Mountaineer of the Week: Josh Taylor

Meet Josh Taylor, a volunteer leader with the Everett Branch and member of the Equity & Inclusion Working Group. Josh has benefited from the experience from The Mountaineers community and is proud to pay it forward.   
Michelle Song Michelle Song
Associate Volunteer Development Manager
June 24, 2022

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

Name: Josh Taylor
Branch: Everett
How long have you been volunteering with The Mountaineers? 2019
What activities do you participate in with The Mountaineers? Climbing, Sport Climbing, and Scrambling

Volunteer Leadership Questions

WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO volunteer WITH THE MOUNTAINEERS?

 I was inspired by the volunteers in the courses that I took with the Mountaineers. I have benefited so much from the instruction, experience, and community of the organization, so I'm proud to pay it forward and share the stoke!

WHAT IS THE BEST, FAVORITE, OR MOST MEMORABLE experience YOU'VE HAD WITH THE CLUB?

 Our Rock 2 field trip when I took BCC in 2019 stands out. It was during that trip that our class really gelled and became friends rather than simply classmates. I still climb with many of the folks from our class.

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

I am always trying to be better at risk management. During climbs and courses, there is so much going on and safety has to stay front of mind. I am always trying to find ways to facilitate better decisions and make things as safe as possible.

What is one thing you do on trips to create an inclusive experience for people of all skills and backgrounds?

I like to learn everyone's names and make sure that I address people by their names. It is a small thing that helps me form an individual connection. I want them to know I am invested in their success in the course.

IT'S OFTEN SAID: "GOOD JUDGEMENT COMES FROM EXPERIENCE; EXPERIENCE COMES FROM BAD JUDGEMENT." Can you describe a learning experience TO HELP OUR COMMUNITY BUILD THEIR GOOD JUDGEMENT?

I had a near-miss this past season on Mt. Logan where I slipped on blue ice and my team had to arrest. After moving to safer terrain, we had a group discussion about the incident, our plan for the day, and whether to continue. It was a great example of following protocols and consensus decision making.

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

Raise your hand! There are always trips or courses looking for instructors or leads. Be open to new ideas, techniques, or any other things that can make your courses or trips better.

What do you wish other members knew about volunteering with The Mountaineers?

It is such a great way to connect and build friendships. I have made so many great friends and climbing partners that I would probably not have had I not been volunteering.

What is one surprising thing you've learned or gained through volunteering with The Mountaineers?

I have learned how fortunate we are to have an organization like the Mountaineers. There are not a lot of organizations like it in the U.S., where there is such a breadth and depth of instruction available.

Is there aNYTHING ELSE WE SHOULD KNOW ABOUT YOU?

 I am a Maine transplant that didn't take up hiking until age 30, skiing at age 33, and climbing at age 35. It's been incredible to find these things and be continuously learning!

Lightning Round

What's your go-to place for a post-trip meal?  Mondo
How about your best trail snack? Cheddar Goldfish
What's your favorite close-to-home adventure? Winter route on Mt. Dickerman
Who is your Mountaineers hero? Doug Sanders
What "luxury item" do you bring on most trips? My Kindle
What's next on your bucket list? Skiing Japan or the Alps

is there a Volunteer Leader that you'd like to see as Mountaineer of the week?

Send an email to Michelle Song to make a recommendation.

LEad Image of Josh Taylor at Skyline Lake in Snoqualmie Pass.