IF YOU WANT TO BE HEARD, TELL US.
We are here to serve as a common contact and common voice for the community. If you feel you can help in some way in your area, get in touch. We are specifically looking for someone in the Mt. Baker area to handle outreach there, and always welcome any volunteer efforts and guidance in any area of the state. Below is our current staff. We are also actively soliciting board members- if you have experience in this area, or feel you are qualified, please reach out.
CONRAD WHARTON- President and Executive Director
Conrad moved to Washington and began ski touring here in 2008, after growing up skiing and snowmobiling in Girdwood, Alaska. After graduating from the University of Puget Sound in 2012 with a major in Communications and minor in Environmental Policy, he settled in Seattle. He recently moved to Leavenworth, and currently works as a mountain guide year-round. When not working, he is likely skiing or climbing somewhere between California and Alaska.
BRENDAN SMITH- Program Coordinator
Brendan was born and raised here in Washington, and now lives in Seattle. After a misguided youth of park skiing and early mountain adventures in Issaquah, Brendan came to the city to attend UW, where he graduated with a degree in Biology. When not consumed with schoolwork, Brendan spent extensive time exploring further reaches of the Cascades, both on skis and rock and alpine climbing missions. After graduating, he spent a stint at REI before joining the staff at Alpine Ascents International. There, he coordinates local and international logistics for their guided programs. He continues to spend every spare moment available in the mountains.
Kyle Thackray- Community Outreach
Kyle has been deeply involved with the outdoor community for many years. He grew up in Corvallis, Oregon, and spent much of his youth ski and bike racing before moving to Washington in 2008. Kyle continued to ski race in college at the University of Puget Sound, as well as spend considerable time skiing pow. After beginning his ski touring career on a pair of Armada ARGs, he has reconciled himself to the highly variable snow of the Washington backcountry and purchased some crampons and a more reasonable touring setup. Kyle continues to venture deeper and further into technical adventures in the mountains when he can escape from his 9-5 at Cascade Designs Inc. After climbing the Kautz in a day this summer, he is ready to never walk downhill in the snow again.
MARINA FITZPATRICK- Events Coordinator
Marina is local to the PNW. Growing up on and around the Puget Sound, Marina would stare longingly at the Olympic and Cascade mountain ranges, and wonder if anyone was standing up there or if anyone had been there before. As an adult, she has not lost that wonder. Marina has hiked, climbed, skied, and sailed all over the northwest. She works as a mountain guide, and at Seattle outdoor gear shop Ascent Outdoors. She also attended the University of Washington, where she established their chapter of the international nonprofit GlobeMed. She graduated in 2014 with a degree in International Studies and Development.
MIKE KNAPE- Secretary and Director of Development
Mike developed an outsize passion for skiing in the undersized ski areas of Michigan, and brought it with him to the west in 2008. His ability to have a great time while on skis no matter the terrain has brought him to a wild variety of places in the Cascades. After graduating from the University of Puget Sound, Mike moved to Seattle in 2012 and continues to dominate the amateur division of local rail jams. He also puts his time into the cerebral world of business analytics, and currently works for a little local co-op called REI. In case you're wondering, those are Dynafits in the picture. You'll have to ask Mike whether the toes are locked.
ROWAN STEWART Stevens Pass Outreach
Rowan is a Vashon Island native. Although only 22, he has spent an astounding amount of time in the mountains of Washington. He possesses a near-encyclopedic knowledge of Cascade peaks, many of which he has visited by splitboard. When not in the hills, Rowan is generally on the water, captaining other peoples' boats or sailing his own. He spent last winter living in a small cabin in Merritt, working and shredding at Stevens Pass. He is currently in search of his next cozy spot to spend another season riding and exploring.
MIKE YOST- Snoqualmie Pass Outreach
Mike spent many years in the ski industry, first at Gerk's and then as manager of Pro Ski and Mountain Service. He lives in North Bend, where he currently shreds the bass guitar and regularly wins at raddest dad around in Country League. Mike is a wealth of knowledge about ski construction, ski gear, and vintage ski movies. He gets as many laps as he can in touring at Hyak when not skiing with his family. You might spot him on a pair of his own custom boards at Alpental as well.
SPENCER KADAS- North Cascades Outreach
Spencer grew up in Corvallis, Oregon, where he was faster at riding bikes than Kyle. He commutes to far-flung skiing locations from West Seattle. Spencer has spent many days thrashing around the North Cascades in search of snow, and looks forward to helping others achieve the same.