About Us Title

Why We Do What We Do?

Backpacking

We love Colorado’s wilderness beauty and want to share it in a way that inspires others. By sharing our knowledge and expertise, we hope to open up to you the local wilderness gems. We believe you will have a richer, safer, and more enjoyable experience because of the knowledge you gain on mountain safety, environmental stewardship, and local mountain geography and history.

However, just because we love the mountains (and hope you do, too), we know the mountains don’t always love us. Your safety is our number one priority and everything we do is with safety in mind, from the vehicles we drive, to a regular assessment of the weather/road/trail conditions, to discussing appropriate daily objectives.

We want you to explore the mountains, travel safely, and have experiences that last a lifetime!

As a result of our beliefs and values, described above, we have created a one-stop shop for wilderness guided tours and trips, team building activities, transportation, local outdoor exploration and information, safety training, event planning, and expert advice.

Environmental Stewardship

Mountain Peaks

We strive to be conscious about our impact upon this planet, responsible stewards of the public lands that we have the fortune and opportunity to use, and we desire to help make this a better planet for our kids.

In order to give back and make this a better world for our kids, we have implemented practices to help achieve these goals:

  1. We 100% carbon onset all our vehicles. See Carbon Project C below.
  2. Our office is 100% wind-powered.
  3. We place a premium on environmental education by weaving environmental stewardship skills into all our services, tours, and programs.
  4. We strictly practice minimum impact travel considerations and Leave No Trace ethics and principles with our tours and services.
  5. We donate 5% of our net profits to Colorado charities that promote environmental and social change.

We believe education regarding preservation of wilderness areas and open spaces is part of our work. To protect these magnificent areas and the flora, fauna, and clean water that comprise them, we must make everyone aware of their role in this work. Our goal is for our guests to feel a connection to these wilderness areas and, through their experiences, to develop the desire to allocate funds, time, and resources to promoting their preservation for future generations.

Mountains and Flowers

We consider your safety as our highest priority!

Road Biking Helmets Picture

We have the highest safety standards for any guide company, outfitter, event planner, and/or transportation company in Colorado. Your Safety is always our first priority.

Just because we love the mountains (and hope you do, too), we know the mountains don’t always love us. Your safety is our number one priority and everything we do is with safety in mind, from the trips and tour we design and choose, to the vehicles we drive, to the regular assessment of the weather/road/trail conditions, to discussing appropriate daily objectives.

We ensure our teams members under go yearly medical and first aid training. Out staff have certifications in wilderness first aid, wilderness first responder, wilderness and urban emergency medical technician, registered nurse, CPR, and even higher levels of certifications. We take in consideration and evaluate experience in this equation. Thus, we have team members that do not just have certifications with no real life patient contact. We have professionals that have the experience to go with the certifications. In addition, we are always encouraging and updating the skill levels of our team members. Rest assured, we are setting the bar and are equipped to handle issues that arise in the backcountry and truly assess you before and during a tour or outing.

We are highly professional guides with the skill, expertise and experience

High Altitute Tents

We are highly professional guides with the skill, expertise and experience.

Our team members (Guides) are true professionals. They are the best of the best and are experts in their disciplines.

What does this mean? In 2009, over 200 applicants applied to be part of the team and four candidates were chosen. We have a very stringent hiring and screening process. Our guides or team members have skills, education, training, and many years of experience that truly separates them from their peers. Rest assured there is no trial and error on your mountain or outdoor experience. The reality is in addition to training and education, there are many nuances developed through experience. Our team members are between the ages of 32-66 years young. If you want an amazing experience, know that you are having the best join you in the mountains.

We are proudly a part of the local Boulder, Estes Park, and Denver community and will share with you our local knowledge

CWRAG Van in the city of Boulder

We are proudly a part of the local Boulder, Estes Park, and Denver community and will share with you our local knowledge.

We are proudly a part of the local Boulder, Estes Park, and Denver community and will share with you our local knowledge.

We are a local Colorado company with offices in Boulder and Estes Park. We have taken great strides in creating strong bonds in the local community through organizations that we have joined and support.

In Boulder, we are a member of the Boulder Chamber of Commerce, Boulder Convention and Visitors Center, and Boulder-Denver Better Business Bureau. We have partnered with many local businesses and charities to help support our local community.

In Estes Park, we are a member of the Estes Park Convention and Visitors Center. We have partnered with many local businesses and charities to help support our local community. We take extra time to help rocky Mountain National Park with extra projects that help improve environmental and educational programs.

In Denver, we are a member of Visit Denver (the convention and visitors center) and Boulder-Denver Better Business Bureau.

Although we have many local non -profits that we support, we have chosen two organizations (one environmental and once social) that we actively raise money and give our clients that opportunity to provide additional donations. The first organization is the Colorado Carbon Fund. The Colorado Carbon Fund is a state agency which aim is to reduce green house gases and educate the public about their carbon impact. The second organization is Veteran Expeditions. Veteran Expeditions goal is to reduce to the incidence of suicide, homicide, homelessness, and incarceration that plagues the military veteran community. Vet Ex is the only veteran organization we know of that is 100 % run by veterans so all money goes to the veterans. Vet Ex current campaign is the stop 18-program. Learn more about it.

We provide the Most Personalized Service and take extreme pride in customizing our services

Personalized Services Picture

We provide the Most Personalized Service and take extreme pride in customizing our services for groups and individuals.

Our goal is to “give you memories that last a lifetime”, “make your lives more interesting”, and “open up experiences not found in your guidebook”. See testimonials.

We strive for giving you the best local experience that is not found in your guidebook, on a blog or website. Everything we do is make sure you feel you are cared for and supported. Making you feel at home, supported and knowing that your wellbeing and safety is our first priority. We do not want you to come experience Colorado with us and then just leave. We want you to always stay in touch, e-mail or call to say hi and feel free to contact us for any questions about the outdoors you may have.
We strive to give you experiences that last a lifetime.

“We do not remember days… We remember moments.” (Cesare pavese)

We are a Green Business and a Carbon-Neutral company

Bald Eagle fly overheard picture

We are a Green Business and a Carbon-Neutral company.

We strive to be stewards of the lands we use and stewards of our impact on the local and global environment.

We spend a lot of money and time reducing our carbon impact and have striven to be a carbon neutral company. Our office is 100% wind powered and all our vehicles are 100% carbon offset. We have even calculated our air travel and waste into calculating our carbon impact.

As for being stewards of the lands we are so lucky to use, we have implemented practices such as Leave No Trace, Tread Litely, and other environmental stewardship education to reduce our impact and educate those that visit the outdoors with us. Education about environmental impact is woven into all our programs, trips, tours, and events in order to help educate and preserve the resources that John Muir and others so rightly lobbied and fought for.

We provide superior Access, Education, and Support

Trees in the Forest Picture

We provide outstanding access, education, and support!

We are used to providing access, education, and support for outdoor activities and recreational sports (hiking, biking, backpacking, snowshoeing, backcountry skiing, climbing/mountaineering, etc.). We have the outdoor skills, experience, and training to evaluate objective and subjective risks associated with outdoor activities. This allows us to truly give you information and education for you to be safe while doing these activities.

You can rest assured you will get up to date weather, mountain/trail conditions, safety considerations were evaluated, rescue plans communication, and chain of command systems are in place. You can also be assured that what you are told will help minimize your impact on the environment.

Accessing outdoors and wilderness activities is not like dropping you at the mall in downtown Denver. These activities and mountain environments can present many objective hazards. We have the skills, mountain and outdoor education and experience to make sure you are safe.

The other big difference that we provide is support. We NEVER EVER just drop you off in the mountains, but have a recorder and communication system that monitors if you are overdue or should have returned. Our guides are trained in wilderness education and safety and provide a more indepth understanding of the geography, history, wildlife and vegetation of the local area. We also provide the education to travel in the mountains and outdoors safely. If you want access, education, and support, we are the Gold Standard for guide and transportation companies.

We are Authorized, Licensed and Permitted
in Colorado with all appropriate agencies

Authorized and permitted by the US Government (Rocky National Park and US Forest Service – Roosevelt National Forest), State of Colorado, City of Boulder, Jefferson Co., and the Colorado Public Utilities Commission. Authorized by the Colorado Public Utilities Commission to Transport Passengers – CO PUC 55777.

United States Department of Interior. Rocky Mountain National Park. We are permitted for the following commerical guided activities: Winter activities; Hiking; Backpacking; Photography Tours; Road Bicycling; Fly Fishing; Peak Ascents (including Longs Peak); Sightseeing. Note: RMNP permites for each activity separtely. We are the only guide service permitted for all these activities.

United States Department of Interior. Bureau of Land Management: Moab and Grand Junction. We are permitted for the following commerical guided activities: Mountain Biking. Note: Permitted to guide the entire Kokopelli Trail.

United States Department of Agriculture. Roosevelt National Forest: Boulder Ranger District. We are permitted for the following commerical guided activities: Mountain Biking; Hiking; Backpacking; Fly fishing; Winter acivities.

Note: The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities on the basis race, color, national origin, age, disability, and where applicable, sex, martial status, familial status, parental status, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, political beliefs, reprisal, or because all or part of an individual’s income is derived from any public assitance program.

City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks We are permitted for the following commerical guided activities: Mountain Biking; Hiking, National History/wildlife Tours; Photo Tours.

Jefferson County Open Space. We are permitted for the following commerical guided activities: Mountain Biking; Hiking, National History/wildlife Tours; Photo Tours.

State of Colorado. Department of Regulatory Agencies, Division of Registrations. Licensed Fishing Outfitter. We are licensed for the Fly Fishing. Outfitter #2717.

The State of Colorado, Public Utilities Commission (CO PUC). We have authority to provide Sightseeing, Charter Service, Limousine Service, and Scheduled Shuttles. CO PUC:#55777.

We are the only outfitter / guided company in Boulder, Denver, Jefferson or Lairimer County that is authorized by the Colorado Public Utilities Commission to provide transportation. What does this mean? We are truly a one-stop and have the highest safety standards for both outfitters and transportation companies.

Note: The State of Colorado, Public Utilities Commission (CO PUC), requires companies that provide sightseeing tours to have authority with with CO PUC. If a company does not have a PUC #, then they are providing sightseeing service illegally in the state of Colorado. Please report these companies to the CO PUC in the interest of Public Safety.

In terms of outfitters or tour companies, our guides are also professional drivers as well. We have them have routine medical and physical exams, driving safety and background checks are performed, yearly driving records are checked, driving hours are monitored, specialized mountain driver training is accessed and additional training is provided, and a much higher level of insurance is required than just an outfitter. As a result of this authority with the Public Utilities Commission, we are allowed to charge for transportation, outfitters or tour companies are not. The biggest difference is you can rest assured we have insurance for transportation and professional drivers are driving you. If safety is important, make sure professionals meeting the gold standard for safety requirements are transporting you.

Please check to make sure the tour company or outfitter is authorized by the State of Colorado Public Utilities Commission to provide transportation services, including sightseeing. CO PUC. We can be found under PUC #55777 or Boulder Wilderness Shuttle LLC.

If the tour company or outfitter is not authorized, chances are they are able to charge cheaper rates because of inadequate or lack of insurance or minimum levels or poor safety standards. Outfitters (hiking, biking, rafting, mountaineering, climbing, etc) are not required in the State of Colorado to have transportation authority or insurance to transport passenger. Thus, your safety is put at risk or should anything happen, there is little or no recourse.

We are used to providing access, education, support, and guided trips or guided tours for outdoor activities and recreational sports (hiking, biking, backpacking, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, and more). We have the outdoor skills, experience, and training to evaluate objective and subjective risks associated with outdoor activities. This allows us to truly give you information and education for you to be safe while doing these activities.

You can rest assured you will get up to date weather, mountain/trail conditions, safety considerations were evaluated, rescue plans communication, and chain of command systems are in place. You can also be assured that what you are told will help minimize your impact on the environment.

We also provide the education to travel in the mountains and outdoors safely. If you want guided tours, guided trips, sightseeing, access, education, and support, we are the Gold Standard for guide, tour, event planning and transportation companies.

Your Safety – Please read this!.

Note: Companies that not have appropriate permits, licenses, or authority will not have these listed on their website or advertising materials. These companies are operating illegaly! Please report them to local authorities or land managers as they present great public safety risks to the public and you as a potential client.

Question any outfitter, guide company, tour company, event planner or transportation company with lower trip costs!

The reason is usually they are illegal, do not have insurance or permits. Some companies in Colorado say “they have permits and authority” without really having them. So you are in doubt – when you are quoted a low trip price, please contact local authorities or land mamagers to confirm that this company is operating legally. We are happy to provide contact names and phone numbers as a requiement of our permits, licenses, and authority.

Joshua Baruch – Owner, Manager, Senior Guide

Joshua Baruch Picture

Colorado Wilderness Rides and Guides is owned and operated by Joshua Baruch. Joshua has been working in the outdoor industry for 16 years, with experience in outdoor guiding, healthcare, mountain rescue, transportation, and safety. Joshua has a tremendous passion for exploring the outdoors, a desire to promote exploration in others, a strong sense of responsiblity related to mountain safety, and an uncanny ability to find the best local places and experiences possible.

Josh lives in Boulder with his wife, Erica, son, Asher, and daughter, Lilah. When not working, Josh can be found on the many trails, peaks, and couloirs in Colorado’s front range mountains. Erica is another avid outdoor enthusiast and son Asher and Lilah is already formidable hikers at age four and two. Throughout the four seasons, the Baruch clan continuously explores the manificant terrain, scenery, and wildlife of their incredibly extended backyard!

Josh’s outdoor experience includes managing and owning a mountaineering guiding company that operated domestically and internationally for 5 years (California Expeditions), more than 30 international expeditions to five continents; AMGA training and AIARE certiciations; 2 years high angle search and rescue experience; 2 years EMT-I working the 911 call system (Golden and SWAC Firestations); W-EMT training and certifications; Critical Care resgistered nurse and seven years nursing experience (including trauma intensive care units, telemetry, post anethesia, interventional radiology); Certifications in Advance Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) and Pedicatic Advanced Life Support (PALS); College Instructor for outdoor navigation, Safety consultant and risk management plans written for the State of California; Former wildfire red card and wildlife crew member. First profession was traveling on the ATP Tennis tour, had to choose between skiing or tennis at age 15, chose tennis because father was a tennis pro. Seven month honeymoon traveling around the world, favorite spot Ladakh. Education and degrees in Environmental Studies (adventure education and alpine ecology) and nursing. Research in altitude physiolgy and the 10 environmental stewardship skills developed in adventure education.

First backpacking trip was at age 7 with Mother, Heidi, and brother, Eddie, that included eight days and the eight AMC huts around New Hampshires Presidental Range. At the end of that trip, I was hooked by mountains and what I had experienced on that trip. The next year I skied Tuckermans Ravine headwall for mothers day at age 8 and that tradition continued every mothers day for the next 8 years. The time since has been building upon a solid outdoor foundation and passion developed from a young age. The important lesson I learned is exposure at a young age can really set the seed for a foundness and love of the outdoors. I am trying to create the same foundation for my kids and those that I have the opportunity of share time with outdoors, regardless of their age. We all get our exposure to different things at different ages and times. The most important thing is creating a safe, fun, and engaging experience to maximize personal growth, learning, and ‘thirst for adventure of some kind’.

Erica Baruch

Erica Baruch Picture

Heidi Baruch

Bernardo Beteta

John Happs

Stacy Bare

Justin Burger

Justin Burger Picture

Caleb Bury

Calbe Bury Picture

Caleb is one of our designated photography guides at Colorado Wilderness Rides And Guides. In addition to guiding photography tours, he guides peak ascents, and winter activity programs. Caleb is responsible for many great pictures on our website as well. When not working with us, Caleb can be found at his other job as an officer in the US Air Force.

Artist’s Statement:
Although I have always appreciated the varied beauty of nature, my first real inspiration to photograph it was on a trip to Sequoia National Park in California. I had borrowed a few cameras before that, but decided on that trip to acquire my own and start using it regularly. I was originally drawn to landscape photography, specifically, high-contrast black and white landscapes/seascapes. I have since become fascinated with the many genres of photography and enjoy shooting portraits, abstracts, and time-lapse to name a few.

I have been influenced through the work of many great photographers, most importantly my friends Jason Rearick, Ira Lippke, and Steve O’Day. I have not had the privilege of shooting with these great photographers, but Ansel Adams and Scott Bourne have had a big influence on shooting style.

I have always shot digital, but I try and shoot like I care about the film I would have to develop. For example, I usually set up and wait for the light to be proper when shooting landscapes instead of just clicking away and searching for “the one” in a bunch of photos.

Most of my travels have been within the United States and I love shooting in California, Colorado, Wyoming, Maryland, Virginia, and Alaska. Favorite places aside, I am convinced that beauty can be found in the places least expected.

I have not taken any formal training in photography and am self-taught through my own trial and error. I have studied many photographers/photos, read numerous books, listened to a variety of photography talk shows and practiced many different techniques through experimentation.

Although I have limited experience in formal photography, some of the events I have covered include Relay for Life events in Calvert County and a mountain climbing training weekend for Veterans Green Jobs. I am a member of the Artists Association of Northern Colorado, and am working towards placing work in local galleries.

You can check out some of Caleb’s other photographs at
http://burycm.smugmug.com/

Anita Engel

Anita Engel Picture

Anita moved to Boulder, Colorado 11 years ago to engage her love of the mountains. She spends her free time hiking and training for mountaineering challenges. Anita has been successful in completing many domestic and international treks including; the John Muir Trail, West Coast Trail, the Dolomites and West Highland Way. Anita’s enthusiasm for adventure has taken her, along with her family to the third highest peak in North America, where they climbed Pica de Orizaba. When at home Anita takes advantage of the endless activities the Front Range offers. The Front Range is a playground for avid hikers and climbers where she spends much of her free time with friends and family.

Anita supports Colorado Wilderness Rides and Guides with her organization skills and attention to detail. Anita can be found at the head office answering customer calls and ensuring the office is in order. As the office assistant, she strives to ensure every customer experience runs smoothly from start to finish. It is Anita’s goal to guarantee every customer accomplishes their objectives and enjoys a unique experience with nature.

Cindy Gagnon

Diana Sabreen

Robin Meetz

Alex Phillips

Alex Phillips is an avid adventurer. As a teenager he spent summers trekking through Nepal, scuba diving the Red Sea, climbing the peaks of the Cascade, White, and Green Mountains, and canoeing the waterways of Northern Canada. He also spent a winter sailing the Caribbean, and another as first mate to Captain Bligh on a ship that supplied a private island in the Bahamas. Now almost 30, Alex is still an adventurer. In-between summer seasons of guiding fishing, climbing, biking, and backpacking trip; he has spent his last two winters either living on deserted Mexican beaches with nothing but a pile of books and a surfboard, or living in the Rocky Mountains tuning skis to earn money for bread, beer, and lift tickets.

While such lifestyle choices could paint a picture of Alex as a nomadic bum, he is also educated in the formal style. Alex is a graduate of Naropa University with degrees in Contemplative Psychology and Religious Studies. He is a Wilderness EMT and Massage Therapist, and an Integral Coaching Apprentice. After college he worked in a wilderness therapy program where he used the wilderness itself as a therapeutic tool. He brings some of this approach to guiding at CWRAG.

Alex likes guiding for Colorado Wilderness Rides and Guides because he is trusted to facilitate an awesome experience. When a cycling group completes its ride before the pickup time, he can modify the itinerary and continue the adventure. If the client tires of fishing, Alex is prepared to pick raspberries, track animals, teach primitive fire making, etc.. It is in customizing trips for each groups’ particular needs that Alex excels as a professional guide.

Zach Weinzetl

Zach Weinzetl Picture

Zach has over 10 years guiding experience working for outfitters and lodges as well as wilderness programs. At Colorado Wilderness Rides and Guides, Zach primarily guides fly fishing. An avid outdoorsman and wilderness connoisseur, Zach spends most of his free time finding the off-the-beaten-path gems of Colorado fly fishing. Growing up in Western Montana, he has an affinity for connecting with nature and experiencing the natural world directly. For Zach, the experience of fly fishing is complete as soon as he puts on his waders, steps into the water, and looks up at the surrounding mountain peaks; catching fish only adds to the adventure.

As a guide, Zach tries to understand his clients’ aspirations and create an experience that they will be talking about for years to come. Zach has a BA in Contemplative Psychology from Naropa University and is an experienced rock climber, mountain biker, kayaker, back packer, and of course, angler. He has Wilderness First Responder medical training and takes pride in anticipating potential risks to help clients relax and fully enjoy their experience. It is Zach’s philosophy to always have a rod handy no matter where he goes. He and his fishing equipment travel everywhere together.

Jack Bruner

Michael Ramsey

Anders Carlson

Privacy Policy

Privacy Statement: We respect the privacy of every individual who visits our website. We take great measures to ensure the privacy and confidentiality of any personal information on this site.

Use of Personal Information: All personal information supplied will remain within our organization and will not be shared with any external entity unless prior permission is given. Your personal information will not be sold, distributed or published in any manner whatsoever.

Disclaimer

Coloradowildernessridesandguides.com does not give any warranty or other assurance as to the operation, quality or functionality of the site. Access to the site may be interrupted, restricted or delayed for any reason.

Coloradowildernessridesandguides.com also does not give any warranty or other assurance as to the content of the material appearing on the site, its accuracy, completeness, timelessness or fitness for any particular purpose.

To the full extent permissible by law, Coloradowildernessridesandguides.com disclaims all responsibility for any damages or losses (including, without limitation, financial loss, damages for loss in business projects, loss of profits or other consequential losses) arising in contract, tort or otherwise from the use of or inability to use the Site or any material appearing on Boulderwildernessshuttle.com, or from any action or decision taken as a result of using Coloradowildernessridesandguides.com or any such material. Coloradowildernessridesandguides.com contains links to external sites. Coloradowildernessridesandguides.com is not responsible for and has no control over the content of such sites. Information on Coloradowildernessridesandguides.com, or available via hypertext link from Coloradowildernessridesandguides.com, is made available without responsibility on the part of Coloradowildernessridesandguides.com. Coloradowildernessridesandguides.com disclaims all responsibility and liability (including for negligence) in relation to information on or accessible from Coloradowildernessridesandguides.com.

Contact Us IconYou are hands down the best outfitter in the Boulder area! Matt, September 2009 (Chicago)We had a tour that rivaled the best tours we have been on around the world. The scenery, history, and education was truely splendid. Amil, August 2009 (India)I really needed this time with my son. Thank you for making this wilderness opportunity possible and safe. This was just what the doctor ordered! We can not thank you enough. Claire, July 2009 (Texas)