Boulder offers such unparalleled access to nature that, at times, it can be overwhelming. How do you get into rock climbing, backcountry skiing or mountain biking, without any experience? Sure, you can ask a friend to lend you some gear and take you out, but that’s not always an option, nor is it always the safest plan.
A new platform called 57Hours wants to help you make the most of your precious weekend time by connecting you with the best, certified guides in the business. Whether you want to try surfing while you’re on vacation or go rock climbing closer to home, the platform can help.
Simply select an adventure from the website’s dropdown menu, then enter your preferred location. Or choose “All Adventures” to see what’s available in a specific region. Voila, you’ll see a list of guided adventures you can book on the site. There’s even information about each individual guide, as well as a variety of pricing options depending on the duration of the experience and other factors.
In Boulder, you can book a guide for a women’s climbing camp, a climbing excursion on The Flatirons or a climbing adventure in Boulder Canyon. In Colorado more broadly, you can hire a guide to hike Longs Peak with you, or take you mountain biking in places like Fruita, Crested Butte and Aspen.
We chatted with 57Hours’ founder Viktor Marohnic to get the scoop on what this platform is all about.
What’s the story behind 57Hours? What inspired you to launch the platform?
The transformative effect of being outdoors is the reason we created 57Hours. We want to make outdoor sports and adventures available to everyone, anywhere in the world, all while fueling a new generation of more mindful people. We also seek to help independent guides make a living doing what they love. 57Hours provides a platform for guides to offer their trips to an excited audience, fueling the creativity that is benefiting both guides and a new generation of adventurers.
What does the name 57Hours mean? Where does it come from?
There are 57 hours from 3:00 pm, Friday, to midnight, Sunday. For years, we maximized those hours, skipping out on work early at the end of the week, packing the car with gear, driving off to climb, hike, ski, run or sail, and returning late Sunday, tired, happy and fully recharged. 57Hours is a nod to the fellow weekend warriors out there.
What problems does 57Hours solve? What voids does it fill?
If you want to go out for a day of climbing or skiing with a guide, most people don’t know where to start. And once you do find a certified guide, it might take dozens of email threads and phone calls before you confirm a trip. 57Hours has streamlined this process so that booking a guided adventure can be as easy as ordering an Uber or reserving an Airbnb.
It’s also a great resource for discovering outdoor adventures. Most people have never heard of trips like skiing and sailing in Norway or hiking the hidden trails of Iceland. 57Hours hopes to be a point of inspiration for booking some of these bucket-list adventures of a lifetime.
What’s the process like for guides and what should they know about working with the platform? What’s in it for them?
It takes 10-15 years for a guide to build a client list that allows them to book enough work to make a living. We speed up that process by providing marketing and audience reach for guides so they can focus on creating the most amazing adventures all over the world.
Can you share a bit more about some of the social/sustainability initiatives you have in place with the company?
We recently joined 1% For The Planet and are also working with AccessFund and POW-Canada. This involves donating 1% of our gross sales to environmental non-profits and choosing an environmental partner for each trip we promote, who will receive a portion of those proceeds. We also run 100% carbon neutral whenever possible and the rest we offset with contributions to climate change initiatives. Our servers run carbon-free, our adventures are all human-powered and our guides educate around “Leave No Trace” methods and how to be environmentally conscious in the outdoors. We also want to make an impact on diversity in the outdoors. We are starting an education fund to support guides’ training and certification, especially BIPOC and female guides.
What else do you want people to know?
Our biggest goal is to make the outdoors more accessible to all. Whether you’re exploring a new location for the first time, interested in trying a new sport or hoping to improve at an existing hobby, 57Hours will connect you with the best fit guide for your needs and skill level.