What drives you to explore and encounter the outdoors?
Having a deep and reverent love for nature was instilled in me at a very young age. I grew up with two brothers on a large lake next to a woodland area. My brothers and I spent every waking moment outside fishing, exploring and building forts and play areas in the woods. The lessons and insights nature taught me as a child, drew me to study Forestry and Environmental Science as an adult in college. Learning the science behind the natural worlds existence helped me not only to see deeper, but also to respect and care for the wild places I love and call home with every bone in my body. At the end of the day, I always try to give more than I’ve taken, and that’s what drives me to keep exploring and loving the natural world.
What’s your idea of the ultimate time outdoors?
I love the simplicity and hard work of human powered adventures. I find I have the most intimate connection with nature when I am moving right there along with her. Day to day I love to run, hike and walk out my back door and just experience being present in space. It’s not super radical, but it reminds me why I live the simple life I do. For a little more adventure I try and do at least two solo multi-day backpacking trips each summer. It’s the moments that I’m in the high alpine terrain by myself that I feel the most connected with the person I am and the person I want to be.
How do you find time to get outside?
I make sure to get outside every single day. I feel lucky that I have the ability to plan and schedule my days as I see fit. As soon as I have achieved everything I’ve set out goal wise for my work day, I’ll pack a backpack with my camera, an extra jacket, a thermos of tea and hit the trail with my two dogs. Being outside is essential to both my work and my person, so while it is fun and rejuvenating, a lot of the time I am actually working when I’m outside; whether that be photographing, writing, sketching or just drawing inspiration for my designs from the natural world around me.
Do you have any tips for packing for the outdoors?
Less is more. But bring extra batteries and give yourself the freedom to bring one frivolous item. Mine is always a book.
What do you never leave home without when you’re headed to enjoy the outdoors?
My sketchbook, camera and my two crazy dogs!
What are your favorite foods to have on hand while fishing, hiking or camping?
Sausage, whiskey and fresh caught trout!
Cutthroat trout. It was the first trout I ever caught on a fly-rod and fell in love with their beautiful coloring.