Alpen Fuelers - Chad Ryker of Backcountry Rookies

We recently interviewed Chad Ryker of Backcountry Rookies.  Backcountry Rookies is a podcast to educate and inspire people to get into the backcountry.  Chad is originally from Indiana and is avid hunter and advocate for the backcountry.  Backcountry Rookies is an Alpen Fuel Partner.Backcountry Rookies

Where are you located?  I currently live in San Antonio, TX but being a military guy I get to move every few years.  This summer I will move out west to Joint Base Lewis McChord in Washington State.  Pacific North West here we come!


What types of backcountry activities do you do?  I love to be outside whether it be to hike, hunt or hammering up the side of a mountain to enjoy the view from the top.  I am also looking forward to learning how to fly fish while I am in the PNW.  Fly fishing is something I have wanted to do ever since I watched the movie “A River Runs Through It” as a kid.


What adventures do you have planned for this year?   My biggest adventure this year will be the move from Texas to Washington.  My wife and I will pack up our two dogs and belongings and head out for the journey in June.  We are going to take our time and use the road trip as a mini vacation.  We have a few places to stop along the way that we want to explore, like Moab and Salt Lake City and hopefully see and UFO in Roswell, NM.  As for hunting, I have an Oregon bear hunt planned in May and then a Washington bear hunt in August is in the works.  I plan to hit up Idaho and Oregon for elk and mule deer in the fall.  In addition to hunting I know I will be out on the trails in Washington.  My wife and I want to tackle Mt Rainier this summer. 


What is Backcountry Rookies and how did it get started?  Backcountry Rookies started out as a podcast to educate and inspire people before they head west for their first big game hunt.  We are in the process of building a functional website that will be a resource for people to find packing lists for all occasions and hunts from shed hunting for an afternoon to multiple day backcountry trips.  We are also working on a section dedicated to big game recipes and some homemade dehydrated meals.  Most recently, we added section for the Backcountry Rookies Team Members with a photo and brief biography for the best group of guys assembled for the outdoors. 


What can podcast listeners look forward to in 2019?  We have so much planned for this year that it is hard to cover it all.  I will hit a few of the wave tops that will give you an idea.  Most of the shows revolve around hunting so if you are interested in hearing Subject Matter Experts from the hunting community stop by and give it a listen.  Stepping outside of from hunting content a bit, I have Jessie Greger from Next Mile Meals, she explains where Next Mile came from and some of the benefits their meals can provide.  In April, I have a survival show what will focus on how to take care of yourself when you get into a “bad situation” in the wild.  Another show I am looking forward to recording is with Land Tawney, CEO of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, which will cover the efforts of BHA to protecting our public lands public and we will talk about the recent passing of the John Dingell Public Land Package, S.47.  Something to look forward to is the growth of our social media pages.  We have Instagram and Facebook and I encourage people to like them. We have recently started a group page on Facebook titled Backcountry Rookies Nation where you can provide input to the podcast.  Often times I will post about upcoming shows or ask what people want to hear and it is a great place to share information with other like minded hunters who may be able to answer your questions.


How did you learn about Alpen Fuel? The almighty Instagram.  I came across a picture of what was going to be the first Alpen Fuel box and was immediately interested.  One thing I love to do in the outdoors is eat snacks and Alpen Fuel has come through on offering great products in each box from the start.


How has the Alpen Fuel store helped you?  Being able to try out new products before you buy them is a great trial and error.  Sometimes if you order direct from a company you are required to buy large quantities of a product or pay a higher price to try one of something.  Alpen Fuel can send you multiple products to test so you know if you want to buy a multipack of a product.

Peak Refuel


What is your favorite backcountry food?  I am somewhat ashamed and proud at the same time to say I love SPAM.  I could have a slice in my pack every day but through Alpen Fuel I recently tried Heathers Choice Packaroons and they have taken over the top spot in my food packing list.  They are so crazy good.  I really like the mint chocolate flavor.


What is your best piece of outdoor advice?  Get outside and enjoy it no matter what the activity is.  If you are a hunter, fisherman, skier, rock climber, just get outside.  I would also like to add to try something new while you are out there.  If you are a rock climber put a fishing pole on your pack and give it a try.  The only way we can preserve the outdoors or make it better is to be outside in the middle of it.  Get outside this weekend and grab a buddy to go with you.

1 comment

  • Cool interview! Just recently started following both the Backcountry Rookies and Alpen Fuel and so far I’m digging both sites! Looking to place my first order with alpen fuel so I can start testing out some meals before I go on my first backcountry hunt this year!

    Jason Holliday

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