The Colorado chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers (BHA) recently appointed Micah Shanser, James Donohue and Brian Busker to serve on their Chapter Leadership Team (CLT) as Central Rockies Regional Director (Micah) and Assistant Regional Directors (James and Brian).
Micah was born and raised in Northern California, where he grew up exploring the backcountry by foot, bike and on skis. Although he didn’t have hunting mentors in his family, “We spent our time skiing, biking and camping,” Micah said. “My family taught me a lot about the woods and adventure.”
His first job was at a local outdoor shop in Squaw Valley, and “I started hunting and fishing in college,” Micah explains. He went on to earn a Master’s in Wilderness Therapy and, after college, began guiding backcountry trips for at risk teens in Oregon, Washington and Utah. During his off weeks, he worked at a wilderness survival school in Bellingham, Washington.
Micah and his wife went on to found Restorative Adventures, an outdoor school that taught classes on hunting, tracking and ethnobotany. Today he operates a group of Neurofeedback clinics (“Amazing Brains”) helping people with traumatic brain injuries, PTSD, learning disabilities and peak performance. Micah hunts with bow, rifle and shotgun, and lives in Silverthorne, “right on the boarder of unit 371 and 37,” he adds.
James was born in Concepcion, Chile, but grew up in Denver. He started fishing as a youngster, then (after high school) became interested in bird hunting and, eventually, big game. “I didn’t really have any hunting or fishing mentors growing up,” James said. “I’ve just always felt so fortunate to have so many public lands available, and grew up wanting to know/learn more.”
In 2009, a love for wildlife, skiing, backpacking, bird hunting, fishing and emergency medicine led him from a Front Range laboratory job to the Vail Valley, where he started a career on Vail’s Ski Patrol. Just a hike away, the Eagles Nest and Holy Cross Wilderness quickly became his backyard. “Watching the wildlife while working during the winter months is one of my favorite parts about this job,” James says.
He lives in Minturn and primarily hunts in Eagle County, with rifle and bow, and usually fishes “to eat alpine water trout while backpacking,” he says. James hunts grouse and ducks with his dogs, elk and deer have become new pursuits, and he’s never hiking without binoculars, tracking the animals he helps protect through his conservation efforts. “Emergency medicine and wildlife/land conservation are my passions,” James adds, “and I’m fortunate to now have a hand in both.”
Brian was born and raised in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. He grew up hunting and fishing with his father and grandfather. “I started hunting around 12 years old mainly for duck, quail and doves,” he said. “I spent much of my youth trolling for game fish such as bluefish, tuna and marlin.” Brian went on to earn a BAS Psychology from the University of Delaware, then transitioned to becoming a Certified Chef from Le Cordon Bleu.
He lives in Vail, is a Chef for Nobu Matsuhisa at Vail and describes himself as a “Husband, Hunter, Forager, Snowboarder, #buskercooks, #chefswhohunt.” “I hunt primarily in Central to Western Colorado,” Brian adds, “for everything from duck, grouse, rabbit, deer, antelope and elk.” He hunts with both bow and rifle.
Chapter chairman, David Lien (a U.S. Air Force veteran), said: “Micah, James and Brian are taking the bull by the horns in the Central Colorado Rockies, holding Pint Nights, Fly Fishing Film Tours and Wild Game Cook-offs. They are a whirlwind of public lands advocacy and they’re turning BHA into a force to be reckoned with in the greater Summit County region. Thank you Micah, James and Brian!”
The Colorado BHA Central Rockies Group is sponsoring a Fly Fishing Film Tour at the Blue Starlite Drive-in (8:30 - 10:30 pm) in Minturn on July 23 and a Wild Game Cook-off in Avon (at Ein Prost) on August 5 (more information to follow). Join us!
Founded by Mike Beagle (a former U.S. Army field artillery officer) and formed around an Oregon campfire in 2004, BHA is the sportsmen’s voice for our nation’s wild public lands, waters and wildlife. With over 20,000 members spread out across all 50 states and Canada, including chapters in 39 states and two international chapters—in Alberta and British Columbia—BHA brings an authentic, informed, boots-on-the-ground voice to the conservation of public lands. Since the Colorado BHA chapter was founded by David Petersen (a former U.S. Marine Corps helicopter pilot) in 2005 (the first official BHA chapter), they’ve grown their boots-on-the-ground presence to over 1,400 dedicated hunters and anglers.
Backcountry Hunters & Anglers is the sportsmen’s voice for our wild public lands, waters and wildlife