After her Middle Fork season ended, Libby took a well-deserved break, then started a job for the Utah Rivers Council as a water and policy researcher. Working as a researcher will provide Libby with valuable experience and a deeper understanding of the issues facing rivers and the environment. She intends to work another full season on the Middle Fork, but has her sights set on law school.

Patrick worked a full season last year. His knowledge, friendly energy, and guitar skills are greatly valued by both guests and crew alike. After the season ended, Patrick moved back to Bozeman, Montana where he worked for UPS delivering packages. Outside of work, Patrick is skiing as much as possible and training for a climbing expedition in Uzbekistan.

Galen graduated from Lewis-Clark State University with a degree in Business Administration in the fall. After getting her degree, she attended the National Avalanche School with the goal of learning how to train an avalanche dog at Schweitzer Mountain, where she continues to ski patrol.

Ry is living in a 100-year-old mining cabin out in Terlingua, Texas. Without a cell phone, it can be hard to get ahold of Ry. Last we heard, he’s guiding multi-day canoe trips in Big Bend National Park. He’s coming back for another full season. We’re looking forward to hearing his hit song, “Elephant Seal.”

Esa had a fantastic eighth season guiding on the Middle Fork. She is living in Quincy, CA, and working as a 6th and 7th-grade science teacher. Her job gives her the flexibility to guide during the summer. When not teaching, she is often backcountry skiing with her dog, Dipper, in the Plumas National Forest.

Dre joined the IRJ crew last year and had a terrific season on the Middle Fork. Dre’s calm personality, combined with years of guiding experience, made him an asset to our crew. During the off-season, Dre lives in Salt Lake City, Utah working alongside his partner, Rachelle, organizing yoga and wellness retreats. Dre is returning for a full season and helping with a Wellness trip on our August 17-21 launch.

Sunny works as a physician assistant at the Portneuf Medical Center in Pocatello, Idaho. Striving for a work-life balance, Sunny is an active member of the Pocatello community. She’s the president of the Pocatello Tele association, volunteers with the local rock climbing center, and also promotes leave no trace practices around the local trails. She still finds room for a number of river trips every season.

Ryan graduated from nursing school in the fall. After finishing his degree, Ryan embarked on an 18-day winter Grand Canyon trip to celebrate. He’s now working as a RN in the ICU at St. Patrick hospital in Missoula, Montana. In addition to nursing, Ryan is teaching Avalanche 1 safety courses and Wilderness First Responder classes.

Maddie lives in Salt Lake City, Utah with her husband Kyle. She works for a Swiss Consultancy Firm as the operation manager, coordinating events for the company. This winter, she’s been enjoying time doing improv shows, remodeling her house, and spending time with her family. We’re looking forward to having her enthusiasm, energy, and passion on trips next season.

While he no longer guides full-time on the Middle Fork, Dave was able to work a trip and enjoy it to its fullest. Dave is currently a helicopter flight instructor at the leading edge flight academy in Bend, Oregon. After teaching a year of flight school, Dave intends to pursue a career as a helicopter pilot with hopes to move back to Montana.

Jo can take a break from her hectic summer schedule during the winter months. This winter, she’s been taking guitar lessons, going on ski trips, and working on a variety of community projects for the town of Salmon, Idaho. Jo is Gem Air’s office manager, but she really wears many hats for the family business.

Eli has moved on from full-time guiding to a career in real estate. He works as a broker with Compass Commercial Real Estate Services in Bend, Oregon. Even with a new career, Eli was able to work the September fly fishing trips for IRJ last season.

Drew has begun the process of interviews for medical school. He plans to enroll in a program this fall. Making the most of his time before school, Drew has been on tour with his music, backcountry skiing, and kayaking as much as possible. Chances are you can find him at a local brewery in Bend, or a friend’s backyard playing his hits.

Professor Chaffin (Brian) is currently on sabbatical from teaching climate, water, and natural resources policy at the University of Montana. Not to be bored on his sabbatical, Brian and his wife Jenni, have remolded their kitchen, bought an Alaskan river company, and are currently living in Bluff, UT exploring the Southwest desert.

Joe lives and works in Hamilton, Montana. He’s a contractor in the Bitterroot Valley, specializing in custom finishes and remodels. When not working, he’s out elk hunting, spending time with his family, or exploring around the Bitterroots.

Keri was able to work a trip on the Middle Fork for her 22nd 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. His new job title is the stand-up historian.

Hannah’s always optimistic, fun-loving, and genuine attitude makes any day fishing from her raft a blast. During the winter, Hannah balances running a successful art business, raising twins, and living off the grid. Hannah and her family can be found on backcountry ski trips, visiting friends and family, or exploring their backyard, The Salmon-Challis Wilderness.

Nate is the Assistant Director for the University of Idaho Outdoor Program. His job has expanded to more outdoor teaching, which is his passion. Always looking to learn, Nate has started his PhD program in education at the University of Idaho. Beyond school, Nate and his wife Nhi are remodeling their home and planning ski touring missions with their dog, Cecil.

Skip spends his winters in Salmon, Idaho. He works on various off-season projects for IRJ, skis at Lost Trail, and now gets to surf in the newly built Salmon wave. When not working, Skip and Julia are exploring hot springs, backcountry skiing, or adventuring around Idaho.

Julia enjoys staying busy during the off-season. As the IRJ office manager, you’ve likely chatted with her over the phone or email when planning a river trip. She also works with the local community in Salmon as a home health and hospice nurse, and volunteers with ski patrol at Lost Trail Ski Area. When not working, she’s usually getting lost in a book under a blanket by the wood stove.

This season marks the 45th 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.

Part Time Guides

Shannon spent the winter at her home in the Wood River Valley. She is a professional massage therapist with a dedicated following of clients. Chris lives in Salmon, Idaho, working for Fish and Game as the lead on a number of stream restoration projects. Fer is living in College Station, Texas, working on a cattle ranch. Scooter had a terrific year working as the manager of Sturtevants of Sun Valley. Augie is living in Mammoth, California working at a pizza shop and skiing as much as possible. Sena is living in Stanley, Idaho, and snowmobiling as much as possible. George is ski patrolling at Alta Ski resort in Utah.

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