Monday, March 11, 2013

So you want to work in the Adventure Travel Industry...?

I caught up with Oakland's Brian Allen a couple weeks ago, and photographed him as part of my series on Travel Guides and their lifestyles.

A little glimpse of his route and experience in the travel world as a guide and as a operations manager.  We shot at some un-godly hour at Lands End in San Francisco.  Check out the Q & A below!

-Where are you from originally and how long have you been in the Outdoor Industry?

     I'm originally from Oakland CA and I've been in the outdoor adventure industry for about six years.

- Tell me more about the guiding you have done, and where?

     I've worked as a guide throughout California and Hawaii, taking people on trips around Yosemite and the Sierras, as well as Sonoma and the Northern California coast. In Hawaii I guided trips around 4,000 acres of beautiful undeveloped land on the rural east side of Oahu in jeeps or on horseback. The last few years I have spent more time working behind the scenes running operations and logistics.

- What are some of the most intense areas you have traveled to for fun?

     Probably the most intense traveling I did for fun was in China during the 2003 SARS outbreak. I was living in a small town in Shandong Province during that time and did some traveling up and down the eastern coast of China, and made it down to Hong Kong which was where the outbreak was centered. It was a tense time to be in China and I was ultimately forced to leave the country. I also spent 6 months traveling in India and had some intense and illuminating experiences.

-How do you think the adventure travel industry has changed in the last ten years? where is it going?

     I think the last ten years have seen people becoming much more conscious of the impact they have on the areas and communities they visit. I think there is still a long way to go for the industry in this respect but I am encouraged to see people asking themselves and their tour operators  how they can travel more responsibly.

-What would you say to someone who is itching to get into this industry and lifestyle?

     I would encourage anyone to get into this industry - it can be a lot of work and it's not all fun and games but you have the opportunity to visit great places and meet amazing people, and there's rarely a dull moment.

-Any new trips planned for you?
     I recently returned from some travels in East Africa and will probably be staying local for a little while, but I'm always keeping an eye out for the next travel opportunity.

-If you could go somewhere tomorrow, where would you jet to?

     Right now Bolivia is really calling to me...

No comments: