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Guide Profiles

JOHN ALLISON aka "JD"

Age: Born the same month that John Lennon died.
Hometown: Lawrenceville, IL

     
Description: JD hails from a small farm town in Illinois and eventually attended Southern Illinois University with a Bachelor of Science in Forest Resource Management. His outdoor guiding career started in Alaska and has become a life long pursuit ever since. He joined our crew in 2010 after falling in love with the area while spending his summers fighting Glacier's noxious weeds. JD has a few surprises behind that humble exterior. At 14, he got his black belt in Taekwondo and says he dabbles in playing the banjo (but can he do them at once?).
Favorite Quote: Don't Worry, Be Happy

Favorite Place: Ahern Pass; It is a perfect place to sun bathe naked on the continental divide. I wonder if Joe Cosley did the same?




CAROLYN BEECHER

Age: Eisenhower was President when she was born.
Hometown: CONCORD, MA (Now lives in Ronan, MT)

   
Description: Starting in 1991, Carolyn is one of our most seasoned hiking guides. When she's not in Glacier, she guides in Utah's Bryce and Zion National Parks and the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. She also manages a small map business and maintains acreage around her home in Ronan. Her favorite thing about guiding? "My office has a really big window!!!" Carolyn has been known to swim in natural bodies of Montana water any month of the year (yep, even in the winter).
Favorite Quote (She had a hard time picking so we will go with these two):
"I only went out for a walk, and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in."
~ John Muir
"Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves."
~ Aldo Leopold

Favorite Place: "On the 'Backbone of the World', the continental divide, but I'm not going to tell you exactly where. Then I'd have to kill you" (don't believe her though, she wouldn't hurt a fly).




STACEY BENGSTON

Age: Dan Akroyd shares her birthday.
Hometown: MINNESOTA (Now West Glacier, MT)

   
Description: Stacey is the sweetest person you've ever met! This hiking and rafting extraordinaire's incredible attitude can't help but make you smile. And if you just want to know what bird it is tweeting around the corner - you've found your girl. When not in Glacier, you might see a blur resembling Stacey teaching skiing on the Big Mountain or cycling throughout the Flathead valley.

Favorite Place: Granite Park Chalet. Why Granite? "Why the Granite Glow of course!" Glow on Stacey! How to get there: Stay on your own or let us do the cooking and hear our favorite Granite tales on one of our scheduled 3 day hut hikes or custom hut hike (you choose the dates, length of trip)




ALDEN BLAIZE

Age: The Netherlands were beat by West Germany in the Football World Cup the year he was born.
Hometown: EUGENE, OR (Now Columbia Falls, MT)

   
Description: Alden has spent the better part of a decade of summers hiking and backpacking the wild areas of Glacier when not serving the Park Cafe's world famous pie. Starting at Glacier Guides in 2005, he loves sharing his enthusiasm for the wonders of the park, both on the trail and on the river. Becoming a dad within the past few years has inspired him to share this same love with his daughter as well. When not guiding, Alden snowboards, sells coffee, plays soccer and guitar. Favorite Quote: "A person's maturity consists in having found again the seriousness one has as a child, at play." - Nietzsche

Favorite Place: Hole-In-The-Wall Campground. "My favorite place tends to change every season. Hole-In-The-Wall is one of the most remote and magical places accessed by a trail. Last August we gazed at an unforgettable show as the full moon rose out of the dark silhouette of Thunderbird Mountain and cut through silvery clouds to light the night sky." Join us on a 6 day backpack trip and you may get to experience this gem of Glacier. Updated 2011: His favorite place is now the "summit of Bishop's Cap, because truly exposed...with phenomonal views of the entire Park."




VIAN BORG

Age: Born the same year as the first Corvette.
Hometown: West Glacier, MT/ Daytona Beach, FL

     
Description: Vi grew up locally here in Columbia Falls but left Montana as soon after high school as possible in search of work. She started with American Airlines Ground Passenger Services at 18 and retired in 2003 to go to college. She became a paralegal, but after working in a couple of law offices missed the airlines. She became a flight attendant for a smaller airline for 2 years. Luckily for us, Vi realized she missed the mountains and returned to Montana in 2009, after living for 20 years in Daytona Beach. She spends spring and fall in Florida and winters are spent working and living at Whitefish Mountain Resort (Big Mountain). We are thrilled to have her spend her summers with us working in our office. In her spare time she enjoys traveling and enjoying the vast recreational opportunities in the Flathead Valley and Glacier Park, primarily hiking, rafting, and snowboarding.

Favorite Place: The scenery of the Highline Trail. Join us on one of our every Tuesday hikes or our 3 day huthike to Granite Park Chalet for a chance to enjoy the majestic beauty of this trail.




JENNIFER BULS

Age: Born just after the Blues Brothers made the first appearance on SNL.
Hometown: GREAT FALLS, MT (Now Whitefish, MT)

     
Description: Jennifer joined us in 2002, and has been guiding us down the river and on the trails ever since. Jen is one of our most vivacious guides and has a true passion for Glacier Park. She has also guided in the Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex, the Cabinet Mountains and on the Clark Fork River. Her education is in Forest Resource Management, and boy does she know her plants. When she is not guiding, you can find her rafting on other rivers or rippin' up the slopes on her snowboard in the winter. She also works at our local gear shop and does she know her gear!

Favorite Place: Stoney Indian Pass. She loves the cool breeze after a good climb. Join us for a 6 or 10 day backpack trip and you too could feel the cool breeze!




JUDITH CHRISTIANSEN

Age: The Beatle's album "Abbey Road" was released the year she was born.
Hometown: GERMANY (Now Whitefish, MT)

     
Description: Judith knows the answer! How, where, who, what, and when - Need anything involving the office and Judith can help you out. Judith began working as a lead guide on the rivers and trails with her strength in geology. Over the years she decided she preferred the lively pace of the office and now manages the grand scheduling of all the guides. She still enjoys leading a few day hiking trips a year, especially if the group speaks German. Track her down for the answers, or do your best to catch this hiking, bicycling, and skiing ball of energy.

Favorite Place: Nyack/Coal Creek District: SW Glacier Park. Why? "It's very secluded - nobody there, beautiful scenery, great spot to watch for mountain goats at the head of Beaver Woman Lake. The Nyack Loop makes for a great 3-4 day backpacking trip." Maybe if one hikes like Judith you can complete the loop in 4 days, but it's more likely that once in the Nyack you're going to want to take your time and enjoy it. We explore the Nyack region from time to time on our 4 day and 6 day backpacking trips.




ANDREA "DRE" CAMERON

Age: Born two days after The Rolling Stones begin their "Tattoo You tour" at JFK Stadium in Philadelphia.
Hometown: Born in Ohio, but grew up in Helena, MT.

     
Description: Andrea came to us from Helena, MT. However, if you call her that no one around here will know who you are talking about since we all know her as Dre. This bubbly gal is extremely excited about her dream job of sharing Glacier Park with people. In the winter she works at a wildlife rehabilitation center, and works as a counselor for abused and neglected kids. But what really keeps her busy when she is not hiking is her roller derby hobby (go get em' Dre!). She plans on going back to school one of these days to study wildlife biology.
Favorite Quote: "Chasing angels or fleeing demons, go to the mountains." - Jeffrey Rasley

Favorite Place: "Gunsight Pass is my favorite place in Glacier, because it's where I did my first solo backpacking trip in the Park, and it's where I discovered just how overly-friendly (and sneaky) the mountain goats can be."




JEFF COMPTON

Age: Born just after Jim Morrison was found dead in Paris, France.
Hometown: Seattle, WA

   
Description: Jeff joined us in 2013 as a hiking guide after working and guiding for the Nature Concervancy. He has a love of the outdoors with an eye for detail. He says he loves hiking, skiing, birding, music and chocolate. His fun nature and enthusiasm for the park and life in general is contagious (plus he can tell a mean Joe Cosley tale). We sure are happy to have him around.
Favorite Quote: "The wild requires that we learn the terrain, nod to all the plants and animals and birds, ford the streams and cross the ridges, and tell a good story when we get back home." - Gary Snyder

Favorite Place: The slopes above Stoney Indian Pass.
Join us on a 6 Day Backpack and he might just show you why he loves this area so much.




JEREMY COVERT

Age: Born just a couple of days after the song Hotel California is released.
Hometown: Louisville, KY. Home of the Kentucky Derby (the most exciting two minutes in sports).

       
Description: Jeremy is yet another interesting guide. He joined us as both a rafting and a hiking guide after spending several summers guiding on other NW rivers. He loves boating of every kind. He bought a sailboat with the goal of eventually sailing around the world. Jeremy is one of our best guides, most handsome, funniest, and sweetest (Jeremy, you can make the check for that one out to Glacier Guides).
Other than boating, he likes camping, skiing, reading (non-fiction), fine arts and crafts (concentrating on photo realistic painting), cycling, cookery & fine cuisines, yoga.
Fun Fact: he's passionate about early Neil Diamond recordings - before '72 (that's a first for us). He also can ride the unicycle and play the mandolin (not at the same time--but he's working on it.)
Favorite Quote: "Fish don't contain the sacred liquid in cups. They swim the huge fluid freedom." Rumi, Sufi Poet

Favorite Place: Anywhere away from crowds and cars! More specifically igloo camping at Maria's Pass in early spring.




CRIS COUGHLIN

Age: Remembers her bedroom underwater in the 1964 flood.
Hometown: KALISPELL, MT

   
Description: In the office or storming the trail, Cris is fired up about Glacier. As one of our trusty owners, Cris has been making things happen around here since our company's founding in 1983. When not in Glacier, you might find Cris skiing. I wouldn't challenge her to a race though (she was on the US Telemark Ski Team). Favorite Quote: "Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude."

Favorite Place: Cosley Lake, Belly River Valley. Why Cosley Lake? "Whenever I'm there, I visualize the elegant tent camps that were on the shores of Cosley Lake in the 20's, with their white linens and fine china. I also love the lore of old Joe Cosley, the infamous park-ranger-gone-bad of the Belly River. As a matter of fact, had my first child been a boy she would have been named Cosley (she's a bit relieved)." How to get there: Located near the Canadian border at the northeast corner of Glacier, nestled in the heart of the Belly River. Chances are likely you may visit this area on one of our 4 or 6 day backpacking trips, especially the June and September trips.




DEB DUDA

Age: Born just days after Jack Kerouac's famous book, On The Road, goes on sale.
Hometown: Apopka, FL (born in Dover, NJ)

   
Description: Deb joined our office team in 2013 after a career as in education. She was a principal for an elementary school and we thought she'd be the perfect person fit for our family! Deb is full of positive enthusiasm with everything she does. When she is not working in our office, she is baking excellent pies, reading, juggling, listening to smooth jazz, out hitting the trail (by bike or foot), or floating the river (yeah Deb!). She takes full advantage of her time here.
Her goal after retirement? "To live in a state of mindfulness and take in everything around me."
Deb's favorite quote (which we love)..."I believe the richness of life is found in adventure." - Wm. Douglas

Favorite Place: There are so many places to explore, she's not sure yet.




CARTER EASH

Age: Born the same day that Alice Cooper fell off the stage during a concert in Vancouver, breaking six ribs.
Hometown: Glenwood Springs, Colorado (now residing in Columbia Falls)

   
Description: Carter was new to the company as a raft and hiking guide in 2011. He spends the rest of his year inspiring and teaching our youth as a middle school teacher in Columbia Falls. In his free time he plays guitar and likes to travel. New Zealand and the Grand Canyon are among some of his favorite trips. His favorite quote? "Be kind. Tell the truth. Eat good food." Sounds good to us Carter!

Favorite Place: "Many Glacier because of the grand peaks and pristine lakes." Join us on a custom dayhike or on our Glacier Challenge trip and explore this great valley for yourself.




SARA EDWARDS

Age: Born the day the world-wide web first began.
Hometown: Davidsonville, MD

     
Description: Sara grew up back east and when she finished school she headed out west. She graduated from University of Maryland with an environmental studies degree with a Spanish minor. Sara has been rafting with us since 2012. When she is not on the river, you can find her climbing peaks in Glacier, eating cookies from Polebridge and exploring foreign countries on a shoestring budget.

Favorite Place: The Two Medicine area because of "the fall colors, emerald lakes, and views from on top of Rising Wolf Mountain." Her favorite trip is our "overnight raft trip because you are able to experience Glacier National Park from a unique perspective."




ALLISON EGAN

Age: Mother Theresa won the Nobel Peace Prize the year she was born.
Hometown: Albany, OR

   
Description: Allison has been guiding on the river and leading backpacking trips with us since 2005. She graduated from Oregon State University with a B.S. in Exercise Sport Science. What does she do when she is not guiding for us in the summer? She skis...she loves to ski! Allison's favorite quote: Seems like it is a toss up between two quotes - "Break the chains of your mind and you break the chains of your body" or "drop knees, not bombs" (told you, she loves to ski!)

Favorite Place: Red Gap Pass- "Lunch break at the top of red gap pass after a morning of climbing from the east, gazing to where I am about to descend into the belly river valley. There are usually goats there to inspire energy and balance".




DAMIAN ESTRADA

Age: Born the Year John Lennon reports seeing a UFO in NYC.
Hometown: Fullerton, CA (now Whitefish, MT)

   
Description: Damian grew up playing in the surf, mountains, and deserts of California until he found Northwest Montana. He started his Glacier career slinging pies at the Park Cafe and has since spent 15 summers here hiking and exploring. He loves taking people into the park and pointing out everything from peaks to picas to potentilla. Since becoming a raft guide in 2012, he has a new found love for the river and is excited to float, float, float. When not guiding, he has the pleasure of teaching the wonders of science, and has been known to like sliding down the white fluffy stuff in the winter. Favorite Quote: "Walk slowly, don't rush. Each step brings you to the best moment of your life, the present moment." - Thich Nhat Hanh

Favorite Place: "The Peak of Mt. Reynolds. Besides being an incredible view at the center of it all, this is where my girlfriend decided that she would be my wife. I love Montana and feel lucky to be in such a wild and scenic place."




RANDY GAYNER

Age: Same year the Detroit Lions beat the Cleveland Browns in the NFL Championship
Hometown: Cleveland, Ohio (Now Whitefish, MT)

     
Description: Randy is our fearless leader. After first working in the area as a backcountry ranger based out of the Polebridge Ranger district, Randy founded the company in 1983. When he's not holding his trusty clipboard, you can find him floating the rivers, ski patrolling up on Big Mountain or scouting for another fun adventure!

Favorite Place: Many Glacier Valley. Why Many Glacier? "All the great day hikes (Grinnell Glacier, Iceberg Lake, Ptarmigan Tunnel) and wildlife viewing opportunities for mountain goats, bighorn sheep, moose, and grizzly bears."




TEAL GAYNER

Age: Born the same day as Erin Sanders from the movie "Big Time Beach Party."
Hometown: Whitefish, Montana

   
Description: Teal grew up chasing her parents down the river and on the trails of Glacier Park, but she officially started working at Glacier Guides in 2006 in the kitchen. After a few years of helping make food for all our trips, she decided she wanted to work outside and has become one of our rockstar raft guides. Speaking of rocks, go ahead and ask her about them, she currently attends the University of Montana as a geology major. As a local to this area, her fondest memories are of "working" up at Granite Park Chalet as a kid for weeks at a time when the Guides operated it in the late 90's/early 00's. Favorite Quote? "Shoot for the moon, even if you miss you'll land in the stars."

Favorite Place: Granite Park Chalet/ Swiftcurrent Pass area. "I used to love exploring the hidden hanging valleys as a kid."




DENNY GIGNOUX

Age: Born the same year we first landed on the moon
Hometown: Whitefish, MT

   
Description: Denny knows Glacier! Denny started here as a guide in 1993, and has since become one of our owners. We challenge you to stump one of our best naturalists. In addition to knowing his stuff, you'll love Denny's entertaining tales and savvy cooking. When not in Glacier, you might spy this backpacker in South America, Nepal, guiding polar bear viewing trips in Canada, helping his wife Caeli with Climate Ride, or working as a ski patroller at Whitefish Mountain Resort Ski Area. Denny also works to make sure each backpacking trip runs smoothly.

Favorite Place: Summit of Iceberg Peak.
Why Iceberg? "All of it - closer to the elements, weather, touching the sky!" How to get there: Join us on one of our 3 day chalet treks and we'll get a close up view of this peak from the trail. Or view this prominent pinnacle on one of our 6 day backpack trips.




BRANT GIOVANNETTI

Age: Born a few days before the United Kingdom had its first ever national Glow-worm day.
Hometown: Born in Alaska, but grew up in Houston TX.

 
Description: Brant had been rafting the rivers of Oregon for several years before he joined us in 2013. He loves to travel, snowboard, climb, mountain bike and scuba dive. Yeah, he's a busy guy (mainly busy avoiding the coorperate temptation after completing school). Fun fact: Brant used to play the violin way back in the day.
Favorite Quote: "...people are beginning to find out that going to the mountain is going home; that wildness is necessity; that mountain parks & recreation are useful not only as fountains of timber and irrigating rivers, but as fountains of life."

Favorite Place: "The Belly because of the fishing!"




BILL HARTMAN

Age: Boris Leonidovich Pasternak won the Nobel Prize in Literature the year he was born.
Hometown: New Market, Iowa (pop. 193 on a busy Saturday night)


Description: What can we say about Bill? He started here in 2004, and has been our Chief Getitstartedkeepitgoing guy. He is certified in a plethora of things that most of us have never heard of. We just know that he's great at maintaining vehicles and ski lifts. When he is not working hard in the shop, he spends as much of his time near the river as possible. Bill returned to school after 30 years and completed a degree in English/Creative Writing. Nice job Bill! Bill's Favorite Quote: "A road diverged in a woods and I, took the road less traveled and that has made all the difference." - Robert Frost

Favorite Place: As close to the river as he can get.




AMY HANSON-BARTELS

Age: Blondie was the #1 artist the year she was born.
Hometown: West Glacier and Great Falls, MT

   
Description: Working for us since 2002, Amy is one of our fearless rafting guides (and bus drivers). She graduated with a AAS in Sales & Marketing, Resort Management & Ski & Snowboard Business and has also completed a degree in Elementary Education with a minor in Communication Arts. She is now working on her Masters in Speech Pathology. When she is not rafting or taking classes, you might find her tearing up the slopes on her snowboard or teaching in Helena, Montana. Favorite Quote: "Nature soothes and calms our hurried lives".

Favorite Place: "Past Lower Burn Camp on the Middle Fork of the Flathead River where you can first see St. Nick".




IRV HEITZ

Age: Born the same year the CIA was created.
Hometown: Whitefish, MT

   
Description: Irv has been showing us where the fish are since 1996. In addition to the Flathead, he has guided on the Smith, Clark Fork and the Blackfoot rivers. Irv is retired from teaching high school English. When asked if he speaks any other languages, he answered, "Sometimes English is hard enough, don't you think?". Since his retirement, he spends his off season in the North Fork and gets to play grandpa. His biggest accomplishment? "Living the good life in Montana comfortably all my life". Nice job Irv.
Favorite Quote: "Are we having fun yet?"

Favorite Place: "Anywhere in the North Fork looking up at the peaks of Glacier"; and favorite place for hiking, "Dawson/Pitamakin Pass".




BRIAN HINER

Age: Born the same year that Iron Maiden was formed.
Hometown: Lexington, Nebraska (Now Columbia Falls, MT)


Description: Joining the Glacier Guides and Montana Raft family in 2011, Brian has lots to offer. He is an EMT and one of Whitefish Mountain Resort's trusty ski patrollers in the winter, and an enthusiastic raft guide in the summer. He is an avid fisherman and likes playing guitar, going to concerts, writing, and hanging with his wife of 20+ years (and his two adorable little girls). Favorite Quote? "Go fast, take chances." Yep, he's an adrenaline junky, but is also a strong advocate of safety.

Favorite Place: Brian loves getting off the beaten path and up to alpine lakes to fish but North Fork trips are some of his favorite because of the views.




CORRIE HOLLOWAY

Age: Born just before the Ramones formed.
Hometown: Bedford, NH (Now Columbia Falls, MT)

     
Description: Corrie has been a hiking and backpacking guide for us since 1997. After finishing college in Northern Arizona she headed north to spend a summer in Glacier Park...and she hasn't left since. Since having two kids, Corrie has taken on Glacier Guide's social media and marketing, while still finding time to get out on the trail. When she is at home in Columbia Falls she loves to ski, paint, cook and spend time with her husband, daughter and son. Her love of travel and the outdoors has brought her to all 50 states and over a handful of other countries.

Favorite Place: Belly River Valley.
Why Belly River? "Because it's unlike any other place - wild animals, spectacular views, and no roads."
How to get there: Join us on a 4 day or 6 day backpacking trip and there's a decent shot we'll be traversing this spectacular region of the Park.




ANDREW HURSH

Age: Born just days before Nirvana's Nevermind album went to No. 1 in the US Billboard 200 chart.
Hometown: Shawnee Mission, Kansas

 
Description: Andrew grew up in the flat-lands, but stretched his legs in Big Sky Country during college in Missoula. His passion is pining for the life that he already has, which is exploring the woods and playing music...sometimes at the same time (and we certainly don't mind hearing a little riverside banjo). He plays a lot of music. He also likes getting his hands on new books. His biggest goal is to "cultivate something that [his] grandchildren will know as permanent." We wonder what that might be. Something musical probably.
Favorite Quote: "Once upon a time the world was round, and you could go on it around and around." - Gertrude Stein

Favorite Place: "Coal Creek just below Martha's Basin, and anywhere in the North Fork."




ROSS KLEIN

Age: Born just after Sunny Bono became mayor of Palm Springs
Hometown: Littleton, Colorado

     
Description: After graduating from the University of Montana with a Recreation Management degree, Ross started with us in 2010 as a raft guide. In his spare time he enjoys yoga, ice hockey, and anything that allows him time in the woods. We hear that he even plays the harmonica and dijeridoo.

Favorite Place: The Middle Fork of the Flathead of course! Ross loves the crystal clear water, osprey, bear, and remoteness that this river brings. He loves sharing this river with people who have never been here before.




CHERI LEBLEU

Age: Born the same year as Woodstock.
Hometown: Upstate NY (Now Whitefish, MT)

 
Description: Cheri started here as a guide in 2001 after working at the Glacier Institute. Her knowledge of botany makes her a great gal to have around when hiking through one of the many flower filled meadowns. She is also known for her culinary and coffee brewing skills, which come in handy now that she runs our kitchen. Cheri is sure to whip up a smile. When not in Glacier, Cheri might be home visiting her native Adirondacks, teaching herbalist classes at our local community college, or hanging out with her two adorable children.

Favorite Place: "Hole-in-the-Wall" backcountry campground.
Why Hole-in-the-Wall? "The wildflowers, gushing waterfalls - it's just the most amazing alpine cirque!"
How to get there: We're definitely headed to Hole-in-the-Wall on our 10 day Continental Divide backpacking trip and there's a chance we might swing by on one of our 4 or 6 day backpacking trips.




TAMI MCDANIEL

Age: Born 2 days after Richard Nixon announced his resignation.
Hometown: Corvallis, Oregon

   
Description: New to us in 2012 as a hiking guide, Tami has great enthusiasm for the outdoors. She has a background in ecology and was most recently a biology and environmental educator. Tami has traveled all over the world, but it was a childhood trip to Glacier with her family where she walked on a glacier and saw her first bear that she found inspiration for coming to guide in Glacier.
Interesting facts: Tami loves gardening, dance, and outdoor adventure. Her totem animal is a frog (symbolizing luck; abundance; sensitivity to others; water-loving).
Favorite Quote: "And this, our life, exempt from public haunt, finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, sermons in the stones, and good in everything." - Shakespeare

Favorite Place: Tami says, "Do I have to choose?"




KEITH MEEHAN

Age: Born during the Watergate scandel
Hometown: Weymouth, MA (Now Columbia Falls, MT)

   
Description: A river guide and a backpacking guide with us since 1996, Keith loves Glacier. When not exploring, Keith is out there teaching our local 5th graders. We need more teachers like him! When asked about how he feels about Glacier..."On the river or on the trail, I Glacier, therefore I am!" is all he says.

Favorite Place: Summit of Mt. Stimson (Southwestern/Nyack region). Why Stimson? "Glacier's 2nd highest mountain has been taunting me for 6 years now. I see this gorgeous, elusive, and remote peak on the river every day during our full day and overnight rafting trips, as well any time I'm up in the high country looking its way. Been turned around by bears climbing it once, but someday soon I'll be sitting on the top with the most amazing view. Half the beauty of experiencing a favorite place is the giddy anticipation of getting there."
How to get there: We don't offer any guided technical peak climbs in Glacier, but some mountains have established trails taking us to the summits. Occasionally we'll climb a peak on one of our days off or it's possible from the Granite Park Chalet.




TANIA MENACHEMOFF

Age: Born a couple minutes shy of Irish Day
Hometown: The little Venice of the Alps - currently residing in Whitefish..

   
Description: Starting in 2010, Tania has quickly become one of the stars of our office staff. Tania never ceases to surprise us. Born in France, she enjoys traveling, winter sports, backpacking, playing piano (she's played since she was 5), stamp collecting, ping-pong, books, music and just plain being outside. Plus we love hearing her speak French.
...Yes, we did say stamp collecting.

Favorite Place: Every year is different, but last year it was the Belly River because it was the first time over Gable Pass.
Join us on any of our backpacking trips and you may get to see the majestic view from this little traveled pass.




SARAH METZGER

Age: Micheal Jackson's "Billy Jean" was #1 when she was born.
Hometown: Pittsburgh, PA

   
Description: Starting in 2007, Sarah is one of our seasoned hiking and backpacking guides. She is an avid traveler, exploring South East Asia, Australia, Antarctica and most recently Central America. She has a B.S in Marine Biology and has experience teaching sailing in North Carolina. We look forward to many more years of working with Sarah!
Favorite Quote: "Not all those who wander are lost" -jrr tolkien

Favorite Place: "This might be the hardest question to ask someone who has spent any time in glacier, but a rocky outcrop on the western side of Mt Morgan along the Dawson-Pitamakan Trail might be the spot. This spot gives a 360* view of glaciers, mountains, valleys, lakes and will take your breath away. Its a great place to stop for lunch on a day hike or on a backpack trip."




PETE METZMAKER

Age: Shares a birthday with Roseanne Barr
Hometown: Whitefish, MT

 
Description: Whether he is rafting or hiking, Pete knows Glacier! 1986 is the year he started guiding for us, and boy are we happy to still have him around. He studied forestry back in the day, and now teaches science at the local Jr. High School.
Pete's favorite quote? "Happiness is wanting what you have, not having what you want."

Favorite Place: "Any place I haven't been."




JILL MILLKEY

Age: Born just days before the first known web page was written.
Hometown: Atlanta, GA

     
Description: Jill worked in Glacier as a winter guide for the park and also worked for the Glacier Institute before joining our team as a hiking guide in 2013. When asked about what she likes to do in her off-time, sitting was not on her list (but endurance distance running was). She says she likes salivating over delicious recipes, befriending people with dogs and playing the harmonica (although we heard that last fall she got mistaken for an elk bugling). It's hard to be in a bad mood around Jill, as her smile and enthusiasm is contagious. I mean who could be sad around someone that as a little girl insisted on being called "sweetheart" and greeted people by buzzing like a bee?
Favorite Quote? "Anyhow, we never know where we must go, nor what guides we are to get -- people, storms, guardian angels, or sheep..." John Muir

Favorite Place: "The Highline Trail at sunrise. When else can you have that trail to yourself AND see the most beautiful alpenglow around?"




COLIN NOLAN

Age: Born a week and a half before the world's first test tube baby.
Hometown: Duxbury, MA but now lives in Columbia Falls, MT

     
Description: Colin is an avid outdoorsman. He loves to hike, raft, fish and hunt. Before starting with us in 2012, Colin guided in NH, VT, AK and worked on Glacier Park's trail crew. In his off time he can be found snowboarding, building stuff out of wood, or catching big fish. In 2013 he got his Coast Guard Captain's license. Way to go Colin! When asked what cool things he's done, he said "marry Courtney" (one of our hiking guides). Awe...he might look tough, but he's really a softie.

Favorite Place: "Lake Isabel because there are tons of fish and no people."
Join us on a four or six day backpack trip and we might just visit this little known gem.




COURTNEY NOLAN

Age: She was born when Grease was #1 at the Box Office
Hometown: Daytona Beach, FL

   
Description: Courtney's start at the Guides was in 2004 after going on a trip as a guest. She was as a shuttle driver and then guided her first backpacking trip in 2005. She says her biggest accomplishment in life was the 3rd grade (must have been a rough school). When asked what instrument she plays, she says she plays a mean doorbell. Her education is JD, Law so when you don't see her on the trail it's because she has a real job as an Attorney with the State Public Defenders Office.
Favorite Quote: You can get enough sleep when you're dead.

Favorite Place: Anywhere up the North Fork. She loves making Glacier memories that last a lifetime for her guests.




DEAN NYBERG

Age: Alcatraz closed the same year he was born.
Hometown: SPOKANE, WA (Now Whitefish, MT)

   
Description: Dean has over 2 decades worth of experience as a whitewater and canoeing guide. He has a two year degree in Ski Area Management, and has worked in avalanche control, grooming, and patrolling. Dean has over 23 years' experience in and around the ski industry. He enjoys doing most anything, as long as it's outdoors.

Favorite Place: Grinnell Glacier.
"The Many Glacier area is beautiful and Grinnel Glacier's upper lake has many icebergs and a milky green color to its water."




HAAKON OYEN

Age: Born the same month that the US voted in Bill Clinton, the 42nd President of the United States.
Hometown: Born in CT but has lived many different places.

     
Description: Haakon is one of the more interesting guides that we have here. We wouldn't try reading this book by the cover or you will really miss out! He came to us after a couple of years of working for the USGS Grizzly Bear study in Glacier Park. His biggest achievement is that he lives a happy and healthy life style, and has found the means to pursue his passions and make a living at the same time. His goal: To keep it up. Fun fact: He juggles and plays several instruments. If you join one of our trips you may be lucky enough to enjoy one of his many talents. PS. Ask him about his family's circus.
Favorite Quote: "SIn Watermelon Sugar the deeds were done and done again as my life is done in watermelon sugar." - Richard Brautigan

Favorite Place: Floral Park and Mt St. Nicholas.




JOSEPH PEARCE

Age: Born the week before the show Seinfeld premiered.
Hometown: Fayetteville, GA

     
Description: Joseph joined our team in 2012 as a rafting guide. He finished college and moved north (nice work). When Joseph is not guiding on the river, he is found working and playing at Whitefish Mountain Resort or working as support staff for Climate Ride. He loves to mountain bike, folf, snowboard and hang out with his dog Claire. His goal is to get paid to have fun for as long as possible.
His favorite quote? " If you're getting rad and no one is there to see it, are you really getting rad?" - G.N.A.R.
We don't have to see it though, we know Joseph's rad.

Favorite Place: Stoney Indian Pass because it is beautiful and remote.
His favorite trips are the upper Middle Fork in the spring, or anywhere in the North Fork because of how uncrowded they are.




DON PETERSEN

Age: Born the day after the first test flight of the Concorde.
Hometown: Itasca, Illinois but now lives in Kalispell, MT

   
Description: We love Don! Starting with us in 1996, he has become the "jack of all trades" around here. Whether he is backpacking, rafting, or helping out at our Lodge (or with just about anything asked of him), he always has a smile on his face.
When he is not working for us, he is teaching and entertaining local 6th graders, skiing, listening to baseball, or hanging out with his beautiful daughters.
His goal is to keep getting older and when asked about his greatest achievement he relishes over a 1st place win in a pumpkin carving contest ...in 1977.

Favorite Place: Stoney Indian Pass because it's "super cool".
Join us on a 4 or 6 day backpack trip to get the chance to head over this gorgeous pass.




FEDERICO PIOLA

Age: Fede was born the year Mount St. Helens erupted.
Hometown: SOMEWHERE IN ARGENTINA

     
Description: Fede joined our whitewater team in 2007. Prior to that he taught rock climbing in Arizona and has a flair for travel and adventure. In the off season you might see him cycling from Alaska to Patagonia or alpine skiing in the Rockies. He entertains his guests and fellow guides with his pure love of life and wonderful sense of humor. Favorite Quote: "Life is a journey, not a destination."

Favorite Place: The upper sections of the North Fork of the Flathead River because it's wild, remote and scenic.




VINCE ROUBITCHEK

Age: Born in March the year that Pedro Delgado of Spain won the Tour de France.
Hometown: Mt. Prospect, IL

   
Description: Vince is both a rafting and a hiking guide for us and he loves being outside. This Eagle Scout does not do a whole lot of sitting. In his time off he likes to snowboard and travel (he has been know to bike across whole countries). Fun facts: he played the baritone in the 5th grade and he is really good at catching food in his mouth.
Favorite Quote: "Seize the carp."

Favorite Place: Lake Francis. "Go check it out and you'll understand."
Favorite Glacier Guides trip: The Ultimate Hut Hike "because the horses carry you and your gear."




TREY SCALES

Age: Born the same month that Bob Marley released the album "Kaya."
Hometown: Jackson, Mississippi

   
Description: Trey became a new guide in 2012, but he is no stranger to these rivers. He has rafted all over the country and has been rafting on the North and Middle Fork for over a decade. Trey loves snowboarding in the winter and rafting in the summer (he also likes long walks on rocky shores). Interesting fact: Trey is related to Sylvester Stallone (but doesn't say how). He loves most people and ALL dogs!

Favorite Place: He says that he likes "anywhere in Northwest Montana."




TYLER SCHMITTEL

Age: Born 2 days before Tina Turner got a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Hometown: Denver, CO

     
Description: Tyler came to us in 2013 with his love of rafting and the outdoors. He graduated from University of Montana with a BS in Wildlife Biology. His next goal? Grad school to study the sage grouse (more wildlife biology). He likes climbing, mountain biking, fly fishing and practicing the mandolin. His favorite animal is the giraffe, he loves spicey food and simple living.
Favorite Quote: "I'm glad I will not be young in a future without wilderness." - Aldo Leopold

Favorite Place: "The top of Dawson Pass because of the view." Join us for a 3 Day Backpack Trip or a Custom Day Hike to get the chance of seeing this area.




MELISSA SCOTT

Age: Aretha Franklin's "Respect" was recorded the same week she was born.
Hometown: Seymour, IN

 
Description: Melissa is one of our most experienced hiking and backpacking guides. She started working for us in 1992 after years of exploring Glacier on her time off from the Park Cafe (we love that place!). When not guiding for us, she has guided in Bryce, Zion, the Grand Canyon, the Everglades, Canada, and Mexico. She loves to play too...biking, reading, running, skiing, hiking, and traveling the world. A trip with her is an amazing learning experience filled with fun, great cooking and few really bad jokes. Favorite Quote: "Life isn't having what you want, but wanting what you have."

Favorite Place: "Anywhere off trail and as high as I can get."




JEFF 'BUTTE' SOYLAND

Age: Born the day after the Concorde's first supersonic flight.
Hometown: BUTTE, MT (Now Columbia Falls, MT)

     
Description: Behold the River God! Jeff co-manages our river operations and is always ready to pitch in. Whether behind the oars or driving the bus, this savvy veteran gets the job done. When not here in Glacier, you can find Jeff floating the Grand Canyon, exploring Costa Rica, saving injured souls via the Big Mountain Ski Patrol in nearby Whitefish, MT, or chasing one of his two boys around...Butte is a busy guy!

Favorite Place: Floral Park near Sperry Glacier. Why Floral Park? "Because it's rarely visited, very recently glaciated, and pristine!" How to get there: Join us on a day hike to Hidden Lake and we can catch a glimpse of this gorgeous region in the distance towards Gunsight and Edwards mountains. Or perhaps on one of our 4 day backpack trips we'll ascend to Comeau Pass after setting up camp and get a closer look and this spectacular Shangri-La.




CLAY SPRINGMEYER

Age: Born in August of the year that Octavio Paz won Nobel Prize for Literature.
Hometown: Helena, Montana

   
Description: Clay started working with us in 2012 as both a rafting and a hiking guide during his summers off from school. He is studying English and Wilderness Studies. This Eagle Scout has rafted and hiked many places and is quite a muscian as well. He plays the saxophone, guitar, piano, and is one of the frontmen of the Missoula band "The Trees". Favorite quote: "The best is yet to come..."

Favorite Place: Red Eagle Lake because it was his first backpacking trip into the park!




JOSH STEEL

Age: Born the year that John Adams won Stanley's Cup
Hometown: Coram, Montana


Description: We can't say enough good things about Josh, the innkeeper of our Lodge. He has been with us since the Lodge opened in 2010 and has quickly become a fixture around the place. Josh is a wealth of information about the area and things to do, but is most known for his baking skills. His coffee cake is out of this world. In his spare time, aka. when the Lodge is not open, Josh coaches high school hockey, ties flies, goes fishing and pushes snow.

Favorite Place: The "top of Siyeh". Enough said, Josh.




KATIE THURLBY

Age: Born the same day that Edward Abbey died.
Hometown: Colorado Springs, CO

   
Description: Katie joined us in 2013 as a rafting guide. She is a great person to have along on any trip. She loves yoga, being on the river, hiking, eating, sitting around a campfire, laughing, planning and going on adventures. Katie promised herself years ago that she would never live anywhere that was not beautiful. She truely loves life and knows that life is too short to not fully engage and enjoy it. Looks like she found the right place.
Favorite Quote: "All that is gold does not glitter; Not all who wander are lost; The old that is strong does not wither; Deep roots are not reached by the frost" - J.R.R. Tolkien

Favorite Place: Avalanche Lake.
Join us on our Monday Day Hike to see this gem yourself.




KIANDRA WAGGONER

Age: She was born in August of the year that Guy Lafluer won both the Hart and the Art Ross trophies.
Hometown: ANN ARBOR, MI

 
Description: Kiandra has been with us since 2004 and has been guiding since 2002. Her positive, cheerful attitude is enjoyed by all and everyone looks forward to doing a trip with her. She graduated from the University of Michigan focusing on sports management and communication. During the wintertime she usually works in ski resorts but likes to keep her options open. In her off time she also loves going on canoe expeditions with her family and enjoys photography. She most importantly tries to maintain her hockey addiction in a state that has very little...she is our resident hockey fanatic--Go Blue! Favorite Quote: "Do one thing every day that scares you". - Eleanor Roosevelt

Favorite Place: "It changes every time I go into the Park. There are too many beautiful places to just pick one. Try any of them and you will see."




KENN WAGGONER

Age: Born just one week after Richard Simmons.
Hometown: Ann Arbor, MI

 
Description: Kenn came to us in 2012 from Michigan. His main goal was to explore the rivers and lakes around Glacier Park and be around his daughter who guides in the area. When he's not driving guests to and from the trailhead or river put in, he is out exploring (or watching Michigan hockey if it's on). Kenn graduated from Eastern Michigan University with majors in earth science and coastal environments. He has been to all 50 states and canoed over 10,000 miles of Canadian rivers. Favorite Quote: "There's a land where the mountains are nameless, and the rivers all run god knows where. There are lives that are erring and aimlesss, and deaths that just hang by a hair..." -Robert Service

Favorite Place: The Canadian border on North Fork River...it's a small river with good isolation and great wildlife. Join us on our 3 Day Wilderness Float to see this beautiful area.




SUSAN WHEELER

Age: Born the same year that UB40 came out with "Red, red wine".
Hometown: Born in Kalispell, but grew up in Helena Montana


Description: In 2010 we got the pleasure to start working with Susan in our office. Having grown up in this area, she is a great person to answer questions about where to go. She has a BA in Biology and is working on her teaching certificate for middle and high school science. She loves climbing peaks in the summer and playing hockey and snowshoeing in the winter. Something that makes her unique? She plays the cello!

Favorite Place: This is a hard question..."my current favorite is Floral Park to Sperry because of the access to great peaks and fond memories (lots of Pika and wildflowers too)." Her favorite trip is from Stoney Indian to Fifty Mountain. Join us on our 6 day backpack trip and you may get to see this Glacier NP gem!




COREY WHITE

Age: The first issue of Rolling Stone was published on his birthday
Hometown: LITCHFIELD, ME

     
Description: Corey started exploring Glacier on his time off from the Park Cafe (love that pie!). He started guiding our longer multi-day backpacking trips in 2000, so we don't get to see him as much as we'd like. During the "off" season, he explores public lands by foot and loves to read about wild lands and their inhabitants. He has also worked as naturalist at Woodleaf Outdoor School, a residential environmental education center for sixth graders located in the foothills of California's Sierra Nevada Mountains. Some of his favorite trips (all backpacking of course) include the entire Appalachian Trail, Brooks Range (Alaska) and the Grand Canyon. His latest greatest achievement? He completed a masters of education in environmental education program. Favorite Quote? "A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it does otherwise." - Aldo Leopold

Favorite Place: Hole-in-the-Wall. "Classic high country, hanging valley, cliffs, waterfalls, wildlife, Off-The-Hook scenery and to get there requires effort - No day trippers here!" Corey's philosophy is that the longer the backpack trip, the better. "The more time you spend the more you'll experience."




BEN WOLFF

Age: Born the same month that Sally Ride becames the first American woman in space aboard Space Shuttle Challenger.
Hometown: Kennesaw, GA


Description: 2007 is the year that Ben decided to join the Glacier Guides family. He is a rafting and hiking guide as well as a co-river manager. He works hard for us during the summers and is doing his best to play hard in his off-season. His biggest achievement so far is rafting 98 miles in one day and his goal is to travel more. He loves climbing mountains and snowboarding whenever he gets the chance (sometimes in that order).
"If your going to be dumb, you"ve got to be tough." - Vince (co-Glacier Guide)

Favorite Place: Atop Mount Stimpson, because it"s so remote and you feel like you're on top of the world.
His favorite Glacier Guides trip? The 6 day backpack trip because you get away from phones and computers and experience Glacier at it's best.




DAN VOERMANS

Age: Boomer Age
Hometown: Tomahawk, WI

 
Description: Originally from Northern Wisconsin but came to Glacier National Park to work trails. When he found he just couldn't stay off them he joined Glacier Guides in 1997 to share his knowledge of the Park with guests.

Favorite Place: Belly Rive, Two Medicine, Hole-In-The-Wall, Northern Tier Traverse, etc, etc, etc...




NOAH YOUNG

Age: Top Gun was #1 at the box office when he was born.
Hometown: Seattle, Washington

 
Description: New to the Montana Raft team in 2011, but not new to rafting or kayaking. Noah loves rafting different rivers but especially likes the Salt River in Arizona and any river in Idaho. During the winter months you can find Noah backcountry skiing. People love Noah's love of the outdoors and he's a good cook too. Favorite Quote: "You can't win if you don't play!"

Favorite Place: The river. He's a river guy and loves overnight rafting trips.




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Glacier Guides & Montana Raft Company
P.O. Box 330
West Glacier, MT, 59936
406-387-5555 :: 800-521-7238 :: info@glacierguides.com

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Glacier Guides is a Member of Glacier Centennial Glacier Guides is a Memeber of Rafting America Glacier Guides is a Member of America Outdoors Glacier Wilderness  Guides is a proud Member of Leave No Trace Glacier Wilderness Guides - Montana Raft Company Operates under permits from the US Forest Service Glacier Guides - Montana Raft Company is an Authorized Concessioner of the National Park Service