Our Advanced Course is for intermediate to expert climbers who have already completed their initial apprenticeship. Perhaps you're a 5.10 climber looking to break into 5.11, or a 5.11 climber looking to break into 5.12. We will discuss your goals and aspirations as a climber, and then customize a course accordingly. One thing is certain, if you have reached a plateau, we will focus all our energies to break through it. As SMG’s founder Mark Synnott points out: “I know this is true because I have been through every plateau myself, from 5.9 to 5.13. The key to breaking through these barriers usually has everything to do with our mental and psychological approaches to climbing. I have been continually amazed by how much we can improve simply by modifying our state of mind, expectations, or motivations.”
Do you get frozen with uncertainty and fear when you try to bust a hard move above your pro? This is a very common problem that climbers face, and one that we've all dealt with over the years. The good news is that we have techniques for helping you to discern the difference between rational and irrational fears. We'll look carefully at protection and safety systems and we'll help you to figure out how to separate real danger from other situations where a fall is okay. If all else fails, we may just get you up on a safely-bolted route and have you lob off a bunch of times, gradually increasing the lengths of the falls while teaching you how to fall gracefully and with little consequence.
In the Advanced Course, we will seek out some of the longer and more difficult routes at Cathedral Ledge, Whitehorse Ledge or Cannon Cliff. We have guided people on traditional climbs up to 5.12, so regardless of your skill level, we will have no problem finding the terrain appropriate for what you're trying to learn. The Advanced Course also includes instruction in the all-important fine art of bailing. As Mark reminds us, “I have had many epic descents myself, including walls where we made nearly fifty rappels to descend, so I have many tricks in my bag to share with you.”
We'll also talk extensively about training, what works and what doesn't. If you are focused on building more physical strength (in addition to mental), we can help you to figure out a training program that fits into your lifestyle and work schedule.
Bottom line: you tell us what your goals are and we'll figure out a way to get you there. As Mark’s father always told him growing up: "Where there's a will, there's a way."
Other Rock Climbing Courses: