Guides and Partners

Sawback is primarily a one man show but many of our trips come out of partnerships with other guides. Here’s a list with short bios as an introduction.

tom head shot emerald peak 2
Tom Wolfe
Owner / Lead Guide Mountain Guide ACMG/IFMGA

Tom began Sawback in 1995. He spends his winters ski guiding across Western Canada and beyond. Summers are a split between alpine guiding and helping run Churchill River Canoe Outfitters in Saskatchewan.

Rob Coppolillo
Rob Coppolillo
Mountain Guide AMGA/IFMGA

Rob and I partner to bring his US guests across the border to experience the amazing powder skiing Canada has to offer. Rob runs Vetta Mountain Guides out of Boulder , CO and is the author of The Mountain Guide Manual.

Nino Guagliano, AMGA
Nino Guagliano
Alpine Guide AMGA

Nino graduated from the Art Center College of Design, Pasadena, CA and began working as a commercial photographer while simultaneously pursuing his passion for the mountains. After climbing at an elite level for years, Nino turned his attention towards teaching and sharing his knowledge with others. Nino is based in Golden, BC.

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Jun Yanagisawa
Ski Guide ACMG

Born and raised in Tokyo, Jun was an avid skier from childhood.  In search of wilderness, Jun eventually immigrated to Whistler, British Columbia where he has worked for close to 30 years in the ski and tourism industry, moving between his native Japan and western Canada’s heli- and ski-touring world.

Christian Schlumpf Mt. Balfour
Christian Schlumpf
Apprentice Mountain Guide ACMG

Christian has dual Canadian and Swiss citizenship. In his former life he completed a degree in Engineering Physics and worked for an engineering firm in Switzerland. It was there that he decided to change courses dramatically and become a mountain guide. He returned to Canada 6 years ago to pursue this dream and hasn’t looked back.

Conrad Janzen on Generosity aka Freefall
Conrad Janzen
Mountain Guide IFMGA/ACMG

Conrad works mainly as a Public Safety Specialist with Banff National Park and mixes in ski and alpine guiding into his schedule.

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Jörg Wilz
Mountain Guide VDBS/IFMGA

Jörg runs OnTop Mountaineering out of Canmore, AB. Originally from Heidelberg, Germany Jörg settled in Canada many years ago attracted by the incredible heli-skiing. He still heli-skis winters in western Canada and operates his guiding business world-wide.

Larry Stanier Mountain Guide
Larry Stanier
Mountain Guide ACMG/IFMGA

Larry has worked as a guide since 1986 and in the avalanche industry since 1981. He still loves the work and sharing the mountains with guests. His favorite trips are exploring new places with enjoyable people. South Georgia Island, Soviet Georgia, Iceland, Kashmir, Kamchatka and Japan are on the list for the next couple of years.

Lila Trail Breaking
Lila Jansma
Ski Guide ACMG

Lila became one of the youngest persons to ever earn her full ski guide certification at the tender age of 22. That makes sense: she grew up at Valhalla Mountain Lodge learning the trade from her father Leo. Guiding is in her blood. Lila is calm, strong, and patient with an intimate knowledge of the Valhalla ski terrain and snowpack. We are fortunate to have her with us again for our 2020 Valhalla Mountain Lodge trip!

Joel McBurney, Ski Guide ACMG
Joel McBurney
Ski Guide ACMG

Residing in Nelson, BC with his wife and two boys, Joel spends the winter as a Lead Guide for Baldface Lodge in addition to Big Country Guiding trips. With over thirty years of backcountry experience, including two decades of guiding, he never tires of grabbing his skis or splitboard and heading out of a day in the mountains.

Sawback Alpine Adventures
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