Idaho River Journeys Crew

The IRJ crew is looking forward to a fun filled year rafting on the Middle Fork of the Salmon River. Below is what they’ve been up to this offseason.

This winter, Libby is serving as a legislative fellow at the Idaho Conservation League, where her responsibilities include preparing testimony and attending committee hearings at the state capital in Boise. Libby is set to work a full season on the Middle Fork before heading to law school at the University of Montana this fall.

Patrick moved from Bozeman, Montana, to Golden, Colorado. Enjoying the Colorado mountains, he has been ice climbing, skiing, and mountaineering as much as possible. An alumni of the University of Iowa, Patrick is an avid Hawkeye fan, specifically rooting for the women’s basketball team, and he hopes they will make a run in the NCAA tournament.

Idaho River Journeys Guide

Galen dedicated her winter to full time ski patrolling at Schweitzer Mountain and training her avalanche dog, Maize. She had the honor of participating in Wasatch Backcountry Rescue’s dog school, where she enhanced her skills in avalanche rescue. Beyond her duties on the ski patrol, she resides in Sandpoint, Idaho, and appreciates the lifestyle of living in a ski town.

Following a full season on the Middle Fork, Ry and his girlfriend Sierra embarked on a journey around Africa, culminating in boating on the Zambezi River. They are currently guiding canoe trips in Big Bend National Park from their winter base in Terlingua, TX. Last we heard, Ry is still without a cell phone, and he plans to keep it that way.

Esa resides in Quincy, CA, teaching 6th and 7th-grade science. She integrates her passion for the outdoors into her teaching, leading trips into Yosemite, discussing river ecology, and developing a school garden. Her dual role allows her the flexibility to continue guiding during the summer months, and we’re looking forward to her 10th season of guiding on the Middle Fork. 

Middle Fork Guide

Wilson had an excellent first season guiding for IRJ. His calm demeanor, coupled with years of guiding experience, made him a valuable addition to our team. This winter, he’s working full-time as a ski patroller at Schweitzer Mountain. In addition to his patrolling duties, he’s refurbishing an aluminum drift boat, with the goal of being able to fish nearly year round.

Sunny has taken on a challenging role as a physician assistant in a level one trauma center in Salt Lake City, Utah. The position provides her with extensive medical experience and will further her career. Despite her busy schedule, Sunny makes time to ski in the Wasatch Mountains and explore the foothills of Salt Lake City. She still finds room for a few river trips every season. 

Middle Fork Guide

Hannah’s woodblock artistry was recently awarded the cover poster for the Wooden Boat Festival in Port Townsend, Washington. This prestigious honor will be distributed to thousands of people and showcase her artwork. Even with a full summer of art shows and family river trips, we’re lucky to have Hannah work our September fly fishing season. 

Idaho River Journeys Guide

Corby has spent more days on the water this offseason than any other guide at IRJ. After his Middle Fork season concluded, he traveled to West Virginia to work on the Gauley River. Following that, he embarked on a 21-day winter trip in the Grand Canyon. He is currently planning another extensive expedition on the Rio Marañón in Peru.

Ryan is working at the ICU at St. Patrick Hospital in Missoula, MT. Merging his medical expertise with his passion for adventure and education, he teaches avalanche safety and wilderness first responder classes during the winter months. Although he doesn’t work a full season anymore, Ryan always makes room in his schedule for one or two trips.

After several years of working for Fish and Game, Chris and his fiancée Morgan, decided it was time for a change of pace. They outfitted a van to make it livable and parked it at Lost Trail Ski Resort. Chris has been working as a full-time ski patroller at Lost Trail and rarely leaves the ski hill. When he does leave, it’s usually for mundane tasks like doing laundry.

With 800 hours of flight time, Dave is close to transitioning from helicopter instructor to becoming a full time pilot. He works at the Leading Edge Flight Academy in Bend, Oregon, and his goal is to be done teaching by mid-summer. While he no longer works full seasons on the Middle Fork, we’re lucky enough to have Dave work a trip or two every summer.

Middle Fork Guide

Pat is making the most of winter, working full time as a ski patroller at Alta Ski Resort and guiding heli ski trips in Nevada’s Ruby Mountains. This season, he’s been selected for an avalanche forecaster role in New Zealand, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. While we’ll miss him on our trips this year, we’re thrilled for him.

Jo is a true representation of the best qualities in guiding. Her local knowledge, positive attitude, and hard work make every trip with Jo a delight. The winter months offer Jo a chance to slow down, travel, engage with the Salmon community, and focus on projects for Gem Air that she doesn’t have time for during the bustling summer months.

Eli lives in Bend, Oregon, with his fiancée Bobby and their dog. As a commercial real estate agent, he missed guiding last season but hopes to lead a fly fishing trip in September. His main goal is to outfish his brother, Drew, every year.

Drew is in his first year of medical school at Oregon Health Sciences University. While it’s a lengthy process, he enjoys the challenge and the career path it offers. Although his school schedule makes it difficult to work a full season on the Middle Fork, Drew hopes to join at least one trip.

Brian is currently teaching two classes at the University of Montana: one on Natural Resources Policy and a graduate course on complex human-environment systems. Beyond his academic responsibilities, he volunteers for the Redside Foundation, manages his Alaska river business (Sundog Expeditions), and enjoys exploring the southwest desert with his wife, Jenni. Safe to say, Brian stays busy. 

Joe enjoyed an adventurous offseason, spending nearly 30 nights in spike camps while elk hunting. Beyond hunting, Joe is a contractor in the Bitterroot Valley, specializing in custom finishes and remodels. Ideally, doing inside jobs during the winter months. A familiar face on early season trips, Joe will be guiding on our first trip of the season, June 3-7.

Middle Fork Guides

Keri was able to work a trip on the Middle Fork for her 23rd season of guiding. Her knowledge and experience are greatly appreciated on trips. She continues to be the lead nurse at the Pocatello hospital in the field of vascular access. Outside of work, Keri’s winters entail walking with her dog, concerts with friends, and occasional trips outside of Idaho. 

Michael is a mountain host at Deer Valley Resort. When not on the ski hill he leads historic “Mines & Wines” tours around Park City for Fox School of Wine, where his job title is stand up historian.

Idaho River Journeys Guide

Dre faced a challenging start to the season, suffering a back injury that sidelined him for the summer. Turning adversity into opportunity, Dre has since rehabilitated his back and is currently pursuing EMT paramedic training at Southern Oregon University.

Fer lives in Austin, Texas working on the family ranch near College Station, and building his corrective bodywork business. A dynamic approach to improving multiplanar, multijoint, and rotational movement in the body. While he certainly misses a full season, he enjoys the ability to have an open schedule that allows him to work a trip or two when available.

Skip spent his early winter months visiting family, building a new website for Idaho River Journeys, and traveling. Once the snow started falling he has been skiing as much as possible with Julia, repairing rafting and fishing gear, and getting ready for the 2024 season. 

Julia thrives on being actively involved in the Salmon, Idaho community. She’s a hospice and home health nurse, Ski Patroller at Lost Trail, volunteer board member for the Redside Foundation, and manages the office at IRJ. She balances her professional responsibilities with cross-country skiing, walks with her dog, and reading to relax. 


This season marks the 47th year since Bob founded Idaho River Journeys. Being able to operate for multiple decades is a testament to Bob’s leadership and the legacy he has created. While he no longer runs the day-to-day operations, his ideas and contributions are seen on every trip. 

Mary has fully embraced her retirement. She spends her time hiking with friends, going to SF Giants games, visiting her grandchildren, and relaxing in Kauai. Mary still does projects for IRJ, specifically the Christmas cards. This allows her to stay in touch with guests, one of her favorite parts of outfitting.

In Memoriam

This winter, we lost two remarkable guides who, after long battles, passed away peacefully at their homes. Seda and Tom will be deeply missed.

Seda was a legendary guide known for her confidence, humility, gratitude, generosity, and love. Her remarkable journey began in Turkey, where she rowed for the Olympic team, followed by service in the US Army. She then dedicated multiple decades to guiding on the Middle Fork and around the world, she was a guide unlike any other.

Tom inspired several generations of guides with his stoic and knowledgeable approach to river running. His love for sharing bits of history and the natural world made him a quintessential guide. Guests in his boat were often treated to unexpected insights, embodying Tom’s passion and depth of knowledge. He truly was a guide’s guide, leaving a lasting impact on those he led and worked with.

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