Pro Guide Guide Checklist

Pro Guide

The UKCG Pro Guide assessment is aimed at people wanting to guide any level of canyon both in the UK and overseas.  It is also aimed at professionals wanting a qualification that will allow them to provide technical advice to outdoor centres in the canyoning, gill scrambling and gorge walking sector, and would compliment the MIA assessment or mountain guides scheme.

Overview: Guide assessment is over 5 days including all of the advanced personal skills, rescue problems and guiding skills required to work safely in a canyon environment.

Core Syllabus/Check List: The skills check list below covers the majority of what a Level 2 Guide is expected to know, you will not be assessed on all the individual things below but it is expected that all Level 2 candidates have evaluated their own skills using this check list prior to booking on an assessment.

Personal skills
Model good movement within the environment e.g. jumping and sliding
Swim with gear (minimum 20 yards)
Be confident on grade 3 scrambling and steep terrain
Navigation skills e.g. grid reference, map orientation and able to identify features
Identifying relative size of watershed using topographical map
Ability to produce a weather forecast using synoptic charts
Ability to identify changing weather patterns whilst in the canyon e.g. identifying clouds
Have a small geological awareness e.g. rock types and common features
Be able to demonstrate a knowledge of local Flora and Fauna
Understand and be able to explain UKCG grading system to clients


Knots Knots
Directional (aka in-line) figure eight Clutch systems (e.g. Alpine Clutch)
Figure 8 on a bite Alpine butterfly
Figure 8 double bite No knot
Italian/friction hitch including tying off Clove hitch
Tape/water knot Larks foot
Tying two ropes together (e.g. overhand) Prussic knots e.g. French and Valdotain


Personal on rope skills
Demonstrate an understanding of canyon specific equipment e.g. piranha, totem and VT
Climb a rope, single and double strand, using mechanical ascenders
Climb a rope, single and double strand, using ascenders improvised from cord or webbing
Climb a rope single strand using limited equipment e.g. Harness, 2 Cows tails and prussic
Transition from abseiling to ascending
Transition from ascending to abseiling
Pass knot while abseiling
Pass knot while ascending


Understand and be able to rig equalised and independent multiple anchors
Rig and use multiple realisable abseil systems
Set up multiple blocked rope abseil systems and be able to identify advantages between them (e.g. carabineer block, fig 8 block)
Set up and use a safety rope on a person abseil
Set up a system that extends the power point from the anchor, for  a safety rope on person abseiling (e.g. Australian system with alpine butterfly)
Protect a traverse and abseil with retrievable re-belay system
Set up and manage a redirected abseil
Demonstrate good practise with multi-pitch abseils; sequencing, security, rope management, position of most usefulness
Demonstrate best practise when using a stacked abseil
Set up and use combination abseil/lower to avoid multi-pitch abseil
Counter-weight abseil; leader first and leader follows
Rig and use multiple 2:1 lowering systems
Rig multiple haul systems e.g. conventional Z-rig, 4:1 pig rig, 5:1 complex, 6:1 compound and assisted hoist
Set up and use retrievable guided abseil system
Tension guide rope at bottom anchor
Tension guide rope at top anchor
Rig system to isolate rope strands (e.g. stone knot, stone eight and joker)
Rig and manage an in water guide line


Correct placement of wires
Correct placement of pitons
An understanding of checking and the correct placing of  e.g. location and rock type
Set up and use retrievable anchors e.g. retrievable webbing and macramé etc
Demonstrate best practise for meat anchors
Understand methods to minimize need for anchors (e.g. climbing skills, jumps, slides, longer ropes, reversals, re-descents)
Set up and use 2:1 human anchor
Evaluate and rig alternative anchors e.g. knot chocks, dead men, cairns, stakes and sandbags/cobble-bags etc


Guide skills
Appropriate  interpersonal skills
Clear and precise safety/skill briefs
Spotting and supporting from top/bottom
Correct use of short roping skills
Managing group in dangerous areas e.g. abseil stations, slide tops and jump zones
Managing people on slides/jumps and be able to identify hazards
Correct fitting and monitoring of equipment
Awareness of personal safety
Awareness of clients energy/comfort levels


Rescues & Emergency Knowledge
Be able to construct improvised stretchers and carries
Rescue person on none releasable abseil
Rescue person on guided abseil
Rescue person on a jammed lower
Be able to change rope abrasion point on an abseil
Be able to lower a person past a knot
Rescue causality on traverse line
Demonstrate good practise with unconscious causality
Have an understanding of suspension trauma, secondary drowning and hypothermia
Know who the relevant emergency services are and how to contact them
Ability to identify  the factors that contribute to a  flash flood
Describe flash flood warning signs
Ability to identify  the appropriate responses to an impending flash flood in the given environment
Correct use of a throw bag (including throwing coils)
Identify the need for an in water guide line


Possesses suitable personal  gear for canyons rated up to 4C
Possesses suitable emergency group equipment



Advanced Canyoning or Fast-Track Canyoning

Canyon Rescue Course

25 personal canyons, 4 rated grade 4c

40 guided Canyon days

Hold a valid 16 hour or more First Aid certificate

Hold a valid Rescue 3 WRT or higher certificate