Our Climbing Guides

Chockstone Guides are committed professionals. Each brings a wealth of diverse experience to our team. Our lead Smith Rock guide staff and instructors are American Mountain Guide Association certified or trained. Chockstone Climbing Guides strive for the best formal training available combined with diverse personal rock climbing experience. We are all local to the region and enjoy sharing our knowledge and our appreciation through many years of climbing together and guiding in Central Oregon.


Lead Guides

Jim Ablao

AMGA Certified Rock Guide, Certified Rock Instructor, AMGA SPI Provider


Jim Ablao has been guiding throughout the western US since 1989 and a climbing guide at Smith Rock State Park since 1999. Over the years he has earned certification as an AMGA Rock Instructor and Rock Guide, he is also an AMGA Single Pitch Instructor Program Provider, SPI Provider Trainer and AMGA Climbing Wall Instructor Program Provider. He began climbing thirty-five years ago and still exudes a refreshing enthusiasm and passion for climbing, teaching and adventure. He climbs rock, ice and summits throughout the mountains and deserts of the US. His climbing has also taken him to summits and cliffs of Argentina, Chile, S Korea, Mexico and Canada. He has taught and guided diverse terrain with many schools and programs including twelve years with the Colorado Outward Bound School, six years as a guide manager and many years with various “youth at risk” and therapeutic programs. Jim brings diverse experience, his empowering and personalized teaching style into every guiding. Jim lives in Bend with his wife and two daughters.

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“It’s always a pleasure to spend a day climbing with Jim. His professional style and AMGA Certification make me feel safe, while his patience and enthusiasm encourages me to climb routes that I wouldn’t attempt on my own. Each day with Jim gives me a sense of adventure and accomplishment.”  -Gerd Hoeren, Client, Lake Oswego, Oregon

Gabe Coler

AMGA Certified Rock Guide, AMGA American Mountain Guide

AMGA SPI Instructor

Gabe began climbing in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts in his early years, eventually making rock and ice ascents all over New England.

After moving west for college, he cut his teeth in most of the major western climbing areas including: a free ascent of The NorthWest Face of Half Dome, alpine ascents throughout the Cascades, test-piece alpine climbs in the Canadian Rockies and the French Alps.

Gabe has been climbing at Smith Rock since 1999, and has been guiding there since 2003. Gabe is an American Mountain Guide.  AMGA Certified Rock, Alpine, Ski and AIARE Level II.

Gabe inspires those around him through his teaching style, personality and his humble attitude towards climbing.

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“Gabe was friendly, helpful and fun to be with. He paid attention to my strengths and weaknesses and helped me. I would very much enjoy climbing with him again. I learned a lot more in one day with Gabe than I did on two past multi-day courses.”  – R. Goeser

2018 Climbing Instructors  & Assistant Guides

Taylor Nause

AMGA Certified SPI
Taylor came to Central Oregon in 2014 from Greenwood Mississippi.  Since 2012, Taylor has been climbing and skiing throughout the Northwest. He shares his time climbing with skiing the backcountry, baking, photography and most recently sailing.  Taylor is a Certified SPI and AIARE II.
What inspires me about climbing?
Being able to look at the environment from a different vantage point.
What do you love about Guiding?
Have the opportunity to take people on there first climbing experience and seeing their excitement.

Jeff Struck

AMGA Certified SPI

Brady Kendrick

AMGA Certified SPI
Brady grew up in the small town of Graham, TX. After college in 2010, he moved out to Summit County, Colorado where he began coaching a youth climbing team and leading climbing trips outdoors. In 2012 Brady and his wife moved into a van for a year in a half. They toured the western U.S., climbing, enjoying our National Parks, and city shopping for their next home. In 2014, they moved to Bend, Oregon and Brady started guiding for Chockstone Climbing Guides. High off the ground, building anchors and staring out at the amazing scenery reminds Brady of how much he loves making Smith Rock State Park his office. For the past 12 years, climbing has brought his life a new level of adventure, new places to explore, and new friends along the way. If Brady is not climbing on his free time then there is probably some powder in the mountains to ski, or he has been put to work by his wife on a new house project. Brady is rewarded by the satisfaction of facilitating a climber to face their fears, learn new skills, and accomplish their goals.


Sean Chiasson

AMGA Certified SPI

Sarah Regan

AMGA Certified SPI

Todd Merrill

AMGA Certified SPI

Dearric Winchester

AMGA Certified SPI

Jeff Eddington

AMGA Certified SPI

Robbie Ahmann

AMGA Certified SPI

Dana Bartus

Ed Roberts