Our Climbing Guides

Chockstone Climbing Guides are committed professionals.

    • Each of our climbing guides brings a wealth of diverse climbing, professional and outdoor experience to our team.
    • Our Smith Rock climbing guide staff and instructors are American Mountain Guide Association certified and trained within their scope of practice. 
    • We are all local to the region and enjoy sharing our knowledge, passion for climbing and appreciation through many years of climbing together and guiding in Central Oregon.

    Jim Ablao

    AMGA Certified Rock Guide / AMGA Certified Rock Instructor / AMGA SPI Provider / Wilderness First Responder

    Jim Ablao has been guiding throughout the western US since 1989 and a climbing guide at Smith Rock State Park since 1999. Over the years he has earned certification as an AMGA Rock Instructor and Rock Guide, he is also an AMGA Single Pitch Instructor Program Provider, SPI Provider Trainer and AMGA Climbing Wall Instructor Program Provider. He began climbing thirty-five years ago and still exudes a refreshing enthusiasm and passion for climbing, teaching and adventure. He climbs rock, ice and summits throughout the mountains and deserts of the US. His climbing has also taken him to summits and cliffs of Argentina, Chile, S Korea, Mexico and Canada. He has taught and guided diverse terrain with many schools and programs including twelve years with the Colorado Outward Bound School, six years as a guide manager and many years with various “youth at risk” and therapeutic programs. Jim brings diverse experience, his empowering and personalized teaching style into every guiding. Jim lives in Bend with his wife and two daughters.

    Gabe Coler

    AMGA Certified Rock Guide / IFMGA American Mountain Guide / Wilderness First Responder

    Gabe began climbing in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts in his early years, eventually making rock and ice ascents all over New England.

    After moving west for college, he cut his teeth in most of the major western climbing areas including: a free ascent of The NorthWest Face of Half Dome, alpine ascents throughout the Cascades, test-piece alpine climbs in the Canadian Rockies and the French Alps.

    Gabe has been climbing at Smith Rock since 1999, and has been guiding there since 2003. Gabe is an American Mountain Guide. AMGA Certified Rock, Alpine, Ski and AIARE Level II.

    Gabe inspires those around him through his teaching style, personality and his humble attitude towards climbing.


    Michael Alfonso

    AMGA Certified SPI  /  Wilderness First Responder

    Michael discovered rock climbing in high school after gaining an appreciation for the outdoors through adventures as a child. He learned to climb right here at Smith Rock and it remains one of his favorite places in the world to work, play, and explore. Michael enjoys using climbing as a vehicle to explore the natural playgrounds of North America and has spent time climbing in areas such as British Columbia, southern Utah and Nevada, Northern Mexico, California, and all over the Pacific Northwest. With a background in technical instruction, youth programming, conservation, and guided backcountry trips, Michael draws on his breadth of experience to provide his clients with a fun, fulfilling experience no matter what their goals may be. He aspires to instill in each of his clients the same wonder and appreciation for climbing and the outdoors that drives him every day.

    Evan King

    AMGA Certified Apprentice Rock Guide  /  Wilderness First Responder

    Evan has been living and working as a rock climbing guide at Smith Rock for 5 years. His favorite things about living at Smith are relaxing by the river under the ponderosa trees, going rock climbing, and enjoying the colors of the sunset after a full day out.
    Climbing for over 13 years, Evan is an accomplished climber; he has completed The Nose, a 30 pitch route up El Capitan in Yosemite, climbed multiple 5.12 traditional lines in Red Rocks and boulders V8 in Bishop. Ask him for beta on Churning in the Wake, a 5.13 he has sent at Smith!

    With patience, kindness, and passion, Evan will teach you anything you want to know about climbing. He enjoys mentoring new climbers in the fundamentals with a, learn at your own pace style of instruction. Evan wants to help you reach to your climbing goals.

    Evan King

    Rosa Padilla

    AMGA Certified SPI  /  Wilderness First Responder

    Rosa has been climbing for over 9 years and this is her second year as a guide and outdoor educator. She is a certified AMGA Single Pitch Instructor and Wilderness First Responder. Rosa is passionate about empowering those just getting introduced to the sport and supporting others more experienced in the sport by teaching them new skills. In the evenings, she works as a middle school and high school math tutor. Rosa grew up in Florida but has lived in various parts of the country where she has spent much of her time climbing, biking, hiking and exploring with her pup. She attended college at Georgia Tech in Atlanta where she graduated with a degree in Biomedical Engineering. Rosa has been in the medical industry for over 9 years and has designed orthopedic implants for Spinal and Shoulder systems.

    Jeff Struck

    AMGA Certified SPI  /  Wilderness First Responder

    Jeff has been guiding with Chockstone Climbing Guides at Smith Rock since 2010. Jeff’s started climbing in Colorado, near where he grew up in Arvada, Colorado. He moved to Oregon in 1999 for graduate school at Lewis and Clark. Jeff is a high school English teacher during the school year and during the summer enjoys guiding at Smith Rock in between summer adventures with his wife and two daughters. He enjoys climbing because it forces himself out of his comfort zone, it requires counter-intuitive movement and it challenges his ego rather than giving it a boost. He loves guiding because it gives him an opportunity to teach others how to climb safety while expanding their horizons as climbers. Jeff is an avid reader and bike rider as well. Jeff is a SPI certified guide with the American Mountain Guide Association

    Dean Kelly

    AMGA Certified SPI  /  Wilderness First Responder

    Dean Kelly Originally from the east coast, Dean has been living in Bend for the last seven years. Since moving west Dean has made Smith Rock his second home and favorite climbing destination. Over the last 6 years Dean has been working as a backpacking guide in Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, and Olympia National Parks. He is also a NOLS instructor with a passion for education he works as a split-board and climbing instructor. Dean is an SPI certified guide with the American Mountain Guide Association.

    Taylor Nause

    AMGA Certified SPI

    Taylor started guiding for Chockstone Climbing Guides in 2014. Taylor likes that climbing takes him to different
    vantage points. He loves taking people climbing for their first time and sharing their excitement. He has climbed and skied Denali as well as enjoyed long alpine routes throughout the Northwest. Taylor is a gourmet baker of bread and pizzas in his own handbuilt pizza oven. As well as rock climbing Taylor enjoys skiing and sailing. Taylor hails originally from Greenwood Mississippi. Taylor is an SPI certified guide with the American Mountain Guide

    Wolf Porter

    AMGA Certified SPI  /  Wilderness First Responder

    In college Wolf discovered his love for climbing where he completed his Outdoor Pursuits Program, taking students into the backcountry. This is where he fostered his love of teaching and sharing the outdoors with others. After college Wolf and his partner jumped into their custom built van with their dog “Dude” traveling the US in search of endless climbing and skiing. Since then climbing has taken him to different places all over the world including Japan, Peru and Vietnam. Wolf enjoys teaching others and hopes to share his love for climbing and the outdoors with everyone. Wolf is an SPI certified guide with the American Mountain Guide Association.

    Patrick Dunn

    AMGA Certified Single Pitch Instructor / Apprentice Rock Guide

    Patrick has been guiding with Chockstone since 2019. Climbing is so much more to Patrick than sending the hardest routes in the world. It’s about having fun in a beautiful place while learning and growing in the process. Patrick is passionate about teaching technical skills to help climbers gain the confidence to get out and achieve their goals safely and efficiently. Patrick has been climbing for 10 years now, primarily focused on trad and multi-pitch climbing. He is an AMGA Certified Single Pitch Instructor and Apprentice Rock Guide. In his off time, Patrick is an artist as well as a passionate advocate for the outdoor community. You’ll find him promoting LGBTQ+ visibility in the outdoors and developing inclusive climbing programs through his company OUT in the Wild.

    Sam Singer

    Certified Single Pitch Instructor / Leave no Trace Trainer / Wilderness First Responder / Rec Level 1 AIARE Certification

    Sam grew up sport climbing and backpacking in Central Oregon before moving to Tacoma Washington to attend college at The University of Puget Sound. In 2021 Sam received his BS in Physics with a minor in Mathematics. During his time in Washington Sam began focusing on traditional rock climbing and mountaineering in the North Cascades. Sam began his professional guiding career in 2021 with International Mountain Guides and has guided multiple routes on Tahoma (Mt Rainer) and Komo Kulshan (Mt Baker). In 2022 Sam began working with Chockstone Climbing Guides at his home crag of Smith Rock. In his free time Sam enjoys crack climbing, skiing, and making pottery. Sam is a certified Single Pitch Instructor, Leave no Trace Trainer, Wilderness First Responder, and holds a Rec Level 1 AIARE Certification.