About Us

The western United States offers a treasure trove of climbing opportunities. Spectacular guided mountain climbs can be found on the volcanoes of the Pacific Northwest, including Mt. Rainier, one of the most popular climbs. In addition to Mt. Rainier, Mt. Baker and Mt. Shuksan draws enthusiastic climbers. Washington’s Mt. Shuksan is the jewel of the North Cascades and across Puget Sound the slopes of Mt. Olympus are approached through the luxuriant Hoh Rain Forest.

Our “Mountain Guides” are veteran mountaineers which believe in giving personal attention to each and every one of their mountain climbing customers.

“Thanks again for being such a great guide and making the climb such a positive experience!” Nina G

We specialize in two styles of trips:

1. Treks – non-technical hikes that do not entail the use of any specialized equipment but require solid physical condition.
2. Climbs – trips that involve the use of specialized equipment such as ropes, crampons and ice axe.

For either style of trip, we will teach you the skills you will need and help you prepare to climb safely and successfully in the mountains. In addition to the climbs of the Pacific Northwest, we offer international trekking and climbing expeditions through Go Trek.

Our mountain guides are among the finest in the industry and draw on their extensive experience from climbing and exploring some of the most remote places on earth. They are highly skilled professionals and are committed to giving our clients the individual care they expect. Chosen for their leadership, judgment and character; Northwest Mountain Guides have a passion for adventure, guiding you on the path to truly reaching your goals.

Craig Van Hoycraig_van_hoy_alpine_guide

It all came about after climbing one of the “smallest stepping stones”, Mount St. Helens in Washington State. Before that experience I was just an ordinary hiker. Putting on crampons, grasping an ice axe and tying into a rope put me into a whole new realm that of the Mountaineer. It wasn’t long before I was, “taking the next step” and asking what mountain should I climb now. In the late 1970’s I had my first invitation to climb in the Himalayas of Northern India. The word H-I-M-A-L-A-Y-A-S resounded in my mind and conjured up names of famous explorers like Sir Edmund Hillary and Jim Whittaker.

Since then I have traveled in over fifty countries around the world. I have climbed many peaks including Mt. Everest, the “Seven Summits”, and Mt. Rainier over 400 times. Much more then all the lofty summit are the PEOPLE and the friendships along the way. Climbing mountains has been a “good excuse” to travel for me. I look forward to helping YOU find and adventure that is both rewarding and exciting. The mountains of the Pacific Northwest are a Great place to get started and from here who knows how far you end up going? 

In 1989 Craig summited the world’s third highest mountain, Kangchenjunga (28,169 ft.) as part of the First Successful American expedition, without using supplemental oxygen. He is fluent in Spanish and proficient in Nepali. In Latin America he has guided many expeditions in Bolivia, Ecuador, Argentina and Mexico. In 2013 Craig completed his 20th successful summit of Aconcagua and 53rd summit of Pico de Orizaba (more than any other American guide). As a year round guide in the summer months he enjoys guiding in The Pacific Northwest including his favorite mountain, Mount Shuksan in the North Cascades.