ACA certified Lead Pro Canyon Guides are individuals who have attained and demonstrated a high level of technical competence through rigorous training and examination that meets and exceeds international standards. For prospective clients and students, ACA certification provides a decisive tool for choosing the right guide/instructor to help them achieve their objectives.

*If you are not certified as an Assistant Pro Guide, you will be required to perform the Assistant Guide 2 day internship.

Lead Pro Canyon Guides have successfully passed the ACA’s  4-day Lead Pro Guide Course and the 2-day Lead Pro Guide Assessment.

Lead Pro Canyon Guide -- Step by Step

  1. Prerequisite: Must be a current ACA Canyon Leader 2.
  2. Take the ACA's Lead Pro Guide 4-day Course
  3. Perform 2-day Internship (coordinate with Pro Guide)
  4. Pass the ACA's Lead Pro Guide 2-day in-canyon Assessment.
    • Prerequisite: 50 canyon descents completed by the time of Assessment.
  5. Submit a Canyon Resume that reflects the following:
    • minimum of 100 canyon descents
    • minimum of 25 unique canyons descended
  6. Submit the appropriate First Aid / CPR certification (WFR for USA)
  7. Create and maintain your member profile on the ACA's website.

How long does Lead Pro Guide designation last?

Lead Pro Guide designation is valid for three years.

How do I renew my Lead Pro Guide designation?

To renew, you must before expiration:

Retake the assessment

OR...

Participate in 16 hours of continuing education + 2 Training Events (GLAR/Rondys/Ground School/Intro Classes)

AND...

  1. Must hold a valid WFR certification (or Intn’l equivalent).
  2. Keep your member profile current on the ACA's website

What people are saying …

"As always I am much the richer for my time with Rich. An excellent instructor. Always come away with having learned something new."

May 28, 2015

"Rich Carlson could be considered the father of American canyoneering because of his influence on style, technique, and ethics. In 1999 Carlson established the American Canyoneering Association to promote safety, responsibility, and ethics in American canyoneering. Rich and the ACA have been critical factors in building national standards that have become the cornerstone of canyoneering at the recreational and professional levels throughout the Americas." --Dave Black

May 28, 2015

"I have been a rock climber for over a decade and didn't really expect to learn anything new. Was I ever wrong. I didn't realize that there were so many specialized systems employed in canyoneering. All of it makes sense. Rock climbing systems are fine for dry rock, but not at all appropriate in a canyon - especially if there is water present."

May 28, 2015

"My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed the course and now have a new rule for choosing canyoneering partners - ACA course graduates only. You guys are the real deal and you are raising the bar for all canyoneers.”

May 23, 2015

"Any time that you can learn from the pro, Rich Carlson, its a fine day of learning and meeting people with the same interest and passion as you have for the sport of canyoneering!"

May 28, 2015

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