csga eblast - October 2021

This eblast is a long one, lots of news! So grab a warm drink and enjoy…

As always, please reach out with any questions, concerns or inspiring ideas to info@canskiguide.com or president@canskiguide.com

CSGA Board of Directors News:

Bob Sayer steps down as President of the CSGA

On September 10, 2021 the board of directors held a board meeting at Silver Star resort in conjunction with CSGI Instructor training. Bob Sayer had reached the end of his allowable term as President and so stepped down from his position. The Board has elected Erin Tierney as President and Mo Rasiah as Vice President.

Past President - Bob Sayer
President - Erin Tierney
Vice President - Mo Rasiah

Erin is a Level 3 CSGA guide and worked in the heli ski industry for over 23 years. In her career she has worked in all positions from a tail guide / radio operator to lead guide and operations manager. She credits the CSGA and the apprenticeship opportunities the course structure provides through the program as one of the keys to her career development. Her interests as a CSGI instructor, President and a member of the board focus on curriculum development, communication and fostering relationships within our association membership as well as within our industry. Erin currently works for Whistler Heli Skiing and Alpine Solutions Avalanche Services. She can be reached at president@canskiguide.com

Mo is a Level 3 CSGA guide as well as ACMG ski and hiking guide. He has been guiding for 19 years and operates his own business, Crystalline Backcountry Guides as well as working for a variety of other operators in BC, Argentina, Chile and Japan. As a CSGI Instructor his goal is to help perpetuate the teaching and mentorship I received from members during my guiding career to new and upcoming guides. As a member of the Board and Vice President, he aims to support and represent the interests of our members and our association to the best of his ability.

As you will read below, Bob is not going anywhere. The Board is happy to have Bob remain on the board as Past President and as our representative at the International Commission for Alpine Rescue. Bob will also remain as Dean of the CSGI. Bob has selflessly served the CSGA for over 25 years as a curriculum developer, instructor, president and ambassador. We look forward to a time, hopefully at the AGM in the springtime, when we can gather in person and officially recognize Bob as the innovator, leader and volunteer that he is. Until that time – get involved in your association –BE LIKE BOB !

Fellow Guides,

It has been my pleasure to represent the Canadian Ski Guide as its President for many years.  It has come time to step aside and let the next generation of bright, capable guides lead us into the future.

We have come a very long way as an association:  We have CSGA Guides working in operations all around the world.  Many of the operations here in BC are owned or operated by CSGA Members.  We are represented and present at international congresses.  We are in sound financial shape.  And we have a strong, hardworking Board of Directors making sure that there is a place for us in the future of Guiding.

I am not leaving Guiding or the Association.  I will continue as Past President and to represent us to the International Commission for Alpine Rescue and elsewhere. 

The new CSGA President is Erin Tierney and our new Vice President is Mo Rasiah.  Please get to know them and give them your support.  The Association is in good hands and with their energy and your support it will be an association we can all be proud of.

Thank you for having me as your President.

Bob Sayer

Scope of practice and terrain guidelines update:

The Board has reviewed and updated the CSGA Scope of Practice and Terrain Guidelines. These guidelines describe the levels of responsibility for each guide level as well as the definitions of required supervision for each level. Definitions are included for both mechanized certifications and ski touring endorsements. It will be posted on the website shortly. But in the meantime, check it out here CSGA Scope of Practice and Terrain Guidelines

Instructor Training Recap:

Instructor training for CSGI Instructors was held Sept 10-12th at Silver Star Resort. 19 instructors attended the two day session. The focus for this year was Curriculum Development, Lesson Planning and Technology. New DACUMs for all course levels are being developed to ensure a clearer understanding of expectations for students and instructors alike. These DACUMs will be sent to students once registered for a course, providing a useful tool for course preparation. Many thanks to the Education Committee for their work. Time was also spent teaching computer technology to ski guides to improve both course communications and record keeping – the après mountain bike ride was definitely enjoyed after that session!

Covid requirements for upcoming courses.

As per industry standards, all students and instructors must have proof of double vaccination for courses during the 20/21 season.

The Importance and Value of Being a Current CSGA Member:


  • As per CSGA bylaws (4.07): If you have not paid your annual dues you are not a current member of the CSGA which means your certification is suspended until you do pay, at which point you will be reinstated.
  • If you are hired as a CSGA guide and have not paid your dues you are not recognized by the CSGA as a current guide. It is your duty to inform your employer.
  • Your basic CSGA membership has a $25,000 Accidental Death and Dismemberment Policy included?
  • The CSGA offers additional insurance opportunities like Weekly Accident Indemnity (WAI) which may cover a portion of lost wages after an injury. Also available, Diagnostics and Specialist Access Insurance. Both of these policies are available to the individual as well as spouse and dependents.
  • WAI insurance premium has been significantly reduced this year. Check out the rates in the member’s only section.
  • A current CSGA membership qualifies you for many industry pro deals. More pro deals will be listed soon on our website but most outdoor companies are happy to extend offers to CSGA members. If you have a company you would like us to explore a relationship with, please reach out.
  • A current CSGA membership allows you access to FREE Recurrent Training sessions annually, held in November in the Kootenays and the Coast.
  • A current CSGA membership allows you access to joint annual Fall CPD sessions with the CSGA, ACMG and CAA.
  • You need to be a current member to enroll in a CSGI course.
  • A current CSGA membership means you are operating as a PROFESSIONAL GUIDE in the Ski Guide Industry.
  • Coverage is from November 1, 2021 – January 1, 2023 and must be paid by December 31, 2021.


Current Membership Requirements:

  • Membership fees to be paid by December 31, 2021
  • Attend every 2 years:
    • Recurrent Training or
    • Summer Glacier Course or CSGI Level Course
    • Instructor Training (Level 3 only)


Interested in Personal Liability Insurance? Take our survey! We can only offer this to our membership if we have enough interest and participation and we only know that if you fill out the survey ! Thank you !          Survey Link


Jointly held by the CSGA, ACMG and CAA

October 5-8th, 2021 marked the first Superweek CPD sessions hosted jointly by the CSGA, ACMG and CAA. The CSGA would like to thank the ACMG and CAA for their support and experience in hosting large events of this nature. It is a partnership we hope to continue annually, bringing our associations together to share our collective knowledge.

The CSGA hosted three sessions on Client Relationships by Terry Makos, Proactive Critical Incident Stress Management by Erin Tierney and Being a Professional Passenger in the Helicopter by Geoff Doran. These were received very well. We are already preparing for next year so if you have any feedback or ideas for topics please let us know.

Together our associations shared 10 presentations with over 1200 registrations from 377 members. The CSGA had 325 registrations. Recordings of CSGA sessions are available for $10 in case you missed them!

Summer Glacier Course – Sept. 12-19,2021

With Covid-19 protocols in place, candidates spent the week outdoors in less-than-ideal weather conditions.     Snow blanketed the peaks on two separate occasions, and the hike out on Saturday morning was lengthy and treacherous due to the 10-15cm of new melting snow blanketing the landscape. Given the mostly adverse conditions, the morale of the entire group remained surprisingly high. Much of the focus was spent on rope mechanics and rescue simulation training. Feedback from the candidates on the training value associated with the SGSC was extremely favourable. Many experienced the first-hand benefits of the intense and extensive rope training conducted over the period of one week. SGSC continues to be the gem within the CSGI training curriculum.

Final Thoughts:


Our new website looks great but as with anything new it has had some glitches. Registrations and Member Dues Payments may take 48 hrs to register through our payment provider. Your name may not appear on the website instantly after paying your dues. If you do not see it posted after 48hrs please email admin@canskiguide.com


Recurrent Training is free for current members and required every 2 years. It will be held in the Kootenays (Whitewater) and the Coast (Whistler) on Nov 27, 2021. Register on the website here: Course Registration


Check out some great potential job opportunities here: Jobs!

And as always, operators, please feel free to submit your job postings at info@canskiguide.com


Check out our Facebook page: CSGA Facebook

Got an idea for a post? Want to profile your operation or yourself as a guide? Send a profile and photo to info@canskiguide.com

Hope you are all getting ready for a safe and successful winter.
That’s all for now, take care !