Outdoor climbing at it's finest

Next up on the Adventure Guide Program itinerary is a week in the legendary NZ adventure region, Mt Cook. Home of the highest mountain in the country, this area is synonomous with rock and ice climbing, hiking, mountaineering, ski touring and general outdoor bad-assness. Not for the faint-hearted, you need solid training and systems in place to explore this area, which is subject to strong winds, sub-zero temperatures, avalanches and rockfall. 

For those who have the right skills however, this place is adventure nirvana! Check out Ken's update on their time at Mt Cook below...

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Climbing in Mt. Cook and Wye Creek this week was epic! We started our week with a new instructor and climbed at a crag called Wye creek. It over looks Lake Wakatipu in queenstown and offers some pretty epic views of the surrounding mountains. Our instructor Rich split the group and worked on commercial rigging with us while the others climbed some new routes to get warmed up for the week ahead of us.

 

On tuesday we drove out to Aoraki / Mt. Cook National Park. I have been frothing to get here since I landed in New Zealand and was overwhelmed with excitement to get the team up for some multi pitch sport climbing. So far multi pitch was a culmination of everything the team had learned on the course and the opportunity to put it all to the test. The views on the way out were amazing and only further built the hype for the week ahead.

 

What does your class room look like?

I partnered with Rosie from my team up a 4 pitch climb called Mako in the Mt. Cook valley, in the shadow of the massive Mt. Sefton behind us.  

The legendary Paul Rogers was our head instructor this week. He is know world wide for his work in the greater ranges as a guide, putting up new routes and all around experience. He was a wealth of knowledge and someone to call a future mentor for myself. He has a really relaxed teaching style, peppered with constant jokes and stories from his past expeditions in the mountains.

Paul keeping a watchful eye as Jocelyn builds an anchor 3 pitches off the ground.

We had beautiful weather all week and packed it full of climbing and some solid time on the wall together. Here is a shot of me perched from a hanging belay station about 150 meters off the ground, waiting for some other team members to come back down the wall.

Some of the crew really came into their own this week, pushed new  boundaries and are really putting their training to the test. 

The focus of the week was multi pitch change overs. One pitch being anywhere from 30 to 60 meters of the rope length, switching between a belayer and a leader as we climbed up. We focused on a lot of technical knowledge as well. Safety systems, belaying techniques and anchor building. There is generally a little more stress to get things right when you are dangling a few hundred meters off the deck, and that is where the training comes in, and keeping a cool head

I think the whole group really came together this week, forming a new level of trust in each other in multi pitch and really becoming more confident on the wall. I really enjoy sharing in all that excitement and the development and journey together.

 

We rocked up at the Mt. Cook airport for a quick safety briefing and were so lucky to get a free flight from In Flight  Mt. Cook Heli and Ski tours. They flew us up along the Tasman Glacier and gave us an incredible view of Mt. Cook. The summit was beaming with sunlight. A true inspiration for me as I will be training to be a mountaineer as well. I'll never forget that view.



Pure Ex has done sure an amazing job at facilitating the crews and providing them with a real and in depth experience with some of the most qualified and experienced instructors in the game. We learn by doing not by sitting in a classroom being told.

We finished off the week by watching the sunrise over Aoraki / Mt. Cook as a team. Paul sat behind us and told stories and fun facts about the Southern Alps.

 

 

One of my favorite things about this course is the bond and relationships that I have built with my teammates. Everyone brings something different to the table and everyone has a unique background that all comes together, forming our goofy, misfit family. The friendships that I have built with my crew will without a doubt last a lifetime.

 

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If climbing is your thing, then you'll know how amazing this looks. If climbing isn't your thing, you'll be surprised by how much you enjoy learning new skills and overcoming any fears you have of heights etc, as our careful instructors take you through safety measures and make sure you are 100% confident in what you are doing. If you are keen to take on a challenge in the outdoors, feel free to get in touch (below) and we can chat you through some options we think might suit you. 


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2019-09-24

If you're interested in our Adventure Guide Program (AGP) in Queenstown, let us introduce you to "PHEC". Pre Hospital Emergency Care (PHEC) is an intense five day, crucial part of the AGP which trains participants to deal with a myriad of emergency situations. Please note the photos are not real life and are the result of great acting skills in order to recreate real life scenarios. If you'd like more information about the Adventure Guide Program or PHEC, feel free to reach out. Thank you to Peak Safety Ltd for your ongoing support!

2019-09-19

Check out the video below to hear Program Leader Keri share her experiences from the Expedition Leader Program with us. The three month immersive program wrapped at the end of August and we were lucky enough to steal 4 minutes of Keri's time to get a sweet snapshot of what the 90 days in Ecuador, Galapagos, Peru, China, Laos, Thailand and Nepal was really like!

2019-09-16

We loved having our Adventure Guide Program participants volunteer with the Wakatipu Restoration Trust last week on some important projects in Arrowtown! Thank you for having us, and we're looking to joining you again next time 😀

2019-09-12

Goodbyes have been said, reunions have been made, photos have been uploaded and time has been spent reflecting. We are thrilled to hear how much our Expedition Leader Program crew enjoyed their 12 week experience and we're so proud of what each individual achieved! We wanted to share with you one last blog from program participant Chloe, summarising the key things she has taken away from the Expedition Leader Program. Whatever you're doing in your life, we feel as though it's an important and powerful read. Enjoy, and feel free to check out the teams awesome photos in our recent album we've uploaded. We're warning you now - every photo is envy worthy!

2019-09-08

EXCITING NEWS!!!! Pure Exploration are SO excited to share our latest offering for our 2020 Adventure Guide Programs - CANYONING! Keen to sign up for one of our 12 week programs, but don't think that rock climbing is really for you? No drama! The canyoning option is now available for you to do instead of the rock climbing strand, enabling you to spend time in the water (splashing around, slipping and sliding between canyons) as well as your hiking, pre hospital emergency care and swift water rescue training. We are offering the NZOIA Canyon Leader qualification alongside the NZOIA Bush you'll also undertake over the 12 weeks. Panicking that we've dropped rock climbing? Don't be, we're still offering the rock module (which proves to be increasingly popular), we're just introducing canyoning as a further option! If you're keen to hear more just flick us a message!

2019-08-28

What is this PHEC you might hear us mentioning from time to time? PHEC stands for Pre Hospital Emergency Care, and there's a reason we keep banging on about it - if you're heading out to the back country it's vital knowledge to have. You could save a life. Regardless of whether you're heading out bush, there's actually never a bad time to undertake Pre Hospital Emergency Care and that's why we incorporate it in each of our Queenstown Adventure Guide programs. Our Patagonia Adventure Guide Program and Expedition Leader Program also feature a wilderness first aid qualification. Check out this article to find out more about PHEC and how it teaches you the skills needed to become an asset in an emergency.

2019-08-27

For those of you who are interested in our Adventure Guide Program as you'd like to get your foot in the tourism industry, look no further. Dana, an alumni from our Adventure Guide Program in 2017, was kind enough to give us a life update at the end of last year. Since graduating from the AGP the wonderful Dana has been a Director of Operations, Lead Guide and a Naturalist in the US. We'll be checking in with her shortly for another life update. Until then, have a read and join us in celebrating the successes of Dana!

2019-08-22

The Adventure Guide Program in Queenstown was always a tough one to name. The word adventure summons up thoughts of gripping journeys discovering untouched lands, undertaking challenges that your dreams haven’t even dared explore and of course, an envy worthy Instagram feed. But of course, it's so much more than that! So, in reality, what is the Adventure Guide Program? What should participants expect from it? Check out our latest blog on our website for the "6 things you should know about the Adventure Guide Program in Queenstown, NZ".

2019-08-15

Is #throwbackthursday still a thing? We're not sure, but if not, we're bringing it back! As our Adventure Guide Programs are kicking off for Spring and Summer 2019 it seemed an appropriate time to share Deni Zawalski's awesome Queenstown AGP video with you all. What's more, talk about a success story, Deni now works for Southern Lakes Heliski right here in Queenstown. Yup, she's living the sweet life long after graduating from the program! For those of you who are wondering what life could look like after the three months on program, flick us a message. We have heaps of awesome stories about alumni who have gone on to work in the industry here in Queenstown, and we would take pleasure sharing their successes with you. Thanks for letting us share Deni!

2019-08-14

We were curious to find out why some of our participants chose to join us on our Expedition Leader Program earlier this year. Chloe shares her reasons with us, maybe they're something that you can relate to as well!

2019-08-13

A huge welcome to our 11 incredible participants who have joined us from all around the world for our Adventure Guide Program here in Queenstown NZ! We're excited to show you our home, watch you grow and share in your successes over the next 12 weeks! Oh, and they're eager too - check out the evidence captured of their lake swim in the depths of winter ❄🏊‍♀️ we love the enthusiasm - brr!

2019-08-11

Things you learn when you travel the world 101. "Outgrowing people, jobs, places and situations is okay. You should not feel any shame or guilt for leaving toxicity, old patterns, or boredom behind to pursue your own journey to happiness." Check out the blog below to hear more Ah Ha! moments our Expedition Leader Program participants have identified on their travels so far.

2019-08-08

Interested in our 12 week Adventure Guide Program in Patagonia but feel a little freaked out at the thought of reaching out for more information? We get it. That's why we teamed up with the guys at GoAbroad.com to write an article all about Patagonia, hoping that it gives you an idea as to what you can expect from this sparsely populated, jaw-droppingly beautiful region which is home to some of the world's best hiking trails and rock to climb! Keen to hear more? No drama, flick us a message and we'll sort you out with some more enticing information about the program. Just don't blame us when you've canned the job and booked your flights for our November intake! 😆👌

2019-07-25

"Growth, vulnerability, pushing limits, authenticity, connections. These all come with being on the ELP team. When I signed up for this trip, I knew it would be a life changing experience in a ton of ways, but somehow, after only 1 month, we have all changed beyond expectations in more than one way." Please check out another one of Chloe's incredible, gripping blogs to find out more about how travel and adventure, plus everything that comes along with it, furthers ourselves in our own personal development journey.

2019-07-22

Ecuador, Galapagos, Ecuador and ...China?! What were both the expectations and the reality of China on our Expedition Leader Program.

2019-07-19

Last week our 2017 AGP Alumni and favourite German, Michel Affkerback, left NZ after almost 2 years with us here in Queenstown. Michel has been accepted into the Arctic Nature Guide program at the University of Norway to further his guiding career even more. It was an absolute pleasure to have Michel around, and to see his gnarly climbing, hiking and ski touring missions whilst he was in NZ. We miss you already Michel, and cant wait to hear all about your next adventures!

2019-07-18

Meet Katherine! She is an alumni from our Adventure Guide Program having completed it in early 2019. Katherine explains what she learnt on the AGP and the skills she now feels equipped with in life. Katherine has also made her home in Queenstown, New Zealand since graduating. Curious as to what you can get out of the Program even if you're not looking to become an Adventure Guide? Check out the video below, or shoot on over to our Instagram for further thoughts from Pure Ex alumni!

2019-07-15

Who wants to hear more about our ELP's experience on the Asangate trek in Peru? We do! 🙋‍♂️ "54 km, 5 days, 3 course meals, spectacular views, alpacas for days, chilly nights, and very dry hot days. This is what the Ausangate trek is all about." ... Link's below, you know what to do!