Ross Cluley – owner of Vert Hotel Chamonix, Bluebird Cafe, So Local ski rental. We use Ross Hewitt for our staff avalanche training and I recommend him 100 %
Doug Brown, Colorado, March 2020 ‘Thank You Ross for one of the best days of my life.’
Morgan Sinclair, Chamonix, February 2020, says:
Why Hire a Ski Guide?
I have skied my entire life, starting as s young boy on a rope tow in Scotland. For me, skiing is so much more than just a hobby; it’s hard to describe this passion to people who don’t have it. Living in Chamonix for the past 10 years has let me connect with like-minded mountain people. My good friend and ski partner, Mattias Franson, suggested hiring a ski guide this year to work on our risk and hazard management in the mountains – as we have a number of steep projects we want to work towards.
There are a lot of guides in Chamonix but ours needed to be a skier first! Someone we could trust, relax with and learn from. For us, there was one guide who stood out in the crowd: It had to be Ross Hewitt.
Having known Ross for a long time and knowing his descents – most notably for me the South West face of Mont Blanc – speaks for itself. His local knowledge, proven competence and friendly, easy-going manner made it an easy choice.
Day 1 – Marbrées Direct
An early jump put us on the first bin of the Sky Way in Courmayeur, which secured us a premier spot at the steep entrance to the Marbrées Direct. After a bit of a climb up from the glacier, via an easy couloir, we found ourselves at the top of the sharky start. There were some other familiar faces there that morning, which confirmed that this was a good route choice!
While transitioning onto our skis, Ross asked us about hazard identification and what we would do to manage them. This was really good as it got us talking about the perceived hazards and the actual ones.
A steep entry opened up onto skiers’ right of the face, allowing us to charge down. The descent had just about every type of snow conditions going. At the bottom, with tired legs and big smiles, we paused for a coffee and croissant before heading up to the Arpe, above Courmayeur. From here, we dropped down into a back bowl, which was around 35 degrees and a perfect aspect to hold some stellar snow.
Again, further discussions around risk assessment. Great stuff! And an interesting line choice. My initial gut feeling was that this slope was classic avalanche terrain and that it should have been avoided. How wrong I was!
About 45min of ascent put us on the top of a virgin snow field. Five hundred metres of perfect snow! Ross opened it up by ski cutting the area that would be most likely to slide. No movement, so we dropped in and were not disappointed!
Day 2 – Bonnati Couloir
Another early rise, through the tunnel to Courmayeur, and back up the Arpe. After some traversing and enjoyable turns on refreeze, we regrouped at the moraines of the Miage glacier.
An hour’s skin before catching sight of the Himalayan Face of MB. The line chosen would be the Bonnati Couloir: A stunning steep line. Ross took the lead and put in the boot pack, which was LONG!
The ascent was cold but the views of the south west face made this possibly my favourite descent to date in the Mont Blanc Massif. So great to share it with my good friend, Mattias and such a solid guide. A day I will remember for a long time.
Many Thanks Ross!
Justin Gale, UK, February 2019 ‘If you want to ski with an awesome skier who is also an excellent IFMGA, then Ross is your man. Booked him after a fabulous day when he led me on the Perrons; the remit was for three days backcountry skiing in Tarentaise with my family with exciting challenges, best snow, confidence building within our mixed experience group, together with ski technique instruction and mountain craft along the way. He quickly sussed our family dynamic and delivered big style – on all fronts. My wife and kids loved him, we were all buzzing at the end, totally satisfied but wanting more and as soon as possible…Ross is the man: great on the mountain and also super fun after round the dinner table and fire. His passion for the big mountain ski is infectious.
Jess Parker,Germany, February 2019 ‘Had a wonderful 3 days of off piste and ski touring with Ross in Chamonix. Ross was super professional, great fun and keen to share his vast knowledge of the mountains. Also bonus points for the lovely photos! ⛷
Charlie May, UK, January 2019 ‘Incredible day skiing! Despite 90% of Chamonix being closed & poor visibility, Ross managed to find the perfect powder bowl. The day nearly didn’t happen, but ended up being our best day skiing. Ever.’
Rupert Shanks, UK, January 2019 ‘Just had 2 amazing days skiing in Grimentz, Switzerland with Ross. He led us to exactly the kind of skiing experience we wanted – fresh, deep snow accessed from lifts, short hikes and a bit of ski touring. We re all still floating on cloud 9. 100% would recommend Ross for any kind of mountain experience. He has a calm and fun nature that we all enjoyed being around.’
Samie Vu, Singapore, December 2018 ‘Did some Scottish Winter climbing in Torridon with Ross in 2017. Ross is a solid guide, able to make the best of bad conditions, and always gives good and clear instructions. He’s eloquent, friendly, and enthusiastic about climbing which is inspiring for us. 2017 was our first time climbing in Scottish winter and we were lucky to have him as our guide. Absolutely trustworthy and amazing. I can’t recommend Ross more! Never did any skiing with him as I can’t ski but I believe he’s one of the best ski mountaineer guides! Met up with him for drinks in Chamonix; he has very good contacts for local doctors and physiologists. He’s become a good friend of ours, always willing to share information and beta about routes.
Martin Hoile, Switzerland, December 2018 ‘Top lad, top guide who has an intelligent understanding of the variable conditions one encounters in the mountains to look after your safety. Great fun to ski with Ross’
Kate Hoile, Switzerland, December 2018 ‘Not many people I would trust with my life in an Alpine setting but Ross is one of them.’
Tim Longstaff, Tarentaise, France, December 2018 ‘The best in the business!’
Duncan Robertson, Gstaad, Switzerland, December 2018 ‘Ross is a Jedi going up and down hill! Good craic as well!’
Yoshiko Ohba, Japan, August 2018 ‘Ross guided me on Aiguille des Crochues Ravanel route this summer. I am a Japanese. I am not very good at English and I am old (66). So I was a bit nervous. But he was a very kind and cheerful person. I totally took on his magic and I had a wonderful time.
Matthew Hudson, US, July 2018 ‘I had an excellent experience summiting Mont Blanc and more with Ross in July of 2018. Very professional but also incredibly personal. Not only did he get us up and down safely (a great guide is one who is willing to call you out when you need it) but you will feel like you are with a good friend as he shares stories on the history of the route, his mountain adventures and more. I would recommend Rosa for any guiding needs!’
Cameron Park, UK March 2018 ‘I was lucky enough to have been guided by Ross in March last year. I was part of a group of 5 who wanted to take on the Western Oberland ski touring route but was the only one with limited experience going up snow covered mountains rather than down! Ross was fantastic throughout the trip and whilst unfortunately we had to bail on the route half way through (high winds, lots of snow and very poor vis) this allowed us some time based in resort doing some very cool skiing away from the pistes.
Whilst touring Ross’ guidance was brilliant and during our more downhill focussed days in the latter part of our trip his instruction made the booting up far easier and my technique skiing down far better. I cannot recommend him more highly and will be using him for all my Alpine adventures in future.
Nora Holford, UK, September 2017 ‘3 days classic alpinism in Mont Blanc Massif with Mountain Tracks “excellent guides and organisation”
Matt Ellis, UK, August 2017 ‘Ross guided me on the Monte Rosa Route for a week in August 2017. I didn’t have a lot of experience in the Alps but Ross knew what I was capable of and set the pace and technical challenges accordingly. I ended up doing more than I thought was possible, while feeling safe at all times. Not only was he a great guide but he’s also a great bloke, which is very important when you are together in mountain huts for days on end. His big mountain skiing stories will keep you entertained. I would recommend him to anyone’
Jean Claude Ulhenhaut, Malta, August 2017 ‘Ross was my guide on the Monte Rosa route. It was my first time mountaineering and on occasions I got quite nervous, but Ross always took great care and made me feel safe at all times. I really appreciated all the patience he displayed and the stories he shared throughout the trip. Planning another climb with Ross this summer on Grand Paradiso’
Daniel Wood, Germany, August 2017 ‘6 days classic alpinism on Monte Rosa area with Adventure Consultants – When Ross finishes his aspirant program, employ him – he’s a complete natural’