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Rob Gowler

Date of Surgery: 8/8/2011
Update (3/2013): Rob is guiding full-time and will return to Alaska for the climbing season. He is training for the Wasatch 100 as well.

About Rob

I have based out of Jackson Wyoming since 1992.  I moved to Wyoming from Maine because of the skiing and the alpine climbing.  I spent most of my time skiing in the Tetons as opposed to the resort.  I have always been more of a ski mountaineer despite my ski racing background.  Now I live between Talkeetna Alaska, Jackson Wyoming and Moab Utah.  Not much has changed since the early 90’s.  I still love to climb and ski, although now I try to add a little surfing and kite surfing into the mix when I can.  I spend much of the time living out of a converted school bus so I can live comfortably while I travel around climbing, skiing, guiding, surfing and kiting

Career Background

I got into guiding because of my obsession with climbing and skiing.  Before guiding I had worked random jobs so I could spend a lot of time on the road climbing.  2012 will be my 18th year guiding.  I have done everything from teaching glacier travel crevasse rescue courses for an outdoor college, snow safety and avalanche forecasting for the World Extreme Ski Championships, Ski mountaineering guiding, avalanche education, I am a senior guide for Jackson Hole Mountain guides, chief guide, operations and staffing director for the Alaska Mountaineering School.  I have guided all over North and South America.  I plan on guiding for a long time into the future.  I have a great client base and work for the best people in the industry.  My fellow guides and friends who own the companies I work for are family.  Mountain guiding is the best job in the world in so many ways, I can’t see doing anything else any time soon.

“Rob Gowler is one of AMS’ core lead guides who gets our toughest assignments.”

–Colby Coombs, Owner/Guide AMS

Treatment Procedure and Recovery Plan

When I injured my knee at the end of July 2011 I wasn’t sure what I was going to do.  I was more than likely going to go back to Mexico to get surgery since I have no health insurance.  I talked to some of my doctor friends on the phone and they could tell that I had torn my MCL.  It was through The Steadman Clinic that I learned of the Kees Brenninkmeyer Foundation.  I underwent an MCL repair on my right knee with 6 months of physical therapy.


"As a recipient I can tell you that it IS true and there are absolutely no strings attached. When they say that they will pay for 100% of the surgery and all associated costs they mean it. I went to physical therapy everyday for the first 2 + months and they covered that no problem. I continue to go to PT as often as the doc recommends. I was put up for a week post surgery in Vail until I was ready to drive back home. I have switched locations a couple of times since my surgery and had to reschedule different therapists and they are fine with that too. Their only goal is to do what is best for the patients at any expense. Without the help from the foundation I can say with certainty that I would not be looking nearly as good as I do for a prompt return at 100%. All I can say is Thank You for all of your help!"

- Rob Gowler