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Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides

Yosemite National Park, CA, USA
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About Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides
SYMG is a leader in the active travel and mountain guiding world, providing carefully planned and executed trips in the most spectacular wilderness areas of California. SYMG was started in 1991 by three friends offering hiking trips into California's mountains in hopes of more closely meshing lifestyle with work. Now, over 25 years later, we've shown thousands of people the beauty of Yosemite and the High Sierra and have been named one of the "Best Outfitters on Earth" by National Geographic Adventure Magazine.
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My sister and I did SYMG's Yosemite Grand Traverse (Stock-Supported) this August. We have both done a few stock-supported trips in the Sierra Nevada (e.g. MT-Sobek's Southern JMT, Reds Meadow/Ansel Adams, Sierra Club/Rock Creek) over the years - and this was among the best
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Pace of the hike was set by the top hikers in the group as fast as 4 miles per hour. If you are an average hiker, most of the hike you will be alone, sometimes miles between hikers. The fitness level needed to keep up is a half marathon pace of 1 hour and 45 minutes. If
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Response from Graham O, General Manager at Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides
Responded Nov 7, 2019
Hi BrentT357, I'm sorry to hear about your experience was less than positive. Our guides work very hard to accommodate a variety of hiking paces during our trips. When there are different preferences we will allow those who prefer a faster pace to join the lead guide and those who prefer a slower pace to join the guide at the back of the group. Keeping a guide at the front and back of the group is part of our risk management during the trip and prevents situations like you describe. Beyond this, we also schedule standing and resting breaks throughout the day. I'm also sorry to hear about your opinion of the food. The menu planning and preparation is something our guides take very seriously. They take into account the individual dietary preferences and restrictions of all group members and design a meal plan with that specifically in mind. I'm sorry to hear that the level of spice and quantity of food was not up to your standards. If you have specific feedback I would be happy to forward this to the guides so we can better plan in the future. Please let us know if we can make it up to you in the future. We would appreciate the opportunity. Thanks again BrentT357. Sincerely, Graham Ottley General Manager
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We thoroughly enjoyed our back country experience without the stress of carrying a heavy pack, getting the permits, or cooking meals. Having knowledgeable guides made the hiking and camping experience easy. Our mule handler was happy to accept help, but didn’t require it. The
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Response from Graham O, General Manager at Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides
Responded Aug 16, 2019
Thank you for taking the time to write this HikerPilatesGirl! We are so glad to hear that you had such an unforgettable trip of a lifetime! Please let us know if you would like to begin planning another trip with us! Sincerely, Graham
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Took a four day tour with them. Guides were really wonderful and it was a decent, assisted camping trip. However, for the outrageous price the company charged (well over $2k per person!) we were expecting to have mules with us, be able to camp where we wanted (not next to other
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Response from Graham O, General Manager at Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides
Responded Aug 1, 2019
Dear Ms Anja Manuel- We feel terrible you were disappointed and once again apologize for you not feeling like you got enough value on the trip. We have strived to offer our guests experiences that are unique, have value, are safe and fun for over 28 years now and typically hit the mark. We aren't saying you didn't feel this way, but to say we are "intent on gouging our customers," is off the mark and not at all our intention. As a local company we very much rely on our reputation which has been built on successfully executing trips in remote wilderness areas such as the one you chose. As discussed before and now after your trip when you called in, the pricing for private versions of our trips are tier based on the number of people. With smaller group sizes the rate does increase as we don’t see the same economies of scale, compared to our scheduled trips which often sell full. We work very hard to outline this information in our Complete Pre Trip Information Packet that was sent to everyone. We also hope that our flexibility with regards to our policies was appreciated surrounding your husband's cancellation. Of course we were very sorry that he wasn't able to join us. Ultimately, we hope that the experiences and memories made in Yosemite's wilderness with your children and friends were meaningful and valuable. Thanks again Anja. ]Sincerely, Graham
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As part of our Yosemite holiday our teenage daughters had an afternoon’s private rock climbing lesson with SYMG. Daniel was the instructor. He was exactly the right level of supportive vs encouraging and the girls had such a fun time. We were taken to a really secluded rocky
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Response from Graham O, General Manager at Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides
Responded Aug 16, 2019
Thank you for taking time to leave this review! We are glad to hear that you had a great afternoon with our Rock Guide Daniel. Please let us know if you have any future trips planned to the area. Thanks again! Cheers, Graham
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