Jeff Carty

Avalanche Center Director

Jeff grew up in eastern Canada, where the skiing options were farmer's fields and the local golf course. He had enough and moved west in 1996 to play in the snow and mountain... Read More +

Jeff Carty

Avalanche Center Director

Jeff grew up in eastern Canada, where the skiing options were farmer's fields and the local golf course. He had enough and moved west in 1996 to play in the snow and mountains. Jeff took his first avalanche training in 1996 and his first professional-level avalanche course in 2001. He's been an outdoor educator since 1992 and has worked in the NOLS winter program since 2004 as a backcountry and avalanche instructor, program supervisor, and instructor trainer. Jeff holds an MSc in outdoor education from the University of Edinburgh. He geeks out on snow science and has a particular interest in how human factors affect decision making. Jeff's primary outdoor pursuit is to go downhill, either on snow or on the river.

Ryan Sorenson

Avalanche Forecaster

Ryan grew up in northern Wyoming, learning from an early age to snowboard, ski, snowmobile, and climb in the Big Horn Mountains, Tetons, and Beartooth Range of Montana. Ryan ... Read More +

Ryan Sorenson

Avalanche Forecaster

Ryan grew up in northern Wyoming, learning from an early age to snowboard, ski, snowmobile, and climb in the Big Horn Mountains, Tetons, and Beartooth Range of Montana. Ryan moved west in 2008. He graduated from Southern Oregon University with a degree in environmental science and experience as a successful collegiate runner.

Beyond college, his aspirations focused on leading and studying in an alpine environment. His desire for mountaineering, climbing, backcountry snowboarding, and skiing led him to Mt. Shasta, where he could hone his guiding skills and share his passion and expertise of traveling in the mountains. Ryan guided for Shasta Mountain guides for three summers and completed a short stint as a professional ski patroller in Tahoe.

In 2015, Ryan was drawn to the high Sierra Nevada Mountains and moved to Mammoth Lakes, California, to guide backcountry skiing, mountaineering, and rock climbing. Ryan moved back to Mt. Shasta in 2019 to forecast for the Mt. Shasta Avalanche Center, issuing avalanche forecasts and teaching awareness and companion rescue courses during the winter. In the spring and summer, he worked for the US forest service as a climbing ranger patrolling the Mount Shasta and Castle Crag wildernesses, responding to rescues, and providing first aid to lost or injured climbers and skiers.

Ryan has a quiet yet humble and professional demeanor with an excellent mountain sense and an adventurous spirit. When not working, he can be found running the trails, fly fishing, and even learning to surf.

Todd Glew

Professional Observer

Todd has been working with the West Central Montana Avalanche Center since 2018. Todd grew up skiing in New England and found his love for backcountry skiing in High School a... Read More +

Todd Glew

Professional Observer

Todd has been working with the West Central Montana Avalanche Center since 2018. Todd grew up skiing in New England and found his love for backcountry skiing in High School around 2000. In pursuit of bigger mountains and powder skiing Todd moved to Alta, Utah, in 2003. In 2007 he graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in Parks, Recreation, and Tourism. Todd has been working as an avalanche educator and professional mountain guide specializing in ski, rock, and alpine climbing since 2008.

When it is not ski season, Todd can be found rock climbing, trail running, surfing, hiking, mountain biking, fishing, or just about anything that gets him outside.

George D'Angelo

Education Coordinator & Professional Observer

Beginning on skinny skis and leather boots, George learned how to ski and discovered a passion for backcountry travel in western Montana. George worked at Montana Snowbowl as... Read More +

George D'Angelo

Education Coordinator & Professional Observer

Beginning on skinny skis and leather boots, George learned how to ski and discovered a passion for backcountry travel in western Montana. George worked at Montana Snowbowl as a patroller before pursuing backcountry powder stashes and educating others on how to do so responsibly.

He has spent considerable time in the backcountry throughout the Rockies and Cascade Ranges. He has completed the NSP/ USFS National Avalanche School, AVPRO, and has a PRO1 and PRO 2 equivalent. George is a professional member of the American Avalanche Association and is an AIARE course leader.

He has worked with various guiding and avalanche education operations, including Payette Powder Guides, Sawtooth Mountain Guides, and the Wallowa Avalanche Center. He began his teaching career here in Missoula with WCMAF and is excited to come full circle and assist the education program after 13 years in the industry. When not exploring the mountains, he enjoys floating the melted snowpack that fills our rivers and spending time with his family.

Trask Baughman

Educator & Professional Observer

With a background in guiding and outdoor education, Trask began working with the West Central Montana Avalanche Foundation in 2019. As a professional member of the American A... Read More +

Trask Baughman

Educator & Professional Observer

With a background in guiding and outdoor education, Trask began working with the West Central Montana Avalanche Foundation in 2019. As a professional member of the American Avalanche Association, he serves as a lead educator, helping further the organization's mission and grow west-central Montana's education programs. As a West Central Montana Avalanche Center Professional Observer, he works throughout the winter operating season to ensure that up-to-date and pertinent information is incorporated into each avalanche forecast.

During the winter, he travels the mountains on telemark skis, splitboards, and powder surfers. When he is not in the snow, he can be found at home with his wife Emiko, dog Franny, or playing D&D with his two brothers and sister.

Meredith Condon

Educator & Professional Observer

Meredith took her first Recreational Avalanche course through AIARE in north Lake Tahoe in 2010. Since then, she has lived and recreated in the Pacific Northwest and Southeas... Read More +

Meredith Condon

Educator & Professional Observer

Meredith took her first Recreational Avalanche course through AIARE in north Lake Tahoe in 2010. Since then, she has lived and recreated in the Pacific Northwest and Southeast Alaska. In 2015, she began working as a mountaineering and backcountry skiing instructor for NOLS based out of Alaska, Idaho, and Wyoming. She completed her Pro-1 certification through the American Avalanche Institute in 2019 and is devoted to chasing winter as an avalanche educator and professional observer.

Meredith has spent much of her adult life teaching, coaching, and managing operational risk as a former Coast Guard member. She loves avalanche education because it is a world where she gets to continue to develop these skills by helping others learn about decision-making in avalanche terrain; the best part is she gets to ride her snowboard while doing it.

Elizabeth Fricke

Educator

Elizabeth Fricke is originally from North Carolina and moved to Montana in 1999. Her background is grounded in outdoor education. She worked for the North Carolina Outward Bo... Read More +

Elizabeth Fricke

Educator

Elizabeth Fricke is originally from North Carolina and moved to Montana in 1999. Her background is grounded in outdoor education. She worked for the North Carolina Outward Bound School, the National Outdoor Leadership School, the Chadwick School, and seasonally raft guiding and kayak instructing on rivers and rocks for many years.

She received her undergrad at Appalachian State University in Recreation Management and a Master’s in education at the University of Montana. Currently, she directs the University of Montana’s Outdoor Program and has been in that position since 2004. She teaches courses for the American Mountain Guide Association, Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics, and the West Central Montana Avalanche Foundation. She is passionate about teaching others and prefers ski tours to lift rides any day.

She completed a Level 1 Avalanche course through NOLS in 2004, a Level 2 in 2009, and a Pro Level 1 course in 2019 through the American Avalanche Institute. She enjoys skiing with her husband and two daughters - and loves chasing them around the mountain on weekends.

Jane Quinn

Educator

Jane started backcountry skiing in the Big Sky area in 2007 with a pair of snowshoes and a snowboard. It only took a couple of adventures for her to switch back to her skiing... Read More +

Jane Quinn

Educator

Jane started backcountry skiing in the Big Sky area in 2007 with a pair of snowshoes and a snowboard. It only took a couple of adventures for her to switch back to her skiing roots, assemble an AT set-up, and learn how to ski deep powder and tight trees on two planks instead of one. After years of cultivating experience, skill, and passion as a skier and mountain biker, she decided to dive into the world of outdoor education. She became a PMBI certified mountain bike instructor while living in Bend, OR in 2015 and the following year, she earned her AIARE avalanche instructor certification in Silverton, CO. After relocating back to Montana in 2017, she founded See Jane Adventures, LLC, whose mission is to empower individuals through outdoor education. She is passionate about helping people conquer fear and anxiety, learn about their true mental and physical potential, and drop their egos in favor of teamwork and supporting one another – all of which are powerful tools for tackling everyday life too!

Ben Schmidt

Educator

After an ill-fated attempt to ski the "backcountry," Ben took his first avalanche course at the University of Montana in the '90s. Since then, Ben has gathered observations, ... Read More +

Ben Schmidt

Educator

After an ill-fated attempt to ski the "backcountry," Ben took his first avalanche course at the University of Montana in the '90s. Since then, Ben has gathered observations, volunteered, taught classes, and helped others learn before they go. Ben grew up skiing the "summits" of Wisconsin and the U.P. and moved to Montana quickly after a ski trip to Big Mountain (Whitefish). Ben brings a decade of ski patrol and avalanche mitigation work, along with many years of skiing in varied Rocky Mountain conditions. Ben teaches whitewater rescue courses when it's not snowing, works in risk mitigation, environmental emergencies, and hits the river as often as possible.

Raina Phillips D’Angelo

Educator

Growing up in Southern Interior British Columbia and Northwest Montana, Raina Phillips D'Angelo is at home in rugged mountains, wild rivers, and snowy winters. She skied as ... Read More +

Raina Phillips D’Angelo

Educator

Growing up in Southern Interior British Columbia and Northwest Montana, Raina Phillips D'Angelo is at home in rugged mountains, wild rivers, and snowy winters. She skied as a child on Big Mountain at Whitefish and Lizard Mountain at Fernie. She began backcountry skiing upon moving to central Idaho in 2005. Her avalanche education began in Stanley, Idaho, in 2007 when she worked as a Winter Ranger for the Sawtooth National Forest.

Since then, summer and winter backcountry activities have been her primary source of employment and enjoyment. In 2018, she became an AIARE Level 1 and 2 Instructor and took her Professional Level 1 Course in January 2020. She shares two sons with her husband George in the Salmon River country of Idaho, where they live off-grid near the small town of Challis. She is still perfecting the art of the telemark turn.

Jack Doering

Educator

Jack grew up skiing the icy slopes of the Midwest but moved out West as soon as he could. After graduating college, he spent winters living like a true ski bum in an RV with ... Read More +

Jack Doering

Educator

Jack grew up skiing the icy slopes of the Midwest but moved out West as soon as he could. After graduating college, he spent winters living like a true ski bum in an RV with a woodstove, skiing and evaluating snowpacks all around North America. Jack has experience ski guiding in Alaska and ski patrolling at Discovery in Phillipsburg. He has a background in outdoor leadership and education and is passionate about teaching what he has learned along the way. When not exploring SW Montana on skis, Jack works for the Forest Service as a firefighter and tries to squeeze in all the trail running and mountain biking that he can.

Maelan Arciello

Educator

Maelan grew up skiing at Red Lodge Mountain. In 2006, he and his family moved to Missoula, and he continued to hone his skills at Snowbowl. He attended college at the Univers... Read More +

Maelan Arciello

Educator

Maelan grew up skiing at Red Lodge Mountain. In 2006, he and his family moved to Missoula, and he continued to hone his skills at Snowbowl. He attended college at the University of Montana and received a B.S. in Parks Tourism and Recreation Management. During his junior year, he accepted an internship in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, which allowed him to teach skiing for a year and a half. In Steamboat Springs, he realized his passion for instructing, providing on-snow education, and exploring the backcountry.

After returning to Missoula in 2016, he started coaching for the Missoula Freestyle Team. He began volunteering for the West Central Montana Avalanche Foundation (WCMAF) in 2017, helping deliver the Know Before You Go schools programs. Since then, he has grown steadily as an Educator and expanded his role within the WCMAF Education Program.

He maintains a strong passion for outdoor education and emphasizes having fun and being safe. As an American Avalanche Association (A3) member, he has Avalanche Leve 1 and 2 certifications. His goals as an outdoor educator are to instill confidence in students and help them better their decision-making in the mountains.

He manages the local ski and paddle shop, LB Snow, and guides for Montana River Guides during the summer. He also works with the Whitewater Rescue Safety Institute in environmental spill response safety on waterways throughout the country.

Ryan Milling

Educator

Ryan has been exploring the backcountry on skis since coming to Montana in 2012. Ryan has always had a passion for education and learning, teaching for various organizations,... Read More +

Ryan Milling

Educator

Ryan has been exploring the backcountry on skis since coming to Montana in 2012. Ryan has always had a passion for education and learning, teaching for various organizations, including NOLS, Aerie Backcountry Medicine, the Montana Wilderness School, and the UM Outdoor Program. He is passionate about breaking down barriers to enjoy the outdoors safely and responsibly. His avalanche and skiing background comes from years of ski patrolling, leading winter camping expeditions, teaching avalanche and winter skills courses. As an American Avalanche Association Pro, he is constantly working to improve the quality of avalanche education and focuses on providing inclusive education, free from big attitudes and egos. He is currently in nursing school and works at the local ER. When the snow melts, Ryan enjoys whitewater kayaking and guiding on the Middle Fork and Main Salmon.