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WHO WE ARE

The guides of Sun Valley Trekking are what set us apart. Each of us has extensive teaching and guiding experience, many with an advanced degree in a related field, and all with a deep love for what we do. Sharing the joy of the backcountry while caring for the comfort and safety of our guests is our mission. Our trips are geared towards each person's experience and comfort level. Whether you are a skier, snowboarder, snowshoer, mountaineer, naturalist, photographer, kayaker, backpacker, fisherman or woman, or aspire to be any of these, we share excellent food, friendship, and laughter in the incredible wildlands of Idaho, Wyoming, and Alaska.  All of our guides at Sun Valley Trekking are certified Wilderness First Responders, have extensive avalanche forecasting and rescue training, years of teaching experience in the outdoors, and are licensed by the Idaho Outfitter and Guide's Board.


Joe St. OngeJoe St. Onge earned a BA in Outdoor Education from Prescott College in 1994. Since then, his talent and ambition as an educator and mountain guide have taken him to many of the world's great ranges. He's guided climbing and ski expeditions throughout the contiguous United States, Alaska (including ascents of Denali and multiple first ascents/descents in the St. Elias Range), Ecuador, Chile, Argentina, Bolivia, Nepal and Pakistan. He has also returned to Prescott College to teach as an adjunct professor in their Outdoor Education and Wilderness Leadership degree programs. In between expeditions, Joe co-founded an environmental education program in Crested Butte, Colorado and earned a masters degree in Geography at Utah State University and is a certified Ski Mountaineering Guide with the American Mountain Guides Association.  Joe has been the chief of guiding operations for Sun Valley Trekking since 2000 as well as a backcountry carpenter and wood cutter for the six huts.  Joe and Francie now have two little girls, Neve and Soleil, who they hope will take over the trail-breaking duties in the future.


Francie St. Onge

Francie St. Onge hails originally from Minnesota, where some say she skied out of the womb. She completed a Bachelor of Science in Forestry-Resource Conservation at the University of Montana in 1995. Since then, she has guided wilderness expeditions throughout the inter-mountain west and Alaska, Co-founded a winter environmental education program in Crested Butte, Colorado, and worked as a naturalist in Denali National Park. Francie completed an MS degree in Recreation Resources-Environmental Education at Utah State University. In 2009 Francie started the first Wolf-Ecology program based in Sun Valley.  Chief guide for SVT’s Chix programs, Francie's enthusiasm for wild places has a contagious effect on our guests.  Francie runs the office operations for Sun Valley Trekking while guiding, training for x-c ski marathons and raising her beautiful little girls, Neve and Soleil.


Bob JonasBob Jonas is founder of Sun Valley Trekking. After 20 years guiding the path of SVT, Bob has a part-time role in our Yellowstone operations, and as a guide. In his 60’s, the "old man" of the outfit is happy to leave business management to the young bloods so he can repair to the wilds at anytime, any season. Bob is the author of a book, Ski Magazine's Total Skiing. He is also director of the Wild Gift, a non-profit he recently founded, which sponsors young leaders on exceptional wildlands experiences. Bob is a former salmon fishery biologist (Alaska and Greenland), and also worked as a middle school teacher in Idaho. A Sun Valley native, in 2002 Bob notched his 56th season as a skier, which includes countless days in the backcountry, millions of runs down Sun Valley's incredible resort slopes, and a stint as ski instructor and coach in the 1960s.


Patrick Graham

Patrick Graham earned a B.A. from Johnson State College in Outdoor Education with a concentration in wilderness leadership and adventure education in 2004.

During school Patrick honed his skiing and climbing skills in the icy mountains of Vermont, and since then has been putting them to good use exploring the wild ranges of the world on his skis.  Patrick has worked extensively as a guide and instructor in therapeutic wilderness programs as well as guiding skiers throughout Idaho and Chile.  Patrick's insatiable stoke for the mounatins is infectious and will surely add fun and adventure to your experience with him in the lead.


 

Mark PuleioMark Puleio is a native New England skier who has been pursuing ski lines since he was 3 years old. Graduating in 1994 from Prescott College with a degree in Wilderness Leadership, Mark has been professionally guiding in the mountain environment ever since. Mark guides expeditions to several South American venues including Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador and has guided climbing and skiing extensively throughout North, South America and Europe. He has a level 1 certification with the Canadian Avalanche Association and is a Wilderness First Responder with five years full time ski patrolling under his boards.  Mark has completed extensive training through the American Mountain Guide Association and is fully certified with the International Federation of Mountain Guides Association. Mark also works with college and university outdoor education programs helping to create and run curriculum based programs of study. When he is not guiding trips he enjoys being at home with his three children: Stokely, Frances and Harper, and his wife, Kimberly in a quaint village in the hills of Vermont.


Ed ZinaderEd Zinader's love of the mountains began at an early age, but blossomed during his time in Missoula, Montana studying forestry at the University of Montana. After school, his passion to explore took him to many a mountain summit, 3 years in Malawi for Peace Corps and finally to Sun Valley where he fell in love with the lifetime of skiing opportunities. Ed worked as an apprentice for 3 years with Sun Valley Trekking learning the local mountains and the skills of the trade. He is now proud to split his time working as a licensed backcountry ski guide during the cold months and chasing after various livestock during the summers as a farmer!


Kyle CoshowKyle Coshow grew up on the east coast with frequent ski trips to Vermont. He has a B.A. from Johnson State College in Outdoor Education with a concentration in adventure and wilderness leadership. He has expedition experience from Alaska to South America. 

On the off-season he is part owner and operator of Peak Expeditions Inc., which privately vends summer adventure programs through Smugglers’ Notch Resort in northern Vermont.  He has been with Sun Valley Trekking since the winter season of 2006-2007.


Jonathan PreussJonathan Preuss grew up in the hills of New Jersey. Seeking more adventure and exploration, JP went to school at Johnson State College, Vermont, studying Outdoor Education and Biology. After completing his education, JP needed bigger mountains, which led him to the Sawtooth National Forest. He was able to build on his mountain skills and snow science after interning as a Hut Meister for SVT, pushing him to gain his Idaho guiding license. JP also enjoys climbing on rock and is a certified AMGA SPI rock instructor. He continues to explore the vast system of terrain in Idaho and wishes to further his education through the AMGA Ski Mountaineering Guide program.


Chris MarshallChris Marshall fell in love with skiing during his sojourns to the icy forested slopes of New England's mountains. Fortunately, his love for mountains and powder skiing drew him west. Chris earned a BA in Wilderness Leadership and Geography from Prescott College in 2005, and a MA in Experiential Education from Prescott College in 2011. He has worked as an Associate Faculty member for Prescott College in the Adventure Education department since 2007 instructing such classes as Wilderness Leadership, Avalanche Forecasting, Alpine Mountaineering, and Ski Mountaineering. He has experience teaching and guiding in Colorado, Utah, Arizona, Idaho, California, Washington, and Alaska, from one day couloir and peak climbs to 19-day glacier traverses. Chris has served on the Board of Directors for the Kachina Peaks Avalanche Center since 2008. He has been involved in avalanche education courses since 2005 and is a professional member of the American Avalanche Association with experience teaching both level 1 and level 2 courses. Chris has been trained in the ski mountaineering discipline by the American Mountain Guides Association (AMGA), and is currently pursuing certification in that discipline. He obtained his professional level 3 avalanche certification from the American Avalanche Institute in 2011. Highlights of Chris' personal experience include an expedition funded by the American Alpine Club to the Neacola Mountains in Alaska. Along with fellow SVT guide Patrick Graham, the team was successful in establishing numerous first ascents and ski descents. Chris enjoys any day on skis in the mountains- let him guide you and help you achieve your goals and dreams; from an introduction to backcountry ski touring, to avalanche education, to steep couloir skiing, Chris is excited to do it all.


Kat DarlingA native of the mountains of New Hampshire, Kat Darling grew up on skis. Kat spent her early years ski racing on the steep hard pack of race courses before her love of the outdoors brought her to Prescott College to study Outdoor Education and Environmental Studies. During her Prescott College studies, Kat enrolled in a 3 week backcountry ski course hosted by Sun Valley Trekking and she was hooked. Kat returned two years later and has worked her way from apprentice to licensed backcountry ski guide/chef extraordinaire with an intimate knowledge of the mountains surrounding Sun Valley and our huts. A farmer in the warmer months, Kat is an inspiring backcountry companion.


Molly ReeveMolly Reeve is a graduate of the Audubon Expedition Institute based out of Cambridge, MA. She earned a BS degree in Environmental Education while traveling through Mexico, Hawaii, the Adirondacks, and the Chesapeake Bay region. Molly fell in love with the backcountry, skiing, backpacking, and rock climbing while completing the Outdoor Educators Semester with the National Outdoor Leadership School. She enjoys living the dream and has worked outside as a patroller, river guide and summer camp director. Her twin sister Kate recently married Molly's longtime camp friend and SVT guide Patrick Graham. Molly is joining us in the office and is excited to bring her knowledge of business management and her passion for learning, leadership, and outdoor pursuits to SVT.

 

 

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