We had the good fortune of connecting with Whitney Vestal and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Whitney, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
Golden Mountain Guides is the ultimate dream for us – and we’re living it! When we first started our company, we wanted to share our passion for climbing with others and TEACH them how to enjoy climbing and the outdoors safely and to reach all their climbing goals. We also wanted the freedom to control our future and still making a living while doing the things we love! Owning our own business was a way to do all of that. We a passionate about what we do and enjoy our “job”. It allows us the luxury of being home with our family, travel and live the life we want. We also wanted to provide a stable and desirable career for our employees. In the outdoor industry, it’s common for guides to work for multiple companies at once in order to make ends meet. At Golden Mountain Guides we strive to provide competitive pay and hours while also provide training, mentorship and help with continuing education in the guiding industry.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
While there are other guiding companies in our area, we are truly passionate about providing a quality, professional service. We strive to make every trip include Skills, Scenery, and Smiles! Every trip is customizable to your ability and goals so you get the skills you want. The scenery is breathtaking. And we know you’ll leave with a smile. We’re different from others because we not a cooked cutter guiding service. We will custom tailor an experience for you. We also are very firm about our guides’ certifications and making sure everyone is only guiding within their level of certification. That means if they have an SPI (single pitch instructor cert) they are in their scope of practice and guiding single pitch climbs. Likewise, if they are am AMGA Rock Guide or have taken the Rock Guide course, they can guide multipitch.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
We love living and working in Golden, CO and I actually love showing friends around. For breakfasts, we would go to the Golden Diner or Sassafras and then get coffee at the Windy Saddle. For lunch, I’d take them to D’Deli or Abejas. Dinners would include the Buffalo Rose, Sherpa House and Woody Pizza. During the week we go hiking or climbing in Clear Creek Canyon where the trails and rocks are not to be missed and the scenery is just breathtaking. There are so many trails in and around Golden that you could probably hike a new one every day for a year. I’d also suggest walking down Washington St in Downtown Golden for shopping and then heading along the Clear Creek trail for the view and the History Park.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Two people/organizations come to mind right away. In our first year of business, we partnered with an outdoor gear company, Red Fox, but it was really facilitated by their marketing, salesperson, Arielle Powers. She saw something in our business and helped us out a lot with a space to hold free clinics to get our first clients and booth space at popular festivals. We also truly appreciate the help we receive from the Colorado Enterprise Fund to help us get our start and provide other resources when we had questions about anything business related
Ben Coryell, Owner Golden Mountain Guides