Vol. 40 (2017)
Research Project Cultural Resources and Human Dimensions

Oral histories of Exum Mountain Guides who began guiding between 1947 and 1965

Kimberly E. Geil
Department of Global Studies, Idaho State University, Pocatello, ID
Yolonda Youngs
Department of Global Studies, Idaho State University, Pocatello, ID
Man with a large sheet of metal strapped to his back with snowy, rocky mountains in the background

Published 2017-12-15


Exum Mountain Guides is the oldest climbing guide service in North America. Exum guides have been integral to the growth of guiding as a profession as well as mountaineering in Grand Teton National Park, across the United States, and internationally. However, no comprehensive history of the guides and the guide service exists, nor have individual stories been consistently captured. This project conducted oral histories with guides, clients, and staff of Exum Mountain Guides, and then used those interviews to look at the pathways taken to become a guide, common experiences and characteristics between the guides, and what guiding life was like for those guides who began guiding prior to 1965. Future research is needed to collect additional oral histories and analyze the histories of guides who began guiding after 1965, as well as those of office staff, clients, and others and investigate changes that have occurred over time.


Featured photo from Figure 1 in report.