Experience This, Cheechako

Alaska Chick~Alright. I’ve read hundreds, if not into the thousands, of posts now. From the incredible and gifted writers,  the dreamers,  the professionals and the mentors. The one thing I know from living this life, on this planet, every single day, is there is always going to be bad, mean and evil shit going on out there in the world… even on/in this one, online. I know and this is my wish as well, POSITIVITY and HELPING OTHERS is the direction I want for my life. But. I’m about to have a rant. (You may leave if you have already been subjected to one today.)

Rant, pet-peeve…(that has always struck me as really funny, I mean do you put your peeve on a leash?) Experience. Are you born with it? Not talent, experience. The kind you get by doing it. Whatever “it” is. Ok, follow along. How does one “get” experience? … By doing “it”! That’s right! A Professional “a person who performs commercially in a field typically reserved for hobbyists or amateurs”. (snort)

Experience is everything.Experience; “Experience as a general concept comprises knowledge of or skill in or observation of something or some event gained through involvement in or exposure to that thing or event.

The concept of experience generally refers to know-how or procedural knowledge, on-the-job-training. 

A person with considerable experience in a certain field can gain a reputation as an expert.”

I always find it funny that when something is on my mind in any matter, I am just going to have to ask all my brilliant friends to come up with a good acronym for this …event, that always seems to take place here, on-line. So. I opened the happy new Daddy, Michael Schechter’s email tonight, (7-24-11), and the quote he took note of was perfect!

“You can’t change the world if you don’t make a few mistakes.” ~Tim Sanders

Survival, you and the wild placesMy personal favorite quotes about experience are first by Doug Rader (a former third baseman in Major League Baseball),

~ “If experience was so important, we’d never have had anyone walk on the moon.

The second is credited to Unknown.

~ “The trouble with using experience as a guide is that the final exam often comes first and then the lesson.”

That about sums it up. The only way to get to the top is to take that first, second, third, fourth, and next and next until you get to the top. The same exact way as you would with any and every single professional anything at all. There was the first. The first client, customer, contact, thing, whatever. Everybody starts with their first. Now, it may sound like I am saying the same thing over and over again. You’re right. I am!

Keeping everyone safe!There has never, in my years with Pioneer Outfitters, has there been a hunter, a hunting client, come up to me and ask if we have a guide in his first year that has never had a client of his own. Ask me if he could pretty please have the newest guide possible to lead the way into the remote Alaska wilderness. Never. Not once. Really.

A few of my all time favorite hunting clients, that I’ve guided in my years with Pioneer Outfitters, were my first hunters, with each animal. I’ll tell you straight out, I did some pretty goofy shit when I was starting out my first, second and third year of guiding. I still do some of it. Can you guess why? That’s right, because it works.

I’ll let you in on another insider fact. It wasn’t until my 5th year guiding, that I didn’t get what I was after. Another fact, to back this one up, most Professional Guides DON’T come home empty handed for the first 1-3 years. No real reason, just the way it works out, when, of course you aren’t dealing with a ding-dong.

Alaska Guide BoardEvery single Registered or Master Guide took his first client out into the field. The Pioneer Outfitters Survival & Guide Training program and the Alaska Mountain Safaris with Master Guide Robert Fithian are the only state of Alaska approved assistant guide training courses.  Completion of these courses will meet the requirements of AS 08.54.630(4)(B) and 12 AAC 75.130(5).

The requirements to become an Alaska Assistant Guide are extensive. It can take years to reach and fulfill the requirements and to receive a recommendation to receive an Alaska Assistant Guide License. Much of the training involved with these requirements are met in the field, by being in the field.

Experience makes it all easier.When a trainee is recommended by Master Guide Terry Overly or Master Guide Robert Fithian, the state of Alaska Commercial Services Board knows that the individual, being recommended is has not only met the requirements, but is in every single way ready to take visiting hunters from out of state, into the Alaska Wilderness to Hunt Big Game.

Oh, I almost forgot! A Cheechako, by definition, “A new-comer to Alaska, ignorant of the terrain, the weather, the animals, the culture, the necessary driving skills in the winter, etc.” Hmm. Food for thought I guess.

Do you think you have what it takes to be one of the finest?






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