Rachel O.

Instructor, Alaska Expedition 1b

Born in Green Bay, WI, Rachel grew up exploring the Northwoods. She spent summers leading backpacking, canoeing, and kayaking trips in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Minnesota. After college, she completed a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine. She fell in love with the rolling mountains of the south and now lives in Nashville, TN. Rachel is a Wilderness First Responder and is joining us for her first season as an instructor.

  • Education: University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire; bachelor’s degree in social work
  • What excites you the most about working for AT this summer? I am most excited about getting know the students, working hard to provide them meaningful and epic adventure, and eating some great trail food.
  • What do you do when not working for AT? I can be found hiking and exploring around Tennessee and North Carolina, belting out Disney songs on road trips, and looking for a good cup of coffee. I also enjoy journaling, pizza, building out an adventure mobile with my fiancé, mountain biking, and planning my wedding at the end of the AT season.
  • Favorite outdoor memory? While leading a trip in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, we completed a remote mile-and-a-half portage, carrying our canoes and gear through swamps, steep ridges, and an overgrown path. It was so rewarding to see the teamwork, confidence, and strength that the group had—and the feast we had that night was delicious!
  • Favorite quote: “Keep me here in this wild present tense.” – Nahko and Medicine for the People