I must say I was a bit nervous as I have never gone deep into the jungle...
The Team at Great Alaska International Adventures
Laurence John- Principal & Founder
L.J. has been exploring his entire life. Born in rural Saskatchewan, Canada, he left in his teens for a full scholarship to play hockey for Denver University, then continued on to Los Angeles to work with Hughes aircraft in the late fifties and eventually Zerox after his semi-pro hockey career ended with "old school" knee surgery. His first taste of Alaska was a hunting trip in 1969 with his Zerox co workers, and "the Greatland" never left his mind. As they say, "once you go to Alaska, you never go all the way back". He spend the next 10 years developing recreational properties on the Olympic peninsula, but Alaska never left his mind. In 1981 he traveled back to Alaska for more property development and that is where he met his partner, Kathy Haley- Alaska native and the daughter of a famous Kenai Peninsula homesteader. The die was cast and Great Alaska Adventure Lodge was born.
Deb John is Laurence's partner life and in travel, and has driven with him from Texas to Costa Rica, traveled the backcountry roads of the Yucatan peninsula and the even boated upriver in the darkest Amazon. Lake many of us, Deb wears a few hats, and is the Great Alaska book keeper, and keeps us all on an even keel with both accounting and networking matters. She's been an Alaskan for over 2 decades after hailing from Utah.
Kathy Haley- Owner/homesteader Kathy was raised at the current lodge site. Her father, a famous Alaskan homesteader, flew survey flights for the U.S. Army and once the homesteader act was created, no one was in a better position to pick the very best spot on the Kenai! It is from this location that Kathy grew up- eating wild moose and sheep, smoking salmon caught from the Kenai River, flying across Cook Inlet to dig for clams and set-netting off the mouth of the Anchor river. Kathy now lives with her husband John and is the spiritual center for Great Alaska. Along with working in the office during the summers and connecting with our guests, she is a specialist teacher for dyslexic children and adults, and shares her incredible faith with the local community through her local church. She also travels with her husband John to her "other family" in Waco, Texas every year.
Kent John - Owner/G.M./Marketing/Fishing Operations
Kent traveled north to Alaska in his Senior year of high school to raise a little money for college at Washington Statue University. While processing sockeye salmon on the Nushagak River, he fell in love with the state. Following the long summer of fish processing, he spend a week on the Kenai with his father, and first fished the confluence of the Moose and Kenai rivers, where the lodge now sits. Kent has now guided the Kenai river since 1984, and has trained and managed the guide staff for 20 years. He multi-tasks by designing marketing strategy and website presence for Great Alaska- and he's written most of the copy that you read on the website.
Kevin A. - Operations Manager. Kevin is enjoying his first year as operations manager here at great Alaska and doing a stellar job. Kevin lived in Alaska prior to his arrival this year, and spent time at remote locations both guiding and managing) in New Zealand, Texas and other exotic remote destinations. His ability to keep to schedule and ensure all of our guests are safe and happy is truly special. Photo and bio coming soon!
Nick P. - Safaris Manager. Nick is in his second stint with Great Alaska, and is in charge of all Safaris-based activities. Nick is an amazing young man with a great handle on all the adventures we offer our guests and if you are flying to BearCamp, rafting the Kenai, Cruising Kenai Fjords or Mountain biking the Chugach mountain trails, you'll be be well taken care of my Nick and his Safari guides. Photo and bio coming soon!
Jay D. - Executive Chef. Jay is in his first year with Great Alaska, and no matter what activities you will be enjoying with us, you'll enjoy his amazing food. Hailing from the east coast, Jay bypassed a chance to cook at Fenway Park in Boston to share his amazing culinary touch with our guests. From the daily appetizers at happy hour, to the "Adventurer's lunch" to our amazing dinners, you are in for a treat. Photo and bio coming soon!Andrew H. - Sales Andrew wears many hats, (including his favorite- fly rod steel head and Trout guide during the fall season and occasional deckhand on our offshore halibut fishing boats!) as well as handling all graphics and artwork for Great Alaska. He also an outstanding sales agents in the winter, so like all of our office staff, you'll speak with him both in the winter and summer. Andrew is one of the most versatile members of our team and in addition to his wide ranging talents in the office and in the field, is the lead guitarist for the lodge's staff band, "Sockeye".
Steve F. - Freshwater fishing guide/Winter sales
Steve has been with us for more than two decades and is one of the finest guides in the state. In addition to spending more than 10,000 hours guiding guests on his beloved Kenai river, he'll happily share his knowledge of the run timing and fishing styles to help you plan your trip. Actually, he'll happily share his knowledge on a giant variety of topics! Of course after more than 2 decades living and exploring on the Kenai Peninsula, he is expert in all things Alaska, and is equally at home planning your fishing trip, or your National Park safari or Kenai Multi- sport.
Johnny H. - Lead Safaris Guide
Johnny is our lead Safaris guide and trainer for all things safaris. If your trips includes a trip to Denali National Park, a tour to the "end of the road" in Homer or a hike out over the incredible Harding Ice field, you are likely to cross paths with Johnny. Johnny heads up a truly stellar cast of guides for our non fishing adventures.
Caprice S. - Bearcamp Mgr. If you are fortunate enough to have BearCamp on your itinerary, you'll learn about the incredible animals from Caprice Stoner who is in her fourth year sharing the meadow with the amazing animals. Matt stays at bearcamp all summer long and is one of the most experienced bear guides in Alaska. Caprice, in addition to guiding and Managing the BearCamp experience, runs many of our Kenai Peninsula and Denali National Park safaris. They are both a great asset to Great Alaska Adventure Lodge.
Our Alaska Sport Fishing and Safaris staff is the finest in the state, and we invite you to get to know them soon.
Mexico's Holbox Fly Fishing Lodge
In Mexico, our lodge manager is Luciano Govi. Luciano is a world traveler who has made lovely Holbox Island his home. His unique blend of local charm and worldliness, along with his distinctly Italian sense of hospitality make your stay unforgettable. In addition to ensuring your trips success, Lucian will make you feel welcome and relaxed. We are fortunate to be working with Luciano, and our guests tell us time and time again how much they appreciate his local knowledge, his unique outlook on life and of course his fresh quesadilla and espresso over ice cream! All the fishing guides are locals who have been fishing these waters forever.
Wherever one travels, it is the people you are with that make the trip. We are fortunate to have been blessed with the finest staff that anyone could hope for, and our guests remind us of that fact time and time again. Please come and join us this year!