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Why “Private” Rules the Day

When we opened our doors here at Redline Guiding we honestly figured we’d be like everyone else in this industry in that we’d try to pack as many people into our groups as humanly possible so as to maximize profits. But that, as it turns out, really isn’t who we are, nor is it how we operate on the day-to-day. We lead private tours, like 99% of the time. We cater to individuals. We provide personalized attention and agendas that fit. We regularly earn heart emojies. And though we can’t officially add it to our written policies, we try our level best to be flexible and not demand that this crappy day is your crappy day. Granted, sometimes that has to happen. If we or our guest can’t be flexible, it is what it is and we attempt to do what we set out to do. Barring safety concerns, of course, in which case we pivot on a dime and do something safer.

Or, we just keep trying to nail down a day that works. This, in particular, is generally the case for objective-based adventures. A classic example is Huntington Ravine. If people hire us to guide them or be their knowing companion on the Huntington Ravine Trail, for example, we’re not going to do it when it’s wet and even more dangerous than usual. So, unless our guest cannot do it on another day forcing us to pick another objective instead, we will keep right on re-scheduling the activity until it happens. This most recent trip to Huntington Ravine is a classic example. The trip must have been called for weather three times — the result of all those July rains — before Redline Guide Will Murphy and guest finally sent the route on a hot but clear August day. As Will puts it…

We had been waiting for a favorable weather window and when it finally came, it afforded a spectacular opportunity to hike/climb The Huntington Ravine Trail. July was a rainy month and our guest and I rescheduled this trip a number of times. Finally it synched. It would be a warm day, but it was clear, calm, and beautiful.
We started early to beat the heat at the lower elevations pacing ourselves into the ravine, knowing that the hard stuff was ahead: ‘The Slabs’ and ‘The Chimney.’ After getting past ‘The Fan,’ we took a break at The Slabs reviewing techniques that would make it safer. Our guest handled it well. Moving forward was The Chimney. On the way, we were sure to soak in the views of the beauty and ruggedness of this alpine setting. This is a secluded area and we enjoyed every step and view we could.
Our guest was eager to take on the Chimney as he had prepared himself physically and mentally to do this. He was eager to complete the Huntington Ravine Trail. Topping out to the Alpine Garden, the summit was in reach. He had been there before and wanted to experience the Alpine Garden, so after lunch (and considering ourselves fortunate to be where we were) we traversed the Garden to descend back to Pinkham Notch via the Lion Head Trail. Our guest was well prepared to take on this challenge and it showed in the outcome of the day! Well done! —Will Murphy

Will’s summary does just that: it summarizes the lengths we go to to get the job done. Do note in this story who the day was all about. That’s right, our private guest. Driving home the point that private tours rule the day just for this reason, to start. We have no doubt we have the full agreement of past guests with whom we’ve been able to make their day be about them.

Will also took a bunch of photos and short video clips we were able to piece together into the little video keepsake (thanks):

Great job one and all finally making this one a reality. Thank you for choosing Redline Guiding to lead your adventure.

NOTE: Often times rescheduling, especially without a ton of advance notice, is costly and complex, and puts undue burden on us and our resources. We had to add this disclaimer because we obviously can’t reschedule just anything for anyone and for any reason — which is why it’s not written policy. We try our best.

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