into an untracked powder field, say, or leaning back over a cliff, on rappel—when that moment of doubt hits: Am I about to trigger an avalanche? Is this anchor safe? And despite the brisk mountain air, you start to sweat.


Freeskier Magazine – “Lesson Learned” – by Erin Spong. February 13, 2020

     We were nearing the top of our line, just 400 vertical feet to go, when all of a sudden, something just didn’t feel right. The color in my face quickly faded and my heart raced at an irregular and alarming rate. My legs shook and my hands were numb. I was having a full-blown anxiety attack, nearly 3,000 vertical feet above the parking lot, with three feet of fresh snow and hazardous avalanche conditions plaguing the backcountry


Gear Junkie – “Backcountry Academy Ski Touring Jackson Wyoming” – by Nate Mitka. February 13th, 2019

    “I lowered down the lip of the crevasse, placing my survival in the hands of my partners above, rigging a haul system. We practiced 6-to-1 haul systems as part of a crevasse rescue course on low-angle terrain this past weekend. And, of course, this was just a simulated rescue!”


Freeskier Magazine – “Uniting the Backcountry Ski Community in Jackson Wyoming” – by Donny O’Neill. February 15,  2019. 

     “He found the only flat landing in that entire pillow field,” Hoji ribs as I come to a stop before him and the four other members of our party. We’d just descended an incredible 1,000-foot line, beginning in the trees of a north-facing forest and ending in a wide-open ramp with a plethora of mushroom tops to pick apart, and all of it filled with over a foot of fresh Wyoming powder.”


Freeskier Magazine– “Higher Education” – by Fredic Riemers. January 4, 2019

Learning Crucial Skills at the Arc’teryx Backcountry Academy in Jackson Hole

     When you are in a backcountry skiing clinic in the Tetons and Eric Hjorleifson, who stars this year in an entire movie featuring steep skiing exploits, leans over a couloir and exclaims, “it’s steep,” you can be excused if you find the edge of your comfort zone rushing headlong towards you. Standing on the airy Northeast Ridge of Buck Mountain on a cold February day, staring down into Buckshot couloir plunging 2,000 feet into Avalanche Canyon, I may have wobbled a bit.”


Los Angeles Times –  “Can a 60 Year Old Climb Wyoming’s Grand Teton” –  by Jeff Greenwald. March 11, 2018.

    “At 4 a.m. on a chilly August morning, as the stars flickered above a jumble of crags and snowfields, four climbers scrambled out of their sleeping bags and set off from the Quonset-shaped hut on the saddle of Wyoming’s Grand Teton.

Ropes coiled over their shoulders, they hiked up the steep switchbacks to the Black Dike, a vein of basalt that signals the beginning of the challenging, three hours-plus climb to the mountain’s summit.


Gear Patrol – “Climb Grand Teton in a Weekend, Here’s How” – by Will Cockrell. March 12, 2015.

     “One might think that the most memorable part of climbing the iconic Grand Teton is the summit. But on the famous 13,770-foot spire that juts up from the Snake River basin a few miles outside of Jackson, Wyoming, it’s actually the evening before your summit bid that ends up occupying the most real estate in your brain for years to come.”


The Denver Post – “Kelley McMillan will attempt to climb, ski down Grand Teton in Wyoming, following in her uncles footsteps” – by Kelley McMillian. April 9, 2012

      “It all began with a photo of my uncle.  In the picture, he’s standing atop a 13,770-foot peak with a beaming smile and his arms stretched high above his head in triumph. I came across this picture about a year ago, and it stirred something in me. I, too, wanted to climb Wyoming’s Grand Teton and experience the magic of one of North America’s mountaineering classics.”


Freeskier Magazine– “How to nail your backcountry ski tour” – by Lily Krass. February 24, 2020.

     Exploring the expansiveness of a new mountain range is exciting. Finding out what’s behind each ridge, hunting for hidden couloirs and searching for sheltered powder stashes is an almost addictive endeavor. While it’s incredibly rewarding to knock out a big ski tour with your friends, rolling into an unfamiliar zone with only a few days to get your bearings is tough and often leads to hours lost to confusing route-finding and indecisiveness. Nailing it isn’t easy.”


Arc’teryx Bird Blog –“Deep Snow, Making Friends and Staying Alive” – by D’arcy Mcleish. February 7, 2019.

    What’s the best part about skiing? Ok, maybe the second-best part, as the first is snow. In all its forms, too. Deep snow, light snow, heavy snow, wet snow, dry snow, hard snow; they’re all pretty amazing, really. But the second-best part of being on snow is sharing that experience with friends.”


Arc’teryx Bird Blog – “Learning to Stay Alive|Backcountry Ski and Snowboard Academy” – by D’arcy Mcleish. January 5, 2018.

     “The other day I was out for a light tour with some friends. We were just outside the boundary and headed to one of the regular ski lines in the Blackcomb Backcountry. As I came through a couple of rock formations, I saw two skiers sitting at the top of the climb. It’s not unusual to see folks you know out here so I was curious to see who it was.”


Arc’teryx Bird Blog – “Just Like Riding a Bike” – by Shelma Jun February 15, 2019.

    As I sat at my dining room table one week ago, repeatedly watching a YouTube video on how to cut skins for my splitboard, I started to wonder if this was a good idea. “This” being my decision to get back into splitboarding after thirteen years. While climbing has been my all-consuming passion in recent years, it is snowboarding that cemented my love for the mountains almost two decades ago. Now here I was, hoping to get back into a sport that had kept evolving and growing since I had been gone. So, yeah, I was nervous. Nervous about being the slowest one, about getting my butt kicked and wondering if it would be as magical as I remembered.”


Arc’teryx Bird Blog – “Nat Patridge, Exum Guides.” By D’arcy Mcleish.  January 5, 2018.

     “It will be my hardest guiding job ever.” I’m sitting in a cozy alpine lodge in Jackson, Wyoming with Nat Patridge, President and Lead Guide at Exum Guides. He’s talking about his two boys, now 4 and 8 years old and what he sees as his most difficult task as a father and guide. How do we teach our children to stay alive and be savvy to the dangers of the mountains? An IMFGA guide, Nat is a quiet, thoughtful mountain man and doesn’t go out of his way to advertise the fact he’s spent his life in the hard to reach places of the world; climbing, skiing and looking for the best in himself.


Black Diamond – “The Exum Files Part 1 – The Extended Column Test”-  by Jeff Burke. November 17, 2017

    Meet Bill Anderson—a Senior Exum Guide and Level 3 avalanche instructor for the American Avalanche Institute. It’s safe to say Bill knows a thing or two about the ins and outs of winter backcountry skiing. So when Bill sits down to discuss the finer details of the ECT—or Extended Column Test—as he does in this article, it’s time to listen.”


Black Diamond – The Exum Files Part 2 – “Ski Techniques with Guide and World Champion Jessica Baker” –  by Jeff Burke. December 11, 2017.

     “ Skiing efficiently, beautifully and safely in the backcountry requires experience. That’s why we reached out to Jessica Baker—a former freesking world champion and Lead Exum Guide—to learn about her helpful techniques for improving on the slopes. Baker grew up on skis, and her wealth of knowledge is apparent when she dives into the fundamentals of making great turns in Part 2 of the Exum Files.”


Black Diamond – The Exum Files Part 3 – “Ski Transitions in Technical Terrain with Zahan Billimoria” –  By Jeff Burke. January 16, 2018.

     “Exum Guide Zahan Billimoria is a wiry billy goat of a mountaineer. Trim, quick and energetic, “Z” has a preternatural fluidity in the mountains, covering ground fast and moving with purpose. He was a member of the US Ski Mountaineering Team and has spent several of his formative years honing his skill set with several speed ascents and descents of innumerable Teton peaks. So, transitions and efficiency are his bread and butter.”


Powder Cloud – “Set a Track to Higher Learning – Arc’teryx Academy” – by Brigid Mander. March 1, 2020.

    “ A sinking feeling in my core spread slowly to my limbs, then I felt a tingle in my face. In trying to find and mark the three beacons buried in the snow during a snow-safety refresher course with the Arc’teryx Backcountry Academy in Jackson, Wyoming, I’d gotten flustered and turned around with my new transceiver and wasted precious seconds. This was a zero-stress search in a flat, snowy field in a municipal park, not a true milliseconds-matter search in a debris field for a person with limited air supply. I felt irresponsible—mortified even—as a backcountry skier and partner.”


Outside Magazine – “Friday Interview with Nat Patridge” –  by Kelley McMillian. December 28, 2012.

     “One of the most revered guides in the United States demystifies the life of a guide, explains what it takes to become one, and shares other insights gleaned from a life spent in the mountains”


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