Éric Kirouac – Guide and instructor
Eric holds a certification as a hiking guide from the Association of Canadian Mountain Guide (ACMG) as well as a level 3 training in alpine technique. His vast experience in the mountains allows him to teach mountaineering techniques with a master’s hand.
“It was in 1980 at the Paul Comptois school in Laval and I was in 3rd year. The teacher asks us “OK friends, I would like you to draw me what you want to do in life.”After a few minutes , the teacher goes from student to student, mentioning what the drawing represents, “you want to be a veterinarian, OK I think you want to become a nurse, here we have a future firefighter. Eric, I don’t understand your drawing. “I, who had nevertheless applied myself to making a beautiful stick figure drawing to reply,” That madam are mountains and that is me, later I want to play in the mountains “.
Thankfully, Eric is much better at being a mountaineer than an artist!
François-Xavier Bleau – Guide and instructor
François-Xavier has been an adventure guide since the early 2000s. He has accompanied hundreds of travellers on all continents and has managed to make a living from his passion ever since. He is the founder of the Terra Ultima trekking travel agency which he managed for 10 years. Now a freelance guide, he focuses on initiating and teaching rock climbing. Efix (FX) is a Certified Hiking / winter hiking Guide and Top Rope Climbing Instructor (TRCI) certified by the ACMG. He pushes for the professional recognition of adventure guides in Quebec in order to achieve the most demanding standards at the pan-Canadian level. A seasoned mountaineer, mountaineering and rock climbing are a personal passion that has taken him to some of the highest peaks on the planet, such as Manaslu, Aconcagua, Elbrus, Denali and Lenin Peak.
How did you start at LLNS? Friend and colleague of Léopold Laliberté for a long time, I have shared several big expeditions with him as guides for years. Our common passion has led us to work together for his mountain and climbing school.
My recent favorite is Les Dames de Coeur section in Val-David. Less known compared to others, it offers several beautiful options accessible in trad, sport route and top rope. Plus, it’s a few minutes from my house by bike!
Next Project: Raise my level in traditional rock climbing to someday aim for the ACMG Assistant Rock Guide level. I will do this for purely personal reasons and to prove to myself that I can have this expertise and this rigour.
Your philosophy as a climber? To make this sport as accessible as possible while making people autonomous and responsible for the safety and the spirit of the sport. To have fun, to want to discover new places, and to be in fusion with nature and the friends who share this passion.
Certifications: Hiking Guide, Winter Hiking guide and TRCI ACMG. First responder Sirius (80h), CSA 1 and 2 Avalanche Canada.