COLORADO AMBASSADORS

HEATHER BLAKEMAN

WESTERN SLOPE AMBASSADOR

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Favorite Adventures: Heather's absolute favorite adventure is trail/ultra running, primarily in the mountains. Heather also enjoys mountain biking, hiking, snowshoeing, and anything active and outdoors. 

Why she Always Choose Adventures:

It was just a short time ago that Heather was overweight/obsese and struggled to be active. With a strong desire to be able to go on a backpacking trip, Heather decided to get healthy, get strong, and start adventuring. Just a backpack trip and half marathon later, Heather's passion for running distance and love for the mountains grew strong. Heather loves the opportunity to explore places that can only be found and seen by foot. High alpine lakes, peaks, single track trails are where peace is found. Knowing that she has had to work for every experience, Heather has learned that explorations and adventures should be sought and chosen, but never taken for granted.

TINA BRUCE

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Favorite Adventures:

Hiking and being outdoors! 

Why She Always Choose Adventures:

As a Disabled Army Veteran, Tina uses recreational therapy to treat her depression and PTSD. Being outside and in nature brings her a sense of peace and tranquility. She always chooses adventures so she can live fully present in the moment.

JAMIE BRYAN

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Favorite Adventures:
Jamie loves skiing, mountain biking, boating, camping, and hiking! This summer (2022) he's excited to begin doing some bike packing trips, for the first time!

Why He Always Chooses Adventures:
Jamie always calls mountain biking and skiing his “happy place”.

Since he was a kid his favorite activities were anything involving being physically active. He grew up on Maryland’s beautiful Eastern Shore, where exploring the creeks and rivers of the Chesapeake Bay, as well as hunting and fishing, was a way of life. He also started skiing in the Poconos of Pennsylvania when he was 5 years old. It wasn’t long before he experienced the “Call of the mountains”. He moved to CO in November 2010, and instantly felt at home. To this
day, he's still just as much in awe of the mountains and beauty here, as when he first arrived.

TANYA CHAFFEE 
Grants Manager & All-Around-Ninja

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Favorite Adventures:

Tanya is an avid runner and loves going camping, hiking, or doing anything in nature.  The mountains are, as she puts it, the place where her heart is happiest.  A close second is traveling around the world and experiencing new cultures.  She enjoys meeting people with her same appreciation of the wonders of this amazing Earth, and readily shares her passion for the outdoors and her sports with anyone who even hints at a glimmer of interest.

Why she Always Choose Adventures:

The greatest gift you are given and can give in this one life is your TIME.  Tanya always chooses adventures because she believes it is immeasurably important to use her time wisely, spend it with those she loves, and spend it doing meaningful things that create memories.  She grew up camping in the mountains of northern New Mexico.  Tanya remembers youthful summers of running wild through meadows and exploring for hours.  She now enjoys carrying those experiences and memories forward with her children.  Over the past 15 years, Tanya has also created deep bonds with friends through distance running, and is looking forward to pushing herself further and faster in the upcoming year.  Through Always Choose Adventures, Tanya hopes to share her sports and experiences, and to learn of new ways to spend time in appreciation of nature.

DAVID CAWDREY 
 

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Favorite Adventures:

Hiking, camping, archery, really anything fun!

Why He Always Choose Adventures:

HANNAH FULTON

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Favorite adventures: Hiking, camping, SUPboarding and indoor TR climbing. She loves new adventures and will try anything once! 

 

Why she always chooses adventures: 

Getting outside and choosing adventures is basically what keeps her sane. There is nothing that makes her feel better mentally and physically  than a nice, long hike. She has battled depression and anxiety her entire life. Since she moved to Colorado 4 years ago and started spending time outside regularly, her mental health is the best it's ever been. She has also met so many great people, some of which have become great friends, through outdoor activities. 

JAKE HARTMAN

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Certifications: NREMT

 

Favorite adventures: Mountaineering, Canyoneering, backpacking. Pretty much whatever adventure

 

Why he always chooses adventures: 

Despite living in colorado his whole life, Jake hasn't really seen much of Colorado out side of the confines of the city, and spent most of his time either working or at home. Until 2020 he was re-introduced to Colorado when his Girlfriend invited him to thru-hike the Colorado Trail, and what a marvelous introduction it was! Ever since Jake has always chosen adventure for; fun, health, both physical and mental, definitely for the "gram" and he has been doing his very best trying to drag his friends out of bed early to catch those early summit sunrises all year round. Although being relatively new to the "adventure life", it has had a huge impact on his perspective on life and it's unique challenges, which may be overwhelming and seem impossible at times, can be overcome, one step at a time. 

ALY JOBSON

TRAIL TIMEOUTS - PROGRAM AMBASSADOR

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Favorite Adventures:

Rock Climbing, Hiking, Camping, Anything out in nature!

 

Why She Always Chooses Adventures: 

After moving to Colorado in 2015 to pursue a more outdoor-focused lifestyle, she has summited 10 14ers, completed multiple backpacking trips, climbed many rock climbing routes, and more...all things she couldn't do in her home state. Choosing adventures, taking risks, pushing past self-doubt and fear is where people grow the most. Aly lives a life of constant self-discovery, and adventuring is just what she does. 

LYNNE JUSTICE 

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Favorite Adventures:

Exploring Colorado with family and friends, camping, photographing wildlife. Lynne loves visiting new places and learning about their history plus what each town has to offer.


Why She Always Chooses Adventures: 
Lynne grew up camping in Northern California with her family and when she moved to Colorado, she
went camping and fishing with her neighbors. She actually spent her honeymoon in the mountains
on opening fishing day. Lynne has passed her love of traveling and enjoying the beauty of nature to her family and encourages her friends also.

JAMES KERSEY

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Favorite Adventures:

Mountaineering, Class 3/4 scrambling, Backpacking, Snowshoeing

 

Why He Always Chooses Adventures: 

James's first mountain experience came the summer after college when, on a bit of a whim, he and college friends set their sights on Mt. Shasta in California. Armed with not much experience and facing very icy conditions on the Hotlum-Bolam Glacier, they only made it to ~12,000ft before turning around - but he was hooked. Since then (and after some much needed training), James has climbed mountains in California, Oregon, Washington, Colorado, and Wyoming. He feels most at home and a sense of peace high up in the mountains and calls Rocky Mountain National Park his home away from home. He's now looking to share these experiences and adventures with others!

DONI MARSELIES
ACA EVENT PHOTOGRAPHER
ACA Ambassador II - Wilderness First Aid Certified - Solo Colorado 

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Favorite Adventures:

Backpacking in the spring and winter and photography hunting.

 

Why He Always Chooses Adventures:

Marsel loves the outdoors. He often enjoys nature by going on solo backpacking trips. Since he would go out and about by himself, he likes to make sure that he knows everything there is to know about his surroundings. He likes looking at his immediate landscape that sometimes includes trees, rocks  and random shrubs with a hope that he can catch a glimpse of any type of wildlife; so he can capture it with his camera. Lately he's been writing about his hikes, and hope someday he can make a living writing about his experiences in the outdoors. 

MOLLY QUIRK

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Favorite Adventures:

Hiking and backpacking with friends, furry companions, and solo. Traveling to camp in National and State Parks since a child, she values the beauty and majesty of mountains, oceans, and deserts alike. In the last year, she has visited Joshua Tree National Park, Zion National Park, Bryce National Park, and Rocky Mountain National Park. Her favorite trip to date was Havasupai Indian Reservation in Grand Canyon National Park. She is also a fan of yoga, paddle boarding, kayaking, horseback riding, and trekking to hot springs.

 

Why She Always Chooses Adventures:

As someone with ADHD, the outdoors is one of the most critical ways she harnesses energy into something positive. Getting outside helps her stay focused! Born and raised in Orange County, CA, spending time at the beach and swimming in the ocean was a calming activity which instilled the importance of adventure and recreation. Now, as a teacher she continues to see the value of nature and how it guides youth and adults alike to stay in the present moment. She is passionate about ensuring that all people have access to outdoor recreation and its benefits.

KRISTY ROGGEMAN
ACA Ambassador II - Wilderness First Aid Certified - Solo Colorado 

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Favorite Adventures:

Hiking is probably her number one, then camping. She is attending school to become an outdoor professional and her first back packing trips are with her class. Backpacking will most likely become her favorite because it combines her 2 favorite things in to one.

Why She Always Chooses Adventures:

Because choosing adventures is what she wants to do for a living. She has been hiking for the last 8 years and been getting more extreme over the last 4-5 years. Hiking and camping and being in nature keeps her happy and healthy. She also loves to take pictures of her adventures and would like to get better at using a “real” camera.

JENNY ROACH
LEAD AMBASSADOR
Wilderness First Aid Certified - Solo Colorado 

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Favorite Adventures:

Jenny's favorite adventures include hiking the big rocks and exploring the trails sharing her love of the mountains with her grandson. She hiked her first 14er in 2019 and caught the bug. Jenny hopes to see the top of them all. She loves all the winter things best. 

Why She Always Chooses Adventures:

For sanity. For grounding. For connection. Jenny will be the first to tell you of the magic in the sparkling snow just before the sun crests the horizon; the tranquility of the rushing, half frozen mountain steam as it timelessly passes by; the utmost importance of passing on the knowledge of conservation, love and care for our planet. 

AWK STANLEY
 

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Your Favorite Adventures:

Hiking, camping, kayaking, fishing, snowshoeing, and traveling. And food! Food is an adventure too right?? 

 

Why she Always Choose Adventures: 

Nature and the outdoors is where she finds her therapy and peace. Having never visited Colorado at all, Awk decided to move to Colorado 3 years ago after a slump in her mental health. If the saying is true about the mountains calling, it called and Awk answered. It was probably the best decision she could have made and she doesn’t regret it one bit! The positive impact that nature and the endless outdoor possibilities have really helped her find her inner peace. She always choose adventures because life is full of amazing adventures and she wants to share it with as many people as possible! 

LAUREN STROBEL 
 

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Favorite Adventures:

Hiking, camping, kayaking, fishing, really anything in the water!

Why She Always Chooses Adventures:

Lauren grew up in a family of outdoorsman, in the beautiful state of Minnesota. Her favorite pastime is going fishing with her dad every year at midnight on fishing opener in Minnesota. It’s something she has done since she was a small child and will continue to do as long as she is able. 

Lauren developed a love for hiking on one of her many trips to Colorado and it helped fuel her decision to finally move there. She has struggled with anxiety in several forms for much of her adult life, but nature has been a natural remedy. It calms her, even in the most intense situations, and brings out the extrovert that is hiding inside of her introverted shell. 

She loves to push herself to try new adventures and reach new limits! Being a member of Always Choose Adventures has given new meaning and energy to her every day life and she can’t wait to share it with others! 

JACKIE WILSON

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Favorite Adventures:

Backpacking Machu Picchu, a bike and barge trip in the Netherlands, backcountry hut trips, backpacking Havasupai (Obviously! She's done it 12 times!), the Grand Canyon rim to rim, the Grand Tetons, and Yosemite National Park. As well as hiking, snowshoeing, and backpacking almost anywhere in Colorado! She loves to travel and experience the great outdoors with workout vacations being her favorite. She loves hiking by herself and with her dogs (her best adventure buddies!) and hiking with others. It was an amazing adventure fostering dogs also for a Rescue; She was able to help save lives and help these dogs experience love and find people who truly care about them.

 

Why She Always Chooses Adventures:

She loves experiencing new places, meeting new people, and sharing these experiences with others. Every new adventure is exciting and every new experience, even if it's on the same trail. She always find peace in the mountains. When life can get so crazy busy, a hike in the mountains, especially if there's a waterfall or stream involved, brings calm to her world and fills her soul.

LEAH WHITELAW

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Favorite Adventures:

Canyoneering, hiking, rock climbing, sky diving, camping, and SUP-ing

 

Why She Always Chooses Adventures:

Leah considers her life to be a spontaneous adventure! She prefers to spend more time outdoors than in, usually accompanied by her dog. Leah is a retiredish circus performer now working in the beer industry. She values helping people discover joy, empowerment, and inner peace through outdoor recreation. Leah’s latest passion is slot canyons and hope to be spending more time between rock walls soon!