SINCE 1998

The Professional Association of Wilderness Guide and Instructors (PAWGI) was founded in February 1998 in order to establish standards within the wilderness guiding industry in Canada. In the Summer of 1998, the first Certified Wilderness Guide course was completed in the Donjek region of Kluane National Park and Reserve, in the Yukon Territory, Canada.

In 2012, PAWGI was formally registered as a non-profit professional association and certification agency under the Canada Not-for-profit Corporations Act (Federal Registration Number 802766-8, Canada Business Number 835317306, U.S. Trademark Registration Number 4001880, Canada Trademark Registration Number 792036).

PAWGI is the only professional wilderness guiding association in the Americas with formal agreements with other agencies and associations in Africa and Europe

PAWGI has published the only wilderness guiding manual in Canada (ISBN: 9780981174693). PAWGI has also developed environmental guidelines for various agencies, including Public Works Canada, and published various other resources pertaining to wilderness guiding. PAWGI published high standards have ensured an impeccable track record among certification holders worldwide for almost two decades. Overall, PAWGI standards have ensured a level of safety and professionalism no other association or agency has managed to achieve to date.


Since 1998, PAWGI has grown to become the only wilderness guiding association in the world with partnership agreements in the United States, Canada, Africa, South and Central AmericaEurope, as well as Scandinavia, offering PAWGI members unmatched work mobility and professional recognition. 


PAWGI certified guides and instructors also work, or run their own guiding companies, all over the world, including Africa, Belgium, BrazilCanada, Costa RicaDenmark, Finland, France, Iceland, Italy, New Zealand, NicaraguaPanama, the United Kingdom, the United StatesNorway, and Sweden.


In 2016, the Professional Association of Wilderness Guides and Instructors became the first industry association in the world to offer no fee membership to his certification holders.