EWES is an abbreviation of European Wilderness Education School, an nonprofit association registered in Spain. EWES is a WGA certified training institute and its professional education courses are accredited by the Institute of La Pobla de Segur in Catalunya. EWES is a WGA certified School. Besides, EWES offers a wide range of short courses and operates on an international level. 

The Wilderness Guide Association (WGA) is an international organization founded in Finland with member and certified training institutes all over the world. It provides and promotes a high standard for responsible and sustainable wilderness guiding in a wide variety of environments, climates and activities. 

In order to fulfill its mission the Wilderness Guide Association will:

  • Provide and promote high standard for environmentally and culturally responsible wilderness services
  • Promote responsible and sustainable use and protection of wilderness areas
  • Provide certification for guides and organizations that meet our high standards
  • Provide networking-structures for our members, potential clients and other interest groups
  • Provide services and benefits for our members
  • Create and distribute information and material to improve the training and the level of wilderness guiding
  • Promote the Wilderness Guide Association.

The Wilderness Guide Level 1, 2 and WAFA courses are fully English spoken. All communications, manuals, assignments and teachings are in English.

Nevertheless, Spanish spoken courses and workshops are being offered.

Generally speaking, a B1 level would be sufficient but a successful participation highly depends on the learner’s personal motivation and communications skills. The level of language skills is the responsibility of the student and will not be evaluated prior to participation, please contact the EWES team in case of doubt.

Already possessing basic navigation, survival and guiding skills will help to optimize the offered learnings since you can build your knowledge onwards. But ¨old¨ knowledge and skills sometimes come in the way of open minds and block new insights rather than use them for growth. We have learned through observation that the key for successful learning does not find its base in previous skills but in an open mindset, willingness to learn and flexibility towards changing and challenging conditions.

We will create conditions where learners can experience their own challenges, this is the zone where the magic is and deep learning takes place. We will always meet the learners where they are and from a place of care inviting them into the learning zone and the plane of new possibilities. The experience is always adapted to the particular level of the learners and continuously evaluated. You certainly do not need to be an athlete but a good healthy body and being soul-connected is coherent with the work as a wilderness guide and therefore highly promoted by EWES. Sleep well, eat healthy and stay away from additives as much as possible, this combined with a regular daily exercise, even only walking one hour per day would be suficiente for participation.

Yes, if you participate in the EWES Wilderness Guide Level 1 course you will receive the following certificates: 

  • WAFA Certificate (valid for 3 years)
  • Adventure Tracker Certificate
  • Wilderness Guide Level 1 certificate

A Wilderness Guide is not a protected profession in most of the countries. It is important to study the legal situation in each of the countries where you want to work as a Wilderness Guide to comply with local regulations.

An International Mountain Leader (IML) has been trained and assessed against the challenging requirements of UIMLA. Each country regulates the local competencies and might have legal variations. The competencies of an IML is focused on the skills required to lead parties in mountainous areas, including snow-covered type terrain of the “middle” mountains but excluding via ferrata, glaciers and terrain requiring alpine techniques.

A Wilderness Guide has completed training in an institute certified by the Wilderness Guide Association (WGA) or has been assessed against the competencies and requirements of the WGA.  


The W.G.A. is categorizing regions for wilderness guide specializations based on the Walter Biome classification system.

While more defined classifications are available, we feel that the following is sufficient for our purposes: https://wildernessguidesassociation.com/w-g-a-eco-regions/

Specific and pronounced Mountain areas are excluded from its competences. The level 2 and 3 specialization focuses on soft skills, leadership and hard skills specific to the ecozones rather than general mountain skills. 

When starting your participation for a WG1 course, EWES will sign you up for a one year free membership as aspiring WGA guide. This means you are still learning but planning to become a future WGA member. 

After completing the entire course successfully a certificate of EWES for the Wildrenes Guide Level 1 is obtained. Optionally, the student can opt to do their practical period of 28 days of duration. EWES does not require the practical period for the WG1 certification, but is an additional requirement to request a WGA membership. The final membership is requested directly to the WGA, EWES is an independent association and not responsible for the process. Please visit www.wildernessguidesassociation.com for more information.

The student can choose which module to include in it´s Wilderness Guide Level 1 program, either the Cold or the Arid module. This is suficiente for the WGA certification. In addition, the other remaining module may or may not be added optionally at a discounted price.

No, to access the next level of a particular environment, you need to finish the previous level: to take the WG2 Arid you need the WG1 Arid module, and to do the WG2 Artic you need the WG1 Cold module.

EWES has a broad network of partners and former students, this community creates new business opportunities all the time and is a good starting point for new professional contacts. The EWES team will also advise to find the best option for the specific needs of the student. But ultimately the student is responsible himself for finding and contracting the best placement for him or her. 

The practical period has a total of 28 days: 3 days may be counted for preparation and a minimum 15 out of 25 remaining days under supervision of a WGA certified guide.

EWES expects a detailed audiovisual description of all the days of the practical period and a written evaluation of the supervising WGA guide.

EWES expects a detailed audiovisual description of all the days of the practical period and a written evaluation of the supervising WGA guide.

No, normally this is not possible. But our core team will always take a moment to evaluate exceptions in case extensive professional experiences can be proved and motivated. 

Send an email to info@ewes.earth or contact us by the online form on the website. You will be sent a digital questionnaire that needs to be filled, this contains personal data and motivation, all the forms will be treated strictly confidential and be destroyed after course completion. Our intention is to have a personal intake call with each of the students but due to time constraints and traveling this might not always be possible. After this call payment instructions will be sent and after receiving the deposit your placement is assured.

Please visit our reservation conditions on the website for details on this matter.

Per email to info@ewes.earth


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