Our Alaska Guides
It takes a talented individual to be able to lead an Alaska expedition, and our Alaska guides are true outdoor multi-sport professionals. We hand-select each guide based on their ability to deliver an unparalleled level of customer service, a strong wilderness skill set and background, and an insatiable passion for Alaska's wild spaces. Each lead guide is medically certified as a Wilderness First Responder and carries the necessary qualifications to competently backpack, hike, kayak, canoe, and climb throughout Alaska's vast wilderness. When you choose to travel with us, you can rest assured that your trip has been meticulously planned and executed by real Alaskans with authentic Alaska know-how, skill, and ability.
Dan Oberlatz - Owner
Dan has been exploring Alaska's vast wilderness since 1992. For nearly 20 years he has systematically explored remote and poorly understood regions of the Alaskan wilderness, on foot, skis, and by raft especially in the environs of Lake Clark National Park, where he lived year-round until 2005. With at least 15 exploratory expeditions into this little-known wilderness, and multiple expeditions across Alaska, Dan is likely the greatest current authority on the backcountry of the northern Aleutian and southern Alaska ranges. To his credit, Dan has done more than just explore. He is vitally concerned with the sustainability of the wilderness and the viability of the rural communities in the region. Dan spent 6 years as Vice President of the Alaska Wilderness Recreation and Tourism Association. In 2013, Dan was elected to serve on the board of directors of the Alaska Travel Industry Association. As a board member of the Renewable Resources Foundation, he promotes responsible and appropriate tourism as a way to help impoverished communities, while preserving Alaska's wilderness heritage. In 2008, Dan was awarded AWRTA's Ginny Hill Wood Award for his contributions to Alaska conservation and sustainable tourism. Dan is committed to exploration, to the preserving of the wilderness for future generations, and to the advancement of knowledge. His expertise is sought after by various, and he has been quoted or featured in Alaska Business Monthly magazine, US News & World Reports, the Associated Press, National Parks Magazine, Men's Journal, and others. His photographs have appeared in a number of national publications including Outside, Backpacker, Men's Journal, and National Geographic Adventure and Traveler. Dan is also a member of the Explorers Club, to which he was elected in 2009. But as much as anything, Dan loves the backcountry, and he finds his greatest joys while immersed in it. With humor and penache, he goes out in search, and each time he returns he brings greater knowledge and interest to the outside world. He splits time between homes in Anchorage and Lake Clark with his wife Danielle and daughters Isabelle and Bryn.
Aaron Fetter - General Manager
Aaron has been guiding for Alaska Alpine Adventures since 2003 and his passion for the wilderness grows with every adventure. He came to Alaska in 2001 to complete a bachelor's degree in outdoor studies at Alaska Pacific University and pursue a lifelong dream of guiding in Alaska. Most recently, Aaron co-founded Adventure Appetites - offering Alaska Alpine Adventures' gourmet food to adventurers everywhere. He divides his time managing operations, packing food, and exploring Alaska's wild places. Whether traversing remote mountain ranges, climbing high on an Alaska peak, or packrafting a wild & scenic river, Aaron says, "I find inner peace while immersed in Alaska's most remote backcountry." Aaron is a Wilderness First Responder and certified Whitewater Rescue Technician. He lives in Anchorage with his wife Adele and daughter Emily.
Andy also joined our team in 2003 and is the quintessential Alaska wilderness guide. Andy's calm demeanor and solid backcountry awareness is unmatched and his resume of Alaska expeditions is both lengthy and impressive. During the 2006 season he completed a solo thru-hike of the entire Pacific Crest Trail from Mexico to Canada yet returned to Alaska to guide for us in 2007. Andy is a Wilderness First Responder and certified Whitewater Rescue Technician. The quintessential adventure guide, Andy's extensive backcountry knowledge and experience, particularly in the Lake Clark area, are a fine compliment to his affable good nature and wry sense of humor.
An Alaska transplant from Colorado, Haley joined us for her first summer in 2010. Having spent the previous 2 summers extensively exploring the mountains surrounding the Colorado wilderness lodge that she managed, Haley craved an even bigger wilderness experience. One season exploring Alaska's wilderness, and she was hooked. She currently lives in Anchorage, and spends as much time on the slopes and in the backcountry as possible. Her positive energy is contageous, and she's always more than happy to share Alaska's wilderness with our guests. Haley is graduate of the University of South Carolina, and is a certified Wilderness First Responder.
Mario hails from the pacific northwest where he developed a love of adventuring and exploring mountains. He first discovered Alaska on a solo bike trip from Anchorage to Skagway in 2006, and having been bitten with the bug that is Alaska, he ended up staying the rest of that summer in Skagway, introducing people to the grandeur the state has to offer. That first summer turned into four summers guiding people through the wonders of the coastal temperate rain forest of southeast Alaska. This passion of exploring alaska has taken Mario from the slopes of Denali to the rivers of ANWR. He spends his winters as a ski patroller at Stevens Pass in Washington State. He has been a part of the Alaska Alpine Adventures team since 2010. He is looking forward to showing you his favorite spots and keeping you and your belly happy. Mario is a wilderness first responder
Captured by the grandeur of her vast wilderness, Nick has made Alaska his home since 2006. He has shared his passion for wild places and back-country travel while guiding clients and students on kayaking, canoeing, packrafting, and trekking adventures through some of the state's most spectacular landscapes; from the rainforests of Southeast to the ice-choked fjords of AK's rugged gulf coast. In his free time, he loves pickin' bluegrass tunes on his guitar, and spends his long, Alaskan winters playing in the snow and training sled dogs. Nick has continually worked to advance his back-country skills, and discover the uniqueness of each and every place he visits. With a degree in Outdoor Studies from Alaska Pacific University, and certified as a Wilderness First Responder, Whitewater Rescue Technician, and Leave No Trace Trainer, and looks forward to sharing his experiences with others seeking to travel deeply, yet lightly, into Alaska's superior wilderness.
Reigning from the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of Asheville, NC, this true-blue Tarheel first visited the Greatland in the summer of 2005. The roots grew deep that first summer, and today he is proud to call Anchorage his home. Guiding has been a passion since settling in AK, and he has led over 4,000 guests through the state. Bryan joined the AAA team in 2011. The mountains and adventure within them have always inspired Bryan. On any given day you can find him enjoying his backyard seeking out powder stashes in the backcountry, rolling singletrack on his bike, or just capturing the beauty of the outdoors through the lens of his camera. Bryan is also the General Manager of Adventure Appetites. He is a certified Wilderness First Responder.
Erin developed a love for wild things whilst romping around the hills of Wyoming as a kid. After receiving a BS in Recreation Leadership from BYU-Idaho, she made her way up to Alaska in 2007 which led to 5 summers of leading trips through the majestic temperate coastal rainforest and glaciers of Southeast Alaska. She joined our team in 2012 and her passion for Alaska and its wild places continues to grow as she further explores and shares the vast wilderness Alaska has to offer. With a Masters in Experiential Education combined with her quirky sense of humor, she gets downright excited to assist others in delving into the Alaska experience. Erin winters in Wyoming to spend time with family and ski but is alway happy to get back to Alaska. She is a wilderness first responder.
Joe is an internationally certified IFMGA mountain guide with a passion for mountain adventure in Alaska. He has been climbing and skiing around the world for 24 years with highlights on long alpine climbs in the Southern Alps of New Zealand, limestone rock climbing in Thailand, mixed climbs in Colorado and spring ski mountaineering in Alaska. He made the first ski traverse of the Chugach Mountains from Anchorage to Valdez, and the first full-length ski traverses of the Tordrillo and Neacola Mountains. Of all the mountain ranges Joe has visited, the Neacola Mountains of Lake Clark National Park are his favorite. Joe received an undergraduate degree in geology and geography from the University of Canterbury in New Zealand and a graduate degree in watershed science (snow science focus) from CSU in Fort Collins, Colorado. In addition to being a certified guide, Joe works as a writer, photographer and hydrologist. He lives in Anchorage with his wife Cathy. www.stockalpine.com
Born and raised in New Hampshire, Nick began climbing and skiing mountains as soon as he could walk. Now Nick lives in Girdwood, Alaska. He is a graduate of the Outdoor Recreation Leadership program from Colorado Mountain College and Alaska Pacific University’s Outdoor Studies program. Since 2008 he has been a year round mountain guide, ski guide and educator working with the Alaska Mountaineering School and the Alaska Avalanche School. He enjoys sharing his knowledge of safe mountain travel. Along with his extensive experience base he is a certified Wilderness First Responder, Avalanche Level 3, Leave No Trace Master Educator and is close to earning his Ski Mountaineering Guide certification through the American Mountain Guides Association. Nick looks forward to sharing his passion for the mountains with you.
Born in Fairbanks and raised between Alaska and Tulsa, Oklahoma, JonDavid developed an early appreciation for a variety of landscapes and lifestyles. After college, this former University of Kansas lacrosse player moved to the high Rockies of Colorado to pursue a life of playing in the mountains and raft guiding. Now living in Alaska full time, JonDavid is enjoying all that the state has to offer. From rafting, packrafting, hiking and and biking in the summer months, to climbing, skiing and working with a high angle rescue group in Valdez during the winter, he has a passion for every season. Getting his start in the Alaska tourism industry with a small riverboat operation in the interior almost a decade ago, he has had the privilege of meeting and working with thousands of Alaska’s visitors and looks forward to meeting thousands more. JonDavid is also a volunteer firefighter and certified EMT 1, Wilderness First Responder, and Whitewater Rescue Technician.
Joan is our urban adventurer, hailing from the great city of Chicago. After trading in her urban ways and Da Bears for real bears, she has really found a home in the mountains and rivers of Alaska. Joan is forever working on her degree in Wilderness Education from DePaul University, and has used her education as an opportunity to travel and experience wilderness areas around the world. An avid water sports enthusiast, Joan enjoys sea kayaking, canoeing, surfing, and floating lazy rivers, as well as exploring beautiful remote terrains. Her cheery disposition, active imagination, and long winded stories make her a delight to be around. Joan joined the AAA staff in 2012 and is a certified Wilderness First Responder as well as Leave No Trace Master Educator.
Duane first came to Alaska in 1989 to climb Denali and became captivated with the size and diversity of the state. A native of Vail, Colorado and an alumnus of Colorado State University, you'll find him actively living the mountain lifestyle. Although busy raising a daughter and running a successful development company for 20 years, Duane always found time for backcountry adventures, including 41 of Colorado’s 14er’s, the Grand Teton and Mt. Rainier, just to name a few. As a past member of a Mountain Search & Rescue Team in Colorado and K9 Search & Rescue Team with his avalanche rescue dog Bode, Duane is trained in the most current mountain safety standards. Today, his greatest joy is in the volunteer work he does with the Montana Fish Wildlife & Parks Grizzly Bear Conflict Management Team. He also works with the Colorado 14er Coalition and the Continental Divide Trail alliance. During the winter you'll find Duane at Beaver Creek Resort where he is a PSIA Level III ski instructor. He is a certified Wilderness First Responder and Swiftwater Rescue Technician.
Gus hails from Upstate New York’s Finger Lakes region. It was there that he grew to love the outdoors and all the fun activities that go along with them. Gus joined the Alaska Alpine Adventures team in 2012 and fell head over heels for the grandeur and beauty of Alaska’s wild places. He spends his winters skiing, hiking and climbing in the Lake Tahoe Region of California. Gus has a B.S. in Outdoor Recreation and Leadership and is a trained Wilderness First Responder, and is excited to share his humor, positivity and passion for Alaska with all of our guests.
B-Dog joined the Alaska Alpine Adventures team in 2009 and has since ventured to the far reaches of the state. His most recent pursuits have taken him on backpacking adventures in Wrangell-St.Elias and Lake Clark National Parks, as well as kayaking on the remote Katmai Coast. When not adventuring in the Alaska wilderness, B-Dog winters alone in the company warehouse in South Anchorage. He looks forward to sharing the stories of his adventures with you, and possibly hitching a ride on you backpack or the bow of your kayak.