Joy and Generosity Fuel Adventure

The Mountaineers flourishes thanks to a culture of giving. Donors and volunteers give back and pay it forward, empowering others to confidently explore and become advocates for our natural world. Your year-end donation will support the future of outdoor education and recreation in our own backyard and beyond.
Bri Vanderlinden Bri Vanderlinden
Development Director
December 19, 2022
Joy and Generosity Fuel Adventure
Photo by Nate Brown.

I adore this time of year. The comforting contrast of dark green cedars against bright snow. Breathing in the crisp air. Feeling the grounding weight of an extra full pack while I let my mind float to a cold winter sky. Coming home with rosy cheeks, kicking snow off my boots at the door, and feeling the warmth of a fire embrace me like a bear hug. I experience so much joy in the winter when I am able to get outside and then return home. This joy heals and sustains me.

Getting outside

Whenever I get the chance to get to know our members better, I ask “What first drew you to The Mountaineers?” Your responses have been as varied and numerous as trees in a forest. And yet, your stories all come back to three big themes: you wanted to learn skills to recreate confidently and responsibly, you sought new friendships or community, and you were drawn to a collective of people that would advocate together for our natural world. The shared wisdom and passion of our community has had a magnetic pull for generations of outdoor enthusiasts.

Coming home

Almost every one of your stories have had the same conclusion as mine: once I came here, I felt as if I found my way home. I was wrapped in the love and support of this incredible volunteer community. And the outdoor experiences you’ve helped to provide have brought me immense joy and a sense of belonging. 

Here at the onset of winter, I am once again reminded of the legacy of joy that Mountaineers like you have built. Courses are opening and filling for the 2023 season. Books are being delivered throughout the PNW and beyond to equip and inspire. Kids are finding their inner confidence. Volunteers – new and seasoned alike! – are becoming better leaders. All this because Mountaineers adventure with purpose. We exist not only to celebrate individual adventure and ambition, but also to invite more people to enjoy, discover, and conserve the natural world.

Sharing joy

The Mountaineers flourishes thanks to a culture of giving. Donors and volunteers give back and pay it forward, empowering others to confidently explore in our own backyards and beyond. I have personally benefited from the passion and generosity of our community, which has inspired me to give back as a donor and a volunteer myself. 

Would you consider making a special donation this month to invest in our future?

As we look toward the future, we are inspired by the ways we can lean even deeper into our mission. The spirit of generosity, fueled by our shared joy, helps us achieve our most ambitious goals. By the close of 2022, we hope to raise $200,000 in support of our mission. We are optimistic that our community will continue to grow stronger, and we recognize that we must invest more heavily in our operations and vision to better support our volunteer educators. Your generosity will help us succeed. 

I am beyond grateful for the experiences I’ve been afforded through The Mountaineers, from rainy day cross-country skiing with youth at Lake Easton to co-leading my first Forever Young urban walk at Alki Point at the start of the pandemic. I imagine that you can relate. I hope you will join me with a donation to help open up more of these opportunities for future generations.


The Mountaineers® is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization located at 7700 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle, WA 98115. Our staff work to support our seven branches (Bellingham, Everett, Foothills, Kitsap, Olympia, Seattle, and Tacoma), three lodges (Baker, Meany, and Stevens), and our Kitsap Forest Theater. Tax ID: 27-3009280.

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