Zeb Blais

About: Zeb’s feet are covered with Darn Tough socks and a pair of ski boots or mountaineering boots most of his waking hours. As a ski and mountain guide, he loves the challenges of helping other people move safely and efficiently in the mountains almost as much as he loves moving in the mountains in his free time. Avalanche courses, mountaineering seminars and international expeditions are his bread and butter.  He is an AIARE (American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education) certified Level 1 course leader and Level 2 instructor and is working his way through the AMGA (American Mountain Guides Association) certification process.

In the summer, Zeb lives in Washington state where he guides mountaineering trips and skills seminars on Mount Rainier, the North Cascades, and Denali for RMI Expeditions. Fall, winter and spring are split between California’s Lake Tahoe and Eastern Sierra and various places with good skiing, ice climbing or rock climbing. 2014 was the first winter in eight years in which he returned to his home state of Vermont for a stint of amazing New England ice climbing.

Zeb Blais, Darn Tough, Vermont

Kudos: Zeb traversed Tajikistan’s Fedchenko Glacier in 2014, one of world’s longest glaciers outside of the polar regions. During the trip he traveled 400km (250 miles) on dirt, snow, ice and river in temperatures ranging from -25F to 85F while carrying way too much gear. Before the trip, he organized a clothing drive to donate warm clothing to people in communities of the Pamir mountains. With Turkish Airlines checking the clothing donations for free, Zeb’s team was able to give out 350 pounds of clothes to the Pamiri people.

Zeb has skied on 3 other continents besides Asia, and is interested in guiding you on ski trips to the other 3. Guiding and personal climbing has taken him to the summits of Denali, Aconcagua, Cotopaxi, Pico de Orizaba, Mount Rainier 45 times and a host of other spectacular places.

On the Socks: It is important to have an indestructible pair of socks on a long expedition. If your socks can’t take the abuse of running shoes full of rocks and sand, river crossings and long days in ski boots then chances are your feet are going to have issues. If your feet have issues, chances are you’re not going to be able to complete your objective. If you can’t complete your objective, and your objective is traversing a large glacier, chances are you’re going to be stuck in the middle of that glacier. And that’s not where you want to be is it?