Your Guides

One of the most amazing things about operating a business like ours is being able to surround ourselves with such incredible individuals. To have them coming back year after year is incredibly flattering. If it weren’t for these great people, we’d be just another tour business. They are the reason that we are so successful and we cannot thank them enough.

Here’s a little introduction…

Returning Guides

Ollie Cahoon

Oliver Cahoon

Oliver was born and raised on the east benches of the Salt Lake Valley at the mouths of the Cottonwood Canyons. His love for the mountains and close proximity to the Wasatch Front Range fostered a passion for hiking, climbing, backpacking, mountain biking, and of course, skiing and snowboarding. Oliver graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in Adventure & Outdoor Programming. In his studies, Oliver spent many weekends on the rivers of Southern Utah paddling through desert canyons in canoes, paddle rafts, SUP boards and kayaks. Escaping the heat of the desert, Oliver and his Alaskan Husky (Utah), travel and work seasonally between summers in the San Juan Islands and winters at ski resorts across the west! Oliver is returning for his 3rd season with AKT this summer.

Gary Goldfinger

Gary Goldfinger

Just returning from a winter spent climbing in Asia and Europe, Gary is back for his fifth season! Gary attended the Expeditionary Studies program in upstate New York where he disciplined in paddle sports. Originally starting off as a passionate rock climber, Gary has excelled in both paddling on the river and on the ocean since joining his university program. When he isn’t guiding tours here at AKT, he travels around the world working in the outdoor industry and taking trips to exotic places, like Africa and Asia on climbing expeditions, or Patagonia where he worked as a kayak guide

Gary has his Wilderness First Responder and CPR certification, as well as numerous awards from the BCU (British Canoe Union) and ACA (American Canoe Association). If he’s not out kayaking in the San Juan Islands, he’s probably clinging to a rock or floating down a river! Gary’s other passions include climbing, sleeping in his car, eating street food, and giving himself haircuts in Erik and Megan's driveway. His unbelievably high energy level, quick wit, and enthusiasm make him a super fun guide to be around.

Cobi Krumholz

Cobi Krumholz

Cobi grew up in Wisconsin, where he spent his time kayaking and sailing on Lake Michigan and the lakes around Madison. He later graduated from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, with a major in Marketing and a minor in Recreation Management. In the fall, he’ll be joining us for his fourth season guiding at AKT, but in the meantime he ’s up at Mount Shasta in Northern California working as a mountain guide. And in the winter, you can find him snowboarding in Jackson Hole, Wyoming

Cobi’s hobbies include anything that take him outside, including rock climbing, snowboard mountaineering, sailing, paddle boarding, slack-lining, and of course kayaking. He’s currently working on getting American Mountain Guides Association certifications, and expanding his skills and knowledge as he works to guide different activities year round.

Sean Miller

Sean Miller

Sean is back for his second season at AKT this summer. An educator at heart, he loves to share the history and ecology of the San Juan Islands with guests. His hope is that in addition to having a fun paddle, his guests will leave with a deeper understanding of the ecosystem that they've come to enjoy. During the winters he spends his time hitting the slopes at Alta Ski Area in Utah.

Sean’s career in the outdoors began after going through the Scouting program. He achieved the rank of Eagle Scout, and spent 6 summers working at BSA Camp Horseshoe. This led him to the Expeditionary Studies program at the State University of New York in Plattsburgh where he is currently working to complete his degree. He's earned his 3 Star Sea Kayak Award from the British Canoe Union, and hopes to take his Level One Coach Certification in the not-too-distant future. He is also a Wilderness First Responder and Leave No Trace Master Educator.

Lisa Moen

Lisa Moen

This is Lisa’s second season here at AKT. She was born and raised in New Jersey, and has been living in Washington for two years. She graduated from the College of New Jersey with a degree in Mathematics with a concentration in Biology. She’s also a talented performer, having spent almost ten years doing semi-professional theater; so you know you’ll be entertained when you join her on the water!

Lisa grew up spending her summers sea kayaking in Maine, and has always been an avid hiker and backpacker. Two years ago she hiked the Pacific Crest Trail. This past winter she hiked over 800 miles along the spine of the South Island of New Zealand on the Te Araroa. She discovered her passion for guiding during a semester with NOLS while on her first trip to New Zealand. She has since returned to NOLS to receive her Wilderness First Responder certification and plans to take the course to become a Wilderness EMT in the winter. For the summer, she’s here to share her love of the outdoors with her guests. A Leave No Trace Master Educator, she’ll tell anyone who will listen about the benefits of packing out their apple cores instead of just tossing them on the ground.

Noah Person

Noah Person

This is Noah’s second season working with us in the San Juan Islands as a kayak guide. He recently returned from his winter job at the ski resort at Snoqualmie Pass, WA, where he has been managing a number of equipment rental shops for several years. He is a Whidbey Island resident and a lifelong Western Washington native, where he enjoys snowboarding, rock climbing, dirt-biking, fishing, backpacking; but he has always felt most comfortable on the water. Noah literally grew up on the sea, spending much of his youth with his family on a small sailboat, including a year-long voyage to Central America. As a teen he was part of a sailboat racing team based out of Sequim, WA, then landed a job on a NOAA research ship right out of high school and traveled all throughout the Pacific, where he earned the rare title of Golden Shellback, an honor bestowed upon sailors who have crossed the equator at the International Date Line.

Over the last several years he has found himself at home in a kayak, having racked up hundreds of miles in his boat, the Wild Ginger. He’s taken on a number of lengthy paddles, most notably a three-week voyage from Olympia to Deception Pass. On the water, he’s usually talking about one of his favorite subjects, which include local human and natural history, geology, marine flora and fauna, the fascinating power of tides, and especially how amazing kelp forests are!

Stevie Strong

Stevie Strong

Stevie came to the Puget Sound from Champaign, Illinois; this is her third season with AKT. She previously worked as a Ranger for Philmont Scout Ranch, and as a kayak guide both in the outer banks of North Carolina, and in the Apostle Islands on Lake Superior. She’s now happy to call Bellingham home, where she relocated to work for a local sourdough bakery over the winter.

When she isn’t kayaking, she’s usually biking, chasing the sunset, baking bread, or fighting the never-ending battle against weeds in her community garden plot. She believes that the Puget Sound is the most beautiful place to paddle, from the scenery to the wildlife to the challenging currents, and she can’t wait to share her passion for this area!

New Guides

James Carlberg

James Carlberg

James comes from Minnesota where he grew up paddling many of the 10,000 lakes the state offers. He previously lived in northern Minnesota where he graduated from the University of Minnesota Duluth with a degree in outdoor education and business administration. Pursuing his passion for paddling he led kayaking trips for Lutsen Resort on the north shore of Lake Superior for a season. James now calls Anacortes home and is hoping to pursue his outdoor education career in the Pacific Northwest.

When he is not paddling you can find him mountain biking, trail running, camping or looking for the next big adventure. James is extremely passionate and enthusiastic and hopes to share his great love for the outdoors with you on your next paddling adventure!

Matt Cunningham

Matt Cunnningham

Born and raised outside of Cleveland, Ohio, Matt has always enjoyed outdoor recreation. He is a recent graduate of Bowling Green State University, and has a B.S. in Environmental Science. Matt grew up paddling, hiking, and camping on the lakes and rivers in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, and Massachusetts. Last summer Matt was living and working in Great Smoky Mountain National Park as an environmental educator, and building tree houses in his off-time. Matt enjoys teaching canoeing and kayaking, climbing, mountain biking, snowboarding and playing music. In March of next year he plans to paddle the Grand Canyon.

Caleb Diehl

Caleb Diehl

Caleb grew up in the mountains of northern Utah, but became a Pacific Northwesterner after moving to Oregon to earn his undergraduate degree in history. In college, he led skiing, snowshoeing, backpacking, and hiking trips all over the Pacific Northwest. He worked a summer at an environmental education center three miles into the heart of Oregon’s Opal Creek Wilderness, and was inspired to write his thesis on the area (ask him about it and you’ll have enough to talk about on a 5-hour tour). After graduating, Caleb led wilderness backpacking trips for at risk urban teens in the Pacific Northwest, taught English to high school students in rural Thailand, and backpacked around Cambodia and Japan. With two years of experience as a trip leader and Wilderness First Responder, Caleb will keep you safe on the water. After this summer, Caleb plans to return to Portland to earn his Master’s in Urban and Regional Planning.

Alyssa Hoyle

Alyssa Hoyle

Raised in San Diego, California, Alyssa grew up surfing and looking for creatures in local tide pools. She’s thrilled to be spending the summer back on the west coast after a year teaching international school groups kayaking and other outdoor skills on Tioman Island, Malaysia. Prior, Alyssa spent two years working as a naturalist in various California national and state parks, and attempting to perfect her Spanish teaching in Guatemala, Ecuador and Spain. When not kayaking, you can find her practicing yoga, rock climbing, hiking and trying to catch every sunset she can!

Ian Mitchell

Ian Mitchell

Ian Mitchell is a new guide joining us this summer. He hails from Reno, Nevada, and has spent a great deal of time working in and exploring the Sierra Nevadas. He is joining us from Leadville, Colorado, as he is a recent graduate from Colorado Mountain College with degrees in Outdoor Recreation Leadership and Outdoor education. Through his school, he has attained a certificate in Wilderness First Responder as well as a master training in Leave No Trace wilderness ethics. Ian has paddled on multiday trips around the San Juan Islands with students from his school, teaching them how to navigate the islands by way of kayak.

Ian began his outdoor career as a crewmember with the Nevada Conservation Corps, building trails and using chainsaws to combat invasive species. This is where his love for the outdoors grew strong. After four seasons with the Conservation Corps, he moved to Colorado to attend school. Ian loves rock climbing, hiking, camping, and paddling. He is joining us this season to strengthen his skills on the water and to have some fun in the marine environment of the Pacific Northwest.

Jacqueline Marber

Jacqueline Marber

Jacqueline was born and raised in Sammamish, Washington and then moved up to Bellingham, Washington to go to school. She studies Recreation in the Health and Human Development Department at Western Washington University with a minor in Psychology. She played Lacrosse and swam growing up since the age of 10. In college, she fell in love with rock climbing and dedicated every second to bouldering either outside or inside at a gym. Sea kayaking also grabbed her attention and she’s very excited to be working out on the water for her first season here at AKT.

She has traveled all around the world to some incredible places including South Africa, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Europe, Australia, Fiji, Ecuador and hopes to keep venturing! Her dream is to move to Maui and lead outdoor tours in the sunshine and give people experiences they will never forget!

Pax Templeton

Pax Templeton

Pax grew up split between Maine and New Mexico, spending his free time exploring the desert, mountains, rivers, and ocean that these great states have to offer. After earning his BA from the University of Vermont, he took up the nomadic seasonal life and has never looked back. Always up for an adventure, he has spent his time since ski bumming in Lake Tahoe, brewing beer in Ecuador, hiking in the Himalayas, and lounging on Asian beaches. It’s his goal to set foot on every continent before he dies and he only has two more to go.

An avid nature lover, Pax moved to the San Juans for the amazing wildlife viewing opportunities and jaw dropping vistas. But like anything good in life, these are things that are best when shared, making his job here as a sea kayak guide one of his favorite to date. He is psyched to be able to explore them and share them with you from the seat of a kayak!

Logistics and Reception
(their hard work helps to make our guides look good)

Kailey Davis

Kailey Davis

Kailey Davis is born and raised in Anacortes Washington. She is currently a sophomore at Anacortes High School, where she enjoys science classes the most. This is her first summer working at AKT and is super excited about it! Kailey plays soccer and has her whole life. Kailey has grown up in a very outdoorsy family and enjoys hiking, camping and fishing here in the PNW. One of Kailey’s favorite summer activities is paddle boarding with her friends. Kailey also loves dogs!


Ryan Foggin

Ryan Foggin

Ryan was born in Virginia Beach and lived in Florida for a couple of years before migrating west to Anacortes. Coming from a military family, he’s a big fan of traveling and staying active, with a particular passion for the outdoors. Ever since taking a kayaking course to learn basic safety skills, he has pursued opportunities that allow him to be out on the water, which brought him to AKT! Not only is he a fan of paddling, he also is a runner and a frequent participant of the Ragnar relay race. His team placed first, second and third place in the three years they competed. In addition, he has been a state competitor in both cross country and swimming and is the team captain of the JV soccer team. He spends the school year up in Bellingham, where he studies Computer Science at Western Washington University. He is excited to be joining AKT for his third summer and is always helping out in any way he can!

Alex Hanesworth

Alex Hanesworth

Alex was born in Klamath Falls, Oregon, but grew up right here in Anacortes, spending most summers paddling around the San Juan Islands. She’s been collecting sea glass and crab shells on the shores of Fidalgo Island for as long as she can remember. She currently attends Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island and is pursuing a degree in Literary and Visual Arts. She knew she couldn’t live far from the ocean, but she misses the Pacific more than she’d care to admit.

When she isn’t talking about the Northwest and the creatures and plants and bodies of water she misses, she can be found making radio stories, hiking, swimming, painting and writing poetry. Alex loves local and natural history, particularly that of the island she was raised on. She is ecstatic that she gets to spend a summer exploring and sharing her home with you!

August Newkirk

August Newkirk

August hails from Ashland, Oregon but when his family made their way back east he found his home in Delaware, where he grew up. This is his first year working with us but he is no stranger to water or paddling. He spent this past summer working on Fenwick Island in Delaware as a kayak instructor and assistant tour guide in the bays of Delmarva! His greatest love is being outside in nature. In addition to kayaking he loves sailing, backpacking, swimming, and exploring the outdoors!! Last fall August packed up all of his things and moved back out west and has since made a new home on Guemes Island here in Washington. This coming fall, he will be attending Evergreen State College where he hopes to find a major that will guide his passion for education and helping young people.

Wyatt Roman

Wyatt Roman

What’s that? No, it’s not a bald eagle you hear, it’s Wyatt Roman! New to the crew this year as a recent Western Washington University graduate, Wyatt has lived in the temperate Pacific Northwest for 13 years and has spent the last few hiking, climbing, backpacking, cycling and journaling throughout the Salish Sea region and Southwest deserts. His formal education included working with peers to develop place-based curriculum that facilitated natural history learning in an outdoor setting for kids aged 9 to 19. His most recent practicum consisted of spending week-long periods out in the San Juans and in older growth forests telling Coast Salish stories, tiptoeing in intertidal zones, chasing and identifying birds, scooping up and identifying stream macroinvertebrates, tracking growth of Garry Oak restoration sites, inspecting cougar and bear scat, and planting trees!

As both a student and teacher in the great PNW, Wyatt has learned quite a bit about the Salish Sea region and its inhabitants (both bipedal and quadrupedal)! So, ask Wyatt questions! While he may not know everything, he is a wealth of knowledge and shares his excitement with the crew and our guests to get on on the water and poke around. Since his arrival he has amazed fellow crew members with his perfect mustache, what’s his secret? Well, you’ll just have to book a trip with him to find out!

 

 

Thank you for everything. Our meeting went like Swiss clockwork from start to finish thanks to you and your amazing guides. I simply can’t say enough good things about those four to do justice to the subtle but stout job they did on our trip. We felt completely safe, the food was nothing short of spectacular (and always right on time!), and they were simultaneously in complete control and entirely respectful of our group. Ours is a company based upon outstanding customer service and it’s perhaps an understatement to say that we demand the same from the agencies and individuals we choose to work with. Anacortes Kayak Tours has certainly lived up to our vision of what customer service can and should be — Bravo!

—Kaj Bune, Exped

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