Victor McNeil

Owner, AMGA Mountain Guide

Victor grew up in Western Oregon and after completing his degree at Southern Oregon University began working as a professional mountain guide in 2008. As part of this experience he has guided, skied and climbed around the world, including in Peru, Chile, and Japan. During the summer he currently works for Alpine Ascents International, guiding and leading courses on Denali, Rainier, the North Cascades and internationally in Peru. As part of this work he also teaches mountaineering courses and instructs guide training across the American West.

Since 2017 Victor has served as the Executive Director and Lead Forecaster for the Wallowa Avalanche Center in Eastern Oregon. There he runs and operates the center, organizing, fundraising and helping facilitate and lead AIARE Avalanche Courses.

Among his certifications, Victor is a fully certified American Mountain Guide through the AMGA, is a professional member of the American Avalanche Association, and is an AIARE Instructor.

La Grande, Oregon is home for Victor and his wife Kelly, along with their two Golden Retrievers, Luna and Sadie.

  • Certifications

    AMGA Mountain Guide
    Level 3 Avalanche
    Wilderness First Responder
    CPR
    AIARE Instructor

Kelly McNeil

Owner

Kelly grew up in Eastern Wyoming where she started exploring the mountains at an early age. After receiving her PhD from Oregon State University in 2009 she began a career as a professor at Eastern Oregon University, where much of her work focuses on public health and research in outdoor physical activities including the study of behavior in outdoor environments. She has traveled around the world skiing, climbing, hiking and exploring, including to Peru, Mexico and Bhutan.

Since 2017 Kelly has helped organize and run operations at the Wallowa Avalanche Center, including teaching avalanche courses for both motorized and non-motorized users and serves as a Pro Avalanche Observer.

  • Certifications

    AIARE Pro 1
    AIARE Avalanche Instructor
    Wilderness First Responder
    CPR

Caleb Merrill

Guide

Caleb Merrill grew up on the coast of Maine, eventually venturing west in search of more snowfall and vertical relief. He began his career in the snow and avalanche arena in 2006 as a ski patroller at Solitude in the Wasatch mountains of Utah. Early morning avalanche mitigation routes with explosives along exposed ridge lines are amongst the favored memories of this job. Caleb became a guide with Ruby Mountain Helicopter Skiing in 2014 and has enjoyed exploring the nooks and crannies of this hidden gem of a range while learning amongst some of the best guides in the industry. He is the creator, host, and producer of The Avalanche Hour Podcast- a side project aimed at creating more dialogue amongst the snow and avalanche community. Caleb is actively progressing through the AMGA ski guide program in hopes of certification. He completed an AIARE level 3 course in 2014, and is currently an AIARE course instructor. He looks forward to a winter in the Wallowas- getting to know the terrain, snowpack, and people.

  • Certifications

    AMGA Ski Guide Course
    Wilderness First Responder
    CPR

Michael Hatch

Guide

Michael Hatch grew up in Boise, ID and earned a B.S. in Resource Conservation/Wilderness Studies from the University of Montana, and an M.S. in Education from Eastern Oregon University. Currently Hatch is the director of the Outdoor Adventure Program and instructor of Health and Human Performance for EOU. Hatch worked for over a decade as a backcountry ski guide in the Sawtooths and Wallowas. One of Hatch’s biggest passions is teaching avalanche courses, as an AIARE Course Leader for Level 1 and 2 classes. Hatch is a professional member of the American Avalanche Association and is also a board member for the WAC.

  • Certifications

    AIARE Level 3
    AIARE Level 1 and 2 Course Leader
    Wilderness First Responder
    CPR

Towner Menefee

Guide

Hi I‘m Towner Menefee. I grew up skiing, climbing, fishing and running rivers in Central Oregon. Ski touring had been my greatest passion for the past 15 years. There is no place I’d rather be than hiking and sliding around in the mountains. Through out my 20‘s and now into my 30’s I‘ve pursued guiding jobs in various disciplines. I have raft guided on the Deschutes and on the Nenana river in Alaska. I’ve mountain guided on Mt. Shasta, Mt. Rainier and Mt. Baker and I‘ve been working as a ski guide in the Wallowas for the past four years. I’ve taken the ski guide course with the AMGA and I’m a pro observer for the Wallowa avalanche center. I pride myself as someone who loves to have fun in the mountains, make good decisions, and be safe. Other interests include playing guitar, white water kayaking and steelhead fishing.

  • Certifications

    AMGA Ski Guide Course
    Wilderness First Responder
    CPR