TCI Climbing Program for Entry-Level Tree Workers


Jepson testimonialNo climbing experience necessary!

Length of program  5 full days

Location Taught in Atlanta, Georgia and Jacksonville, Florida. 

Maximum class size  3 students. Personal instruction!

Tree work is difficult and extremely dangerous. There is no middle ground when you work in the trees. What you do is either right or it's wrong – with potentially disastrous results. That's why worker safety is our first concern and primary emphasis. Throughout our program, students learn the right way to do things as well as the right things to do so they are safe and their work is competent and efficient.

Most of our students have never climbed a tree with a rope and saddle. No worries. First you'll learn everything you need to climb safely; then we'll teach you more advanced techniques and skills that are used daily on the job. While some theory is taught, our emphasis is on practical, hands–on training. Most of your class time is spent in or under a tree. And, due to our small class size, you'll get plenty of individual help.

pdfTree Worker Program Outline


Both of our Tree Worker Program instructors are known for their vast knowledge and experience, patience, and ability to communicate clearly.

TreemanPeter Jenkins

In Atlanta:Robert TewsRobert Tews  Peter "Treeman" Jenkins, the founder of TCI, is an ISA-certified arborist with 25 years of accident-free production climbing experience. He has also been teaching tree workers and recreational tree climbers at all skill levels for over 30 years, with no accidents to date. Peter no longer climbs for a living; he now does residential tree inspections for risk and health.

In Jacksonville:  Robert Tews is an ISA-certified arborist and production tree climber with 20 years of injury-free production climbing experience. He has been teaching tree climbers since 1998. He runs Treeventure Services LLC in his home town.


PREREQUISITES: Must be in good health, with weight appropriate to height. Must speak some English.

COST: $1,200 per person, does not include food and lodging. Advance registration and $400 deposit are required to hold your place (deposit is applied to balance, which is due by cash or check on the first day of class). Students who take this program in Atlanta and stay at the TCI Clubhouse or at the motel we suggest in Jacksonville (see Lodging, below) do not need to rent a car for transportation. Talk to us about details.

GEAR: If you don't own gear, we suggest that you NOT purchase it until after you have taken our training, when you'll have a much better idea of what's needed. We have all the gear you need to train with, including all the gear in the pdfTCI Climbing Kit for Entry-Level Tree Workers sold by and WesSpur. However, if you own a saddle, please bring it with you.

SCHEDULING: TCI's class schedule is shown on our calendar. Most of our classes fill up quickly after we announce them. If you see an open class that you can attend, we urge you to sign up for it immediately. Sometimes we can schedule classes upon request as well. Contact us (if emailing, make sure to include your phone number) to see what's possible. A minimum of two students is required for a class to be confirmed. We keep an active waiting list.

PLEASE NOTE:TCI does not teach during the winter months. It's usually just too doggone cold and wet to be able to learn (and teach) comfortably. In February, we will start scheduling our Spring classes. If you want to be placed on our waiting list, please send us an email with your name and phone number, and we'll get in touch with you.

Please read our Cancellation Policy completely.

The success of each TCI class depends upon every student's participation. We schedule a maximum of only three students per course, and we do not overbook. If you don’t show up, your absence has a major impact on us and on people who are waiting to take our training. With that in mind, TCI has the following cancellation policy:

  • If your plans change and you need to cancel, you must call us at least three weeks ahead of time. (We prefer to know as soon as you know.) This gives someone on our waiting list enough time to make travel and personal arrangements to take the course. We will refund your deposit minus a standard $50 cancellation charge if we are able to fill your slot.
  • If you cancel less than three weeks ahead of time, you will forfeit your entire deposit.
  • In the event of a health or family emergency (for which we may require documentation), we will refund your tuition deposit minus our standard $50 cancellation fee.
  • TCI reserves the right to deny future program participation to students who cancel.

Lodging in Atlanta is comfortable and convenient at the TCI Clubhouse, where two days of the program are taught. The Clubhouse kitchen is fully stocked for cooking, and linens are provided. Many restaurants and grocery stores are within easy walking distance. In Jacksonville, we suggest the Aloft Hotel (how about that name?!) close to the Jacksonville airport at 751 Skymarks Drive (904-714-3800). Rates vary depending upon the season. Grocery stores and restaurants are nearby.

Recommended reading: TCI teaches Jeff Jepson's P.R.E.P. system of preparing for tree work. We highly recommend his book, The Tree Climber's Companion, which many arborists consider the "Bible" for tree workers. (It is not necessary to read this book before coming to class.) We also recommend Jepson's two other excellent books, To Fell A Tree and Knots at Work. All three books are available (for a package price if you want all three) onsite in Atlanta, in our website store , and from other vendors.

ISA CEUs: 32.5 in the Practice, Climber Specialist, and Certified Arborist categories are available for this program if you are an ISA-Certified Arborist.

Contact us with inquiries or to register. PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR PHONE NUMBER!



Visitor Login