** IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT **

As of March 30th, COAC has suspended backcountry avalanche advisories and pro observations until further notice.

On March 23rd, Governor Brown of Oregon issued Stay at Home orders for the public regarding the COVID-19 outbreak. The directives are clear in that “to the maximum extent possible, individuals stay at home or in their place of residence.” On March 27th the Deschutes National Forest issued a closure of all developed recreation sites including trailheads and snoparks. COAC is committed to supporting our community, local emergency services, and agency partners and because of this we felt it important to cease operations as we all work together to minimize the impacts and spread of COVID-19.   

This decision was not taken lightly. Aside from the need to maintain congruency with the Governors' orders, there are inherent risks with backcountry activities in alpine environments and it’s important to consider unnecessary exposure to COAC forecasters, first responders, and local medical staff in light of the current situation.

We look forward to getting back into the mountains and providing you all with the tools to recreate safely in the backcountry. Until then we thank you for your continued support and wish all our mountain community the best of health and wellness.

COAC Board of Directors

Trevor Miller
President

Trevor arrived to Central Oregon in the fall of 2007. Originally from Salt Lake City, Utah, he grew up skiing in the Wasatch Range while being exposed to some of the finest avalanche forecasting personalities and organized efforts to promote snow safety and backcountry ethics. Trevor served as a member on The Brighton Resort (Brighton, Utah) pro patrol, he is AIARE Level 1 and 2 certified. Trevor had the idea of organizing Central Oregon backcountry users as a result of the increasing size of the Central Oregon backcountry community, lack of free community based awareness efforts, and minimal geographically relevant forecasting tools. His focus has been on establishing a proactive organization to support and organize the community to champion for increased avalanche education and forecasting in our region.

 

Jon Tapper
Vice President

Jon Tapper has been a front/side/backcountry enthusiast since 1994, and has lived in Central Oregon since 2003. Having also lived in Telluride, Big Sky, and SaltLake, Jon has been exposed to the ski/backcountry community for over 2 decades as well as various terrain and snowpacks. Jon partnered with Trevor to bolster the mountain safety culture within Central Oregon. AIARE Level 1 certified, Jon’s interests have carried him toward backcountry photography. Jon's day job is in Sales, Marketing, and Operations, providing a good background to apply towards business aspects of COAC.

 

Aaron Hartz
Director

Aaron is an Oregon native and started skiing at a young age. After being introduced to backcountry skiing, he started climbing and skiing the Cascade Volcanoes to prolong the ski season. He is currently a guide at Oregon Ski Guides and Timberline Mountain Guides. Aaron is AAI Level 3 trained and a professional member of the American Avalanche Association. He is passionate about skiing and snow safety, and excited to be involved with COAC.

 

Adam Stroup
Director

An Oregon native, Adam moved to Central Oregon in 1998. Although an avid mountain biker, hiker and mushroom hunter during the snow-free months, he’s more at home on his snowmobile or quiver of skis. His passion for snow science and snow safety led him to his AIARE Level 2 certification in 2015 and his involvement with COAC. Adam lives in Bend with his wife and two snow-pups and works for a local pharmaceutical research company.

 

Kevin Grove
Director

Kevin is an Engineering Professor at Central Oregon Community College and has been an avid backcountry skier and climber for the past 15 years. He grew up in Montana, attended college at Montana State University in Bozeman, and has called Bend home for the past 12 years. He is passionate about snow science and loves to share this passion with COCC students and with the Central Oregon outdoor community. Kevin is AAI Level 3 trained.

 

Allison Miles
Director

Alli learned to ski on the icy moguls and man-made snow of south-central Pennsylvania, but she eventually migrated west and discovered the joy of untracked backcountry lines, sharing dawn patrols and storm days with friends, and expanding her knowledge and experience of snow science. Alli has completed her AIARE Level 2 and is continuing to build her skillset through experience and education. She loves exploring the mountains on skis and is always happy to break trail, dig a pit, or drop in first.

 

Caroline Ponzini
Director

A resident of the PNW since 2000, Cara has a longstanding love of the outdoors having worked in conservation, outdoor education, and earth sciences. She earned her BS in Geology from the University of Puget Sound, and Juris Doctor from Lewis and Clark Law School with a focus on Natural Resource and Environmental Law. Cara enjoys using her legal background to improve access to education and resources, including making backcountry travel accessible, fun, and safe for all user group. She holds a CAA Level 1 avalanche certificate from the Canadian Avalanche Association.

 

Zoe Roy
Development Director

Zoe is originally from the land of maple leaves and 'eh', however she left Canada at a young age and grew up in Bend, Oregon. She skipped town after high school and recently moved back to Bend after ten years which included living in Austria, going to college at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City and pursuing nordic ski racing at an elite level in Canmore, Alberta. Zoe loves the mountains, backcountry skiing, and the community of people those bring together. She is excited to be part of growing COAC into a premier forecasting and educational resource center.