Alpen Fuel Ambassadors
Interested in joining our Ambassador team? Apply here.
Hailing from St. Louis, Missouri, Max Benz moved west at the age of 18 and never looked back. His attraction to physical pursuits in the outdoors has undoubtedly driven his career path and passion for capturing people in the most rugged of environments. From ski lines in the Alaskan backcountry to early mornings in Arizona elk country, Max has extensively documented adventures on the rivers, mountains, and deserts of the American West. While the camera is a staple, don’t make him choose between his skis, bike, or bow.
Jill Staats was born and raised in Washington state. In April of 2018, she quit her job, sold her house and hit the Pacific Crest Trail with her sister. They completed the 2,650 mile journey together in 143 days. Since then, her passion for hiking has become obsessive. Jill takes full advantage of the beautiful state she lives in by hiking every weekend until the weather says other wise. You’ll also find her working out with her husband or traveling the world to exotic places such as Africa and The Maldives. She is a firm believer in living life with experiences, big or small, so she’ll never let one pass her by!
Erik Petersen has been documenting life in Montana and around the world for more than two decades. He was a newspaper and magazine photographer for 10 years, photographing stories that varied from the Iditarod sled dog race in Alaska, to helping educate girls in Afghanistan. His work now consists of freelance commercial and outdoor photography as well as documentary filmmaking. Erik is lucky enough to live in southwest Montana with his wife and two boys, a dozen chickens, and a pair of bird dogs.
Born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska, Melissa Meade's love for wildlife photography began soon after hiking deep into the Chugach Mountains for the elusive Dall Sheep, which ignited her great love for the mountains and the animals that call these amazing places home. She has journeyed all across Alaska photographing wildlife from the massive Yukon Bull Moose to Coastal Brown Bears to the tiny Collared Pika that inhabit the backcountry. In the land of the midnight sun, she continues her adventures, one photo at a time.
BK Koomler is a professional photographer from Boise, Idaho currently residing in Santa Barbara, California. With a love of everything outdoors, he is constantly seeking out new experiences to document. He was a backpacking and climbing guide throughout college, spent several years documenting his travels abroad after school, and is now an award winning photographer working with myriad outdoor brands. From weeks in the Idaho backcountry filming documentaries, to photographing hunting trips in the remote Alaskan wilderness, BK has experienced it all. There is always something new to explore, and you can be sure BK will be up for the adventure!
When Zoe Greenhouse’s plan to thru-hike the Pacific Crest Trail in the spring of 2020 was postponed due to Covid-19, she turned to Plan B: the Colorado Trail. Five weeks, 500 miles, and 100,000 feet of elevation change later, she completed her first thru-hike at age 17. Zoe is an avid hiker, runner, sailor, and skier; actually, she’ll do anything involving the outdoors. She has biked 200 miles around Lake Champlain in her Burlington, Vermont, hometown; worked at a ski area for three seasons; and completed section hikes of the Arizona Trail and Appalachian Trail.
Nashville native David McKinnon is an avid outdoor adventurer. His passion for backpacking spans 35 years and has taken him on treks through a dozen states including Alaska, Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, Wyoming and Tennessee. David is currently section hiking the Sheltowee Trace through Tennessee and Kentucky, and the Cumberland Trail in Tennessee. He leads the Nashville Backpacker Meetup group, an organization with over 5,300 outdoor enthusiasts.
Caden Crawford is a thrill-seeking adventure addict based out of Montana. He is an award-winning landscape and adventure photographer and has had the privilege to work alongside the Montana Tourism Board as well as a handful of awesome outdoor brands. The 9/5 wasn’t quite cutting it for Caden and he has decided to take on the #vanlife to pursue freelance photography full-time. His 4x4 van is ready to take on anything from big snowboarding excursions to long backpacking trips in the Montana backcountry.