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Seth grew up in the WRO business, spending his summers logging many river miles in Idaho, Oregon, Montana, Alaska and Canada, among other places. Now, with around 300 multi-day river trips of experience and almost 20 years of guiding, he has dedicated himself to carrying on the WRO tradition of providing quality wilderness adventures in the years to come. Seth spends most of his time during the summer out on the rivers rafting, kayaking, fishing, and sharing wild places with others. In the winter, he stays busy running the WRO backcountry skiing business and getting trips organized for the coming season. Seth graduated from Montana State University in 2008 with a degree in Geography and a minor in Native American Studies. Seth leads many of the WRO trips and works on all the WRO rivers. Seth looks forward to sharing some of his favorite rivers with people joining WRO trips, and can be reached at [email protected] or 406.579.8677.
Amy also spent her summers growing up on the river as part of the WRO family business. She knows the ins and outs of WRO and guides on many of the different rivers we offer trips on. Amy is a graduate from Montana State University in graphic design and business. She still does some freelance design work, but spends most of her time these days managing Sweetwater Hollow, which she founded a few years ago on the banks of the Salmon River as an event venue hosting weddings, concerts and other events in Salmon. Her passions are snowboarding and hockey in the winter and kayaking and rivers in the summer. She is enthusiastic and loves sharing a good time with others. Amy doesn’t guide full-time for WRO anymore as her other business ventures keep her busy, but we are happy to have her when it fits her schedule.
Pepper was one of the original guides at WRO in the early 70s, and he has plenty of good stories about how things used to be in the good old days! Pepper left river guiding in the 80s and moved to the bay islands of Honduras to run a dive resort on Barbareta. He lived the island life for 26 years, which has also left him with many great tales of adventure, from running off thieves on the island to day-to-day life in Central America. After moving back to the states ten years ago, Pepper has traveled extensively in Central America, South America, and Southeast Asia. Pepper has been spending more and more time in Idaho the past few years. After he began guiding a few WRO trips here and there, he decided he likes spending more time on the river. After 40+ years and the Tonsmeire family still running WRO, we are happy to have Pepper back on the guide roster! Pepper guides on both the Middle Fork and Main Salmon.
Peter Moran, or PJ, started guiding trips with WRO in 2013. Whitewater kayaking has been a major part of PJ’s life from a young age. His passion for whitewater kayaking has taken him on travels not only around Idaho, Montana, and the Pacific Northwest, but to other countries and continents as well. PJ has spent over ten years as a rafting guide, with many more years of river experience before he began guiding professionally. He spends his winters as a professional ski patroller at Mt. Baker Ski resort in Washington. Being on pro patrol requires high levels of first aid (Wilderness EMT) and high angle rope work for rescues, which are also great skills to have as a river guide. PJ guides on both the Middle Fork and Main Salmon.
Alex grew up in Salem, Oregon, where he developed an early love and enthusiasm for spending life in the outdoors. Alex first started guiding river trips during the spring of 2011 in Colorado. He attended the University of Denver where he earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology and psychology. During the winter months, Alex works as a professional ski patroller and EMT at Bridger Bowl in Bozeman, Montana. While not working, Alex seeks out fun times and adventure as he pursues his passions of boating and skiing in wild places.
Shane is from the Palouse region of Northern Idaho. He has been guiding for almost twenty years and has run rafts on some of the most challenging, technical whitewater runs in Idaho and Montana. Shane has an engineering degree from Idaho State University. Some of his preferred hobbies include powder skiing, steelhead fishing, whitetail and turkey hunting and just good old-fashioned exploring! However, his favorite pastime is enjoying Idaho’s great spring whitewater. Shane is one of the nicest guys you will ever meet and makes a great addition to the WRO team, guiding on rivers in Idaho and Montana.
Keith is a longtime resident of Montana’s Flathead Valley and has a history of guiding backpacking and rafting trips in the Flathead area. He has done many trips on the wilderness section of the Middle Fork Flathead, as well as the lower day trip section of the river. He has guided many hiking trips in Glacier National Park and other areas of the Montana backcountry. When Keith isn’t spending time in the outdoors, he is a school teacher in Columbia Falls, Montana. Keith brings a wealth of backcountry knowledge and experience to any outdoor adventure and we are lucky to have him as part of the WRO team! He guides in Montana, Alaska, and Canada.
Kyle has been a river guide on and off for 20 years! Before coming to work with WRO in the late 1990s, Kyle worked on a variety of different rivers in California. Since joining the WRO team he has guided on all the trips that we offer. After spending many winters ski patrolling at Whitefish Mountain Resort, he now teaches high-school english and writing full-time in Whitefish, where he lives with his wife Kim. With such an extensive guiding history, Kyle is a great addition to the WRO team. He guides a few trips for us each season in Montana and Idaho.
A local from Salmon, Idaho, Bridger grew up in a boating family and was introduced to the river at an early age. He got his start guiding day trips on the Salmon River near town, and now works for WRO on both the Middle Fork Salmon and Main Salmon. Bridger’s passion is for skiing and when not studying at Montana State University – Western, he is usually chasing snow around Idaho or Montana. Bridger’s family owes the Bertram’s Brewery in Salmon, so when you are passing through Salmon before or after your trip, stop in to try one of the Bertram’s local family brews!
Jessica is originally from Arizona, but she has spent time on rivers around the world. Jessica started guiding day trips in Alaska on the Chilkat River outside of Haines, moving on to multi-day wilderness trips on the Alsek and Tatshenshini. Starting with WRO in 2015, Jess spends most of her summer on the Middle Fork and Main Salmon Rivers. When not running rivers, she spends her time traveling, kayaking, skiing and hanging out with her dog Shady Grove. Recent kayaking trips have taken Jess to Chile, Nepal, Africa and many other places around world!
Tyler has worked on the rivers of Montana for almost a decade, giving him a breadth of knowledge on Montana plants and natural history. Tyler started working with WRO on the Middle Fork Flathead in the spring of 2017, and is now guiding full time for WRO. In addition to the Middle Fork Flathead, Tyler also guides on the South Fork Flathead, Middle Fork Salmon and Main Salmon Rivers. When not running rivers, Tyler spends his winters skiing in Montana, where he works at Whitefish Mountain Resort.
Jason first joined the WRO family in 2015 when he jumped on a trip in Montana as a friend of one of the guides. He and Amy hit it off and he has been spending more and more time on the river since then. Jason and Amy both enjoy traveling and kayaking, and they have on been on several big kayaking adventures to Ecuador and Nepal over the years. Jason also has a passion for horseback riding and playing hockey. Jason lives between Salmon and his family’s ranch in Montana, and he also spends a good portion of the year working with Amy at her event venue, Sweetwater Hollow. With a PhD in astrophysics, Jason is definitely the smartest person on the WRO crew! He is currently working on publishing his first book.
Jon is another local on the WRO team, hailing from right here in Salmon, Idaho. Jon has been guiding and running rivers in Idaho for over 20 years, and has also spent time teaching Idaho history in the neighboring town of Challis. His local knowledge and extensive guiding experience make him a pleasure to spend time with on the river, and he’s also a stellar teammate when it comes to running challenging whitewater! In the spring, Jon guides on the Owyhee and Jarbidge-Bruneau Rivers with WRO, and in the winter he helps with our winter yurt skiing operations. When not floating rivers around the state of Idaho, Jon can generally be found outside somewhere, either hiking, hunting, fishing, or spending time at his property a few hours drive into the mountains from Salmon.
Sara has been running rivers with friends for years on rivers around the west, and she now owns a house right here in Salmon, Idaho. She got her start working on the Salmon River and now guides for WRO on the Main Salmon, Middle Fork Salmon and Middle Fork Flathead. When not running rivers in the summer, Sara is usually working in her sewing shop, Study Pine Gear and Repair. At Sturdy Pine she builds mesh river duffle bags, carrying totes and other river bags as well as miscellaneous sewing repairs on outdoor gear and clothing. In her free time, Sara enjoys skiing, hiking, fishing, canoeing and riding her dirt bike around Salmon.
Carly is another local from Salmon, Idaho. Growing up in a very outdoorsy family, she has spent lots of time exploring all the great activities Idaho has to offer, and especially enjoys camping, playing hockey, biking, and skiing. Carly is finishing up her last semester at the University of Montana in Missoula. She first got her start guiding on the day section of the Salmon River, eventually moving on to guide multi-day trips on the wilderness section. Carly joined the WRO team in 2018. She now guides for us on the Main Salmon and Middle Fork Salmon, bringing her enthusiasm and unwavering positivity on every trip!
Matthew first became addicted to river trips in North Carolina, where he spent many days swimming beside his kayak on a variety of rivers. After the hook was set he returned to his home state of Texas where he began to guide canoe and raft trips on the Rio Grande in Big Bend National Park. Matthew first came to boat in the Frank Church Wilderness in 2015 in between Grand Canyon trips, and he immediately knew he wanted more. With a passion for “Old Fashioned Adventure” and a blind charisma for anything Wilderness related, it was only a matter of time before Idaho would call him back. These days, Matthew works year round as a river guide, and would have it no other way. Between river trips you can most likely find him at his home in the Chihuahuan desert, obsessing over music or riding his mountain bike.
Destrey was raised in Ogden, Utah and got her start guiding on the Kennebec river in Northern Maine as a college summer job. She immediately fell in love with the river and since then has spent time guiding in Maine, Utah, Colorado, and most recently, Idaho. At Colby College, she studied European Politics with a minor in education, and she is currently working on her nursing degree. Winters take her to Snowbird, Utah, where she works as an alpine ski racing coach. Skiing and mountain biking are two activities Destrey enjoys, but she just generally loves being outside!
Jonas grew up in Steamboat Springs, CO, while spending his summers near Copenhagen, Denmark. With an affinity for fishing, boats, and skiing, spending time on rivers fly-fishing and rafting in the mountains was natural for him from a young age. Jonas attended Colorado State University, where he began guiding on the Cache La Poudre River. After graduating with a degree in Natural Resource Recreation & Tourism in 2014, he felt drawn to Idaho’s mountainous interior. Following some life changes, he landed in Idaho for the 2016 season and has made it his home ever since. Most recently, Jonas has spent his winter working for Idaho Conservation League in the fight to restore Idaho’s Salmon and Steelhead. After guiding in Idaho for several years, he joined the WRO team in 2020. Jonas looks forward to another great river season casting flies, paddle boating, and trading stories on Idaho’s best rivers. You might even get the odd Danish lesson! Jonas currently guides on the Middle Fork Salmon, Main Salmon, and Canyons of the Salmon.
Emily Lewis was born and raised in the Flathead Valley of Montana. She grew up in the outdoors, whether it was in the mountains skiing or hiking or on the rivers and lakes of Northwest Montana. She’s been rafting as long as she can remember and naturally started guiding as a summer job at Montana State University, where she earned her degree in Environmental Science. In 2009, she began her guiding career doing day trips in Glacier National Park, moving on to guide multi-day trips in Arizona, Utah and Idaho. During the winter, Emily is typically hanging around home in Whitefish, MT and working in the ski industry until the next river season begins. She can be found guiding on the Middle Fork Salmon, Main Salmon, Middle Fork Flathead, and Canyons of the Salmon with WRO.
Although Shawn grew up in Tennessee, she didn’t discover her love for the river until she moved to North Carolina. After two seasons in the Southeast, Shawn made her way to Alaska to try her hand at sea-kayaking guiding. The views were spectacular, but she felt the river calling her back. The change of season brought her to Bend, Oregon, where she is currently pursuing a degree in Biology along with all of her wildest river dreams. When she’s not on the river or in the library, you can find her falling off of her surfboard, playing roller derby, or searching for the perfect dad joke. Shawn guides on the Main Salmon with WRO.
Nyima grew up playing in the mountains in Crestone Colorado, a small town nestled in the San Luis Valley. From a young age, his dad introduced him to skiing and rock climbing, which quickly became life-long passions. It wasn’t until a little later in life that Nyima discovered the magic of rafting during a Main Salmon trip in high school. From that point on, rafting became a huge passion that eventually turned into a career. When the rivers are too cold to run Nyima can be found attending Westminster College in Salt Lake City, skiing, climbing, biking, and believe it or not, occasionally in the library studying! Nyima guides on the Main Salmon and Middle Fork Salmon for WRO.