Inside Exum Guides' Splitboard Mountaineering Camp, One of Only Two Worldwide

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Exum's Brendan Burns teaches up-and-coming splitboard mountaineers how to rappel into a couloir in Grand Teton National Park. Exum photo.

Jackson Hole’s Exum Guides hosts one of only two splitboard mountaineering camps in the world. Exum splitboard guide Brendan Burn started the two-day camp after visiting with Neil McNab, a fellow Jones Snowboards guide ambassador who runs a splitboard mountaineering camp in Chamonix.

Impressed with McNab's instruction, he introduced his version of the camp through Exum last year and just finished the its second edition last weekend.

Kicking off at Snow King Mountain Resort, the camp teaches skinning, transitioning, climbing, and bootpacking efficiencies as well as ice axe handling, crampon use, and self-arrest drills. The group then learns how to rappel with boards on at the Exum Ice Park in town.

Depending on the group's skill level and experience, the guide breaks up it into smaller touring parties. Each party heads into Grand Teton National Park, chooses objectives, and practices rappelling in and out of couloirs.

Skills You Need Before You Go

In its second year, Exum's Splitboard Mountaineering camp teaches backcountry snowboarders how to self-arrest, set anchors, and manage rope systems in steep terrain. Exum photo.

If you want to do this camp, you should be at least a strong intermediate snowboarder. Exum’s strongest requirement is fitness. You should be able to comfortably tour 3,000 to 3,500 vertical feet. Bring your beacon, probe, shovel, and pack. Guides can provide technical gear.

You can contact Exum directly at (307) 733-2297 to request availability for future camps or to set up a private session. The camp cost is $795 per person for three days of guiding and instruction. Want to learn more? Check out Exum's site for more info.

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