Meet Our Team

Our team combines a passion for the outdoors with friendly expertise to help our customers get the most out of their adventures.

  • Sandeep Nain

    CEO & Guide
  • Burke Lyman

    Store Manager
  • Brennan Halterman

    Shoe Whisperer & Footwear Buyer
  • Kayli Brown

    Sales Associate
  • Mike Keller

    Warehouse Associate
  • Jerry Casson

    Ski Specialist & Boot Fitter
  • Kat Cutright

    Director Of Strategy
  • Kira Clausen

    Sales Associate & Social Media Marketing
  • Jessica Thomas

    Warehouse Associate
  • Madison Daniel-Smith

    Warehouse Associate
  • James Redfield

    Warehouse Co-Manager
  • Sydney Kahl

    Sales Associate/Ski Tech

Trevor Mayes

Sales Associate

Trevor grew up in Seattle, but spent the last 10 years roaming around the Pacific Northwest. His love for the mountains led him back home where he loves to ski, mountain bike, backpack, and all things adventure.

Sydney Kahl

Sales Associate/Ski Tech

Sydney is originally from Maine and grew up hiking, canoeing, and Nordic skiing in the White Mountains. When not in the ski shop or on the sales floor at Ascent Outdoors, Sydney instructs mountaineering, ski, and canoe expeditions for the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS). In her free time she or can be found searching for an alpine lake to swim in, or pursuing her next mountain objective, usually on skis.

Mike Keller

Warehouse Associate

Mike made his trek to Seattle in 2013 from Tempe AZ. Although, his love of bikes began in the Midwest, at five years old when he got his first bike: The Huffy Dirt Dog. Mike immediately felt at home in the PNW, where you can spot him cruising around town, mountain biking, racing cyclocross, trail running, or going on long walks with his best four-legged gal pal, Freya. Little did he know at five, dirt and dogs would continue being staples in his life.

In a former career life, he specialized in peddling beer for a local bicycle-themed brewery and is excited to continue working to support getting rad in the outdoors.

James Redfield

Warehouse Co-Manager

Originally an east coaster, James spent the better part of the last six years working seasonally and full time in national parks and ski areas around the US. As a recent transplant to the Pacific Northwest, he is fired up about enjoying all that Washington had to offer.

Madison Daniel-Smith

Warehouse Associate

Madison originates from Seattle and spent some time living in Bellingham. But now she's back and ready for action! When not exploring the PNW with her dog, she will be exploring her creativity through art, music, and Dungeons & Dragons.

Jessica Thomas

Warehouse Associate

Jessica grew up climbing trees, exploring forests, and camping in the midwest. She moved to the PNW two years ago where she enjoys hiking, backpacking, camping, climbing, and collecting rocks on the coast. Her deep-rooted passion for the outdoors led her to Ascent. Although she has now advanced to climbing rocks—you can still find her up in a tree every once in a while.

Scott Mcleod

Warehouse Manager

Scott loves any excuse to get outside and out for an adventure, especially if it includes his dog, Stella. Backpacking and paddleboarding are his favorite ways to soak up the Washington summers while winters are filled with snowboarding. After moving back to Washington from Arizona his passion for spending time in nature grew into a full-fledged obsession, and he can think of few places that are as beautiful and accessible to anyone who wants to enjoy the outdoors. He finds spending time in nature to be very cathartic, spiritually fulfilling, and a great way to get a boost and bring perspective to his life.

Jennifer Jones

Warehouse Associate

Jennifer is originally from Wyoming and moved to Seattle about 11 years ago. She enjoys hiking, backpacking, and snowshoeing in the great outdoors. She also loves a good book or movie in a cabin or seaside cottage with a glass of wine.

Sasha Hanigan

Warehouse Associate

Sasha was born in California and has moved between Washington and Oaxaca, Mexico, where her mom is from. Sasha enjoys enjoy climbing, scrambling spicy class 3 or 4s, and bushwhacking. In her free time she works on her jeep and off-roads a lot. Sasha solos most of her summits and has recently gotten into multi-pitch climbing. Sadly, she has yet to learn to rappel.

Will Bowen

Ski Specialist & Graphic Designer

Will spends a great deal of his time outside skiing, climbing, hiking, backpacking, biking, and practicing yoga. He has called many places home, from Atlanta and Santa Barbara to New Zealand, but couldn't be more excited to be in the Pacific Northwest at Ascent Outdoors. After years of wanting to increase his knowledge of outdoor gear and become more involved in the outdoor community, he finally feels at home and surrounded by good people.

Please come talk to Will about trees. If you don't want to talk about trees, Will is also happy to talk about environmental conservation, vegan cooking, yoga, and ceremonial teas. If you want to talk about gear for any of the activities listed above, come find Will. Trust me, Will can get into a really deep conversation about tent stakes if you're up for it.

Samantha McCann

Sales Associate

Sam likes rocks and running up down and around mountains. When she's not at Ascent Outdoors, you can find her cruising around the Cascades in her running vest, singing country music and jumping in alpine lakes. In the winter, Sam loves to backcountry ski, ice climb, and skate ski. She is passionate about finding you the best gear for whatever adventures you've got planned, but specializes in fast and light shenanigans. Ask her about the best foods to cook on a Whisperlite, or her favorite Cascade traverses!

Kira Clausen

Sales Associate & Social Media Marketing

Kira is a native Seattleite, and grew up camping and hiking with her family. She started her professional life as a teacher and didn't find the outdoor industry until later in life. But she now and can't see herself doing anything else!

Kira grew up doing competitive gymnastics and swimming, so when she found climbing 8 years ago, she fell in love. Her main hobbies include rock climbing, snowboarding, and backpacking. But she's always down to go running, biking, hiking, paddleboarding, or really anything active and outside. This winter, she plans to pick up skiing and eventually get into the backcountry.

Since she found her passions later in life, Kira believes you're never too old to start over or learn a new skill. She strongly believes the outdoors is for all — and there are no dumb questions. So come find her and ask her anything! Don't forget to say hi to her fur baby, Ruby Lane - the official shop dog!

Sandeep Nain

CEO & Guide

Sandeep began his climbing career in the Pacific Northwest, and enjoys rock climbing, ice climbing, and backcountry skiing. He has climbed and guided extensively in the Cascades, and summited the volcanoes of Washington multiple times. Some of Sandeep's favorite climbs in the Northwest are the Torment-Forbidden-Traverse, Liberty Ridge, the Coleman Headwall of Mt. Baker, and the North Ridge of Mt. Baker. Although Sandeep is known by the climbing community for climbing big alpine routes, his first passion is rock climbing. On sunny days you can find him climbing with friends at Mt. Index, trying-hard on steep crimps at Exit 38, or in the winter pulling on plastic in the gym. He enjoys projecting 5.12 routes as much as climbing long rock routes in the backcountry.

In addition to a depth of climbing experience in the Pacific Northwest, Sandeep has extensive high altitude climbing and guiding experience. Some of Sandeep's first high altitude climbs were in the Indian Himalaya, where he and two friends achieved three first ascents of technical six-thousand-meter peaks in the Miyar Valley which were documented in the American Alpine Journal. He has also been active in Mountain Rescue, and earned the Life Saving Award for an especially difficult and dangerous mission.

These days Sandeep can be found responding to emails on his laptop at the warehouse, playing with his three daughters, helping customers at the shop, or climbing with Miyar Adventures guides during their time off.

Burke Lyman

Store Manager

Do what you love and never work a day in your life" was a phrase that Burke just did not believe. And then the mid-life crisis hit. He bypassed the neck tattoo and the convertible Camaro and opted for a job at Ascent Outdoors.

If you are lucky enough to catch a glimpse of the once-accused Sasquatch partaking in one of his favorite outdoor activities, you'd find him backcountry skiing, backpacking, fastpacking, long distance trail running or, just recently, alpine climbing.

Burke likes to talk. Boy, does he like to talk. If you manage to catch him at the store, he loves it when you ask him a question. If he doesn't know the answer, he will make sure to find someone who does.

Moral of the story: Burke didn't need a neck tattoo and convertible Camaro to love what he does and never work a day in his life.

Jennifer Jones

Warehouse Associate

Jennifer is originally from Wyoming and moved to Seattle about 11 years ago. She enjoys hiking, backpacking, and snowshoeing in the great outdoors. She also loves a good book or movie in a cabin or seaside cottage with a glass of wine.

Brennan Halterman

Shoe Whisperer & Footwear Buyer

Brennan has had the blessing and privilege to be a part of the Seattle outdoor retail scene for 20 years now. Fortune threw him into the footwear department at the Seattle REI and he was able to work alongside some master class tutelage via OG GOAT Pete Smith for almost 5 years. After some time at The North Face he stumbled across Second Ascent in 2008 and is quickly approaching his 14th year at the business (now Ascent Outdoors) in August 2022.

Brennan has been the Footwear buyer at the shop since 2015 and has enjoyed the wild ride of the quest for a next-level footwear selection in the northwest. It has been his absolute pleasure to help assist all visitors to Ascent Outdoors with their foot health and footwear needs.

Brennan enjoys off-trail backpacking, looking for wildlife, swimming in lakes, crawling into tree holes, wading through coastal sea caves and, most recently, plundering trails with his two small children. He has had the sincere pleasure of extensive backpacking in SE Alaska, Denali National Park, and many, many areas across WA state.

Brennan can share many fun stories involving flying squirrels, huge elk skulls, cougar growls, the Marmot Underground, wacky bear glissades, 3am Alaska summer rope swing with Humpback Whales, Sasquatch theory, thirsty Mountain goats with hiking kilts, those 2 times at Burning Man, and, most importantly, Ice Weasels.

Will Bowen

Ski Specialist & Graphic Designer

Will spends a great deal of his time outside skiing, climbing, hiking, backpacking, biking, and practicing yoga. He has called many places home, from Atlanta and Santa Barbara to New Zealand, but couldn't be more excited to be in the Pacific Northwest at Ascent Outdoors. After years of wanting to increase his knowledge of outdoor gear and become more involved in the outdoor community, he finally feels at home and surrounded by good people.

Please come talk to Will about trees. If you don't want to talk about trees, Will is also happy to talk about environmental conservation, vegan cooking, yoga, and ceremonial teas. If you want to talk about gear for any of the activities listed above, come find Will. Trust me, Will can get into a really deep conversation about tent stakes if you're up for it.

Jerry Casson

Ski Specialist & Boot Fitter

Jerry has been working at Ascent Outdoors for the past 5 years and currently serves as the ski buyer and one of the master bootfitters at the shop. He has 30 years' experience as an avid backcountry skier and climber in the Pacific Northwest.

Nick Chernikovich

Warehouse Associate

Nick previously work in the corporate world for the last 20 years before becoming our Warehouse Manager in January 2022. When not meticulously taking care of his mustache, you can find him playing in the snow and climbing rocks around the PNW.

Carson McCarrel

Warehouse Trainer & Manager

Carson's favorite outdoor activity is skiing. From laps through the park to powder stashes, he finds happiness in all aspects of skiing! Carson is a huge reason why things in our warehouse are so well organized. The systems he's implemented help warehouse operation run smoothly so your orders reach you quickly.

Scott Mcleod

Warehouse Manager

Scott loves any excuse to get outside and out for an adventure, especially if it includes his dog, Stella. Backpacking and paddleboarding are his favorite ways to soak up the Washington summers while winters are filled with snowboarding. After moving back to Washington from Arizona his passion for spending time in nature grew into a full-fledged obsession, and he can think of few places that are as beautiful and accessible to anyone who wants to enjoy the outdoors. He finds spending time in nature to be very cathartic, spiritually fulfilling, and a great way to get a boost and bring perspective to his life.

Kat Cutright

Director Of Strategy

Kat discovered a love of the wilderness after relocating to Washington from the Great Plains as a teenager. They love sleeping under the stars and have clocked many miles backpacking trails in Washington and Montana, and hiked the full Torres del Paine circuit in the Patagonian Andes. Kat's favorite outdoor activities besides hiking & camping are non-technical alpine summits, running (slowly), distance-riding her road bike, and lifting heavy objects. Right now, their exploration of the PNW is largely limited to car-camping with their road-trip-happy eight-year-old daughter and corgi. They are looking forward to getting back into climbing one of these days.

You won't find Kat at the shop often, but you will find them online, writing copy for the website and blog, fine-tuning promotional emails, and helping the rest of the team drive the mission of Ascent Outdoors!

Mike Keller

Warehouse Associate

Mike made his trek to Seattle in 2013 from Tempe AZ. Although, his love of bikes began in the Midwest, at five years old when he got his first bike: The Huffy Dirt Dog. Mike immediately felt at home in the PNW, where you can spot him cruising around town, mountain biking, racing cyclocross, trail running, or going on long walks with his best four-legged gal pal, Freya. Little did he know at five, dirt and dogs would continue being staples in his life.

In a former career life, he specialized in peddling beer for a local bicycle-themed brewery and is excited to continue working to support getting rad in the outdoors.

Bucky Bukowitz

Sales Associate

Bucky grew up in Maryland and spent most of his time paddling and peddling around. After cycling across the country he began guiding trips in Jackson, Wyoming. While dreaming of the Pacific Northwest he found himself guiding multi-day sea kayaking trips in the San Juans. He enjoys everything from mountain biking to backpacking and is always wanting to expand his knowledge in the outdoors.

Sasha Hanigan

Warehouse Associate

Sasha was born in California and has moved between Washington and Oaxaca, Mexico, where her mom is from. Sasha enjoys enjoy climbing, scrambling spicy class 3 or 4s, and bushwhacking. In her free time she works on her jeep and off-roads a lot. Sasha solos most of her summits and has recently gotten into multi-pitch climbing. Sadly, she has yet to learn to rappel.

Kayli Brown

Sales Associate

Kayli was born and raised in the Washington Cascades, so her natural love of the outdoors was a catalyst for all her hobbies. Skiing, hiking, backpacking and water sports are an adventure staple. She is currently studying to get her Masters in Public Health but in her free time she loves to paddle board on Lake Union and ski Mission Ridge. If Kayli isn't outside she can be found enjoying the Seattle food scene or playing a game of Uno.