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Trail Chat with Discover Outdoors Guide, Kevin

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Discover Outdoors guide team is nearing 50-strong, meaning a couple of things:

  1. This year has been epic and next year"_ forget about it.

  2. We narrowly missed the opportunity to be "50 Shades of Grey" for Halloween and are trying to forgive ourselves.

Within this pride of uniquely capable people is Senior Discover Outdoors Guide, Kevin Cafaro, who approaches each adventure with the enthusiasm of his first DO trip. Kevin was courageous enough to sit in the hot seat. Let's get to it.

DO: If you only were allowed 5 items to take on a distance backpacking trek, what would they be and why?
KC: Salami, because it's delicious and I always pack one for our trips. Then a pocket knife to cut the salami, a Camelbak to wash it down, duct tape to seal it back up and a friend to share it with. All these things come in handy for various other purposes, but I'd say these are their primary uses.

DO: What has been your most rewarding DO client moment?
KC: There are a lot of moments with human clients, but I don't want to show favoritism so I'll choose a non-human memory. We had a rescue dog from Ecuador on a Hike with Adoptable Hounds trip. It was right after a big blizzard and he had never experienced snow and ice before. He had long hair and after an hour of limping around with ice-clumped paws, he was done. We thawed him out and duct taped balloons to his feet. He was a new dog and pranced around like he owned the snow for the rest of the day.

DO: If you were a bird, which would you be and why?
KC: I would obviously be the African Swallow, although everyone knows they are non-migratory and don't have the body weight ratio to carry a coconut. We saw them on our Discover Outdoors trip to Kilimanjaro this Labor Day. This is one of the more exotic places I've visited and the different birds we saw at each camp and elevation made it all the more intriguing. Groups of Alpine Chats, for example, couldn't resist coming inches away from us to investigate, and the Raven followed us all the way to the summit at 19,200 feet, probably in search of trail mix.

DO: What is your favorite campfire story?
KC: My favorite story comes compliments of fellow Discover Outdoors Guide, Marcus Brooks. The idea is that we're camping out in the spring in bear country, and we hear a noise sliding down our tent over and over. We charge out, pocket knives brandished, only to find out its a chipmunk climbing up a tree, along a branch and slip sliding down the side of the tent. Sounds cheesy, but we get into the storytelling of it and everyone's on the edge of their seats. Never gets old.

DO: What's your next great adventure?
KC: My next adventure is starting a new job in the education tech space, but my next outdoor adventure... I'm planning a few trips to some of my favorite parks outside of the city, like the Catskills and Shawagunks. They're the perfect getaways in the winter for snow shoeing and ice climbing. Looking forward to taking folks on those Discover Outdoors trips this winter. After that, I'm likely to go back to Kilimanjaro next year and hoping to check out Machu Picchu .

To learn more about Kevin and the rest of our Discover Outdoors team, click here .

See you on the trail soon, Adventurers.

Categories: Adventure, People, Education