We had the opportunity to speak with one of EXP’s Lead Guides, Kyle Sherman, on the importance of guided trips. Kyle Sherman has been a professional guide for 8 years and is now an EXP Lead Guide and Guide Coordinator. Whether it’s backpacking, climbing, paddling, or biking, if there is a new way to see the world, he does it. Give it up for Kyle Sherman!
EXP Guide Kyle Sherman
What is unique about being an EXP Guide?
The main difference is the variety of trips and activities we get to lead. EXP Guides don’t just guide a hike, or a rafting trip, we do everything. Our goal is to make each trip unique to the client’s personality. We are making sure that the entire process is smooth and that we are handling all of the on-site logistics. Being able to see the big picture is unique to being an EXP Guide as we coordinate the logistics behind the scenes. I’ve never guided the same trip twice!
What are the benefits of a guided experience?
Going guided means that the client just has to show up. They don’t have to worry about time changes or weather. When a trip is guided by an EXP Guide, they get a customized, flexible flow. When the parks are busy or a reservation changes, a Guide can pivot and keep the flow of the trip. The Guide’s expertise and knowledge are also critical in keeping the client safe at all times. We know the area and can take the client to epic locations which are less publicized if plans need to change.
What is an example of when having a guide was important?
On one trip, I could sense that a few of the clients were uneasy about rappelling for the first time. We had a full day planned but I suggested that we try a half day and go on a hike for the other half. This put the clients at ease and they ended up loving rappelling. Being able to offer them options and show them that it was not a big deal if we didn’t do a full day gave them a better experience overall.
What is the best thing about guiding clients?
I love the person-to-person interaction and coming in as a stranger and then walking away with a very special connection and relationship. Getting invited to dinner or to visit a client after only knowing someone for 6 days is so special. You start to become part of the family. I also enjoy being able to do the small things. Once I overheard a family saying that they didn’t have any good family photos, so I made sure to take one and surprise them with it framed; being an EXP Guide has made it possible for me to create these unique relationships!
What is your favorite EXP Guide and client story?
All of them are very unique and special, I have so many stories. I just had a baby and some of the clients I guided messaged me asking to buy things off of my registry. Totally didn’t expect it!