We Made It…Five Years and Counting

Five years ago, we launched the first issue of Elevation Outdoors. It was just about the worst time to start a magazine—the economy was disintegrating and print magazines were deemed a quickly disappearing anachronism. But we believed in the message of this magazine: that

Colorado thrives on a culture of people who base their lives around a relationship with the natural world—who love to get out and play in it, and when it comes down to it, want to protect it. We also knew that the companies who do business in the outdoor world were not willing or ready to just shut down because times were tough. And we believed that print magazines are not dead, that you enjoy leafing through the oversized pages we put on the stands every month and that you like getting them greasy while chowing on a bagel or enjoying a brewski. Our bet paid off: Five years later, we are still here and still growing.

All along, I have wanted Elevation Outdoors to be a group project. My greatest resources as the editor are my writers and photographers—I like to give them the free reign to explore their passions and talents in these pages instead of telling them what I want out of them. They are climbers, runners, cyclists, skiers, paddlers, guides, bird watchers, beer drinkers, festival freaks… people like you who want to get out there as often as possible, who want to share that experience.

It’s the people who make the pages. Co-owner Meredith Demaso worked for these past five years as publisher, taking on the unenviable job of hounding people to buy ads so that we could build the magazine. The same grit made her become a backcountry skier over these past five years, too, taking avalanche safety classes and hopping on new AT gear. Alongside Meredith, account executive Dana Waggener hit the pavement to sell ads, while she was also climbing every day at Movement gym. Our new publisher Monica Davis came to us from Giant bikes and brings a love and deep knowledge of cycling culture to her pitches. Account executive Elizabeth O’Connell loves to go backpacking, getting to know the gear of the companies she brings in to promotions in the magazine. Their success selling EO is tied to their passion for what the magazine represents.

This magazine is a local community that touches the globe. The cover of our first issue was shot by legendary Boulder climber Jonny Copp, who sadly died in an avalanche in China soon after we launched. In our pages, Colorado climber Timmy O’Neil has written on helping to cure blindness in Africa. Pete Takeda has shared his love of Longs Peak’s Diamond Face. Endurance mountain bike racer Sonya Looney has taken us on journeys from Boulder trails to Costa Rica. Journalist Paul Tolme wrote about fracking before it was the hot-button issue it has become. Idaho Springs festifarian Eric Steele recounted how he crashed an I-70 snow plow. Longtime EO managing editor Jayme Moye first introduced us to Shannon Galpin who has dared to bring cycling to women in Afghanistan. Rob Coppolillo has taken us along for the ride as he attempts to become an AMGA/IFMGA certified guide. Senior Editor Cameron Martindell brings us video from Namibia to Utah to Loveland ski area. Senior Editor Chris Kassar has fought to save rivers in Chile and in Salida.

Most importantly, we try to keep bringing you, our readers, into Elevation Outdoors. Ultimately, our success has only been because you pick us up, you read us. We are simply a reflection of how you live life. Thanks, readers!

–DS

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