10 Essential Questions: Brittany Weiler

Meet Brittany Weiler, a 4-year member that joined to adapt her Midwestern outdoor skills to our PNW terrain, and stayed for the Mountaineers community.
The Mountaineers The Mountaineers
April 12, 2019
10 Essential Questions: Brittany Weiler
Photo courtesy of Brittany Weiler.

Each week we bring you a personal story from one of our members. For our member profile this week we talked to...

Name: Brittany Weiler
Hometown: Beach Park, IL
Member Since: May 2015
Occupation: Associate Advisor for Retirement  
Favorite Activities: Camping, Canoeing, Skiing, Hiking, Backpacking and Scrambling

10 Essentials: Questions

How did you get involved with The Mountaineers?

Curiosity. Moving here from the Midwest there was a real part of me that felt clueless in how to transition my outdoor lifestyle skills... Was hiking really "hiking" if there weren't mountains where I came from? Can I really say "sure, I know how to ski" when there are only large hills where I've skied before? Do people still car camp when there are so many backpacking options? Everything seemed so foreign and yet so familiar. I had moved out here, specifically for easier access to the outdoors and a less sedentary lifestyle but it all just seemed so "extra". A Google search gave me The Mountaineers – an organization that could teach me all the how-to items I was curious about. It started with an Introduction to Map & Compass Course with Brian Seater and Brian Carpenter, which led to Basic Snowshoeing with Kirk Peterson and Kristine Linn, which led to Scrambling with Kirk Peterson and Nina Crampton, which led to Wilderness First Aid with Mary Panza and Navigation with Peter Hendrickson and Brian Hill... and so many other wonderful volunteers.

What motivates you to get outside with us?

The Mountaineers community. I'm building relationships with people that share my values, which helps me maintain an outdoor lifestyle. From the leaders and instructors that made their initial impact on me while I was a student to the friendships I've found and the mentors that I continue to discover - I feel forever indebted. I want to give a sliver of the joy they bring to my life back to the community of newcomers and add to the memory bank many more adventures.

What's your favorite Mountaineers memory?

The bivvy practice Richard Bell, Bill Borom, Nina Crampton & Rena Chinn challenged us with on a Leadership Retreat – it was hands-down one of the most fun learning experiences I've had.

Who/What inspires you?

Every volunteer I meet at The Mountaineers are who inspire me - to give so much time, compassion and experience is a true gift. Mother Nature, though, is what inspires me. The raw and natural beauty of the extremes offered by the outdoors are always a humbling and worthwhile experience.

What does adventure mean to you?

Adventure, to me, is any experience that invokes an unexpected emotional response - the stillness of a sunrise that erases any memory of life's responsibilities, tears of gratitude that the body did not fail when the mind was certain it would, the rush of adrenaline when you're within site of the summit (or car) and the moment you feel all the feels because something in nature triggered a distant memory.

Lightning Round
Sunrise or sunset? Sunrise.
Smile or game face? Smile.
What's your 11th Essential? For real: athletic tape. There's not a boot around that won't give me a blister but tape always comes to my rescue. For fun: Sour Patch Kids.
What's your happy place? Camp. It may be temporary, but it always feels like home.

If you could be a rockstar at any outdoor activity overnight, what would it be? Sailing. It's so far out of my comfort zone on so many levels, but I would love to be a captain overnight.

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