Current Transportation: 2001 Ford Ranger with a dirtbag suite for two
Core Activities: Alpine climbing, ski-mountaineering, rock climbing, ice climbing
Non-Core Activities: Guiding, working on the board of directors at American Certified Guides Cooperative, crab fishing with family, avy education
Favorite Places: Alaska, Bugaboos, Washington Pass, Chamonix, Italian Limestone
My Jam Is: Folks say I don't like music, I just like loud guitars.
I Eat Lots Of: Meals in European huts while guiding
Fun Fact: I'm not weird, I'm just nice.
Mark is native to Washington. He was raised by wolves in the North Cascades where he was introduced to alpine climbing and deep powder skiing. After closing his geophysics textbook for the last time, he joined the league of homeless, car-dwelling, nomadic, mountain guides and began lapping countless classics with clients in the Cascades and the High Sierra. After a decade of hopping from crag to glacier, Mark received his IFMGA/AMGA guiding certification and now is the director of his own boutique guide service, The Mountain Bureau LLC, a booking network for climbing and ski touring trips worldwide. Mark calls Ballard, Wash., home.
This mid-layer puff is hard to pass up. Potential for 365 days of use from a desert puffy to ski touring, this layer is extremely versatile, great for dry or wet zones. Try it out. I'm probably wearing it right now (and I literally am while typing this).
This glove makes the cut on a number of occasions to protect my hands from snow and ice yet maintain dexterity. This is a perfect mid-weight glove for 4,000-meter peaks and technical ascents where performance is needed. It's a go-to. Check it out.
Building A Backcountry Ski Paradise In Kashmir
Mountain guide Mark Allen helps build the local avy education network—and discovers a cold smoke Shangri-la. [Read More]
How To Layer Like A Pro In Winter
Mountain guide Mark Allen breaks down the science behind the layers he chooses. [Read More]
Video: When Rescue Isn’t An Option
A storm keeps Mark and Sheldon's plane from picking them up. Hunger, bears and avalanches are imminent. What now? [Read More]
The Guide’s Guide To Layering For Ski Touring, Part 3 of 3: Putting It All Together
Guide Mark Allen shows how to put layers together to stay warm in the backcountry. [Read More]
The Guide’s Guide To Layering For Ski Touring, Part 2 of 3: Intro To Outdoor Textiles
Guide Mark Allen shares pro layering tips for backcountry skiers. [Read More]
The Guide’s Guide To Layering For Ski Touring, Part 1 of 3
Guide Mark Allen's pro layering tips for backcountry skiers [Read More]
Into The Khumbu: Ama Dablam
21,000ft and moving too fast. It has been three years since I have been exposed to the altitude of the Himalaya and the feelings are all coming back to me. Getting to easier climbing terrain for the… [Read More]
Ski Tribes of the San Juans
Ski cultures are territorial, especially the old ones. The locals band up like gorillas claiming large swaths of alpine territory. The troops get protective when others invade. Guarding the stash can… [Read More]
Getting Pinned: An IFMGA Aspirant in Chamonix
Every time I drive into the North Cascades National Park I read a park sign that says “The North Cascades-The Alps of America.” This has always struck a spiteful chord in my dark side and I have… [Read More]