Backcountry Rookies Founder Chad Ryker is originally from Indiana. The Military allowed Chad to travel all over the world but his past several years have been in the Southwest United States where he has been chasing mule deer, javalina, coyotes, wild hogs and whitetails. Chad recently discovered the wonders of hunting in the mountains of the Western States and knew that is where he wanted to continue to hunt big game. Chad created the Backcountry Rookies Podcast to help educate hunters like him who wanted to experience the west but were not sure where to start. He hopes the Podcast will encourage others to get out west to enjoy that vast country in search of big game.
Backcountry Rookie Team Member Jeremy Ansell got started in backcountry hunting back in 2013, since then I have been able to hunt in some of the most beautiful country of the Western United States. Getting my start in Southern Colorado provided me the opportunity to learn how to hunt in the thick dark timber as well as some open country. Now I get the chance to hunt in Idaho where I can sit on a mountain top and glass all day for the game I am chasing. Above all, my passion is to get out and help other hunters learn how to hunt and most important, enjoy the mountains.
Backcountry Rookie Team Member Jordan Whitlow is originally from Lubbock, Texas where he grew up hunting White Tail Deer and migratory birds. Jordan now resides in Southwest Colorado where his passions are Mule Deer, Elk and anything putting him in the outdoors. While not new to the outdoors, he is a Rookie to Western hunting and enjoys working /talking with others while figuring things out with experienced hunters and Rookies alike.
Backcountry Rookie Team Member Gus Fletcher was born and raised in Hood River, Oregon: the heart of the Cascade Mountain Range. Growing up in the west, with epic hunting country right out his backdoor has given Gus the opportunity to chase elk, Blacktail deer, and bear his whole life. Although Gus is not new to the outdoors or western hunting, he still considers himself a Rookie and a student of the sport. Gus’s passion is archery elk hunting as well as sharing, teaching, and helping others with hunting and the outdoors in general. Gus now lives in Southwest Colorado where he continues to pursue elk, bear, and Mule deer with his bow.
Montana Representative Bear Taylor was born and raised on Utah's Wasatch Front. Bear grew up rifle hunting for Mule Deer, Elk, and Antelope with his family. Their hunts were mostly done from a road in the warmth of a truck.
Bear moved to Southwest Montana in the Fall of 2015 and instantly knew he wanted to become a Backcountry archery hunter. As a 40 year old Rookie, Bear wants to show people that you are never too old to start a new adventure or to learn new things.
I moved to Montana in 2007 and have developed a love and appreciation of everything outdoors. I am the first in my family to hunt. Learning everything hunting and really cutting my teeth in Montana has taught me a lot of do’s and don’ts. Always striving for learning more about hunting and the quarry I hunt has me constantly educating myself as well as others. My favorite hunt is Archery Elk in the high country of Montana when the bulls are bugling. Only recently have I gotten the Mule deer bug. Every season, if there is a tag for it, it’s in my pocket. I have a keen interest in outdoors gear as well. Finding out what works and what doesn’t is what I truly love when preparing for a hunt, I can’t get enough. When I am not hunting, I spend time with my wife and two amazing and beautiful daughters from camping, fishing, hiking and exploring what this great state has to offer. As a backcountry rookie, there is always something to learn from every experience, you only have to pay attention!