Q&A: New Account Executive Randy Propster

Last month we added a new team member to the Elevation Outdoors staff. Meet Randy Propster. He’s no stranger to the outdoor industry and we’re thrilled to have him on the sales team at Summit Publishing. We thought you, dear readers, would want to get to know our new guy too.

What brought you to Elevation Outdoors Magazine?
In a word, “passion.”  I’ve always enjoyed a passion for celebrating the multitude of adventures that can be found when you explore the outdoor world.  Elevation Outdoors celebrates everything my passion embodies by informing their readers with content intended to empower them to live an adventurous Rocky Mountain lifestyle.  I look to Elevation Outdoors when I’m searching for a great trail run, or bike route, or secluded campsite, because the editors have their finger on the pulse of adventure opportunities right here in my own backyard.  When I’m not on a trail, I’m searching for great music or a tasty brew and Elevation Outdoors celebrates those elements of life in the Rockies too.  Elevation Outdoors is authentic to who I am. I’ve come to EO to feed my passion with a work/life balance that fits my lifestyle.

Tell us about your most epic adventure.
I hope it’s OK to call an entire year of my life my most epic adventure.  I’ve enjoyed some pretty amazing days of adventure that were full of truly unforgettable moments, but the year I sold everything I owned including my house and car, got married, and spent a 253-day honeymoon walking from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean is without a doubt my most epic adventure.  Looking back, I can’t decide whether it was the awe-inspiring landscapes we walked through, the physical and mental challenge that comes with punishing your body and battling Mother Nature’s elements day in and day out, or the incredibly kind people who can be found all across this great country that stand out the most, but when you combine them all together and share every step with someone as crazy enough as you to take on a journey like that, it all adds up to epic!

What’s your favorite place to go outside and play?
I’m torn.  I love living here in Boulder with the Rockies as my backyard because I am all about exploring the mountains.  However, I grew up on the ocean and there is definitely something that draws me to the salt water.  If I could combine the trails and high altitude adventures of the Rockies with the surf and sand of the coast I’d be in an outdoor adventure utopia!

Who is your outdoor adventure hero?
I’m inspired by so many great adventure athletes and outdoors men and women who have allowed their passion for the outdoors to guide their path in life.  It’s impossible not to be inspired by guys like Laird Hamilton who’s love for surf and the ocean continues to break down the boundaries that define an ultimate waterman, and guys like Dean Karnazes who seem almost super human but get where they are as athletes due to an unwavering commitment.  I’d love to emulate the path of a gal like Susi Mai who has not only worked to become one the best kiteboarders in the world (male or female), she’s also working equally hard to protect the wildlife with whom she shares the ocean she loves.  Who isn’t in awe of guys like Reinhold Messner who push their bodies beyond the original limits that even they may have originally thought possible? There are so many amazing adventurers who inspire me and who I would consider a hero, including my brother who followed his passion from one ocean to another on his bike, and a father who introduced me to the outdoors at a young enough age to ensure I would posses a desire to search out an active outdoor lifestyle.

What’s the next outdoor trip you’re planning?
I’ve put my sites on the Sanitasobo.  Sure, there are countless adventures to be had throughout the Rockies, but the window in front of from my desk here at Elevation Outdoors offers up a spectacular view of the Flatirons and a couple of the tallest peaks Boulder has to offer.  I guess you could call it a siren song because I feel as though they are attempting to lure me in each time I get captivated by the epic view.  Sure, I’ve hiked to the summit of most of them (rite of passage to being a Boulderite), but the time has come to knock off the 5-Peak Traverse (Mount Sanitas, Flagstaff Mountain, Green Mountain, Bear Peak, and South Boulder Peak)!

For the “Contributor’s Question” in the July-August print issue of EO, we asked staff and contributors for their best story of road-trip pain or glory? You gave us a 50-word version for print but also had a longer explanation about yours. Can you tell that story to us?
Sure—spend enough time on the road and you’ll develop what I call “stranger-danger radar.”  Sometimes your radar is off, in a good way. I thought I had been tricked into driving to a remote place for all the wrong reasons.  It turned out to be a highlight of my seven years of living on the road.

A guy I met one evening at a retailer called Idaho Mountain Touring in Boise, Idaho, gave me an address to a “great breakfast spot”.  I followed the directions turn for turn the next morning, and the directions led me to a open field out in the middle of nowhere.  Just when I thought I was going be robbed, or murdered, or worse, a Cessna dropped out of the sky.  The “stranger” I met the night before pulls the plane up alongside my car, sticks his head out of the small door and says, “you hungry”?

He proceeds to invited me aboard, and then takes me for the flight of my life weaving in and out of the jagged peaks of the Sawtooths.  Deep in the mountains we dropped down into a gap in the trees and landed on a short and narrow grass strip.  We “parked” the plane alongside three other small planes, all of whom had also flown into the backcountry for this “great breakfast spot.”  We had landed at the Big Creek Lodge for the tastiest made to order breakfast Idaho has to offer.  After breakfast we hop back in the plane, dive and dip and soar in and out of the peaks again, and then he drops back into that same open field where I get back in my car and continue on my road-trip.

That was a breakfast that I will never forget, and likely never get again.  My visit to Big Creek Lodge was in the late summer of 2008, in October of ’08 the Lodge burnt down.  As of now they are still raising funds with the hopes of rebuilding.  That once in a lifetime experience was an epic adventure that is definitely “Road-Trip Glory”!

How are you looking forward to growing with Elevation Outdoors?
I’m stoked to be in a position to have a positive impact on the community of outdoor enthusiasts here in Colorado.  As a member of the team here at Elevation Outdoors, I will have the opportunity to engage with readers at outdoor adventure festivals and events, at music and brew fests, and at local presentations that we create, support and attend with the intention of inspiring our current audience (and future readers) to search out a healthy, active lifestyle rooted in a passion for exploring the outdoors.  As I help to plant the seeds of passion for outdoor adventure in others, I will also be feeding and growing my own passion.  The team here at Elevation Outdoors believes in the message we are trying to deliver, and I do too.  I know we can empower our audience with accurate information, from the content our editorial team creates, to the authenticity and relevance of the advertisers we enable to reach our audience with the products and services that can (and do) enhance our reader’s experience in the outdoors. Yeah, I’m drinking the Kool-Aid and it’s a drink I want to share with everyone in Colorado!

Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 1.06.29 PMMeet Randy and other members of the EO Crew at our Road Show events this summer. Up next is FIBArk in Salida, June 18-21 (sorry no Randy there). Copper Mountain Music Festival on July 11 (which will be fun for the whole family), followed by Arise Music Festival on August 7-9 and Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest, August 14-16. More details to come on elevationoutdoors.com! 


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