Leader Spotlight: Ginger Sarver

Leader Spotlight is a monthly blog to showcase our incredible volunteer leadership at The Mountaineers. Meet this month's featured leader: Ginger Sarver. She is an active volunteer with the Olympia Branch who is most proud of her work with their Conservation & Stewardship Committee.
Sara Ramsay Sara Ramsay
Volunteer Development Manager
September 29, 2019

For our Leader Spotlight this month we talked to Ginger Sarver, a volunteer leader with the Olympia Branch who loves hiking and dove head-first into leading stewardship activities with The Mountaineers!

Name: Ginger Sarver
Branch: Olympia
Where do you live? Lacey, WA
How long have you been a leader? 3 years (member since 2014)
What activities do you lead? Hiking, backpacking, conditioning hikes, family & youth hiking, stewardship & trail work

Leadership Questions

What inspired you to become a Leader for The Mountaineers?

Hiking has been a passion for most of my life. Becoming a part of The Mountaineers community in Olympia five years ago, I was inspired by so many incredibly talented and caring leaders. It just seemed like a natural progression to follow in their footsteps and try to pass it on.

What is your favorite trip that you've led for The Mountaineers?

One of my very favorite places is the area in and around Snowgrass Flat in the Goat Rocks Wilderness. I've led several multi-day backpacking trips there, introducing Mountaineers to the many trails which radiate out to magical places. I'm always thrilled to see the enjoyment others experience in discovering the beauty of this place for the first time.

How has your leadership style evolved as you've gained experience?

The Mountaineers has allowed me to try my hand at leading stewardship trips focused on trail work. I have over 100 days of trail work experience through WTA, but I did not feel ready to take on the responsibility of leading a trail work party until I became comfortable as a Mountaineers leader. Giving back to the trails in this manner and helping a group of Mountaineers make a difference by improving a trail has been a rewarding experience.

What learning experiences you can share with us, such as take-aways from a close call or a near miss?

Sometimes what you assume will be the easiest part of organizing and leading an activity can cause you the most difficulty (like finding the trailhead - even though you've been there before!). Don't take anything for granted. Plan ahead and double check the details.

What advice do you have for aspiring leaders in The Mountaineers community?

Everyone has unique skills and strengths. As a leader, it's important to share yours and encourage others to discover and develop theirs. It's all about giving back so you can inspire the next generation to explore, play, and protect this magnificent place in which we live.

Is there aNYTHING ELSE WE SHOULD KNOW ABOUT YOU?

I'm extremely proud to be a part of the Olympia Conservation and Stewardship Committee, a group of dedicated lovers of our public lands who challenge every member of The Mountaineers community to give back by dedicating at least one day a year to a stewardship activity.

With their encouragement, two years ago I conceived the idea of partnering with Washington Trails Association to do a Mountaineers-only weekend of trail work - under the direction of skilled WTA trail-crew leaders - to improve the Wynoochee Lakeshore Trail on the Olympic Peninsula and learning new trail stewardship skills in the process. By offering free camping and a fun Saturday night potluck, we made it a huge success and it has become an annual stewardship event for the first weekend in May.

is there Someone that you'd like to see in the spotlight?

Send an email to Sara Ramsay to make a recommendation for one of our upcoming Leader Spotlights!


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Jim French
Jim French says:
Tue, Jul 16, 2019 9:50 AM

Ginger is a marvelous and tireless asset to The Mountaineers in many ways, some of which she has stated above - Leader-Steward-Liaison with WTA and in other ways such as Advicate-Champion for the Natural World and Ambassador for The Mountaineers.

Jennifer Fortin
Jennifer Fortin says:
Sun, Sep 29, 2019 7:02 PM

Congratulations, Ginger! You are the best!

Mary Birchem
Mary Birchem says:
Mon, Sep 30, 2019 3:00 PM

Way to go Ginger!!