Jwalant just concluded his second high-altitude female guide training program with 10 trainees and two trainers. His goal is to promote skilled female outdoor professionals in Nepal. Participants trekked for 15 days to the frigid Langtang Valley and Gosaikunda where the temperatures dipped to -4F.
All applicants were required to have a current trekking guide license which means they have undergone the 45-day training course conducted by a government affiliated academy, but that course is mostly held inside the classroom. The goal of Jwalant’s training is to complement the trekking guide training course and provide first-hand field experience.
Besides the requirement of a trekking guide license, applicants also needed some prior trekking experience and the ability to speak at least one foreign language. Most important was the in-person interview, where Jwalant looked for passion for the outdoors and trekking.
Included in the training was instruction on the Nepali tourism industry, outdoor leadership skills, back country skills, and environmental studies. Objectives of the training were to:
• Develop confidence within Female Outdoor Professionals
• Promote respect for nature, surrounding and fellow travelers
• Build essential outdoor skills
• Foster greater awareness of self, clients and environment.
These women are entering a profession that was traditionally held for men, and their success will undoubtedly open other doors for women in the future. We look forward to seeing more female guides on the mountains of Nepal!