Your Playground Is Waiting


Adventure and exploration is not one-size-fits-all and cannot be constrained by one type of trip. At Sun Valley Guides, we celebrate adventure of all kinds, all seasons, and by all means. With the most experienced guide staff in Central Idaho, there is no adventure too big or too small for Sun Valley Guides. Be it by ski, board, bike or foot, Sun Valley Guides delivers endless adventure throughout the year, throughout the pristine mountains of Central Idaho, and to bucket-list international destinations. We strive to go beyond the ordinary, providing our customers with limitless options for adventure.



Steeped in the rich tradition of Central Idaho’s first explorers and adventurers,  Sun Valley Guides began in 1982 in step with the creation of one of the first hut systems in America. Bob Jonas launched what was then known as Sun Valley Trekking, a guiding service for those looking to travel deep in the Idaho backcountry. Francie and Joe St. Onge took on the operation of that tradition in the early 2000’s and continued to provide guided access to this extraordinary playground. With an expansion into mountain biking and adventures both near and far, Sun Valley Trekking became Sun Valley Guides in 2018 under the stewardship of longtime local and ski pioneer Zach Crist. The operation has expanded over the years, but our mission remains the same as the day we started, to deliver endless adventure to anyone looking to explore the unmatched beauty of the mountains.


Idaho is a wilderness state with far more public land access than any other state in the lower 48. The storied town of Sun Valley sits at the gateway to this vast expanse of unspoiled beauty and the experienced staff at Sun Valley Guides knows exactly where to take you in any given season, on any given day.  

The Sun Valley Guides permit area extends from the Sawtooth Wilderness, through the Hemingway Boulders Wilderness, the Pioneer and Smoky Mountains. It’s a vast and gorgeous landscape filled with endless adventure opportunities.



We’ve got a cozy new office right in Ketchum, come visit us! We are located on the North end of Ketchum, next door to Hotel Ketchum, opposite Backwoods Mountain Sports, at 650 N. Main St. Ketchum ID 83340. Feel free to call 208-721-0290 for booking options or email us at



Sun Valley Guides is proud to work with our brand partners. It is partnerships and friendships that inspire us to continue to strive for guiding excellence.



Sun Valley has a long and beautiful history when it comes to experienced guides sharing their mountain savvy with adventurous souls.  Florian Hammerle set the tone when he built the Pioneer Cabin in 1937.  In 1982, Bob Jonas established Sun Valley Trekking’s guide service and built one of the first hut systems in America.  Francie and Joe St Onge bought the company in 2001 and have continued to passionately serve our community with guided access to an extraordinary playground.  Now, it’s my great honor to take Sun Valley Trekking’s guide service forward, leading guests into our local mountains for an experience that is sure to fill their hearts and minds with memorable moments.  

When the Crist family moved to Sun Valley in 1979, I began to familiarize myself with the surrounding mountains through family outings, school trips and good friends who were equally keen to explore this incredible backyard. Skis, bikes, boats and some good hiking shoes became my preferred modes of backcountry travel. Paddling the Middle Fork and backpacking in the Sawtooth’s are some of my earliest memories of Idaho adventure. These trips taught me a great deal of respect for the mountains here in Idaho and the wonderful culture that thrives beneath.

A mountain landscape so vast and spectacular beckons experienced guides and I’ve been fortunate to work alongside many of these great professionals at Sawtooth Mountain Guides and Sun Valley Heli Ski for the last 15 years.  They inspired me to commit myself to the American Mountain Guides Association curriculum, which is a very thorough and worthy education.  We now have 5 fully certified AMGA ski guides on our staff.  With Sun Valley Trekking expanding beyond the scope of skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing and hiking, to include mountain biking, it seemed an appropriate time to change the name to Sun Valley Guides.  

Aside from a new name, a fresh logo and our new Main Street location, little else has changed.  A few local professionals have been added to the roster in an effort to bring even more experience to the team, helping better serve our guests with extraordinary adventures. On any given day, there’s a phenomenal adventure to be had around here.  Sun Valley Guides knows right where to find it and just how to serve it.  We look forward to taking you and your friends out and about for an experience that will fill you up with Idaho joy! 

Sincerely yours,

Zach Crist