If you’ve called our support line, you may have had the opportunity to chat with JJ. An avid backpacker, JJ is an absolute wealth of knowledge when it comes to determining the proper gear for outfitting your adventure. She’s dabbled all over the Southwestern US having completed treks in Utah, New Mexico, Colorado, and Texas. These trips have allowed her to explore the iconic Delicate Arch in Arches National Park near Moab, Utah, soak in the history of the Ancestral Puebloan cliff dwellings dating back to the 1190’s in Mesa Verde, Colorado, and marvel at the magnificent beauty of Big Bend National Park, Texas. Never one to miss an opportunity for adventuring, JJ frequently makes the most of her time off to explore the many state parks here in Texas most recently having hiked in both Meridian and Mother Neff State Park.
Her favorite local destination is Pedernales Falls State Park, in Johnson City – JJ claims to know all the secret spots so you get that remote wilderness feeling, despite only being about an hour away from downtown Austin.
When weekends consist of mini getaways like these, you’ve gotta go big when it comes to major escapades which is exactly what JJ intends to do. She’s planning a through-hike along the Te Araroa trail in New Zealand. This “tramp” as they call them down under consists of walking 1,880 miles across the two islands of New Zealand from Cape Reinga to Bluff (aka top to bottom). JJ decided to take on this adventure because her goal was to “get to know” New Zealand. After looking into the option of volunteering on an organic farm (WWOOFing) she felt the Te Araroa was the perfect way for her to sincerely experience all New Zealand has to offer. While on the trail, hikers encounter gorgeous coastlines, volcanoes, mountain passes, Kauri forests, and of course it wouldn’t be a trip to New Zealand without farmland full of sheep.
As a Customer Relationship Manager (CRM) at ACK, JJ loves that her role allows the opportunity to delve into researching gear for customers. When searching for jobs, she focused on work connected to the outdoors industry and followed her passion to find a position that spoke to her. At the nuts and bolts of it, CRM life consists of engaging with ACK customers helping place their orders, answering incoming calls on our support line, and conducting a lot of hands on gear research. Oftentimes JJ is dashing out to our warehouse so she can try on an item and truly give our customers an understanding of how something will fit, explain the subtle differences between an Orca Chaser Insulated Tumbler and a Yeti Rambler Insulated Tumbler, or say just how soft a limited edition Yak-Gear YakAddicts T-shirt is (for the record, they’re super soft because of the cotton/polyester blend material).
As with all ACK-ers, in our Getting to Know Us series, I asked about which sauce JJ would like to be dipped in: “Sriracha, because it’s spicy and good – it’d probably give me a nice cleansing feeling too with all that heat”.
Devyn, Asker of the hard hitting questions 😉