Staff Post: Welcoming Nate To AK Huts
My name is Nate and I am a proud new member of the Alaska Huts staff team this year!
A little about me: I grew up in Seattle and recently graduated from Yale with a degree in Environmental Studies. I am an avid runner and climber and spent the past few summers as a mountain guide on Mount Rainier. I care deeply about making wilderness experiences more accessible and creating opportunities that connect people of all backgrounds to the outdoors—one of the many reasons I feel personally invested in the mission and core values of Alaska Huts.
I am excited to be supporting Alaska Huts as an “Outdoor Recreation Policy Fellow” with the Sitka Winter Fellows Program. This means I’ll be splitting my time between Anchorage and Sitka, where I am collaborating with AK State Rep. Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins on several projects aiming to boost Alaska’s adventure tourism economy. With Alaska Huts, I will be assisting day-to-day operations and helping plan the Glacier Discovery project. Based out of Sitka’s legislative office, I am also in a unique position to research policy and advocate for public funding of recreation infrastructure improvements—including, hopefully, the construction of more public-use cabins
In my short time with Alaska Huts so far I’ve already seen just how powerfully this organization brings people together. Last month I got to join some amazing volunteers and Huts supporters at Manitoba’s aptly named ‘Woodstock’ event. While stacking firewood and scrubbing yurts, I was struck by how multi-generational this crowd was: young children rinsing dishes while their parents swept the floors; teenagers hauling wood to hand off to women and men three times their age; everyone working together to make this place better. It’s a testament, I believe, to Alaska Huts’ commitment to inclusive community building and camaraderie.
Earlier in September I also had an opportunity to join Tom and Mackenzie on a scouting mission to pinpoint locations for the new Glacier Discovery Huts along the Alaska Railroad. Hiking under Bartlett Glacier, I was thoroughly blown away by spectacular views in all directions. The proposed hut system is not only in a wildly beautiful area, but also offers access to excellent backcountry skiing, ice climbing, rafting, and wildlife viewing. With the planning process already underway, I am looking forward to doing all I can to support Alaska Huts in making this a reality.